Bleary eyed from our escapade the night before, we slowly organized a plan for the day. Mike and Eric decided to join us for another day on Wall Street. Mike, a climbing instructor, even decided to spend some time teaching us some techniques that might have come in handy the night before. We learned how to transfer belay anchors, build a solid anchor, and much, much more. His matter-of-fact, gracious way of teaching was very easy to follow and super helpful.
The lessons continued for the rest of the day, but we spent many hours on the rock. From the get go, we upped the intensity of the day before. Most of the climbs involved following tight cracks up otherwise blank faces. Jamming your hands or fingers into the crooks and crannies of the rock allowed slow progress up the otherwise impassable faces. It was not, however, easy on the hands. With five climbers, we always had two different climbs going, leaving me free every now and then to bring out the drone. The resulting shots were pretty spectacular.
For the grand finale, we all headed up a seemingly blank wall that sloped steeply towards the sky. From the ground, it looked impossible. Once you were on the wall, it felt impossible. The massive jugs and solid handholds of the gym had no place here. Every handhold was a tiny ledge or crimp that would only fit the first pad of your finger. Stabilizing yourself on your fingers, you could then shuffle your feet upwards. The process was slow and painful. The sense of accomplishment (or relief) at the top, however, made it all worth it.
We all decided that it would be better to have a relaxed dinner and night in camp rather than trying for another extended climb in the remaining hours of daylight. On our way through Moab, we grabbed a bunch of veggies and supplies for the night. With a fire crackling in our midst, we crunched through a pad Thai salad before gorging on burritos as our main course. As we sat around the fire, I couldn’t help but count my blessings. Delicious food, beautiful scenery, and inspiring people are the hallmarks of any successful evening. I consider myself very lucky to have been able to have so many similar moments throughout my travels.