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tuolumne

Tuolumne, Ravens, and Everything Else

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Tuolumne, Ravens, and Everything Else

It's been awhile since I've updated my blog with my recent art pieces. So here is what the past 6 months have looked like in my right brain.

Donner Lake, Truckee CA. This was the first place I felt like I could live forever. The people, the community, the mountains... home.

Cathedral Peak, Tuolumne CA. One of my first climbs in Tuolumne. I've climbed it a hand full of times since and it will never get old. A true classic.

Eichorn Pinnacle, Tuolumne CA. Connected and easily linkable with cathedral peak. This formation has got to be one of the most photogenic climbs!

Half dome, Yosemite, CA. This rock is probably one of my favorite things to draw. I always try to capture it in a new medium every time I do. 

Taft point, Yosemite CA. Ravens and Yosemite. My first venture out to this point was with Corbin at sunset. The valley was filled with smoke from a nearby fire and the last light had already disappeared from the horizon. As we peered into the void I could feel the draw to fly. It must be the most free feeling to be able to sore from these cliffs. It consumes my thoughts often. But with passion comes pain and Corbin was silent. Torn between the worlds of the walkers and the flyers. I'll never forget that day.

Candy Skull. Sometimes you just gotta let your weird out.

Susitna 100, Big Lake AK. To be truly alone in the words is something I dream of often. Where you go from civilized to wild and you learn how to live, to sustain, to do with and without. My spirit animal, the wolf, is with me in these spaces, vicious and powerful.

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Stormy Weather in the High Sierra

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Stormy Weather in the High Sierra

The theme of my five days running and climbing in the high Sierra was bailing. It seemed like I could not escape the bad weather. The day I drove into Tuolumne I could feel the draw to run tall mountains so that's what I did. Getting a late start was not ideal with the current weather patterns but I went for it anyways. A quick glance at the map I picked Mt Dana and Mt Gibbs. After blasting up Dana I was in for a real treat trying to descend into the saddle between the two peaks. I gingerly picked my way down the steep face of Dana sending boulders the size of me whirling down the cliff. Finely down in the saddle I was greeted with a beautiful view of Mono lake and kidney lake a few pictures and some fueling then I was off headed for Gibbs summit. I made quick progress of the ridge but the running become more cautious as the exposure become more extreme and the weather darker. I was on the final push for the summit when the running turned into climbing and it began to rain. Alone in the mountains I made the quick decision to bail. It is always better to air on the side of caution in my opinion. It felt like I descended forever off of Mt Gibbs. Picking my way down another steep face but thankfully not as loose as Dana. Finally I was down in the most beautiful valley. Tons of little streams splitting and rejoining over and over again with some of the softest grass to run on. As the rain drizzled down I happily skipped across the streams trying to make it back towards the road. It was a nice relief from the steep rocky hours of running before. Soon I was in the tree line bonking and it was raining harder. It felt like I ran in that valley forever. Following trails that would quickly disappear and then reform again. I couldn't tell if I was hallucinating or if it was real. Alone deep in the woods not exactly sure where I was I continued to run in the direction I thought right. Until finally sweet victory I hit the road. I short mile run on the road brought me back to my car just in time to meet sonja at the store.

But that was a mild bail compared to the storm I got caught in two days later. Sonja and I decided to do a mellow alpine climb in the High Sierra. The Sierras aren't known for bad weather quite actually the opposite getting coined the term the fair weather range. Bear Creek Spire was the objective doing the North Arête a funky 5.8. We decided to get a 4am start for the 6 mile hike to the base. When the sun finally rose we were stoked to not see a single cloud in the sky. This would change quickly. You can't see what the weather is like until you are about 5pitches up. We had some route finding difficulty which set us back a few hours. We could see the clouds building but didn't think much of it. By the time we created around the arête and got a clear shit of the weather it was bad. Thunder lightning and ominous clouds. We knew we had to bail. We made quick work of six interesting repels and about a hundred feet of 4th class down climbing. The storms were coming from both directions but we made it off dry. It wasn't till we began the long hike out till the lightning, thunder, rain, and hail engulfed us. Heads down we hiked to the rhythm of the hail on our jackets and made it out alive and soaked to the bone. Turns out the weather forecast had changed from a 20% chance of rain to a 70% chance of rain just over night while we were camping away from service. Character building. Lessons learned: never forget how to tie a water knot!

Leaving the Sierras for a bit while this funky weather pattern blows through. On the road in the van to Colorado with my main man Lopi riding shot gun. Time to run some real tall mountains and hopefully avoid all epic weather.

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Toulumne What Dreams Are Made Of

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Toulumne What Dreams Are Made Of

The weather in the Yosemite called for rain and more rain. Friday night Molly and I drove into a damp valley and contemplated if climbing Cathedral peak would be the best idea with the impending weather. The last thing you want to do is be on the top of a peak with a ton of gear on when lightning strikes. However we were stoked so we decided a 3am start was the only way to guarantee we wouldn't get wet (or electrocuted). Everything about the day was perfect and we were safe and sound back in the car when the rain and lightning started to come down. It has been a long time since I've laughed so hard that I cried but this weekend I did it over and over again. Good company. A weekend I won't soon forget.

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