Totally Under My Own Power

Posted on: September 8, 2007


On August 14th Michael Haag, 32, and myself, Wayne Willoughby, 54, climbed Pervertical Sanctuary on the Diamond. it was my second ascent of the Diamond, having done D1 in 1994 after having been carried in much of the way, as well as most of the way out. After years of working my ass off to improve my physical reality I did this ascent totally under my own power, walking in with the assistance of hiking poles on the 12th, took a rest day on the 13th as Michael fixed to Broadway and then climbed the route on the 14th. We were hit by a rain and wind storm while on the route, and Michael free climbed the final pitches in a waterfall, almost becoming hypothermic when his jacket proved to be less than waterproof. We bivied on top when we had difficulty finding Kiener's in the storm after dark. In the morning we did Kiener's and I alternately stumbled and crab crawled down the talus trail. When we were hit by a hail and wind storm Michael became nearly hypothermic again and I suggested that he go ahead and take care of himself, as I was doing fine, and he was far from the same, disoriented to the point that he couldn't give me good directions. When I realized I missed the trail that leads to the boulderfield trail (I didn't want to do the keyhole by myself in case i needed a belay after going over the keyhole) I continued bushwhacking through the night as I went down in elevation, knowing that further down the valley I would meet up with trails above black lake. Which I did. A grand adventure. Over the 4 days I hiked and crab crawled over 25 miles and climbed over 2,000 feet. Not impressive by most standards, but for someone who contracted paralytic polio at nine months of age, has been affected by post polio syndrome since he was nineteen and has endured other major injuries, it was huge. I cannot wait to get back up there next season!!!

Notable accomplishments in the past include 14 ascents of El Capitan, the most recent in March, 6 of these in a push, ascents in a push of Spaceshot in Zion, 3 of the Chief in Squamish, and other assorted fun times.



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