Sunday, July 8, 2007

Day 9, fun climbing!


Laurel got up early and swam and then walked downtown Keystone.

Then we climbed in the Presidents' backyard! We drove around the backside of Mt. Rushmore, parked and chased some climbers to get beta on the area. Met a really friendly guy Steve who was there with his family. He showed us a few routes and we climbed up a spire on the Waves climb in the Seven Seas area. 2 pitch sport route with awesome view ... until the thunder rolled as we were beginning to rappel. It started to rain as we were packing up at the bottom. The picture above is the view from the top (here's a movie from the top).

Drove south to Custer State Park to see the Needles. Really neat area with lots of rock spires and cool forest (and supposedly buffalo but we didn't see any). I think the place gets its name from the spire in the picture above. From there we drove through downtown Custer en route to Wyoming.

Back in big sky country we admired the scenery. Eventually Devils Tower came into view. When we got there we scoped out the approach to the climb we'll do in the morning. The tower cast an ominous shadow over the countryside.

Set up camp, had noodles and sauce for dinner to carb up for the big day, sorted out all our gear, and set the alarm for 4AM. Hit the sack around 11:30 PM.


Anonymous said...

I don't suppose they allow you to climb on the presidents on Rushmore, huh? That would be cool to drive a stake right into one of the presidents' eyes. Would that make you a terrorist?

Big Wall Nuts said...

no, not allowed. will get you arrested and fined. there are 'climbing boundary' signs in the area behind rushmore. technical rock climbing does not typically use stakes, although the first ascent of devils tower was done in the 1800s by pounding wooden stakes into a crack and building a ladder up most of the tower. i'm not sure what would be cool about gouging a stone eye, i think it would make you a vandal, not a terrorist.

Anonymous said...

Do you think it is idolotrous to have great big stone images of presidents carved into the mountain? Were there any worshippers at the foot of the mountain paying homage to Jefferson, asking for guidance on the interpretation of the 2nd amendment?

Big Wall Nuts said...

whoever you are, you have some funny ideas. perhaps carving their likenesses into stone (and printing them on our currency) is homage enough for what they did for our country?