Devo's Blog

Thursday, October 15

Yosemite Pic's are up

After hours of culling and editing, I've finally uploaded all my pictures from my recent Yosemite Valley trip. Enjoy.

Devo's Yosemite '09 photoset

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Sunday, October 4

Weathered out in The Valley

Had an enjoyable first week in Yosemite climbing with Kurt. Weather was "splitter". My guiding compatriot Seth arrived yesterday - just in time for it to rain all night through this afternoon - bummer. It snowed on the valley rim! No climbing to be done, so I wandered around Yosemite Village for awhile, then hung out at Curry Village, now I'm at the Ahwahnee Hotel. Weather's supposed to be o.k. Monday, then maybe a chance of showers Tuesday, we'll see...

Pictures are here. Descriptions of my climbs (and some pictures) are on my climbing page.

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Saturday, September 26

Blogging @ the Olive Pit

Poaching the wireless from the Olive-Pit Restaurant here in Corning, CA. Left Newberg at 12:30 this afternoon, covered 500+ miles so far. Shooting for a rest area north of Sacramento to take a power nap before I drive to Yosemite tomorrow AM. Ciao.

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Friday, September 25

Yosemite bound

I'm on my way to Yosemite for two weeks - left this afternoon. Driving down alone for the first time ever - Kurt's flying down Sunday evening to meet me - so I decided to take it easy and break the drive up. Drove down to Newberg, OR this today to spend the evening with my cousin Bruce; arrived just in time to join his neighborhood BBQ and make apple cider on my great-grandpa's cider press - good times! Tomorrow I'll drive to California. Not sure how far - don't have to be in Yosemite until noon on Sunday, so I'm winging it.

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Saturday, August 29

Another season winding down

Almost done guiding for the summer. My last trip is over Labor Day weekend, then it'll be back to Vertical World full time (hopefully). I'm visiting Yosemite Valley again late Sept./early Oct. for some fun in the sun. :)

Stats

  • 15 Rainier climbs, all via Camp Muir/Disappointment Cleaver - 5 summits
  • 3 Baker climbs via the Easton Glacier - 3 summits
  • 1 Denali expedition - aborted (clients cancelled)

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Monday, August 3

Paradise

Late in July Rosann & I took a break from our busy schedules and spent some time together at Mt. Rainier's Paradise Inn. The weather was perfect and the flowers were in full bloom. That Friday I took Rosann on a day hike to Camp Muir - she finally got to see where I work! We had a lot of fun, the food at the inn was delish, and I enjoyed a leisurely cup of coffee in the morning before meeting my clients in the parking lot for my next summit trip. Good times. :)

Paradise  July 09
ROSANN & RAINIER

Paradise  July 09
AVALANCHE LILLIES

Paradise  July 09
SO MANY FLOWERS!

Paradise  July 09
MUIR AT LAST

More pictures from Paradise

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Tuesday, July 7

No work - go out and climb!

AAI's given me a few trips to work in lieu of my Denali trip - finished a Baker climb over the holiday weekend. Otherwise I've been getting some rock climbing in. Details on my climbing page...

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Friday, June 26

Back home

Flew home from Anchorage last night - that was a disappointing trip to say the least!

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Wednesday, June 24

Sitting still

Had a change in plans over the past few days - the Chinese clients for our Denali trip had visa problems and weren't allowed into the country, so our Denali expedition is a no go :-(. Lakpa Sherpa and I have been twiddling or thumbs here at AAI's guide house outside of Talkeetna for two days, waiting for a directive. Hopefully we can climb something...

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Monday, June 22

Posting from Talkeetna, AK

I'm in Alaska, getting ready to guide my first Denali trip with Alpine Ascents. Spent the day helping another AAI team prepare for their trip: packing, weighing gear, driving the van, arranging air taxi to basecamp, the works. We've just arrived at Talkeetna Air Taxi (TAT) and are making final preparations for them to fly onto the glacier this afternoon. Fun stuff!





It's nice up here, overcast but not cold - lots of mosquitoes though. >:-b There was an earthquake earlier this morning - felt it rumble under our feet - guess it set off a bunch of avalanches up on the mountain - yikes! My trip leaves on Wednesday - can't wait!

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Friday, October 10

Fri eve @ the VW

Back from Yo Valley - always a shock trying to fit back into city life - it's been a few days and I'm still struggling to settling in...

Worked a few days at the gym this week - doing a shift at the front desk at this moment. Everett is so NOT a hopping place - I'm passing time editing Yosemite photos. Again, why do I ever leave that place?

