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Posts Tagged ‘Venice Beach’

Despite living within a couple miles of the mouth of Clear Creek Canyon, I’d never done any rock climbing along its walls (ice yes, rock no). A small group had organized on Fourteener World to get out and climb midweek. John, Steve and I were the only ones available this Wednesday and we trekked over to the Canal Zone area for some post-work sport climbing.

Steve led us off by starting with Holiday Road (5.8), John and I followed the route.

I jumped on the sharp end for the next lead (Venice Beach, also 5.8), which John then followed and Steve cleaned.

That pattern was repeated on another 5.8 (Box of Rain), then the weather started to turn. A few sprinkles and some distant thunder had me wondering if I should commit to another route. While dithering, John decided he needed to depart and I finally started up Bears Choice (5.10). The climbing was easy up to the overhang and then a little insecure after that, but I successfully led the pitch. Steve followed, possibly at a disadvantage due to his height.

We figured we had time for one more route and looked at the only trad climb in the area: Route Canal (5.9-). I’d packed a light rack just in case this was an option tonight and was glad to put it to use.

There were some really nice hand jams in the lower section, followed by a bit of laybacking above. Another group was just finishing up the Gondolier Arete (which shares an anchor with Route Canal), so I clipped into the bolts and setup our anchor then clipped their rope through it so they could quickly clean their draws and lower through my anchor.

Steve top-roped the route and cleaned what gear I didn’t pull while lowering and then we packed up and hiked out just as it was getting dark.

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