First trip to Smith, 2017
The nice thing about Oregon is how varied the climate can be, based on where in the State you are. Sarah and I took advantage of this in the best way possible today, by being completely crazy and doing a day trip down to Smith Rock.
That’s right. Smith. Two and a half hour drive each way… if the weather and traffic hold easy. Longer, if there’s snow or ice or something.
The plan was pretty simple: leave mid-morning, to give the rock a few hours to warm up in the sun, climb a few good routes to remind us what real rock is like, and then drive back home. Simple, and easy.
And honestly… it went pretty easy. The late morning was a nice change from our usual hectic mornings. The drive down was clean, without much ice or snow on the passes around Mt. Hood. Smith was more crowded than we’d expected, but that didn’t really affect us too much… the only real issue with the crowds was that Ollie was a bit more barky than normal. The drive home was long… especially due to the ice and one incident with Ollie, but it wasn’t the worst thing Sarah and I have dealt with, so we were still pretty good.
So, details, right?
Climbing was simple and easy – we didn’t push ourselves too hard, and really only stuck to fun and short routes, with easy approaches. We stayed in the dihedrals, starting out on the ever-popular 5 gallon buckets (5.8, Sport). Then we climbed around a little, did a Trad line called Cinnamon Slab (5.6, Trad) (Sarah did it twice, since she loved it so much), and I did a super easy sport line called Easy Reader (5.6, Sport).
Like I said, simple and easy, but still really pleasant. Sun on our arms, gear on our harnesses, and rock in our hands. Amazing, and a whole winter with only shovels and snow for hand holds.