Starting with the bad: it's hot and it's crowded. Everyone sticks to the road, so at least it's not hard to get away from people. The heat is unavoidable, but the wind keeps it less stuffy. Speaking of the wind, I now think that it'll be more scary than the heights, as it will blow all our gear around and make it hard to stick to the wall. I also saw a dog owner let his dog "go" in the river, three feet up stream of two swimming kids. I watched in horror as the "brown logs" floated into the innocent swimmers. Bad nature etiquette seems prevalent here.
The good: training only lasted for an hour this morning as it was all review. I biked around 20 miles today carrying 80 pounds of gear to the base of the climb as my guide, Mark, can't drive me around due to guiding policy. I discovered some amazing trails while roaming around. Some statistic stated that 95 percent of visitors don't venture a mile up any trail. I think it should be revised to something like 85 percent don't venture 20 feet from the road. It was amazing seeing Half Dome, El Cap, the Cathedrals, Lost Arrow and all these other faces from amazing perspectives, without people, and just a walk from the road.
While bringing our gear to El Cap, we saw people rappelling from the summit on a 3000 foot long rope (which must weigh several hundred pounds). The common rope length is around 180 feet. We caught the rappellers at the bottom and learned that the trip from the top can take 30 minutes and is dangerous due to the fact that the friction on the rope can burn through metal. Anyway, tomorrow we will climb four pitches, which are perhaps the hardest in terms of bringing our gear up—part of this is the terrain, but also because we will have seven gallons of water which will get lighter as we go on. Tomorrow will also be expedition-style where we will rappel on a 600 foot rope to the bottom after a day of climbing to spend the night out of the wind. Two days from now we will be off the ground for good for the remaining three to four days.
*As I will be not high enough for service nor low enough for wifi tomorrow, I may not be able to get a post in.