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The Skink Non-Epic
8:52:11 AM
Ignoring the weather forecast last Saturday we headed off for what was suppose to be an easy stroll up Skink. We cruised up the first 2 pitches of the watchtower crack. As Steven headed out accross the traverse our 'good' friend Anthony arrived at the base of the cliff. Beaming with joy and obviously happy to be on the ground he said 'you're going to get wet!'

Ignoring this advice we continued upwards. Light rain started to fall shortly afterwards and it rapidly increased to heavy steady rain. Steven set up a belay under the shelter of the roof. I seconded the pitch, by which time it was pouring and the rock was flowing. Steven offered to lead the final pitch which was an offer I couldn't refuse looking at the water flowing down the rock. The final pitch was slow and wet but otherwise uneventfull.

With the rain falling freely we were keen to descend and get back to the car. I abseiled first, only to find myself sitting on the knots on the end of the rope. Damn, forgot it is a 2 rope abseil. I look down & think the 60m rope will make the ground from the second abseil. Also our rescue party (partners) had arrived at the car park so I knew I could get a second rope if I got stuck again.

From the end of the rope I make myself safe on 3 cams in a slot so Steven can lower more rope & anchor it to the top. I abseil to the ledge then Steven drops the rope and retreats to the top car park to be collected by the rescue team. Down the rope again to find myself again sitting on the knots 10m above the ground. Damn, didn't judge that too well.

I then swung accross to the Watchtower crack, untied and pulled the rope then had a very cautious down climb in the wet.

A bit of fun in the rain but definitely no of epic proportion.

9:50:16 AM
Good to hear you guys are down safely Robin :)
9:42:49 AM
I think I liked the scuttlebutt better. By the time the story got back to the Pines there was 3 people hanging from a single cam sliding out of the rock with the lowest saying "cut the rope and save yourselves". Plus something about gelignite.
9:38:19 AM
On 5/11/2005 robin wrote:
>A bit of fun in the rain but definitely no of epic proportion.

I would call that epic. I'm suprised that you didn't choose to walk down.

In fact I'm surprised at the number of parties that do choose to abseil the Watchtower Faces given that the walk-off descent is often the quicker option.

10:15:44 PM
I guess we weren't really thinking about the descent when we started the climb. We headed up Skink with the plan to climb at Kitten Wall for the day. With the pissing rain and no walking shoes we thought the abseil would be the quickest way off. In hindsight the walk would have been quicker and safer.

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