It's October 18th already! Where has the time gone!? After my birthday, Tommy and I got right to work by hiking up the East Ledges and establishing our basecamp on Wino Tower. Despite the seasonal early October storm, the weather has remained warm (80's!), far too hot to work on these tough pitches in the daylight. This was no surprise however. We planned on doing a lot of night climbing this season and that's exactly what we've been doing. About 4pm every day, the wall goes into the shade. We'll eat a big dinner and rappel off Wino Tower to work on the 4 pitches below us (pitch 16: 5.14, pitch 17: 5.13c, pitch 18: 5.13c or d and pitch 19: 5.13c). Climbing at night has worked out great. It's quiet, cool, and time seems to stand still. Hours will pass in the solitude of your headlamp and thoughts before arriving back at Wino Tower sometime in the middle of the night.
During our last two day stint on the wall, Tommy and I focused on the "Dyno Pitch." This pitch features three distinct cruxes: the dyno (obviously), the super thin dihedral directly above, and the crimp liebacking at the top. On the first night (we've been climbing from 5pm - 1am lately for optimal conditions), we worked out a great sequence for the dihedral and liebacking. Tommy linked the pitch from above the dyno to the top and I managed from the middle of the dihedral to the top. This was a huge breakthrough for both of us. The next morning was cloudy and windy, so we had the treat of climbing in the daylight. When Tommy said he wanted to work on the dyno that day, I wasn't so sure. But, after a few cups of coffee, I could hardly contain myself. Our buddy Cooper Blackhurst was with us and snapped a few photos of the dyno...
The Set Up
To my great surprise, my body remembered how to execute the move, and within a few tries, I was sticking the dyno! This was a great relief for me, as this is one more of seven 5.14 pitches that is feeling more and more feasible with every attempt. Where Tommy excels at super technical climbing, I guess I can jump. Tommy came close to sticking the move at least 15 times, but alas, no dice. I'm not too worried though. He'll stick it. And when he does, we'll turn our attention to the MEAT of the climb: the two traverse pitches between Mescalito and The Wall of Early Morning Light.