So…I went rock climbing for the first time on REAL ROCKS!! You would think I would have warmed up to this idea before now due to my love of rocks in most other contexts.
Justin and I went on Memorial Day weekend to Tieton, WA to meet a friend and a big group of climbers. The camping was so strange in the national forest. There were just tons of people who found little nooks in the woods and decided to camp there. There were lots of designated camp grounds as well but also lots of random non-paying campers. It felt strange being in such a beautiful camping location without paying for it. The group’s campsite was right on a beautiful, but frigid river.
Justin and I were given a primitive map to help guide us to the group site but due to no cell coverage Justin and I were scrambling for any landmarks that would tell us where we were. As we felt we were getting to the correct spot we snooped in a campsite we though might be the climbing group’s site and hunted for clues. Climbing bumper sticker on one of the cars (which were mostly Subaru’s, which outdoorsy folk love), no-one at the site (which would be accurate with them climbing during the day) and the site looked like it was big enough to fit a big group of people. Done! It was settled, that was the site!
After taking a little snoozer in the pre-honey moon van we woke up to find that our detective work had payed off! We amazingly picked the right site. It was a great group of nice people. However, I couldn’t say the same for the people down the road. I guess I shouldn’t say they weren’t nice people. We didn’t stick around long enough to find out after seeing and hearing the group of drunkies shooting beer cans out of the trees with their riffles. Excellent! Super smart choice fellas! Lets keep that out of the gene pool, shall we?
I decided that I might try climbing the next day if nobody hassled me about it. There’s nothing worse than people building up your anxiety and then participating in an already strenuous and dangerous sport.
The next day I told myself I would enjoy myself on the rock and read my book and if I decided it was an appropriate time to climb and no one had been hassling me I would try it. The time was right, I was shaking like a leaf and I tried it! Holy Cow it was scary!! The rock was really crumbly which made me nervous and the wind was blowing like crazy. Earlier that day Justin was climbing, reached for a hold and the rock fell off the side of the cliff. Great!! Super sturdy! We were all on belay though so as long as all safety gear was put on correctly we would be caught by the rope if we fell.
I had barely started up the climb and my silly heart was pounding out of my chest. The rock we were climbing was on top of another cliff therefore it felt high and scary before I even started the climb. At one point I couldn’t go any farther because my arms felt like burning jello. “Let go of the rock and hang there so you can rest,” they shouted at me. Easier said then done. Whenever my hands/weight started leaving the rock the wind would blow me away from my climb to other parts of the cliff. I was clinging to the rock with, what seemed like, dear life. I decided to continue up, got tired pretty quickly and came down. If my brain wasn’t in panic mode I would have realized I could have held onto the lead rope attached to the belay to hold me in place while I rested. But by that time in the climb my brain and body was completely panicked. I am proud of myself for getting up there and I will definitely try it again…but wasn’t about to later that trip. My heart can only take so much.
Justin did really well. He even started climbing a 5.10. To give you perspective I was climbing a 5.8. Justin always looks so nice up there too because of the great reaches he can do with his long limbs.
I’m just realizing I wrote this post in a very calm tone. I guess it would have sounded different if I had written this right after coming back from the trip. I guess that’s a game our minds play on us (and women who have had children– “it wasn’t that bad.” We say that until we do it again!)
Oh yeah…I almost forgot. Justin and I and another couple went on a hike while the other climbers finished climbing for the day. The hike was beautiful but we found bear and elk tracks and some sort of giant poo!!! Super scary! I was glad when we got off that trail. It was meant to be a 4-wheeling trail with tons of mud pits.
Another cool thing about this trip was it was Justin’s birthday while camping! He was able to have a yummy camping breakfast on a rock next to the beautiful river, get serenaded by the climbing group singing happy birthday and make a candle birthday wish on one of the group member’s emergency candles.Read More
I’m over a week behind on blogging what’s going on over here on the West side, so time to catch up! Two Friday’s ago, on May 28th, was my 30th birthday. Sarah had a surprise plan for me, and she didn’t even want to tell me that a plan existed, but she had to let me in a little on the secret when I started making plans for the night and calling friends
The surprise was a night out at Urban Fondue! This place is so popular, that Sarah had to make the reservation a month before my birthday (that’s before we had even moved to Portland!)
I love fondue, and this was a lot of fondue. Reger & Carla joined us for dinner, and Tracy & Mark met up with us later in the evening. We ordered the ‘Fondue Experience’– 3 rounds of delectable fondues. First was the cheese fondue, with bread to dip. Next the meal fondue— where you cook your veggies or meats in a hot broth on your table. Finally, the desert fondue– fruits dipped in chocolate, etc. Although I was stuffed sick by the time I was done, this was a wonderful way to spend a birthday evening!
Forgot to take picturesRead More