Log Entry 40 – Rushmore

I was really glad to meet up with Renee and David again. They are just awesome. Sunday afternoon Renee and I took some friends of hers climbing. True to my experiences in the Black Hills, we got very lost trying to find the right rock to climb on. The Needles just form a maze. Once we found our route, I led up a trad to set the top rope.

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Since we had the top rope up, Renee and I hopped on the 10 right next door. I was reminded of how unique the climbing is here. The granite is unlike anything else I have seen and learning to trust your feet is crucial. We also climbed a really fun (and long) 8. The sun was getting pretty low and the view was amazing.

We didn’t get a lot of routes in, but we made up for it in just having fun. Plus I got a chance to work on my climbing photography a bit.

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Renee and I headed over to Spearfish Canyon to hop on some good limestone. Most of my climbing has been on granite, so it was kinda different to switch to such a different climbing style.

After warming up and doing a couple of routes, we headed over to an 11b I had seen last time I was in Spearfish. I did it on lead, but I had to go almost bolt to bolt. It is a beautiful route and I was so thrilled to be able to make it to the top. Someday I will need to return and do a proper redpoint.

We finished up on a 1 star tucked into a corner. I stayed in the chimney until a roof forced me out. And then I needed to battle a branch. It had fallen, gotten caught on the roof in the crack, and was now completely where I needed to go. Just as I was getting past it, it started to slip and fall out of the crack. Renee was belaying below me, so just letting it drop wasn’t a good idea. So I carried it with me for a couple moves until I could get it somewhere safe. One of the crazier routes I have done.

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