Jason Huston and I went on a mission after work this past monday. We decided on the Long Dong Route on Kissing Couple in the Colorado National Monument. Since neither of us knew how to approach the route and there wasnt much daylight left, we brought our headlamps and expected to epic. After driving around in the park for a while we decided that we found the way down to the route. We threw on our packs and tightened our helmets and ran down the sketchy cliffs and drop offs until we reached the short chimney that accesses the beginning of the climb. So far, so good. As Jason had been climbing on more vertical sandstone as of late, I wanted him to take the first pitch of the climb. It was a thin crack with face holds that seemed exciting to protect after last nights rain. With slippery feet, he climbed to the top of the first pitch using up almost all the gear that we brought. I enjoyed the top rope and took the next two pitches of chimney. Jason went up the next section that contained a variety of movements and we hung out in the “belfry” just a short distance from the summit of the Kissing Couple. I climbed through bird poo and reached the top safely before dark! What a great day. Jason and I laughed our way up and down the route an made it home before dark. I think that I could get into this. To more adventures with good friends!
Jason looking into the “Belfry” one pitch from the top.
Me referencing our topo in the “Belfry”, thanks to the mountain project for the beta and great comments from past ascensionists!
Jason squeezing through the final move before the summit. Yes, he is crawling.
Topping out on the Kissing Couple.
Taking in the sunshine of Colorado National Monument. So glad that I live just a few minutes away! And loving my Tau Pullover from Arcteryx.
Of course the sun was in our eyes for this photo. The top of a desert tower is a sweet place to be!
piz : )