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Topic Date User
7th Pillar - not quite an epic 16-Aug-2004 At 1:36:29 PM WM
Tempting fate 1: refusing James' suggestion of a 4am alpine start
Tempting fate 2: promising Jacqui an epic trip report
The weather: err, 'bracing'. coldest day of the year, roaring wind gusts, a few showers.
What I wore: thermals, heavy trousers, shirt, 2 fleeces, goretex, beanie
I would have killed for: fingerless gloves, Ug boots on the belays!!!!!!
Start: 11am, after the drive up from Melb on Sat morning
The route: classic!
The bolts: scary as hell - even the anchors!!
Topped out: 15mins after sunset
Descent: Roped traverse down L to Dance of Life. Nope too scary, cancel that let's traverse off the other way to the tourist track. Nope that's even worse, Dance of Life it is. Phew, found a slightly better way and soloed down - only 10mins until total darkness when we'd have had to bivvy! (on what turned out to be Horsham's coldest night yet this year). Just enough light to thread the anchor and both eyeball the knot, then dropped ropes and down James went. Ropes tangled by wind somewhere off to the left - James tied off halfway down, swung across to fix it, then down, yippee. My turn, brought the knot over the edge for easy pulling (ok with a 60m rope!) and then a free hanging 45m abseil in pitch blackness, once 5m away from the rock I couldn't see a thing - very surreal. Full body weight on rope couldn't budge it, couldn't see if they were twisted or what was wrong so lashed them down, abandoned the packs and stumbled off into the darkness - by the light of a mobile phone. Thankfully met concerned girlfriend with torch in Amphitheatre and even then got slightly lost going down Flat Rock. Food, wine and into bed by 9.30... not quite an epic :)

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