Livin’ On The Edge…

Well, a few days later, and a few hundred more miles on Melissa’s Celica, we arrived back in the happy valley. It was a pretty crazy drive. About 95% off the return trip was spent driving in the snow on the way back to Utah. Melissa was a little scared at the trip, and the fear of crashing the car landed me in the drivers seat, and I got to pilot the car back. It was really fun to get to meet her parents and the rest of her family.

One of the highlights of the trip was the chance to go rappelling on Bath Rock in the City of Rocks. After having to do a fairly difficult free climb, we set up the descent on the face of the rock. Melissa’s Dad estimated that it was about a 100 foot cliff, and that there was 120 feet of rope. We set up holds for a belay rope and a rappel rope. The wind was blowing about 30-40 miles per hour with a cold, 25 degree temperature, which, as Cecile so aptly put, made it cold as hell. The girls were anxious to get off the rock, so they were the first ones down. It had taken about an hour to get everyone up the mountain. They wanted to be belayed up the rock, with the ice and the cold weather making it kind of difficult to do the ascension. So with everybody shivering at the top, we began the decline. Laura was the first to be strapped in and lowered over the edge. She began the rappel, and everything was going fine, until we saw only about four feet of rope on the ground from the belay rope. Meaning that she was probably at the end of her rappell rope. We radioed to the bottom were we were told that there was still about 40 feet to go, and we were stuck without any rope. After some tricky knots and some patience on Laura’s part, the ropes were extentended and she was at the bottom in safety. I had a great time, the sudden gusts of wind that made it feel like you were going to fall off the edge of the cliff made it really fun.


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