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Climbing Trip

Deep Water Soloing

Deep Water Soloing

DATE: JULY 13TH-14TH 2019





Banks Lake Photo

This was my second weekend trip with NSM and my first time deep water soloing and it did not disappoint! We were a group of 10, including Toni coming out all the way from the Bay Area. The group was a mix of skill levels and interests, from beginners just learning the ropes of climbing outside to a couple of sport pros to some badass boulderers. Although it was a blazingly hot 90+ degrees during the day, the waters of Banks Lake kept us cool through a weekend of sends.

We all arrived Friday night to our campsite on a peninsula on Banks Lake. Saturday, we started off with sport climbing at Roadside Rock. Although we didn’t have the official guidebook, I was able to figure out a nice slabby 5.9 to set up called Carrot Top. Meanwhile, Carlie and Toni tag teamed setting up Even Better Than the Real Thing, a fiesty 5.9 dihedral in to a satisfying hand crack. We spent the morning swapping climbs and mid-way through, I decided to go after Red Arete, a mixed 5.9 with some beautiful moves. I lost confidence at the second to last bolt and had Carlie lower me. But no worries, Maria jumped in and sent the next move, allowing me to go back and finish the climb! By that point is was too dang hot, so we finished the day off with some ice cream in Electric City and a swim in Banks Lake.

After a windy evening listening to our not-so-quiet neighbors’ party, we picked up the boat and headed out for some deep water soloing! Kayla was our trusty captain, navigating us through the high waters. We found a gorgeous boulder with lots of first ascents. Josephine kicked it off, topping out on what might have been a V0 but a V-Fun jump off the top! We searched for routes on the rock after that using some very key donut inner-tubes to rest on. Overall, we made 3 dirty, spidery, and yet satisfying first ascents. Each lady pushed the routes in different ways to link up some really creative climbing!

After that, we wandered around the lake, exploring new routes along the walls. The highlight from the afternoon was a beautiful blocky feature that Josephine, Toni, Brita, and Kayla projected. I’m pretty sure Jo is still dreaming about that route! Finally, we dropped off our boat, said our goodbyes, and headed home to Seattle. It was a great weekend full of lots of great climbing and some amazing slaydies!

Boulder Hopping

Boulder Hopping

DATE: MAY 5TH 2019





Gold Bar Trip Report Photo

It was a small group of 3, Caroline, Eve and Lindsey (and Caroline's dog Cosmo!), lead by Sarah.  For Caroline, Eve and Lindsey, it was their first time bouldering outside!  The weather couldn't have been more perfect.  Everyone enjoyed the cool morning air, and the clear views on the hike into the bouldering area out in Gold Bar (which we had to ourselves almost the whole time!). 

Sarah did a great job showing the basics of setting up mats, how to spot other climbers, and how to find routes from the guide book.  She took everyone to warm up on a V0, and all 3 of us were surprised at how much harder it was compared to bouldering in a gym!  But as the day went on, we all felt a little more confident and were trying V2's and V3's to push ourselves out of our comfort zone. 

Eve and Lindsey each had their "bouldering moment" and were able to top out some of their most challenging routes!  Caroline's dog Cosmo proved to be a great crag dog, he was content chewing sticks, digging up dirt, and watching Caroline challenge herself on different routes.  Sarah ended her day working on her project, and showing us a fun V3 that we are all determined to get next time.  All in all it was a great day.  :)

Winter Sport Climbing in Vantage


Winter Sport Climbing in Vantage






Denise Trip Report

I never thought I’d rock climb in 30 degree weather. It has been a long winter and I was craving to get back outside and climb. This was my second trip to Vantage and the weather reports were looking fairly grim; temperatures in the low 30s with cloudy skies in the morning and sun in the afternoon. Our group dwindled (understandably) as the weekend approached but a small group of us decided to give it a try and see what we could climb.

Driving into the recreational area was a big shock. The hills and rock were covered in snow and the air was crisp. We were the second car in the parking lot but we saw no one around us. We decided to explore the Feathers since the South Side crags looked dry. There was about a foot of snow on the ground as we walked through the campgrounds which made hiking a little more challenging than we anticipated, but we made it to the crags and felt excited to climb. 

I led three routes during our time there and they were a lot of fun. I had to take small breaks halfway up the wall as my fingers froze touching the frozen rock. We took turns climbing the routes and towards the end, we had some redemption with the sun coming out. Overall this trip was a lot of fun. We had the whole place to ourselves and the Feathers were fun to climb. I wasn’t able to try harder routes due to the extreme temperatures, but it was still fun leading in a new area of Vantage. I enjoyed climbing with such a small group of wonderful ladies and taking in the gorgeous winter wonderland around us!