Outer Space with Marcus

July 23rd, 2002

Marcus and I tried to steal a sunny Tuesday ascent of Outer Space before he returned to the East coast. Sure enough, it was totally sunny. Well, at least for the exact times of the day that we weren't climbing! (for a full write up of the route, see my first climb of Outer Space)

Marcus at the base of the wall.

Marcus leading off on the first pitch. It soon began to rain.

Dave starts across the traverse. Photo by: Marcus.

The rain holds back just long enough for Marcus to lead the crux pitch.

Lightning Flashes accompany Marcus up to the top of the Pillar on pitch 4.

Heading off into a land of perfect hands and chickenheads...

Dave following the 5th pitch. Photo by: Marcus.

There was a ton of fixed gear on the first handcrack pitch, including a really stuck forged friend. I lead the finger crack variation off of Library Ledge and it turned out that practically the whole crux here was protected on fixed nuts. Crazy stuff!

Leading off on the second Shield crack pitch. Photo by: Marcus.

As I belayed Marcus up the last crack pitch (p 6) it began to sprinkle. Then it began to rain, and hard. Slightly worried that the next thunder head was approaching over our heads, Marcus zoomed up the last bit to the top.

Wild knobs on top of Outer Space.

We did the descent without rapping. Here are a few key things to making your descent off the Wall pleasant:

  • At the top, do not descend the first gully. Instead, cross the first gully and begin descending the rib on it's right side. There is some short downclimbing (4th class) but soon it leads to a nice trail.
  • Follow the loose trail down towards the creek (water here). Head down hill after crossing a short slab.
  • Continue down and far to the left across slabs until you are in a steep gully on the far left side with a large tree partway down. Climb down past the tree and take a trail off left around the base of a huge (house sized) boulder.
  • Follow this trail across the ledge system until you come to a gully. Don't go down the gully, but rather look for two white "bunny ears" of rock just across a dihedral-gully in front of you.
  • Once past the bunny ears you are at the base of Orbit. Continue down scrambly ledges back to the base of the climb.

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