Well it was a lovely day, but a late start. We ended up having something of a mini-epic, but as Brandon said, "a climbing farce is better than a climbing tragedy". The 12.30pm start to the climb was prob'ly a tad late, but I accept full responsibility for the slowness of leading Pitch 1...and failing to keep the rope snag free when placing pro. By the top of the pitch I was in the bizarre position of having no pro left, and having to use all my leg power to pull the rope up, inch by inch the last 15 feet...it was an exhausting reminder to be more careful about extending runners on this winding course and NOT letting the rope get sucked into pinching little cracks.
Brandon lead smoothly up pitch 2, whereapon I decided to follow up a variant crack start. Cold fingers and a pack (and lack of due care) saw me sproing back down from 2 m up to smack my back and bum into the rocks at the bottom
mea culpa my friends, mea culpa.
From there on things went well, as I lead the next pitch then B the final one. Then we made the decision to rap back down the route rather than the standard rap off the back and the long scrabbly hike down. We'd never tried this but thought it'd save time and despite the winding routes, we might manage it without needing to leave directionals
Getting down P4 and P3 was sweet and we felt invincible, but then as B set of down P2 he came to the realization that the final 2.5 m of his 50m rope were not going to get him to the next anchor...not even close! So back up he had to climb (after anchoring himself to a bolt nearby and tying back in) in hiking boots, on a slab section! WE now either had to reclimb the 2 descended sections and face the long walk off anyways, or else find another way down. Off to one side there was a scrub filled gully so we rapped off trees down until we cut back across to the anchor, thinking ourselves now in the clear...not quite.
We scrambled back down the walkable section of ridge betwixt the start of P2 and the anchors atop P1, threw the rope down the last pitch (P1) and I set off down...only to find the rope ending 5m above the ground (oh for a 60m rope!). I clipped a single rusty mank-fest excuse of a bolt with my daisy and set a leaver biner on another similarly dodgy looking bolt some 4m higher up. Then keeping thetail-knotted rap lines in my belay tool as a back up should my dodgy bolt pop (unlikely with body weight but...) I slipped back down to the end of my daisy. B rapped down to his bolt, tied in and reset the rap ropes to run through the leaver biner there, then despite misgivings, one at a time we rapped off this pitiful rusty single bolt to the ground.
It was nigh dark as we slid slod our way down the leaf covered steep trail to the hermits cave house, then out the hiking path to the car. Importantly of course we stopped at the beer store before getting home so Kyung Ah soon forgave us our much delayed return, and we drank and feasted till the wee hours vowing never to make those mistakes again.