Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Return of the Nimbeciles


Return of the Nimbeciles 

Well... We haven't seen the summit, yet. We had a ton of work to finish elsewhere on the route for the start of day one:

Ames was busy jumaring 300 feet to organize all our wall junk, from the previous attempt. Meanwhile, I was digging mud out of a seam down on the second pitch... getting it nice and pretty. Then Amy had to haul the fat bag, while I pendulumed all over cleaning our gear under the massive third pitch 5.11 undercling. A couple scrubs here and there with the wire brush had the cling looking perfect!

There was an area in the undercling, where we had previously abandoned a cam, due to Ames being a little shorter than I. But, to be honest, it was a huge reach for me to place the TCU. So, with hammer in hand, I welded a Lost Arrow to the eye...Just in reach! Then, the fun.

 I took a double length sling, passed it through the eye and lowered myself as far as I could. Arm fully stretched, about to let go, I hear..."Myles! Should I..." I yell back "Busssy!" then let go of the sling. I went flying through space, running across the wall for thirty feet screaming at the top of my lungs... Totally wild! We finished hauling the bag and got ready for the unknown.

Suddenly, the new pitch, that we thought was going to be easy terrain, turned hard and committing. Wicked face climbing on bullet-hard, red granite turned out to be the crux. Incredibly tough stance drilling and wild moves, unlocked this pitch; to make it one of the best pitches of slab climbing we have found in the Portal. This one hundred and fifty foot pitch, took us around three to four hours to equip and came out to be about 5.11.

With the sun beginning to hide, Amy took the reins. We looked at a crystal dike that would have taken more bolts, which were becoming limited and decided against it. Instead, Amy Jo turned a corner to the west and vanished. The granite swallowed her completely, while she wiggled through an awesome 5.8 chimney, that ended up slashing the crystal dike, exposing all kinds of insane quarts under an overhang. 

Another drag of the bag, drop of a bolt, and weld of an inch-n'-half Piton put pitch 5 put to rest. With it getting darker, we were right on our mark. One more cruisy flake pitch set us at our bivy. A big, fat,sandy ledge had us resting in style. A full moon, mosquitos the size of horses, and a fire that blazed hot, made it just perfect...

The next morning we woke to a burning hot sun. We slowly packed our bags and stripped down to our underwear because of the extreme heat. Once the sun got a little higher in the sky, the temperature cooled. We jugged our fixed line to the cam anchor thirty feet above the bivouac and were disgusted with the looks of the waiting wall...grainy, crappy granite was about to ruin the line... real fast!  

So, we took the time to look around...
We studied it, analyzed it. 

And....oh boy, oh boy did we find it! 

Ames had noticed it from hundreds of feet below, amazed by it's striking beauty, and hoping we just might climb the thin, golden flake.

So, we fixed two baby angles pitons and kissed the crappy granite good bye!

We, cut hard left from our bivy site and stared excitedly at the amazing flake and slab system which would become our only entry into the massive fins we want to climb. A quick look inside the bolt bag had us realizing.... Whoops?!  We were out of hardware. The flake wouldn't be the problem, but the giant slab would be!

  A minor miss calculation that sent us back down our eight hundred feet of line....probably due to the 5.8 slab that turned to a 5.11 bolting mission!

Till next time, when the Nimeciles Return... Again!

Ames in the squiggly Wyde! 

The Bivouac, 800ft up

Finding the way?
Found the way, for pitch Seven.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Ummagumma and Spandex!

Ummagumma and Spandex!

Our buddy Richard Shore decided to stop by for a visit and a quick lap up Ummmagumma.... He just happened to bring the Red, White and Blue with him.

A twenty dollar purchase, which couldn't  be passed up! 

With the air tickling our legs, we felt as if we were moving at warp-speed. With just over 2.5 hours from the bottom to top of this  2'500 ft adventure climb... I was on time for work and Mr. Shore  and I had a perfect tasteof Ummagumma in STYLE!

Richard on the Look-out

Rocks???? Huh?



Last 500ft corner


A solute to Mr. Ben Horn

Back on time For Work!


Sunday, May 11, 2014

" Nimbeciles" on the wall!

" Nimbeciles" on the wall!

So we are back at it again! Amy and I have found ourselves stung-out, tired and beaten from new routing. For our first day back at wall life, we knocked out a whopping three pitches, for a grand total of 250 vertical feet of climbing. But,true to form, the route wanders all over making the climbing more like 500ft of actual rock crawling. Just a start so far, with plenty of  adventure to come.  Within the next few days, we will be pushing off with the bivy gear and saying sayonara to the hard ground and helllooo to the whippers... Hopefully not, but sometimes they just happen!

We won't divulge to much yet on where the route is.... Just think, Nimbecile!

Good start Henny and Woodward!

Follow us this coming week to see what happens.

Our buddy Dave Turner gave us a shout, as he flew by in his Blue Parasail.


Sunday, May 4, 2014

Ummagumma III-IV, 5.7 A0 or 5.9, 2'500ft..... An Adventure!!

