Sunday, May 27, 2012

My first Outdoor Rock Climbing Trip

Josh invited me to go on an Outdoor Climbing Trip, I've been In-Door Climbing twice now, once a year ago and the second about a week ago.  I was a little scared to go out-door because there are not routes taped out for you to follow.  Plus, you know, it is ROCKS you're climbing on, no soft cushions below.   
We left about 6:00 a.m. and drove out to Superior, AZ.  We hiked up to area, and honestly that was pretty  scary for me, there were a few spots where I felt like I was scrabbling around rocks but Josh was really great and helped me up.

For being late in May it was SO cold!!  It was already supposed to be a cool day and I was freezing!  One of Josh's friends let me use his jacket but with the wind it was still pretty chilly.  They set-up the first route at a 5.4 route which is a good start for beginners.  I did well, I got to the top and rappelled down with ease.  They kept that route up for me in-case I really struggled with the harder routes and wanted to go back that one.  

One of his friends was taking of pictures and I am grateful because now there is proof that I did it!

Josh was super helpful when I was up on the routes, very encouraging and his friends were also very supportive.

The rest of the routes were I think 5.7 and 5.8 which I am not sure how the rating works but Josh told me later that he & his friends were not sure how well I would do on anything harder than the 5.4 but he said I did really well on the harder ones. 

It is crazy but I never realized how high up it was, it never felt that high but in the pictures it looks kind of high up!

This is the last route I did, I think they figured I did five full routes and then half of this last one, I think it was the hardest out of all of them.  I finally just had to say I'm done and come down.  

Josh and his friends are really good, it is really fun to watch them just crawl up, Josh especially.  His one friend who took all the pictures even did a route without rock climbing shoes and a severely hurt wrist.  I really am excited to go again, it was a ton of fun!

These are my war wounds & I am super proud of them.  Josh says the main things I need to work on his falling, I need to not try and still grab the rock but let completely go so I don't get so scraped up.  

This one up on my thigh actually does hurt, the rest just look bad on my knees and shins.  

Honestly though it was so much fun, plus I always love it when my outfit coordinates.  I don't know if you can tell but my friend got me a purple harness to match my purple climbing shoes, all I need is a purple tank top and I will be unstoppable!  Plus how great is my boyfriend, he changed his shirt so he could match me because he knows how much I love to match & wanted to make me happy!  

These pictures of us I think are sweet.
This first one I am pretty sure I just took off my rock climbing shoes and was commenting on how I don't want ugly toe nails and how grateful I was my toe nail polish hadn't chipped yet . . .  Josh thought my concern was entertaining.

Backpacking in Sedona

Josh & I did head to Sedona Tuesday and spent the day there finding little hikes for me to do so I could get used to wearing my backpack and hiking with it on.  

It was a little hot that day, there was a little wind but mostly it was super hot.  Josh and I got made sure we wore sunscreen and I was good to wear a hat, I took it off for the pictures but I was good to wear it.

Josh is really sweet when he takes pictures, this time he tried to get a panoramic set of pictures of where I am sitting so I could remember my first backpack hike and have a perfect recollection.

Both of us 

And the beautiful view.  

This is at Slide Rock, it is pretty popular because of the water you can swim in, we didn't go to the actual slide rock but we hiked down to the water and it was so nice.

The water level was pretty low just like in Tonto, it is going to be a pretty hard summer with the little rain fall we have received and whatever snow we had just sank down and didn't run through.

It was so much fun to head back to Sedona, Josh and I had our "first" date out in Sedona, we even went back to the same first hike we did there and it was fun to there again with him.  Josh would like my backpack to be a little tighter around my waist, he thinks that will make backpacking a little easier for me so the pack will force some of the weight on my hips not just my back and shoulder.  I really don't know how it is supposed to fit so I will just trust his judgement and rely on his experience.  

The Largest Natural Travertine Cave

Josh and I went up this past weekend 05/20/2012 (Sunday - evening of the Eclipse) to 05/22/2012 (Tuesday Afternoon) to head up to the Tonto National Forest.  On our way up we stopped and pulled off the road to watch the "ring of fire" with the help of my Dad's welding mask, our timing was completely perfect, it was so awesome looking.

We car camped that night and woke up in the morning to head to the Tonto Forest Travertine Cave which was really pretty, and thankfully very cool in temperature.  It is supposed to be the largest natural travertine cave in the USA, I do not know that for a fact. . .

Me inside the cave.

I really like this picture, and Josh says this what my "natural" smile looks like. 


The water falling into the cave was really pretty to look at but also super refreshing.  It made a nice little pond down in the middle of the cave.  The volunteer that works there told us how low the water level is right now and how usually it is much deeper water in the cave.

Josh and I, it is hard to get both of us in the a picture so you tend to get a bit of Josh's arm too, but I still think we make a good looking couple.

I laid here for a little bit, it was just so nice and felt cool against my back. 

 We hiked back up after this and I was so hot, and I started to get a head ache, we were supposed to get to fossil springs and backpack down there and hang out at the water tomorrow and hike back up.  This was supposed to be my first backpacking trip but with my head hurting Josh thought it was best to just car camp again and just do small hikes tomorrow so I can get used to my new backpack.

It was super pretty here and I cannot say enough how "cool" it felt to be in the cave.