Back on the Wagon - A Return to Rock Climbing

A long-time guest - Carlton - came down with a number of ailments last year that put an indefinite stop to his climbing.  I worried for him - he's one of my longest returning guests and we've climbed together in the Sierra Nevada, road-tripped to Smith Rock, and spend countless weekends and evenings cragging around Seattle.  All that time together meant that we've talked as much about our families, our jobs, our communities and our politics as we have talked about climbing.  I like to think he's become a friend.

So for this past year I would pepper Carlton with texts and emails.  Are you ok?  And he would reassure me that everything was looking up but he still wasn't cleared to climb.

I was so stoked when, after reading one of my recent Smash & Grab newsletters, Carlton asked me if we could go out for an easy day.

We've been to Exit 38 and most recently, spent Saturday at Index, where Pro Guiding Service picked up a permit last fall.  I showed Carlton what might be the best multi-pitch 5.6 on the west side, the Great Northern Slab.

Welcome back, C.  You've been missed:

If only pitch 2 of the Great Northern Slab went on and on and on...