Category Archives: Zion National Park

A few high quality Grades.

My climbing partner for the last 2 weeks, Buster Jesik, put together this time break down of our recent adventure in Zion.  We linked Spaceshot, Touchstone and Moonlight.   A little video of our adventure also by Buster….

I added a little bit of narrative.

Start time – 6:10 am, Sunday, April 28th, 2013
Spaceshot Total Time – 3:27:09 (note: this was Buster’s first time up the route!)

2:08:16 – Buster’s lead block on Spaceshot (5 pitches – including our free solo of first 3 pitches) #1 and #2 Ballnutz made the C2 pitch a breeze!

1:18:53 – Q’s lead block to the top of Spaceshot  (3 pitches + solo to top)
1:53:15 – descent of Spaceshot, re-rack, and approach to Touchstone Wall – (EPIC*)  
*We fixed our full tag line to the Pitch 7 anchor and fixed our lead rope on Earth Orbit.  Rappelling the route wasn’t that bad, things were going swimmingly!  One tug- movement, two tugs- movement, three tugs–eh, three tugs–eh, shit!  I could barely see the tail ends sticking up from the knot and the sandstone groove the knot was jammed in.  Buster yarded on the other end while I flicked the rope.  Being almost 50 meters down and diagonally left, our efforts were futile.  I cursed as I put the jumars back on the rope.  I re-jugged the whole rope line, adjusted the knot below the lip and rappelled again.  We finally pulled free and clear.    The rappel back to the top of Pitch 5 was a strenuous leftward swing.  A wonderful learning experiment, not awful, but just as time consuming as the standard decent.  
Touchstone Wall –  2:20:35 –
1:10:47 – Buster’s lead block on Touchstone Wall (3.5 pitches) 
03:48 – transition on Touchstone Wall
1:06:50 – Q’s lead block to the top of Touchstone (4 pitches + solo to top) 
Touchstone Wall felt cruiser.  We passed one party of nice gentleman without a hitch.  Thank you gentleman!  
1:21:17 – descent of Touchstone, refuel and river crossing/approach to Moonlight 
Quinn on the upper pitches of Moonlight 
Buster soakin it up!

Moonlight Buttress – 3:19.56
2:09:27 – Buster’s lead block on Moonlight Buttress (5 pitches) 

1:10:29 – Q’s lead block on Moonlight Buttress (4 pitches) 
Moonlight also felt pretty good, I did not climb as quickly (our previous go I climbed the top 5 pitches in an hour.  I was one pitch less this go around and 10 minutes more– and so it goes).   
Start of Spaceshot to top of Moonlight – 12:23:02 
32:47 – summit dance and decent of angles landing trail
12:55:49 – Total car to car time from start of Spaceshot to valley floor 
36:46 – Wait for bus and approach to Monkeyfinger –
37:46 – Time spent climbing on Monkeyfinger – (climbed first 2 1/2 pitches**)
** In November I hit the ledge and ricochet past my belayer.  I was injured for a few weeks, so it was with hesitation I started our 4th wall of the day.
It was still light out and would be for at least another hour or so.   We soloed up to the base of the pillar and I led the 5.11 without a hitch.  “Line fixed!!” I yelled to Buster and glanced down to the base.  I saw a pool of red in the sand while Buster mumbled up, “I have another bloody nose and this one is worse.”  He had gotten one on Moonlight earlier in the day but just dealt.  I was unaware of his predicament until we both stood atop Moonlight and I noticed blood smeared on his face.    

Buster in predicament #2

This time, I waited and watched from my perch.  He fumbled his helmet off and I watched his glasses tumbled down a ledge a little further.  “We aren’t stopping on account of my bloody nose.”
I must admit I was still a little put off by this climb and this was solidifying my angst,   “alright dude.”  I turned around and started going up.  I placed my first piece and leaned over onto the aider, no problem.  I placed my second piece high, unclipped my aider from the anchor and leaned over onto it, bingo.  Just as I was reaching for a third piece, I was off.  Just as quickly I was standing upright back on the ledge.  My right leg took the brunt of the impact and there was a small twinge in my back.  I luckily had the exact right distance in my daisy land on the ledge but not to full impact.  
“That’s it dude!!  Three walls are plenty.  This is the second time I have hit this ledge, I am out!”  I called it.  I am a little disappointed but with the recent tragedies in my life I am glad we are both safe! 
With that we were off, back to the car and drinking a beer with the last inches of light.  

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