A Quick Jaunt Up The GlassJuly 21, 2016 foxmountain_adminGuiding Rock Climbing The Guides' Climbing Adventures
Nineteen years ago I came to North Carolina for the first season at Camp Blue Star as a climbing ‘specialist’ to work for the summer. Nineteen years later I am still proud to be affiliated with Camp Blue Star and serve in a staff hiring and training role for their climbing program. This year, sounding like the start to a cheesy joke the climbing team is an American, a New Zealander and two English guys. Trey is AMGA Single Pitch Instructor Certified and Callum is the UK equivalent (MLTE Single Pitch Award) but Blue Star is still putting him through the AMGA Single Pitch Instructor Course and Assessment. All four will also be taking the two day AMGA Climbing Wall Instructor Course this weekend and eight day Wilderness First Responder certification (as well as five days of climbing training with me later this month). For me this is what sets Blue Star apart from other summer camps, the comprehensive unparalleled staff training for their Outdoor Adventure Program Staff.
Even though we don’t technically start climbing staff training for another week I rounded them up the other night at the dining hall to take them on a quick trip up the ‘Nose’ on Looking Glass Rock just for a bit of fun. The Nose is the Southeast classic climb home of the fabled ‘eyebrows’. The 400ft, four pitch 5.8 climb is a must do for any climber visiting the area. We headed out to Looking Glass, hiking to the base of The Nose and casting off on the first pitch at 7.30pm. I combined the first two pitches and belayed them up with parallel rope technique, reorganized and fired up to the ‘Parking Lot’ and the 3rd pitch ledge. For Callum, Henry and Grace this was their first taste of North Carolina Granite and view of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
From the Parking Lot I lead the last pitch to the summit and brought them up to check out the stunning views and sunset from the top of Looking Glass. Three rapps down and we were coiling the ropes at 8.50pm, one hour twenty minutes with a team of five up the Nose and down again, not bad for the beginning of the season! I must say it’s nice to hike down the Nose trail by flashlight in these nice cool temps rather than running from a storm or sweating in 100 degree heat.
Here’s to another great summer season!