Beginner Rock Climbing Trip 9/1/1

Me, Charles, Byron, and Debbie had never climbed outside before.
This weekend we joined Scott, Annie Karine, Andrea, Robert, and Russ for a first
trip to Jack's Canyon to give it a try. Jack's Canyon is about 60 miles
north of Payson, a bit over two hours drive from Phoenix (140 miles).

The Canyon
Jack's is located in the middle of nowhere. It's just a ten minute hike from here (the campground) down to the climbing area.

Annie Karine
Annie Karine's happy to help us out. She and Scott show us how to use the equipment and climb safely. Robert and Russ will also be showing us some 'moves'.

Gravity of the Situation
Charles shows us what will become of a 70 kilogram object falling 60 feet and impacting limestone at terminal velocity. Andrea doesn't want to hear this.

First Route
The area where we climbed is called Casino Wall. This route is rated a 5.5 (easy). It's about 50 ft. high. Charles, Debbie, Byron, and I all succeed on our first climb.

Charles Scurries Up
Here's Charles resting on a nice ledge. He seems to have a knack for this, getting to the top faster than any of us newcomers.

Showing how it's done

Next Route
This one's harder. It's still considered easy but the start required a really tough move. Scott and Bryon work to figure it out.

Annie Karine
This is near the top of the same route.

Not Much to Hold On To
The rock face has only small breaks and ridges to grab and balance on. Yet this is an 'easy' route. The special shoes help a lot.

Coming Down
Fortunately, no matter how hard the climb, getting down is easy. Pushing off the rock is scary the first time, but then it's a nice ride down.

Bob and Debbie at Mickey
Debbie went right over to a route called 'Mickey' a difficult 5.9! Bob's showing her how to get started.

Annie Karine Helps Out
Annie Karine gives 'beta' (coaching) to Debbie to help her get over the first part.

Happy So Far
Debbie's all smiles getting this far, but she'll be on this route for another 20 minutes or so before she finally gets to the top.

Up To Mickey
The route is named after that rock formation above Debbie's head that lookes like Mickey Mouse ears.

Mickey From Afar
Here are Bob and Debbie STILL working on Mickey. She's almost done - the anchor is near the top of the picture.

Bob on Belay
Robert has great belaying technique. Notice the taught rope, both hands firmly gripping the rope, paying careful attention to the climber.

Debbie on Belay
In contrast, Debbie is exhausted from that climb so she demonstrates how nice it is to have a gri-gri (automatic belaying device)!

Annie Karine calmly points out a rat.

A Mosquito
The mosquitos were aweful on this day. OFF!, Deet, and even an electric dragonfly hardly helped at all.

Andrea the Belligerent
Andrea goes up Mickey and sees me with the camera. "Nah, Nah, I pirated your software, you can't catch me." I volunteer to belay :)

Annie Karine Tops a Ten
I think this is the first 5.10 of the day. Annie Karine celebrates at the top.

Debbie and Annie Karine
Annie Karine belays and coaches Debbie on the ten.

Andrea's Turn
Andrea makes it look easy too. Charles and Byron did this one as well, not quite as smoothly but without any real trouble.

Back to Photologue