Paul Pottinger’s Adventures from the Top of the World

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Ouray 2018: Day 3

Colorado  •  January 31

Finally, the alpine exposure we were looking for. Warm winds… rushing water… melting ice… dry tooling… the complete package.

Senator Gulch Falls. Less ice here than in recent memory.
Roaring water has melted out much of the Senator formation today.
Sondra ponders our options on Senator.
Who dwells within?
This cave went deeper than we were willing to follow.
Sondra lead climbs Senator.
I belay Sondra.
Sondra climbs out of sight, under an overcast sky.
Sondra for Senator!
I just love to belay my buddies.
Kim answers the age old GoPro question: “Is it on?”
Kim has my back on Senator.
She is super attentive to my every move.
Kim ties in to Senator.
Kim ponders her chances on Senator.
Chances of success: 100%.
See?
At the base of Senator Gulch. Belayed by my guide, and encouraged by my teammate. (GoPro Screenshot)
About halfway up the pitch on Senator. (GoPro Screenshot)
Almost at the top of Senator. (GoPro Screenshot)
Nearing the top of Senator Gulch. (GoPro Screenshot)
Lowering down Senator. My favorite part of the day. (GoPro Screenshot)
Thanks Guys! (GoPro Screenshot)
Jodi gets her game face on.
Jodi starts up Senator.
Jodi on the left of Senator.
Jodi climbs the pillar.
Mixed climbing at its best.
Ross starts up Senator.
Kim belays Ross.
Johnny: Always there when you need him.
Ross on the far left pillar.
Those chandeliers are a bit delicate towards the tip.
Dueling belays.
Ross makes his way up the mixed route with ease.
Me on the right, Johnny on the left.
Ross goes up the dripping wet right of Senator.
Sondra climbs the wet, icy eggshell. She weighs about two ounces here. #delicateclimbing
Over running water. Spicy…..
Up the Mine Road, looking for dry tooling options.
Scoping the route….
Burly. Old-school. Awesome.
Slip Sliding Away. Fun route! Climbed it last year with Andy and Kim.
Choppo’s Chimney. Climbed last year, too.
Johnny climbs The Hardest Mixed Climb in the World. Except, not mixed today at all.
Dry tooling at its best.
Kim and Ross head up different routes.
Ross makes great progress up THMCITW.
Up she goes.
Kim conquers this little pitch.
Kim explores THMCITW.
Sondra nails THMCITW.
We enjoy the fruits of our labor. Thanks Ross!
Apres climb, last night in Ouray. We cook spaghetti for our trusty guides.
Sondra and Mark Ripperger.
Justin knows how to relax.

Until next year, Ouray. May your snowfall be deep, your ice be burly, your sheep be bighorned, and your hospitality be warm–as always. Thanks to our amazing guides!

3 thoughts on “Ouray 2018: Day 3

    1. Dear Pasang,
      I am so sorry to hear of his passing. This is the first I have heard this sad news. I appreciate you letting me know. Of course, perfectly fine to use that photo! He was a kind and wise man, and a true spiritual leader for so many.

  1. Paul, what a surprise to find you climbing the top of the world, as I was searching on the web. You and I discovered fencing when you were 11. What a handsome young man you are – and with a family. I have thought of you so many times over the years. You and Katie. I loved you and you and Katie are still dear in my memories.
    I am sure I am not supposed to be writing here – but it might reach you. Anna

    Anna

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