I sent this to the American Alpine Club for submission into the American Alpine Journal.... Here is the whole write-up and route description.  Send a message if you would like a topo.

Ummagumma III-IV, 5.7 A0 or 5.9, 2'500ft
 Wrinkled Lady- Whitney Portal, Lone Pine, Ca
F.A. Myles Moser 2010- 2013

One step from the sliding glass door of the Whitney Portal Store kitchen shows it all! The looming pyramid of the south facing Wrinkled Lady, slashed with dihedral after dihedral stands at its tip of 10'900+ ft. Below it, a system of slabs, terraces, dikes, tunnels and a massive five hundred foot dihedral, make up its foundation, right off the main trail. Over a course of three years I carried rocks while climbing to stack cairns in strange places for future followers. Down soloed wrong turns,  battled foliage, built monastery steps and at times kicked over my own rock stacks. Friends would join in the effort of perfecting this adventure big wall with me. We would get lost together in the unknown. Then once the route had been finished, I often found myself racing the clock to be at work by noon (usually late), pushing the final 500ft dihedral then charging down the scree decent; showing up sweaty and torn to the restaurant kitchen, just in time. This, is to be an adventure...

The 2'500 foot "Royal Arches of the Portal" begins by romping up the polished gully to the left of the Whitney Portal Buttress, don't move too fast its about to be a long one. A quick, slick lie-back will bring you to a humongous house size chockstone. Traverse to the left, under the chock; following a catwalk past "The Lonely Lone Pine". Remember to keep an eye above for a fixed pendulum. Take an exposed undercling and shimmy out to the penji. Swing wildly to the horn! Rock some slab moves to a two foot wyde grassy ledge. Walk it to the right; where a black swirly dike turns up the slab leading to the "Three Tree Terrace". Follow cairns and steps to a broken dike climbing the vertical wall, that quickly turns to a slab. Now at the "Second Terrace", take more  monastery steps that head up and over a shrubby bump to the west. Follow the obvious  path under the chicken-head wall to the "Dead End Log". Climb the knobby arête above the log to a cave on its left. Wiggle and worm through the choked cave to a tunnel on the left side. Boulder up the arête through leaning blocks to another slot/chimney with a thin leaning flake. A giant pine then marks the "Third Terrace" (Gettin' complicated yet?), slip n' slide through the "Pine Needle Chasm" on the trees right. Take the only way out, up an arching slab, exiting through a slight overhang on climbers right. Follow the cairns left and up to the "Turquoise Chicken-heads". Jog left on the heads to another tunnel through; squeeze behind what resembles a "Wooden Power Pole"? An obvious short downclimb to the west will drop the climber at an "Earlobe Undercling" that moves left past some water pods. Gain the arête directly above, via some quick knob climbing. Once again the arête morphs into a 200 ft slab with a big wide lie-back on climbers left, which abruptly ends at a vertical wall. Span the gap on the right, making way up a wyde-span to slab; gain the ridge on climbers left and marvel at the views below. Follow the cairns to the "Fresh-air Traverse"; where wildly exposed, yet secure moves venture to the west. Finish through an incredible water groove for 100ft, ending at the "Fifth Terrace", where the first of two massive southwest facing dihedrals takes off (A giant cairn marks the base). Get creative in the corner, seeking the path of least resistance. When it begins to get steep, dive into the belly of the beast and tunnel for the light. Nearing the end of the corner, a "Bushel Grab" strung tight with cord must be made. A shattered gold dike will lead to more water pods, then over a final chockstone to small manicured terraces known as the "Terrorist Hang". Now, the south face of the Wrinkled Lady suddenly comes into view. A Short scramble to the base, will give way to an easy walk to the west (follow cairns). Pass under the center dihedral (5.8 A2) capped with steep roofs, which had Fred Becky stating "rough unglaciated rock surface and very deep cracks conspired to scrape hands and knees and to tear clothes in serious struggles with cracks" (AAJ Volume 18 pg.120). Well, this won't be the case. Keep moving left along the base to the last massive dihedral on the wall, two large cairns mark the start. Enjoy this easy system of bomber cracks, till once again you dive into the belly of the giant when the wall becomes overhung. Tunnel through, then onto a chockstone, look for the knob on left then continue upward. The final small chimney at the end of this five hundred foot corner, will give you the thrill that you have been looking for, when you look down through your legs and catch all that exposer you had been chasing!

Descent: descend down the west ridge of the Wrinkled Lady to a 4th class gully down climb. Head west to the  Pinyon Pines, to a massive sand slop. Follow the slope to a large boulder drop-off, which has a fixed rope for the short down climb. Take deer paths down the Carillon drainage to main trail (Don't get sucked to close to the creek or shwacking may in ensue).

Ummagumma is the name of a Pink Floyd Album, when defined by Urbandictionary.com it states that the word is "a slang term for having sex. And of course Rock and Roll was originally slang for having sex". So, if you look at it that way, the word Ummagumma could simply mean... Rock and Roll!