I’ve been trying to get up climbing all summer and it’s finally starting to happen more consistently. Two weeks ago, I went bouldering with Peter and company over at Marymoor park. That was fun, but left much to be desired.
So last weekend, I went with Niki and Katie and some of their friends to Exit 38.
Exit 38, is actually a very well established climbing area off of I-90 exit 38. We had a very nice 2/3 day of climbing. I was able to get up on the wall, learning how to lead climb, learn how to lead belay (which is pretty much the same as regular belaying), and learn how to clean.
Cleaning is a pretty fun job in my opinion. Basically, you climb up as normal (using you’re now-established top rope). When you get to the top, you clip in to the anchor chains using two slings (or daisy chains). Then you tell the person below you to take you off belay and you’re free to clean. Cleaning involves untying from the rope (and being careful not to drop it), unhooking the rope from the pulley system you have, rethreading the rope through the chains and finally dropping the other half of the line so you can repel down.
Pretty fun stuff.
Photo credits: Niki Lesniak0