Family Rock Climbing Program, 8-12-2012

7+ years ago Karen and Dan took a couple climbing lessons with EMSCS. It was either my 1st or 2nd season guiding and I climbed with them at Square Ledge and Cathedral that summer. Yesterday, after a 7 year hiatus (for good reason),  they returned with their amazing 7 year old daughter, Catherine. A regular hiker, who preferred scrambling, and National Park Camper, Catherine was eager to try her hand at real rock climbing. We geared up, and after stopping by a very wet Whitehorse Ledge made out way over to Cathedral Ledge for some top-roping on the Thin Air Face.

Despite being a little intimidated by the wet steepness Catherine made multiple attempts on the 80 foot route
Showing off her knot tying skills
Looking for the next handhold
Karen remembered the excitement from our climbs to the top of the cliff 7 years ago
Catherine enjoyed swinging side to side while hanging from the rope the most

The weather remained nice with bits of sun poking through, and since Dan and Karen were eager to checkout Whitehorse Ledge we headed back over to that cliff hoping the sun had dried things out a bit. We were not disappointed.

Ready to go at the Launch Pad
Dad and Daughter tackling the 1st pitch of Standard Route
Hanging out at the “Toilet Bowl” belay
Very comfortable 300 feet off the ground
It turned out that rappelling was actually the most fun part of the day


Heading back to the car, all smiles

It was a fantastic day with a great family that I hope to see again soon. I can’t wait to have adventures like this with my own son Alex. Keep an eye on my more personal blog,, as I am sure he’ll be spending a little time at the cliff this Fall.

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