High season is here! But before things get really crazy, Molly and I decided to sneak off to Penitente Canyon to climb for a few days. With a spring season full of wild weather, the amount of actual climbing we got to do was limited, but we still managed to make it exciting. Penitente Canyon is a beautiful hidden canyon nestled northwest of Alamosa, CO. Made of volcanic rock, the canyon is full of short bolted sport routes with everything from slabs to overhanging huecos.
Day 1 - We left in the morning and and headed west through ominous rain clouds with the ever persistent hope that the weather would be nicer in Pentitente than it was anywhere else...
It wasn't... we arrived in the pouring rain. I promptly decided that the rain was definitely going to blow over shortly and it would soon be beautiful and sunny for the rest of the trip. Anyone who has ever been climbing with myself and has heard one of my ultra-scientific and fact-based meteorology predictions knows that my track record is abysmal, at best. So, it continued to down pour for the rest of the afternoon.
While we set up camp and started to unpack, Molly had a revelation. No, maybe we should call it an epiphany. She had forgotten her harness. That's right. We were on 3-day climbing trip and we only had one harness between the two of us. As a side note, the irony that Molly and I of all people would be short on equipment is truly overwhelming. At this point, most folks would have packed up and turned around, but considering our insane work schedules, we were determined to make this work. At this point it was still raining and we decided that our best course of action would be to drive to Alamosa to do some shopping. After a quick stop in Alamosa, Molly had a new harness to add to her collection and we were good to go, except for the fact that it was still raining...
A collection of stories and adventures from the FAMS director and instructors.