Climbing: February 22-23, 2014 (Yosemite)

February 22-23, 2014: Yosemite National Park, California, USA

Serenity Crack and Sons of Yesterday

The time had finally come for us to climb the famous Serenity Crack 5.10d and Sons of Yesterday 900’ link up. I set my alarm for 5:30am Saturday knowing there was no way in hell John was actually going to get up that early—the mornings are far too cold! We left the Upper Pines campground around 7am and attempted to pay for my camp site. Apparently you can’t pay when the campground reservations office is closed, which is pretty lame. We found out later than the ranger thought it was pretty lame too. Anyway, I had a bit of fear in my head that we get a ticket for having not paid for our campsite so I kinda wanted to finish the climb before 4pm so we could pay before the office closed.

After organizing our gear in the Ahwahnee parking lot and checking out the restroom facilities there (plush!), we set off and arrived at the base of Serenity Crack a little before 8am. Thankfully, we were the first party up that day. John was probably about halfway up the pitch when another party showed up. They were on our heels almost the entire way up only slowing down on at the crux 5.10d pitch which John got through quickly despite slipping a few times. I was feeing particularly peppy that day and breezed through the thin crack crux, pausing only to complain to myself about my toes hurting. Not too shabby.

Supertopo said that most parties skip the last 5.8R slab pitch but John and I went all the way because, well, why not? We had a little lunch at dead tree before starting out rappels to the bottom. I had read that the way down is often a little perilous because of people throwing their ropes on parties below them. Well, I will say that rapping down a crowded route does indeed suck. The party that was closely following us had a 70m rope whereas we had two 60m twin ropes. At one rap station they decided that it was going to be a-okay to just thread their rope through the rap rings I was currently tied to and that John was currently rappelling on. Well, WTF? They ignored me when I said that they shouldn’t pull their rope over my rope (ugh, a little scary when you’ve got 8mm thick ropes!). Then they pulled their ropes over my ropes anyway! UGH! Scary. The kiddos that followed us were nice but geez, learn some climbing etiquette!

All in all, this is my new favorite climb ever! Even better than West Crack.

Sunday we little cragging at Schultz’s Ridge. It was okay.

photos from top: Me having a blast; El Capitan firefall on 2/23/2014; my nails after climbing Serenity Crack / Sons of Yesterday; the amazing crack line on Serenity Crack. The dead tree at the top of the end of Sons of Yesterday.

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