Yosemite highlights:
  • East Buttress of Middle Cathedral Rock - my first Grade IV
  • Flashing my first Yosemite 5.10d (on top rope, of course)
  • Climbing Royal Arches again - so fun!
  • Leading Church Bowl Lieback (5.8) using only one set of nuts (as per Valley hard-man Steve Roper)
  • Northeast Buttress of Higher Cathedral Rock - my second Grade IV and first forced bivouac - a grand adventure all in all (trip report)

When is ski season gonna' begin?

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Saturday, September 27

Yosemite night life

Sat eve here in Yosemite Valley and I'm at the Great Room in the Ahwahnee Lodge availing myself of the free wireless Internet and electricity to recharge my portable electronics. There's a wedding reception happening in an adjacent room with a raucous cover band, an odd juxtaposition it seems but that's the beauty of The Valley - so many here for so many reasons. So many is an understatement - it's crazy how many people are here over the weekend! Be glad when Monday comes and the crowds thin out again...

My first week was fun. Kurt, Jason, Rosann, Sean and I hung out, climbed a bit, relaxed a lot. Weather's been awesome - warmer at night than past years - Rosann never even needed the down booties I got her last Christmas (she hates being cold, esp. when camping!).

The cover band just started a rendition of "Twist an Shout"...

The big accomplishment of last week was when Kurt, Jason and I climbed the East Buttress of Middle Cathedral Rock, one of the classic Grade IV climbs in Yosemite, one of the Fifty Classic Climbs in North America and my first Grade IV climb ever. Suh-weet! :) Tomorrow Jason and I are going to climb Royal Arches - Jason's first and my second time on this classic big wall route.

I've tired of of the cover band and am now listening to my iTunes instead...

This morning there was a "change of the guard" per se as I drove to Fresno Yosemite International Airport and dropped off Kurt, Rosann and Sean and picked up guiding buddy Dave. First time in The Valley for Dave and he's jazzed - just what he needed after a long summer of guiding. Looking forward to climbing some rock with him again.

Cover band is done - phew. Macbook's just about charged up.

Time to sign off and catch some Z's. Big day tomorrow.

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Monday, September 15

Final trip

Been gonzo busy of late working 3-day trips on Rainier. Run my final climb tomorrow then I'm off to Yosemite Valley for two weeks of R&R (climbing too, of course!). After that I'm back working for Vertical World Everett for the winter and skiing as much as possible. Tough life. ;)

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Monday, August 11

Side jobs

I'll be guiding a lot for Alpine Ascents on the Disappointment Cleaver route for the rest of the summer, but lately I've managed to score a little side work too: a Mt. Shuksan trip with Go Trek and possibly leading some trips for Cascade Adventure Guides once in a while. Would be nice to keep things rolling...

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Monday, July 21

Baker break

Guided a 3 day summit climb on Mt. Baker this past weekend. Nice to get off Rainier for awhile - keeps things fresh. Gorgeous summit day - full moon, clear skies, stunning sunrise, fun clients. Even battled Baker-san for my knife and won! Next up: 5 days on Rainier via Muir.

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Thursday, July 10

8 days

Completed my first stint on an Alpine Ascents Rainier mountaineering school - 8 days chock full of instructing clients on the basics of mountaineering: winter camping, back country cooking, crevasse rescue, ice climbing, cramponing, map & compass orientation, avalanche awareness and much, much more... very different than a 3-day guided climb to the summit. I had a great time and learned a lot about teaching from head guide Brien Sheedy. We had a great group of clients who were eager to learn, even if it meant standing around in an ice crevasse in a heavy drizzle or pitching camp in the rain. Fortunately come summit day the weather improved and we got six of the seven students to the top - good times!

8-day Rainier Mountaineering School Jul 2-8 2008
SUMMIT DAY, LIBERTY CAP IN THE BACKGROUND

More 8-Day Mountaineering School pics

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Wednesday, June 25

Back to work

I got the OK to guide, heading out tomorrow for a 5-day stint on Rainier. Back to making some dough! Eye is improving, can actually see shapes, though not details. My prescription is definitely different - hard to tell if my glasses are a help or hindrance... Been climbing a lot this past week - so haven't been as bored. Went to Index Saturday, Monday and Tuesday - good times!

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Monday, June 2

Setback

Finally got to the summit of Rainier this last trip - a 4 day climb via the Kautz Ice Chute. Had good weather, very little wind and an excellent view from the top. My next trip was to be my first as a lead guide - again via the Kautz - but I'd been having some blurry vision in my left eye over the past few weeks, so I spoke to my eye doc over the weekend. He told me to cancel my climb and see him first thing Monday morning whereupon he referred me to a retina specialist who informed me I have a detached retina that requires surgery. So now, instead of guiding Rainier and going to Alaska to guide Denali, I'm having eye surgery on Thursday with an expected recovery of 3-4 weeks. Can't describe how disappointed I feel right now.

