A Halloween without Halloween – also known as a climbing trip to Smith!

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Halloween – Saturday, 31-October-2015
Sarah and I had a few party invites on hand, but… well, none of them seemed quite as fun as going rock climbing down in Smith.
 
So, we went to Smith instead.
Sarah and I drove out to Smith early on Saturday morning – making the drive in her trusty truck.  The back was packed in with climbing gear and camping supplies, and the plan was to hit Moscow, followed up by some single pitch climbs… all dependent on how long the expected rain held off.  We made pretty good time; even though we left a little later than planned (don’t we always?) we still made it before noon, and were on the wall quickly.
Moscow 5.6 (Trad) – We’d done this one before, but I don’t mind re-doing route that I enjoyed.  And I had definitely enjoyed this one initially, so… why not, right?
Pitch 1 – per the last time we climbed this route, Pitch 1 is really fun, clean climbing.  However, this time I took the difficult variation, following a neat layback-crack up to the right, instead of following the traditional climbing line out left.  Definitely made it more difficult, but Sarah beared with my flailing, and I made it through the extra crux.
Pitch 2 – I actually built an anchor at the right spot!  Otherwise, exactly the same as the last time.
Pitch 3 – The longest pitch, and also the most interesting… but yeah, nothing new here.  Long, off-width, fun, super enjoyable.
Pitch 4 (the finish) – I still don’t really agree that this is 4th class… it’s maybe a V0 boulder problem to top off, but that problem is at the top of a ~250+ft cliff.  So we stayed roped in, and went left up a crack to a pair of bolts.
Walk off to the left, following a small path.
After climbing, we got back to the packs, ate some more burrito, and then headed back to the truck… the initial plan was to stay in town, relax, do some shopping, and maybe even visit a dog shelter in Bend on Sunday.  Instead, when we realized that we’d be leaving Smith ~ 6:15, we decided that a comfortable bed was more interesting than exploring Bend… and just headed back to Hood River.
We got some pizza for dinner at a place called “Base Camp pizza”… somehow there’s always a pizza place near climbing walls.  Makes sense – groups of hungry people, right?  We ate, played cornhole, and relaxed.
It wasn’t a simple drive back to Hood River, thanks to a torrential downpour that started around 7:45, but it wasn’t bad either.  Sarah and I kept each other awake for the time, talking and giggling and imaginging our next adventures… but honestly mostly wishing that it wasn’t raining, so that we could have stayed in town and climbed on Sunday as well.
Ce la vie.

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