Monday, August 23, 2010
Tennessean @ Altitude
Over the weekend I made a trip over to the Wild Iris, a local climbing area that sits at 9000 feet. About 8 of us camped out Saturday night waking early Sunday morning to head over to the crag. A clear view of the Wind River Mountains and a panoramic view of the Wyoming desert plains made for some incredible scenery which was only half as good as the climbing (left my camera in the car). The routes are made up of great lime stone with a sustained grade of difficulty in almost every move. Hot Tamale, the last route I got on for the trip, is thus far the crown jewel of Wyoming climbs. You run into the crux right in the middle of the wall. This dynamic move to a small hold sends your feet flying out into nothingness as time slows down and you think of nothing but latching that hold, lest you take a 10' plunge to the last bolt. This move almost shut me down, but after 4 attempts I pushed past the series of crimp rails to a good hold to clip the next bolt. I haven't worked that hard to send a route in a long time; it's an amazing feeling. Still no promising lodging but I'm getting a bit more comfortable living out of my truck...at least I'm saving money.