climbing is life

Impressions El Capitan The Nose 2012

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It's been an year since I've been in Yosemite national park for the first time. I found one note that I made after the trip. Finally it is online.  Let me know what do you think.

You can ask, was I afraid to try myself in trad?

Of course! I was afraid, extremely afraid. I couldn’t even imagine, what it is! But I was sure that once starting it everything will be fine.

Rustam Gelmanov, Рустам Гельманов

For me there were a lot of difficulties, I’m a boulder climber, I’m used to fall right and left. On these rocks everything is different. Even atmosphere was making it clear: “my friend”, you are making something different here, forget the old rules. You can’t fall here! That’s a fact! There is no point to argue with that! If you are going to climb here and climb for long time, you should forget about falling. This is not what I’m used to, I never fixed myself securely, I always run while I have power and I want to.

View from The Nose El Capitan

I was afraid of placing anchors, but not for long. After couple of days fear grew to respect and later I got some understanding of what is happening. At the beginning I was playing with camalots, I was putting them so badly into the crack that I was angry and wasn’t going to fall down.

Rustam Gelmanov, Рустам Гельманов

We were climbing as much as we could and as long as we could. But it is not the most important. We were choosing routees with the most difficult and most unusual styles. Clean lines for hands I loved from the beginning.

Rustam Gelmanov, Рустам Гельманов

Long time ago when I just started to climb, I watched the movie “Masters of stone 5”. I don’t remember anything but how Steph Davis free-sloing the route. I couldn’t even imagine that one day I will try this route as well. You will not believe, but I even was afraid to dream about it. Seriously! One route from the movie I even climbed! The route was not difficult but I enjoyed every move.

First impressions from the trip were scrupulous and touching. When we arrived to Indian Creek, I was immediately relaxed and I started to absorb all this unique nature, mood… wonderful place. We didn’t have much time; I tried to understand everything that was possible to understand.

Rustam Gelmanov, Рустам Гельманов

I didn’t realize when I started to have progress. I was not myself! It felt like someone was climbing for me and I was just wondering around. I still remember the route “Pnete”, which broke this barrier for me. This route is very long, about 40-50 m, beautiful and diverse. Fighting it was difficult but pleasant. How can I explain that? You experience weird feeling while climbing the route. You know, when you are in the plain, there is turbulence, the plain is falling and everything inside you shrinks and you grow numb? The same is with crack climbing. If you are doing good, you have the same feelings.

Seclusion, nature, rocks, desire to go up... This is how I can describe my emotions in Indian Creek.

There was nothing to be afraid of, my every step was controlled by Pasha, who shared a lot of knowledge and thought me a lot in a very short time. You can only dream about better climbing partner! He was not afraid to take me “green” (completely not experienced) to this trip. Pasha put way more contribution to this trip then me.

Just to say thanks to him will not mean anything. He knows everything himself.

Rustam Gelmanov, Рустам Гельманов

Pasha and me on The Nose

Here is my first Big Wall.

What do I know about it? Nothing!

I forgot to mention, that I saw camalot for the first time right before going to USA.I don’t know a lot of names and mix the equipment. Pasha calmly corrects me.

When I saw El Capitan for the first time, I was flattened by its weight! Huge rock with overhanging, clouds are floating around and get stuck in the rock. I couldn’t believe that I will be up there, but I knew I will. It was even funny, now I’m here on the ground and later I will climb there. Can’t be true!

Selection of the right equipment, acquaintance with “Hryun” (special backpack to carry staff on the big wall).

Rustam Gelmanov, Рустам Гельманов

Getting ready

Yearly morning… Ready. Part of equipment is already beneath the start, the rest we are carrying now. The start is exciting, feelings are dancing. We started slowly.

Unusually, how slippery is granite here. You have to get used to it. Work started harmoniously and neatly, almost without words, sometimes we could understand each other without any words. We reached Sickle Ledge fast, but there was congestion, sad and long story. We were not in a hurry, it was good for me: I had time to get used to the height and to the life in the rock.

First night was anxious, it put everything on the right places.

Rustam Gelmanov, Рустам Гельманов

There was no worry anymore. Good and efficient work started. This work sucks out all your power and activates reserve powers. The most important, is to have a good mood!

With every meter I was imbued by new task for me. I wanted to do everything clean, and it started to work out. We were cheering up each other, moving steady, there was no rush. Difficult parts met us open handed, we were even able to do something. Not for long! I was shocked by variety of climbing styles on one route. I soaked everything.

I was remembering everything, I knew I will be back.

Rustam Gelmanov, Рустам Гельманов

I'm climbing under the Roof.

The most difficult part for me is like totem of the whole route. It is impossibly difficult! It is not like climbing on holds: without getting used to that I’m not able to do anything. I was working hard, trying again and again. Pasha was watching; I didn’t give up. Suddenly I became furious, I couldn’t do anything!! I was trying again and again. Pasha’s words saved me: “you are tired, 26 ropes already, what did you expect?” I was thinking that it might be the case, but it doesn’t change the fact that I can’t do it. We finished The Nose with pleasure. All pitches are beautiful in its way. I didn't check the difficulty, I was just climbing. It is a real art: you and rock!

Rustam Gelmanov, Рустам Гельманов

I'm climbing on the right side.

With this our experience on El Capitan came to the end. We finished The Nose in the dark, packed and went back home.

Later in the night Pasha couldn't find me. I was sleeping nearby on the bench in sitting position with my head on my knees.

Look like I was tired!

The video from his trip is here.

2 Responses

  1. Pingback: Video El Capitan. The Nose. - Rustam Gelmanov

  2. Pingback: Впечатления El Capitan The Nose 2012 | Rustam Gelmanov

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