Back in 1986 an artist by the name of Johnny Dawes scampered his way up one of the worlds most CLASSIC traditional rock climbs. Also, creating one of the worlds hardest at the time. The gritstone BEAUTY is one of a kind and has been famous for many years, and will surely remain famous for many more years to come. It is one my personal dream climbs and I wish I had the two lives so I could be there right now draping my palms over the climbs final slopers.
Gaia was again famous when Jean-Minh Trinh-Thieu botches the delicate crux on the headwall and takes a spine tingling screamer onto the gear and eventually into the corner wall below. It was enough to make any heart race. Yes, even you.
But Gaia is the gift that keeps on giving, in April 2006 the beautiful and the talented Lisa Rands powers her way through the low crux and hangs on for the first female ascent of the climb and another E8 for the Bishop local. See Big Up Productions for a good account.
As if that wasn’t enough. Recently Alex Honnold of the American Dream team in the UK made the first Virtual Onsight of Gaia and casually pumped his arms on the summit for what I interpreted as a “not so bad” , spoken in body language. Good job Alex, a truly memorable moment for you, like I said, I wish I could be in two places at the same time. I’m inspired. Very, very inspired. Here’s the youtube clip, it’s all over the net like pam and tommy lee. Gripping. Thanks to all who brought this clip to the eyes of armchair athletes around the world. It’s appreciated. Click here.