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Sunday, September 21, 2014

Ol' Two Tier now climbs to the top (2nd pitches done... mostly)

Sam and I spent 9 hours out at the village cleaning and bolting (where needed) the upper pitch options on Ol' Two Tier. We installed 3 sets of chain anchors creating 4 final pitch options. Sam got to drill and install his first bolt(s). There are two easy sport routes (5.5-5.6 ish)(ran out of hangers to bolt the 2nd sport option), 1 mixed (5.6 ish) and one trad (5.6 ish), all are 30m. I also rapped Schwabby's and added a bolt at 30 meters (from the top) to create a rap station. Our other rap station that we thought would get you on the ground with a 60m rope doesnt; we learned the hard way. I stripped those anchors of their chains and put them up top. This crag is destined to put smiles on climber's faces for a long long time. Bet you wish you knew where it was! Maybe next year...

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Frog Rock 'Dark Side' climbing

I moved to Bozeman in 2005 and have been staring at the biggest most obvious chunk of climbable rock around town for almost 10 years now with zero attempts. Well Sam and I changed that on Saturday. We hiked over to the Dark Side to climb Servus. We climbed the first pitch of Servus then climbed Amber. Totally worth the hike. Even though its only 2 pitches of climbing you seem to be way up on a cliff. When you look across the canyon you are way above the Bozeman Pass climbs. The rock is spectacular pocketed limestone. Im not a huge fan of limestone sport climbs but I do enjoy climbing pockets and climbing in places I have never been before so I was peachy keen. Great views of town. There are dozens of routes that are not in the 3rd edition guide that we walked by on the way to Servus that looked like fun climbs so post Servus, we tried onsighting 3 of 'em. We got humbled after the first bolt on the first route we tried. We sent the second route without many issues besides it being harder than it looked (just like the first route). Sam decided he wanted to swap a crappy bail-biner from his harness for a nice bail-locker dangling from a route a couple of bolts up. I told him I would give him a catch only if he tried to get beyond the locker and he made it two bolts further. I made no attempt on the route but would definitely go back and try.
First pitch of Servus... pockets galore!

View from the base of Amber.
Looking down from the top of Amber.
The first route that shut us down.
This low angle slab is harder than it looks; 2nd route.
Suicidal carabiner.
The 3rd route with bail-locker.
Looking at the Bright side of Frog rock and all the wafers. I know there is a route up the largest one but are there any routes on all the sister wafers?

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Revenue Village: Ol' Two Tier - Finally got to climb "Schwabby's Access" and "Up and Adam"

Its kind of funny how Lucas and I bolted these routes over a year ago and they didnt get climbed until last weekend! I have been dreaming of climbing them since we bolted them cause I knew how awesome they were going to be. And they did not disappoint! If I go with a 5 star rating system out there, these both get 5 stars! 'Schwabby's Access' is a great 5.9 and 'Up and Adam' is the best 5.7 around. Lucas was obviously feeling bold the day he bolted 'Up and Adam'; besides the first two bolts the minimum runout is atleast 12ft keeping the 5.7 uber exciting. They are both pretty close to 50+ meters. We were hoping to finish up the top pitches but due to some time constraints thats all we got to do that day. We, Sam and I, installed chains on all the anchors.
Sam following the FA of Schwabby's Access (named after the guy that showed us on a computer where we legally could and could not to go out there).

Looking way down Up and Adam (named after a certain Adam P. that loaned us the drill that was used to bolt the route).
The bolts hug the arete climber's right adding some exposure to the already bold climb.

Sam brought the sunshine instead of the rain this day (for once!)
Estoy contento. 
Schwabby's uses that crack mid photo with the bush right in the middle of it.
The two slabs. 

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Beartooth Mountains: Tempest Mountain

A friend of mine, Ben, was jonesing to get up Granite Peak so I told him I would try and get him up there. Due to some stomach issues and personal peak bagging desires, I went up Tempest while he found his way up Granite. We left Mystic Lake at 6am and didnt get back until 7:30pm. Thats a lot of trail time, granted I got a couple hours nap while Ben was on Granite. It would have been my 4th trip up Granite and my stoke factor just wasnt high enough to turn the day into a death march and I had never been on Tempest. I would like to climb Montana's 100 tallest mountains so tagging Tempest (#6 or 7 depending on the list) was a must do. There is never really a bad day in the mountains but the West Rosebud experience has really gone downhill in my opinion. I mean, its the Beartooths, a giant wilderness area right? Not so much when there are atleast 10 tents up on the plateau, people everywhere you look, 6ft tall cairns every hundred yards and trails where there never used to be. People were surface shitting right off the trail without even putting rocks on top, allowing toilet paper to blow all over and get caught on rocks and branches. I picked up micro trash constantly. I even put a fire out at Mystic lake that was left full of wood and still burning! I guess its my fault for being up there during peak season but 8 or 9 years ago when I made my maiden voyage there was still a sense of adventure. BUT I still had a great time and it was an overall very successful trip. It might have been the nicest weather the Beartooths have ever seen!
Topping out the switchbacks from hell. This giant cairn has always been there. 
The plateau froze that night and the 3ft of snow a week prior made water available everywhere.

Granite from Tempest. 
A little snow still on the North Face.