Friday, May 8, 2009

Up and up and up Las Cruces 3/27- 4/1

After leaving white sands we headed west through New Mexico and stopped in the city of Las Cruces. There we did the normal boring city things; laundry, library, and food buying- which is where we found out that this city contains a supermarket, and the supermarket contains some tortillas, that were probably some of the best I've ever eaten. After gorging ourselves on warm tortillas we were on our way again and stopped at a climbing area just outside of town called the rough and ready hills. The climbs were pretty fun, so we stuck around for a couple days.

video

Goonie had something he wanted to show me

Good climbing, quiet camping, and pretty sunset


what more could you ask for?

After talking with a group of people from the area, we found out that there was a relatively easy multi-pitch sport climbing area nearby. We decided it was time we gave it a try. Multi-pitch climbing is when you climb up and then belay from a set of anchors on the wall to get your second person up, and then they belay you from those anchors and so on...

On the way up to checkerboard mountain
A very serious moment

This is looking back at the car from where we started the climb after the hike up- you can just barely see the van in the middle of the picture

Mary about to start and lead the first pitch

Where are they going? and why can't I come too?

The first set of anchors- Mary and Michael went up and I stayed down with the dogs


Sometimes you forget how spiky and dangerous the desert can be


and then you get a reminder


Making there way up, both Mike and Mary are about in the center of the picture, it was a big hunk of rock- probably 400-500 feet tall, and we climbed to the top of it. It was a pretty cool feeling

When Mike and I went up we left Goonie with Mary; neither of them were too happy about this since Goonie kept running around trying to climb up the rock and barking continuously and very shrilly...awww say the parents, rotten brat says the babysitter


Looking down from the 3rd pitch, Michael was belaying me and that dark dot is Mary

Michael at the top

Looking at the other side from the top of the mountain

We made it

Looking down from whence we had come

As you may notice, those shadows are pretty long, we had about 45 minutes before dark, and a long way to repel, and a really long walk back to the car


Stepping off the end of the world


Almost down...
We managed to get off the rock before it got dark, but had to pick our way back to the car without flashlights with only that sliver of moon to guide us. We lost the trail practically immediately and there were cacti everywhere, and of course I was wearing sandals. Luckily after a couple of minutes of simply heading down the hill, over boulders and hoping we weren't about to stab ourselves on anything too painful, we met back up with the trail, and made it back to camp; cold and hungry, but safe.