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Tuesday, May 20

First Rainier trip of 2008

It was an interesting one in many aspects. Very warm July-ish weather in May for days 1 and 2. Muir snow field was buttery spring corn crying out to be skied. :( Sunburns galore, though I faired well enough. Summit day was eventful - more than usual. Started out fine with clear skies. Had a few clients punch legs through a few snow bridges above Ingraham Flats, then one slid a good ways down a steep slope while crossing to the nose of Disappointment Cleaver. Nothing too to alarming though. Got windier as we climbed higher and on our last push we encountered 50-plus MPH winds that repeatedly knocked some folks off their feet. Finally, just below the crater rim we called it and began our descent. Things were going fine, then just above the Cleaver one of our clients collapsed and passed out. We were able to revive him and get him to ingest some food and water, but he continued to have several more fainting episodes. (He later mentioned he'd felt "out of it" ever since our first break but never told anyone - not too smart. Likely he didn't eat or drink enough during the ascent, add in a good dose of altitude sickness and bam! - one massive bonk.) Eventually he was able to stand and carefully continue down to Camp Muir, though he did faint a few more times along the way. The final slog from Muir was uneventful and we enjoyed burgers and beer in Ashford before the ride home to Seattle. I'm sore, but it's early season yet. Back on the mountain tomorrow for another 3 day Muir trip!

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Monday, May 12

Packin' for Rainier

The guiding season is nigh upon me - I'm working the first trip of the season this Saturday - a 3 day climb via the Muir/Disappointment Cleaver route. Over the next five weeks I'll be on seven summit attempts via the DC, the Kautz and the Emmons routes. Then I'm off to Alaska for 3-1/2 weeks. Gonna be a busy season early on! I'm excited, though I'll miss being around my family and Rosann... and rock climbing too, of course. ;)

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Tuesday, April 15

Where's Devo?

Announcing a new addition to my climbing page: I'm gonna be gone a lot this summer guiding, so if you ever find yourself wondering where I'm at at a particular time, take a look at my climbing calendar.

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Friday, April 4

Climbing vacation

I'm off to Smith Rock tomorrow for a week - my regular spring climbing fling. Weather looks iffy - cloudy and cold. Oh well, make the best of it. At least I'm borrowing Paul's huMOUNGous 6 person Marmot Halo tent. I could almost live in it! :)

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Monday, March 31

Denali Redux

Got my guiding schedule from Alpine Ascents: I start work on the very first Rainier trip May 17th and will have steady work through the summer. Bonus: I'm going to be an assistant guide on an expedition to Denali's West Buttress June 25- July 15. Was hoping I'd get a shot at one this year - I'm going back to Alaska!

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Wednesday, February 27

Skiing & climbing; hellos & goodbyes

Got to climb and ski last weekend. Rosann and I went to Stevens Pass on Saturday. No new snow and the runs were bulletproof - not the best conditions, but we still had a fun day together. Rosann's one cute ski bunny. :)

Stevens Pass 02.23.08
ROSANN RIDING DAISY CHAIR

Stevens Pass 02.23.08
DEVO ON DAISY

I even shot some video of Rosann skiing:


On Sunday I went rock climbing at Index with Kurt - full report is on my climbs page.

On Monday I said goodbye to Joe, my manager at Vertical World Everett, who's moving to North Carolina. KJ, manager at the Redmond climbing gym will be our interim manager and it appears we're in good hands, but change is... well, change.

Steff Sanvik, a close family friend and my church choir director who has been battling a serious liver condition and was at one time hoping to receive a liver transplant, passed away Monday afternoon. It's been quite an ordeal and a bit of a shock for his family and friends. Steff was a spirited musician, choir director, and band teacher. He will be sorely missed. I'm honored to play at his memorial service.

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Tuesday, February 12

Skiing sucks - time to climb?

Between the avalanche danger and poor conditions, I haven't been skiing in almost two weeks! Starting to think about climbing again - Vantage is often decent in March. Heck, I've climbed in Leavenworth in Feb before, although don't think that's going to happen this year.

I'm going to Smith Rock April 6-11. Rosann and Kurt are coming, maybe Rick & Holly for a few days too. If anyone wants to join us for any/all the time, you'd be welcome.

Not sure when I'll start guiding - depends on when they want to start giving me work, could be the end of March or early April if they do. Still hoping to score a spot on a Denali trip, but might be slim unless something changes. If not, bring on Rainier!

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Wednesday, January 16

Off to Avy 2

Getting ready for my AIARE Level 2 avalanche class. Starts tomorrow at 8am up at Snoqualmie Pass. Weather's looking good - might take my camera and take some shots to share. Chow fer now.

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