---- Current location – Shower/Bathroom at Seneca Shadows Campground, Seneca Rocks, WV, USA (Again) – Temp: ~10DegC ----
The weather today, after 3 days of rain, sleet and hail, was beautiful. Not only was it beautiful, it was perfect. There wasn’t a cloud in the sky, it was hot in the sun, but there was a breeze … oh it was perfect. So, I finally got to hit up some Seneca climbing.
Figure 1 - Me in the Gunsight Notch.
I went out with the two guides from The Gendarme Climbing School, Matt and Massey. It was great, because they knew where all the best lines were and how to get there. We met up at the gear shop around 9:30AM, Massey was there, so we started sorting gear. Matt eventually showed up and we continued getting our gear together, and were ready to set off, when we realised that we each had enough to go out by ourselves. We reorganised and set off with still too much gear. We decided to start on the East Face of the South Summit, so we would be in the morning sun. We hiked up to the ledge, which involved some exposed scrambling, and set up on Conn’s East Direct Start (5.8) to warm up on. We then moved on to some harder routes also on the East Face – Hidden Asset (5.10), Nip and Tuck (5.10c) and High Test (5.9+). I didn’t climb Nip and Tuck, instead I scrambled up into the Gunsight Notch (the huge notch between the North and South Summits) and took pictures as Massey lead it. It was great. It felt very “Alpine Style”, as I scrambled up, wind in my hair. Massey left after we did High Test, so Matt and I scrambled through the Gunsight and rappelled down. We both lead Seneca Daze, a bolted 5.7, and came down.
Figure 2 - Massey climbing Nip and Tuck.
Once down, the three of us decided to go to a local restaurant for burgers. We drove over and ordered. As soon as they started cooking, the entire place filled with smoke – I was alarmed – apparently this is normal. Luckily, they were the best burgers $6.95 could ever buy. If you are ever in back woods West Virginia, I would recommend you stop for one.
Figure 3 - The town of Seneca.
Now I am back at the camp site, more groups are rolling in for the weekend. It looks like it will be a real party soon. I’m off to mingle.