Saturday, 16 August 2014

There is no such thing as Infinite Bliss, but there is 23 pitches of it.

I've still not updated my blog with details of our new route on Mt. Sir Donald, that's proving to be a bit of a beast, and I haven't really been up for the challenge. What I can offer you is a short post about a little diddy I climbed with Aidan a week ago. It's called Infinite Bliss. It's a 700 m sport route on the  west peak of Mt. Garfield, only a hour away from Seattle! And, purportedly the longest fully bolted sport route in North America. 

Like I said, I don't believe in "infinite bliss", and I was a little unconvinced that a sport route in the mountains could be even finitely blissful, but indeed, it was! Aidan and I had a blast. Though there were a few boltless 60 metre pitches of low fifth class climbing to contend with, the crux pitches, were all fantastic and well protected. 

You can simul-climb many pitches, and since all the rappel stations are bolted, you can easily and confidently simul-rappel many pitches too! Here is a link to a trip report by Steph Abegg, hands down the best trip report writer I know. She'll give you all the beta. Below are a few photos to intrigue you...

When climbing a 23 pitch sport route, proper identification is necessary...

...lest you get lost in a sea of granite.

A view towards the outlet of the Middle Fork of the Snowqualmie River, and North Bend.

On the lower wall we climbed a couple pitches up this amazing dyke feature, which was set deeply into the wall. It was really, really fun. And only 5.5.

Aidan following up some low angle slab to the base of the first crux pitch.

Aidan following the 5.10b crux, with the vast sweep of granite that we'd just climbed, fanning out below him.

Another photo from this crux pitch. Sure look fun doesn't it.

...and another one.

Last one.

Aidan Haley, having a blast people.

Aidan following another crux, this one a 5.10a exfoliating chimney. I may have been terrified on this pitch. Despite the bolts, I was certain every hold was going to rip off, and I'm pretty sure I was making ridiculous sobbing noises.

One more from the nasty chimney.

And here Aidan leads up the second to last pitch, a super fun 5.8 up the final headwall.

Our pain has almost come to an end. Aidan looks up at the final pitch. After almost 700 m of effectively, slab climbing, our  little toes were swollen strawberries. Ewwww, gross...and nasty...

Aidan follows up the final pitch of Infinite Bliss. We started our day near those streaks of water in the  top right corner of the picture.

...another photo from the last pitch.

And one more. Aidan has the pictures from the summit. I promise, we made it!

2 comments:

  1. Sarah,

    Awesome... that is all

    Love,

    Nate

    ReplyDelete
  2. ...cousin, you are too kind. Are you going to come and compete at the Hive TNT bouldering comp.? I'm going to be there! Come out!

    ReplyDelete