Rainy Wednesday Tower, 6.17.2012

Bekkah climbs the lower ledges of The Balcony (5.4).
Bekkah climbs the lower ledges of The Balcony (5.4).

Met up with Judy, Bekkah, and Kevin Zickert of Neillsville this morning for some East Rampart climbing. Today was not only the Zickerts' first time climbing outside, but also their first visit to Devils Lake State Park. I'm frequently impressed with how often life-long Wisconsinites have managed to avoid Devil's Lake for so long. It's the most popular park in the Midwest!

After backing down a bit, Judy rounds a blind corner to solve Double Overhang's (5.4) first roof problem.
After backing down a bit, Judy rounds a blind corner to solve Double Overhang's (5.4) first roof problem.

We headed to the Rainy Wednesday Tower area for some nice, long, easy routes. Judy kicked off the party with Double Overhang (5.4), a 85-foot tower climb with a nice dihedral start and two roof cruxes to keep things interesting. Judy climbed impressively, dancing through all the cruxy parts with grace and panache. Bekkah and Kevin followed suit, each with a distinctly different style. Bekkah climbed with stubborn determination, solving the tough parts by sheer refusal to leave. Kevin climbed everything like a school boy just let out of class, charging up each route in scrambles, leaps, and bounds, held back only slightly when the going get spicy. I would LOVE to see Kevin on harder terrain, if only to see if it slowed him down at all and how he would react.

After much success on Rainy Wednesday Tower, we took lunch and then took on the distinctly more difficult Green Bulge (5.7). I'm not sure whether Bekkah liked the climb or not, but she sure as heck was not going to let it defeat her as she puzzled the many cruxes out, one by one. Kevin, to nobody's surprise, charged up again, pulling an airy corner move at the top to reach the biners, hanging 80' into the air. Nice work, Kevin.

Kevin needed to get down to Iowa for work on Monday, so we rounded off the day with The Balcony (5.4), an inside corner framing a tall pine tree. Everyone climbed, then we packed up for some bluff-top views and anchor breakdown before hiking down to the CCC lot. All in all, a great day with fine company.