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Traveling, living, loving, exploring and trying to make some semblance of sense out of this crazy world.  


Sunday, November 2, 2014

Halloween- Trail Daze #10

Thanks so very much to Tyler Hall and Gray C, Shane and Chris Egress,Josiah WeeksScott DrummondNicholas Kurland and Cindy Gray for braving temperatures in the 30's, overcast skies, cold winds and drizzle to make Saturday another in a series of incredible Trail Daze events.

In a matter of hours, this crew built a new switchback to reduce impact on a beautiful old oak tree, removed all traces of the older trail, and did an amazing job of shoring up the trail and stabilizing the belay below Superman.

Strategy session

(L to R) Scott Drummond, Nick Kurland and Chris Egress dig in.

Josiah sez: No gluten or dairy, just CAFFEINE!!!

When the work was done, the rock wranglers descended to inhale chicken pasta salad, power gels and chocolate, then, despite the occasional shower of rain, they dragged out packs and headed back up their freshly-laid trail to tear up some routes.

Nick Kurland and friend Eric worked their way methodically across the wall, dispatching my routes Still Laughing (5.10) and Reaching Conclusions (5.10). After several hangs and combinations of moves, they sent Ryan Eubank's Golden Horseshoe (5.10+) and fought through Fisher's Hunter's Moon (5.10+).  Josiah Weeks, fresh back from the Red River Gorge, warmed up on the great moderate Second Rule with mountain bike madman Scott Drummond on belay , while Tyler Hall and Chris Egress battled the powerful, hard-to-read start of Mike Fisher's La Machina.  

Nick Kurland snaps for the ledge on Golden Horseshoe, one of the great 5.10s to be found at The Reach, Reed's Creek

Tyler Hall rolls through the lower cruxes of Hunter's Moon

Chris Egress cranks through the roof on La Machina

Leaving the youngsters to shred, I collected my wife, relaxing with some friends who actually live above the crag, and we headed off to prepare for a night at Thorn Springs Campground.

We chowed pizza and Halloween candy, talked over issues of the day and assorted trivia of global importance, sipped tasty adult carbohydrate replacement beverages and handed out T-shirts to all our volunteers.

The day's work and play finally caught up with us all around 10 p.m. Good nights were made and we hit the racks.

Cindy rose early to begin frying bacon and making mounds of oatmeal pancakes, and I eyed snow pellets falling from rolling skies as I summoned the survivors to breakfast.

Crispy bacon, pancakes, Sunny D and French press coffee: the Trail Daze crew relaxes post breakfast (courtesy of PHAR/UP and Cindy Gray) in Cabin 51, Thorn Spring Campground

Shane Egress: a force of nature

The South Branch of the Potomac glitters and shines in the autumn sun.

Interesting fact- we have now held EIGHT more local trail work events than the corporate-funded Access Fund, and almost all of our events were funded out-of-pocket or by donations fromsmall companies and local climbers... as opposed to shilling the only automobile without a hybrid or cams made in China.

Outside of Seneca, the two local events in which the Access Fund did (belatedly) participate were created, organized and seen to completion by a non-member.... can you guess who?

PHAR/UP: local climbers making a real difference. 

Being part of the solution, instead of the problem, for over a decade.

Contact us today for information on Trail Daze, local crags and the Smoke Hole Shuttle Service: (304) 668-2856; via email: phar.up.2014@gmail.com

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