Last weekend was a treat!! After working a 70 hour week, I climbed into a car with Greg, Kaeli and Dave heading for Durban; the mission was to go back to the Wave Cave. It has been 3 years since the last time I visited the cave with Falco and Candice. There has been a three year break since the last mugging that happened that trip. Most of the locals are not happy to head down there; they are just not psyched to take the risk which is fair enough.
It looks like it’s going to be up to us to lead the way with this situation, coming from out of town swooping in for the weekend wars! My objective was to climb Barricade (8b) in a weekend; I was hoping to have someone at the cave to give me the spray down. Unfortunately, there wasn’t anyone interested in coming that had actually climbed the line.
After I got over my fear of the horribly rusted bolts (I was pulling flakes off the bolts with my nails) I was able to work out the moves (thanks to Dave’s an epic, hour-long belay). By the time I had done this I was tired; steep climbing is really hard. I did a second burn and managed all the sequences easily enough (apart from the first crux); I even managed some decent linking.
There wasn’t a third burn, on Barricade but I did head up The Big Mo (8a) to figure out the moves and put the draws up so I could use it as a warm up the next day. I was amazed at how easy it felt; I had this memory of being unable to do the crux no matter how hard I tried and now it was pretty effortless. I was, however, officially tired.
Sunday morning the psyche was higher than ever!!! We mission into the cave and I warmed up on The Big Mo, I missed the dyno but worked out the rest of the route (or so I thought). On my second attempt I cruised through Sip ‘n Fly and then launched into the dyno of The Big Mo but I came up short! WTF! I somehow locked off on the sloping crimp and lowered back into the rest for another long shake out and recovery. I was laughing and joking with Dave, telling him that I did that so he would have a second chance to capitalize on the photos! Second try: I fought for it and launched!
There was a deafening roar as I stuck the hold with just two fingers, held the cut loose and re-positioned. I launched again for the second dyno, roaring and swinging wildly in the roof. It’s on mo fo! As I’m shaking out in the roof I notice that my chalk isn’t white but red. I’ve torn a massive flapper from the second dyno and I’m dripping everywhere!
I fought for another 4 bolts making my way to the lip of the cave. The end is in sight, the beta on the other hand is not. I fell off one move from the chains. I hung in there for ages but just couldn’t get there. It was frustrating as hell, particularly since my finger was bleeding badly and I was not psyched to do those jumps again with my finger this sore. Oh well, there will be more cave visits! I promise!!!
Holding the last holds before the chains! Why couldn’t I just do the last move???