One last Valley weekend.
Last weekend I headed up to the Valley with my favorite crew for one last Yosemite Valley weekend. Jeremy, Ryan and I made the classic Friday night Bay to Sierra drive, did some relaxed climbing and bouldering, partied in Camp 4 and closed out the weekend with a trail run from Tunnel View, up to the Valley rim.
We don’t know when we’ll get to climb as three in the Valley again. Jeremy’s headed off to travel for a few years with his wife, I’m quitting my job to climb Aconcagua and head to Patagonia and Ryan… his plans are still up in the air. What better way to finish up a great few years of bagging peaks than to return to the Valley to enjoy amazing granite, campfire stories and Yosemite Mimosas (Cobra and cheap orange juice). Here’s to three great years together in the Sierra!
We stopped just shy of the Park entrance so we could relax and crack a few beers before passing out.
We woke up, headed into the Valley and hopped on Munginella, an easy climb that Jeremy has wanted to lead all season. Wish granted.
Munginella was super fun and we even heard some decent-sized rockfall at the end of the Valley as we topped out on pitch one. The last pitch was the highlight with a fun roof/overhang and then a steep dihedral with some great handjams.
When we topped out, we enjoyed a can of cheap Mexcian beer and the views of Half Dome behind us. The long shadows and subdued fall light made for some fun views.
After returning to Camp for a snack, we realized that darkness was only an hour away. We bouldered a bit behind camp and then began the fine fellowship of Camp 4. A warm campfire, strong beer, Irish whiskey and jovial conversation filled the night. I crashed out pretty early, but the party continued on. By Sunday morning, the whiskey was gone and Jeremy had developed a new injury, from the fire. It seems he lost his balance a little too close to the flames.
As expected, the morning moved pretty slowly. So we made some mimosas and Jeremy and Ryan settled into a fine, hangover-killing hack session.
Towards 11am, we finally decided that a trail run was the ideal way to spend the day. We drove up to Tunnel View and hooked up with a trail that cruised up to the South rim of the Valley. The run up was a killer, but great training for Aconcagua. Along the run we passed a few great views of the Valley.
At the rim, we scrambled over some snow covered rocks and took in the late afternoon light. Nearby we could hear rockfall and melting sheets of ice, separate from the cliffs and thunder down to the Valley.
Sitting in the snow got chilly pretty quick, so we turned around and ran back down the trail. With one last group salute to El Cap, we departed the Valley and headed back to the Bay. Who knows when all three of us will be back in the Valley together? Hopefully we can climb something memorable as a team again soon…