Day 8, Sunday 5/25
Woke up early and ate breakfast. Looks like the weather will hold. Paid to stay the night again at Longs peak. This is the first time during the entire trip we have slept at the same place two nights in a row. We left early to go climb at a place called The Ironclads. I drove my Corolla up a 4X4 dirt road, passing jeeps and trucks along the way. We parked near a hillbilly encampment where we were invited to come drink beer out of what looked like brown-tinted milk jugs (it's 10 in the morning). We declined. Then we climbed while listening to terrible white-rap music, barking dogs, 4X4's, and dirt-bikes. We met some pretty cool climbers though, and we all endured the environment together. At one point Chris and Shaun were both on the wall and I was belayer. I heard something back by our bags and looked to see some chipmunks pull the trail-mix out of my backpack. They then proceeded to tear the bag open and eat the mix while I watched ten feet away unable to do anything except shout. Shaun tried to help by throwing rocks down at them, but they just were not concerned enough to care. Ten minutes later, when it was finally safe for me to leave the rope, I went over there and found the bag torn open and scattered about. All the peanuts, almonds, and cashews were gone! The only thing they left were the m&m's. Thank God, because I can only imagine how hyper one of those little schizo chipmunks would be if they ate just one m&m! Skipping frantically from rock to rock... Hawk bait :)
The view from Estes Park.
Me climbing my first 5.10
We had fun climbing all day and finished the day by climbing a climb that was rated 5.10. It was the first outdoor 5.10 climb for Shaun and I. We decided to leave early to increase our chances of taking a shower. On the way back we pulled into another shower place we had seen off the road, and even though they were already closed the guy let us in to take showers anyway. I had never before thanked someone for a shower! After that we stopped at a laundromat in town and washed all our dirty clothes. Back to camp. Amazed that the weather held all day. Clean, fresh sleep.