Monday, October 8, 2012

10.8.2012 Chapel Pond Slab

After much debate between climbing at Chapel Pond or hiking Mt. Marcy we decided to head to Keene Valley and get on some rock.  Cam and Joe shared a rope while Rob and I were on another rope.  We left Troy at 8am and arrived at the slabs around 10am.  Most all of the slab was dry, which is what we were mainly worried about before coming to climb.  Last year, right around this time, Cam, Charles and I made our first ascent of the Regular Route.  I had just started climbing when we were there last year, so it was nice to lead the entire route and see how the tables have turned over the past year.  There was already a group of Canadian climbers on the route when we got to the base, and the last two in their party were just starting off.  Another two people were waiting to start off on the first pitch and then head left for Empress.  After they were gone, Cam started leading and Joe followed, then I started the first pitch of the Regular Route.  We had to wait occasionally for the Canadian team to make progress, but the only substantial wait was below pitch 6.  After finishing off the last two pitches we sat and ate lunch while taking in the nice views of fall foliage down the valley.  Last time, we followed another party down to the base of the slabs by taking a route that required two rappels.  However, the guidebook says that if you have to rappel then you are doing something wrong.  This time we found one of the ways down that did not require a rappel.

Looking up from the base.
Cam looking down on Joe cleaning P1.
Cam leading through.
Approaching the Canadians.
Perfect day in the valley.

Bomber pro all throughout the crack.
Stellar climbing.  Favorite pitch of the route.
Fall colors in full effect.
Leading up to the great belay ledge on P5.

Cam leading to the chimney part on P7.
All clear.
Can't beat the views over Chapel Pond.
Another party on Empress.
Joe feeling good after the climb...
...and Rob feeling tired.

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