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Bill Brooks climbing in Eldorado Canyon

My trusted accountant Bill Brooks decided to give rock climbing a try. He has climbed a number of 14teeners in the Colorado area and has ascended Long’s Peak via the Keyhole Route 4 times. All his climbing has been on easy to moderate terrain where ropes are generally not used. So today was the day! We pulled out the full arsenal of climbing equipment and got to work. We started the day at Supremacy Slab in Eldorado Canyon. Together we hiked around to the top and set a top-rope to learn some basic rope skills. First thing was to get back down, so we did a rappel. He then learned the bomb proof “figure eight follow through,” how to belay, and then began climbing. His first two climbs he ran up quicker than a sheep dog playing catch. It also reminds me of how he runs numbers, ping, ping, ping. It was obvious this was to easy, so I took off to set up the 5.6 around the corner. There we worked on more footwork and slower climbing strategies as our next step was a multi-pitch climb.


The 5.6 climb at Supremacy
We headed to the base of the Wind Tower and cams, stoppers, slings, the nut tool, and how the rope gets up, were topics of discussion for the next hour. It was great we had climbers all over the Bastille and Wind Tower for Bill to get a better understanding of how the climbing systems work. We climbed the 400′ formation up “The Bomb” route in four pitches (rope lengths). The first pitch is a great warm up and goes at 5.5. The protection is somewhat spars unless you bring up bigger cams like the 3.5 and 4 camalot, but very easy climbing.
Pitch one of the Bomb
On pitch two, we chose the 5.7 West Overhang as a great challenge for Bill. Now that we were 150′ off the deck why not give him his hardest climb? 😉 Bill did great! I belayed right at the lip and the superhuman accountant muscled his way right through it.
Firing the roof!
The last two pitches feel much easier after the roof and soon enough we were on top of the Wind Tower. We got some great arial views of the canyon and began reminiscing about the 80 year old man who use to tightrope across the Wind Tower formation to the Bastille (look at below photo to get a feel). After our short down climb we made the one and only rappel back to the ground, bringing us full-circle back to the base. It was a great day and I am looking forward to future adventures.
Arriving at the summit with the Bastille behind


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