Sunday, March 29, 2009

A day out with the girls

I gotta get out and top rope more! Today was a relaxing day of top roping in Eklutna Canyon with the ladies. Sometimes it's just so much more fun to have a laid back day of playing around on the ice than to try to do something crazy. And we get to climb much steeper stuff when on top rope.

I don't know if I'll ever lead climbs this steep, but I really enjoy climbing steep ice (with a nice rope to catch me from above of course). I guess if I keep doing this long enough I will get to the point where I will be comfortable enough to lead something that has a sustained vertical, but right now it just seems absurd.

I climb this stuff on top rope and am pretty confident that I won't fall off. I feel solid with the safety of the rope. But put me on the sharp end on a hard climb and I might just freak out and fall. I guess I need more days like this with tons of laps on long vertical sections to get comfortable.

I look down past my feet and can see the ground down below and it freaks me out. The climb is just Ripple, I tell myself, one that I have led many times. But I lead up the right side, and it is a dramatically different climb on the left.

Anyway, today was about fun. And it always fun to get out with a bunch of girls that make me laugh for the day.

On the walk out we noticed the level of ash on the snow had increased. I don't think Redoubt erupted again, but there was high winds today and it seems like some of the ash got blown down into the canyon. Right now I'm dealing with some serious puffy, scratchy eyes as a result.