Sunday, December 8, 2013

Creeksgiving 2013

Indian Creek + Thanksgiving = Creeksgiving!
The crew of New Englanders and Texans the morning of our departure.

Spending Thanksgiving this year in the West away from my family meant that I wanted to spend it climbing of course! And if I couldn't spend it with my immediate family, I was going to spend it with my climbing family. So my partner Laura and I loaded up the van in Flagstaff and headed to meet a friend of mine from college, some mutual climbing friends, and unbeknownst to us some soon to be new friends from Texas. But that's the way of climbing; we're always meeting new people and new climbing partners. Especially in a place like Indian Creek where everyone wants to pool their gear so you can lead all the awesome sustained cracks.

Unfortunately, the weather wasn't cooperating exactly how we'd like. It had snowed about a foot the weekend before Thanksgiving when my friends arrived. They had to shovel out places to put their tents and couldn't climb for the first day until things started to dry out. By the time we arrived on Wednesday the sun had been out for a few days and things were looking better. We woke up in fog which cleared and we spent a fun day warming up. The hard route of the day was a finger and ring-lock route called The Last Battle 5.11 that took a group effort to put up. But unfortunately the weather would change again quickly.

Kyle and Kathleen hanging out and trying to stay warm!

The next morning we woke up to a cold and overcast day with no signs of the thick cloud blanket opening up to sun. We still managed to brave the cold temps and get some routes in, including my lead of the classic route Scarface 5.11- which yielded well to my skinny hands. We wrapped up and built a big fire back at the campsite to warm up and cook some of our Thanksgiving feast upon. The spread included mashed potatoes, grilled veggies, sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce, stuffing, and to finish it all off pumpkin pie. Obviously there were many vegetarians in the group (myself included) so the traditional turkey was missing. We had a great dinner and fun evening, especially watching the crew from Boulder next to our campsite go streaking through Creek Pasture campground. But unfortunately when we woke in the morning to the same scene of being socked in by dreary clouds it was time to leave. No one was psyched on another frigid day climbing so we conducted the sorting ritual of gear to make sure everyone got back their respective equipment and hit the road. We didn't get out of the cloud blanket until 4 hours of driving had us back into Arizona. All in all though I had an excellent time and will be sure to return next year for Creeksgiving 2014! Hope to see you there.

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