The story of my recent trip to Yosemite National Park to climb The Nose with Abe Shreve consists of many mini-stories, as would almost all climbing trips that last for 7 days.
Instead of defaulting to the super long and non-compelling trip report that tries to encompass everything that ensued, I’d like to quickly share the titles and summaries to each mini-story—producing a myriad amount of cliffhangers. Here’s to being super vague:
Finding gas in the desert proved to be harder than we thought.
No Vacancy…Yea Right!
Finding a campsite in Camp 4 on a Saturday night was easier than we thought.
How I Met The Captain.
For the first little while, I kept my distance to observe him. Right after sunset, I walked up to him and shook his hand.
I Didn’t Know The Circus Was In Town.
Camp 4 is an interesting place that attracts all sorts of people.
Words of Wisdom.
We found ourselves sitting with a guru who spoke words of wisdom to us and sent us off on our journey.
Excuse Me, Are Those Your Ropes?
We went up just to come back down, having done nothing ourselves to set up for the next day.
I’d Rather Wrestle This Pig In The Mud.
If you think you’re tough because you do CrossFit, try getting a 100+ pound bag up a slabby granite cliff.
Waking Up Early, Just To Go Back To Bed.
Our alpine start was early enough that it allowed us to take a nap before actually beginning.
Hey Spaniard…I Can Still See You.
Don’t climb until you can no longer see the whites of their eyes.
Let’s Bivy Here.
No need to chase ledges when you have a portaledge.
The Day A 40-Year Old Became A Man.
After I drank the olive oil that marinated a family of sardines, Abe consumed the sacrificial fish.
200 Hundred Feet Up and 1200 Feet Down.
After making some observations during the first 200 feet that day, we were faced with a tough decision.
Remind Me Why I Brought My Down Jacket Up Here.
I was told that it get’s cold at night up on El Cap. Maybe that’s why I never zipped up my sleeping bag.
Everyone Loves A Long D.T.R.
No need to rush things when you are sitting comfortably on top of a big ledge that is 1/3 the way up a 3,000 foot cliff.
The Power Of The Wind.
Birds can fly and so can ropes…when the wind blows them.
Three Hours Of Selfies.
What do you do when you are standing for three hours on top of something that is the size of a pizza with a thousand feet of nothing below you? Take a hundred selfies and wait for Superman to save you.
Moonlight Rappelling and Rope Burns.
If I ever meet a professional rappeler, I’ll walk up to him, shake his hand, and say, “Good for you.”
The Day I Became A Tourist.
In all reality, you end up experiencing a ton of “wow-that-was-cool” moments when you pretend to be a tourist.
Half Dome Ain’t No Nature Walk.
If I ever hear someone downplaying the hike up to the top of Half Dome, I’ll assume they are an America Ninja Warrior.
Don’t Forget To Skinny Dip.
Oops. Am I not supposed to mention that?
Never Turn Down A Shrimp Dinner.
If someone invites you to swing by their campsite and grab some dinner, do it.
Plans? What Plans?
After convincing two others to join us on a climb, we woke up, told them “nevermind,” and went home.
The Road To Home.
They say to “never look back,” but as we drove home, I think we looked back enough to convince ourselves of going back.
That's my high-point on The Nose/El Capitan. One day I'll go back and make it to the top.
As for the complete story, I guess you’ll just have to corner me and ask me all about it.
Until then, keep an eye out for a little video that I plan to make about the trip.