Saturday, June 18, 2011

"See you on the other side Ray" (...Bobby)

Big's always sad to say goodbye to a really good climbing partner. There's lot of good climbers but once in awhile you find one that is just such a great fit. Style, ability, patience, knowledge, sense of humor... While I'm happy to see Bobby get married and move to Washington with April (who is one of the nicest girls I've ever met) I'm sad to see him leave Salt Lake. He has been a great climbing mentor to me and has helped me improve my climbing by leaps and bounds just by his confidence alone. We had a great road trip to Red Rocks together, some good gym sessions, a day out climbing with Andy, a few days of intensive trad leading lessons to prepare me for Squamish, as well as many other days climbing the local crags after work. And last of all, he managed to find the time for one last day of really great climbing in Little Cottonwood Canyon together just days before he left. We'd tried to go with April the week before but got rained out of the canyon. But not before he convinced me to do my first Little Cottonwood lead climb up Bushwhack Crack! (that was a huge climbing milestone for me in itself. Being the first climb I attempted in the canyon two years ago and having sat down crying at the bottom because I couldn't get my feet off the ground...I've come a long way to say the least) It felt odd to have Bobby clean that route for me instead of the usual way around...For our last day of was similar to our first. We met around noon went up to Bushwhack which he lead one last time. We linked over to the base of The Hook which I got to lead...I love that climb.Then we went up the Hook Variation, just like so many times before, it didn't feel like an ending. We both had to get going but just couldn't resist the perfect weather and the solitude up at the top of the rock and convinced ourselves to do two more routes. We went up the second pitch of The Hook which is an odd wide crack, then top roped the slab climb Hook Direct. It didn't hit me till the last rappel down when I said to him his usual line, "See you on the other side Ray..." that it was the end. Such a bittersweet day of perfect climbing. (can you name the movie that quote comes from???)


Winters Outloud said...

ghost busters????
Sorry you lost your buddy.

KATIE said...

You got it Ting!