Last Saturday (Aug 19th) was my graduation from Art Center College of Design in California and I was hiking at Grand Teton for 13 hours. I care about graduation but... Grand Teton is more tempting! I've been talking about this trip with my climbing friends from Boulder for a while so I didn't want to miss it!
We slept in the car at Lupine Meadow Trailhead on Friday night and started the hike before the sunrise on Saturday.
My friends, Ryan and Alex, were going to climb Disappointment Peak, Irene's Arete - trad 5.8, 7 pitches. That was definitely out of my ability so I was just going hiking and meet them at Amphitheater Lake.
After my climbing friends sent themselves up to the wall, I was trying to find an “easier” way to get to the other side of the peak. I scrambled some class 3, bouldered some class 4 rock and a lil bit of class 5 wall - it was quite scary. I would feel dizzy if I look down my feet. Below pic shows the cliff I climbed up.
Then I faced a class 5 wall. After inspecting, I felt I would die if I slipped. So I decided to slowly climbed down the gully.
La Sportiva trail running shoes provided amazing grip but I probably had half-size small and they were also brand new - I had blisters on both heels, big toes were in pain. My big toes were almost in purple after almost 20 miles of hiking. They were swollen for couple of days (I'm icing them while writing my blog).
Finally met my friends at Amphitheater Lake. it was really worth the hike (and pain). The water was ice cold which was too cold for swimming but perfect for icing my feet...
At the end of the day my legs and foot hated me, I hated my life. Crippled back to my car, drove to Jackson Hole having dinner, and we went to Lander for the climbing projects at the next day.
Alex was going to give another try on this 5.10c. It was pretty intense but he made it!
Then it's my turn! Ryan set up a 5.7 go west young man for me. It was a fun one but apparently I lacked of endurance. I mostly spent time in bouldering indoor since I was still a beginner (I pulled my back muscle 3 months ago and had to rest for a month.)
The second one was 5.8 put down your ducky - nice long one, around 80-100’. In the middle my arms were so pumped and I was about to give up. Alex: "No… I think you should keep going up." AND I MADE IT!! hahaha thanks my friend refused to lower me down.
After that we were chilling in town waiting for the eclipse at the next day. That night we were sleeping at Walmart parking lot in Riverton. We were watching King's line (climbing documentary) on the crash pads covering with sleeping bag. There were some people parking there overnight for eclipse too.
These two astrophysicists were pretty excited.
I was not super stoked until the sky became dark, the air got chilly, and when it was eroded from 99% to 100% - it became real dark.
There was 2 minutes of darkness! It only happened at the place with total eclipse - my friends who were at 85% eclipse area said the sky didn't turn dark at all.
Once the first sunlight came out, my friends headed back to Boulder. This trip was way fun, and ended with the best note.