Thursday, May 6, 2010

Via Con Aqua, a Trip Up Lost Arrow Direct

The season in Yosemite has started out great. Despite the weather showing complete contempt for all the climbers trying to attempt the routes they have been dreaming about all winter long, there have been enough short windows to allow trips up some of the shorter formations in the Valley.

Jon Byers and I were lucky to eek out a quick run up Southern Man on Washington Column, a slightly thinner sister route to the left of the popular South Face.

After heading out of the Valley for some work, I came back with my friend Geoff Schellens to climb the Lost Arrow Spire Direct, a route famed for its outstanding location, quality climbing, and above all, dee-luxe bivy ledges- big enough to pitch a tent on! We decided to forgo the tent, bringing bivy sacks instead. We would both regret this...

The Falls Wall, with the Spire on the right

Cold morning in the nylon cage!

The route was everything we had hoped for: burly chimney climbing, thin aid splitters, and a summit which cannot be matched for sheer exposure. We spent two cold and windy nights on the best ledges on the route, and during the days yelled ourselves hoarse over the Yosemite Falls which thundered by just 500 ft. to our left.

Captain America eat your heart out!

Looking up from the Second Error bivy

As we rappeled the route, the full moon rose over the Clark Range, and we were treated to a lavender sunset which reminded me of the epic topout storm I experienced during the North America Wall. Lucky for us the night was calm and mild as we hiked back out.

some photos courtesy geoff schellens.


Dan Zelikman said...

How high are you in the second to last photo?

Ryan Huetter said...

Maybe 2000 ft down to the Valley floor. 1400 ft or so up the route we were on.