Bubble in the desert

A blog I started whilst on a GE "Bubble" assignment in Nevada. I'm back in Cambridge (UK) now but still miss the desert and my friends out there.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Dinosaur Rock Carson City - Rock Climbing

Brian from work took me rock climbing at Dinosaur Rock near Carson City. I'm keen to do a route at Yosemite but haven't climbed for a lot of years. I'd like to claim it came back to me fast. Well, some of it did. I got my gear on ok and belaying was easily remembered. I hadn't realized but in the US people often climb on one rope, whereas in the UK we often use two. I still haven't worked it out but I felt that two would be safer but perhaps not. One rope, a thicker one though, is certainly simpler.

Brian led off and made good progress with flowing moves and good balance but taking his time to get it right. I think the route we did may have been called The Gash, which is listed in the picture at 5.7. As I was belaying I was thinking it looked ok. Then it was my turn and the rock face, up close, was much more vertical than it had looked (a familiar feeling).

Brian had positioned himself to belay from the top so he could see me and help me out. This didn't help with the first move though, which took me quite some time. I eventually got going and was pretty nervous the whole way up. At one point I was hanging on with both hands to a granite flake which has a horrible hollow sound to it like it could break off at any moment. I was pretty slow all the way up and probably far too slow to do a 14 pitch route in Yosemite.

Brian was an excellent and solid lead though and very considerate and helpful.

After one route it was already getting a bit dark so we headed off for some mexican food. Nice to climb again but a good reminder of how hard it is.


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