Author Topic: New friends send Skull Queen  (Read 2279 times)

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Offline waulrat

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New friends send Skull Queen
« on: March 29, 2010, 01:27:46 am »
In October 2009 Zac (Caz) and I hatched a plan to have a go at Skull Queen. This being the first time he and I had ever climbed together, so I knew we would have an adventure. To be honest, I had only briefly met him through a chance encounter in the El Cap meadow after his last go at Skull Queen. We had mutual friends and things worked out.  We both wanted to climb something, anything. So we figured two motivated peeps can accomplish something, right? We met at the bridge around 2pm, hung out for a bit, watched some guys on the big stone and wandered off to the Ahwahnee to sort gear and hike to the base and bivi for the night. The Plan was to get and early start to Dinner Ledge, munch down some lunch and fix to at least the start of the Queen and spend the night on Dinner Ledge. The next day we would push to the summit and rap the South Face to Dinner Ledge with plenty of daylight to spare. (ha)

We arrived at the base under the stars with too much stuff (tent included, weather report was questionable) and crashed.

We got an early start ahead of 2 teams headed for the South Face. We cruised the 3 pitches to Dinner and were soon soaking up the sun on Dinner Ledge.

After an hour or so we mustered some motivation to fix Kor roof and off I went. Having done this pitch before I figured it would go without a hitch. I soon found myself under the roof with howling wind and unreal gusts. My aiders were wrapping around my neck, and getting tangled in the rack. It made for slow going. As soon as I turned the roof though, the wind calmed to a light breeze. The roof must have been funneling the wind right up my arse.

Once I got to the start of Skull Queen the Sapporo back on Dinner sounded nice so down I went.

We hung out the rest of the evening with the other party's, enjoyed the beer, the company, and of course the location.

The next morning we woke up early jugged to the rivet ladder and we were on Skull Queen proper by 7am. Not a bad way to start the morning.

I took the lead up the rivet ladder, and then linked 6-7. That wide section was a bit of a pain in the ass. Soon enough I was at the top of seven with a fresh refill of water and Zac on his way up. Zac took the lead up the crux pitch. In good time and good style of course!

We stopped at the top of 8 for a quick smoke, some food and to guzzle some water. I took the lead up to the Clance Stance. There were a few dicey placements for me there but it was all in good fun! For you hardmen out there, you may laugh, but I was stoked to stand on a blue alien with only two lobes marginally stuck. Anyhow that brought us to the final C2 pitch.

looking down from the Clance Stance

Zac took the lead up the final C2+ pitch as the sun was setting. With the final few minutes of sun we got to the final pitch! I wish I had brought my free shoes for this one! An awesome looking thin lieback turned into a slowish simple aid pitch with a few few moves at the end to the tree. Unfortunately with the excitement of topping out on an awesome route and with the entire South Face to rap, I neglected to take any top out photo's. Although I did get a video, but I don't know how to upload that. Anyway we started the rappels down the South Face with the ropes getting snagged one the first one! Not what either of us wanted to deal with after a long day of climbing. Zac took care of that problem quickly and we were gliding down the ropes to our sleeping bags. The funny part was, we didn't take a topo of the South Face so we took a few photo's of another teams South Face topo (the night before) to find our way. 17 hours after we started the day we were back on Dinner Ledge drinking Sapporo and eating cold Chef-Boyardee.

In the middle of the night I woke up to this little ring tale running across my legs, he had 2 little buddy's with him as well.

The next morning we rapped to the ground hiked out and we were done!

We hung out at the bridge for a bit and we parted ways with our heads held high.

(Tom Evans Photo)
All in all, this was a great first wall together, and I can't wait to get back on another one as soon as we can!
P.S. Zac had a ton of his gear stolen from his car the other day, so if any of you in the Long Beach area can keep your eyes peeled for him, it would be much appreciated.
He posted a thread with a list of stuff stolen. Total bummer.  

These trip reports take a long time to write up...sheesh.

« Last Edit: March 29, 2010, 02:12:27 am by waulrat »
It's a tribal thing


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Re: New friends send Skull Queen
« Reply #1 on: March 29, 2010, 06:15:11 am »
Nicely done, fellas!
I did that route, once upon a time.
Had a blast.


Offline Chad

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Re: New friends send Skull Queen
« Reply #2 on: March 29, 2010, 06:48:45 am »

Offline Mike.

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Re: New friends send Skull Queen
« Reply #3 on: March 29, 2010, 06:59:29 am »
Nice report, fun pix...good job up there, guys.
Say no to limbers, excavators and retro-bolters. No matter how much he smiles.


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Re: New friends send Skull Queen
« Reply #4 on: March 29, 2010, 07:46:27 am »
Very good!!!!!

Offline *Mucci*

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Re: New friends send Skull Queen
« Reply #5 on: March 29, 2010, 12:05:09 pm »
Nice!  Way to get back on it Zac!

We did it in august, it was 105 degrees the entire time we were up there.  Almost died from heat exhaustion, but it was still a great time.

Thanks for the write up, you guys look like you were having some fun up there!


Offline Erik Sloan

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Re: New friends send Skull Queen
« Reply #6 on: March 29, 2010, 01:42:20 pm »
Sweet Tr. Thanks!

Offline Caz

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Re: New friends send Skull Queen
« Reply #7 on: March 30, 2010, 01:15:21 am »
Thanks for doing the write up Kyle!

Yeah we had a blast up there and I found a great wall partner out of that trip.

As soon as I get all my wall stuff again I hope to do another wall with Kyle...

I do this for fun...


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Re: New friends send Skull Queen
« Reply #8 on: April 10, 2010, 08:57:28 pm »
A big  hearty "Woot!" for a fine TR & for CazZac's wandering Wall gear.
Glad you recovered your stuff, man, we've got things to do...............well, yeah, eventually.