October 6, 2001
The Castle Crags Wilderness of Northern California, with its fine granite pinnacles
and wonderful views of Mt. Shasta and the Trinity Alps, is great for hiking, and an alpine
rock climber’s playground.
On October 5 five Obsidians and one guest made the drive south to enjoy one of the classic
climbing routes of this intriguing area.
“The Cosmic Wall” (six pitches, rated 5.6) is a low angle face climb to the
summit of Mt. Hubris, one of the prominent peaks in the heart of the Crags.
After a night spent beside a bubbling stream, we rose early under still shining stars and
moon and started the three-mile hike up the trail toward the base of the cliff.
An unusually snow free Mt. Shasta dominated the lightening western sky as dawn found us
picking our way through the brush at the base of our rocky objective.
Though I was designated “leader” everyone in the group had serious
responsibilities as we climbed in the traditional style: rope teams of two and everyone
either leading or belaying on every pitch.
For a Cascade climber the solid rock was a treat.
The brilliant day, outstanding views and awe inspiring beauty of the Crags combined to make a
truly enjoyable and memorable climb.
There is a great satisfaction indeed in sharing a small, sun-drenched summit with friends
and fellow climbers!
Two rappels brought us safely down to a descent gully for the scramble back to the packs and
the pleasant hike down to the car.
Joining me (Doug Nelson, leader) for this most enjoyable outing were Deb Carver,
John & Lisa Manotti, John Pegg and (soon-to-be-Obsidian) Maryanne Reiter.