big wall climbing for fat guys (or, i did not scale the Index Town Wall with clicking carabiners but felt the ghost of a soaring falcon and my soul led a 5.10 with an airy finish through a sunny openbook)
The mountain town of Index in the Cascade Mountains is a little under an hour from our house in Seattle. Biggest brother and his mom and I headed east to this pleasant hamlet for a lazy Sunday afternoon. Adam watched a choo choo train loaded with airplane fuselages rumble over the river while I huffed and puffed to cliffs atop the Index Town Wall. It was deserted for the day, everyone was down below clicking their carabiners. I’ve wanted to get up here for quite some time. The trail to the top of Index Town Wall isn’t as steep as I imagined it would be and it’s fairly short and this was a good weekend for something easy because I’ve been trying to nurse some tendinitis out of my lower leg. And truthfully, I’m tired of the glorious sunshine. I’m depressed about never getting to feel depressed. I need more time to read and write, clean my basement and take rainy walks in the Arboretum. I need Pacific Northwest, puddles and gloom. It’s raining this afternoon. The birds are singing like they never have. They know something.
There’s some pretty neat shooting to be had looking out over Index. I admit my depth of field is somewhat dubious for this frame but I wanted to share a picture that showed some of the climbing hardware the Index Town Wall is famous for along with the town itself, below. Did my attempt translate? At any rate, I was utterly amazed the cliffs were so lonesome on this afternoon. Had the entire place to myself, with only the occasional echoes of the climbing crowd below. If you ever come up here, make sure to venture northeast along the cliffs for more and better vantage points than just the main spot most everyone apparently stops at. There’s a faint footpath to follow in the forest to other vistas (not that you need a path- the cliff is your compass). It goes without saying, for Goddsakes, be careful to not fall over the edge anywhere.
p.s. I did see two falcons.