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481 Fall Climbing Workshop 2011-09-22

Ray setting the rappel

Last weekend was my friend Ray's Climbing Workshop at Fall Creek Falls State Park. Ray called and said that he had enough helpers for the Workshop and he could get by if I did not want to attend.

Well, I took that opportunity just to visit the Park, see some friends and do some things without the group of twenty-five from the Workshop. My friend, Jon was game and we went to the Park Saturday afternoon.

Saturday night was the cookout. It was a cool and crisp evening, perfect for sitting around the fire and telling stories. Paula did not attend; but sent her world famous chilli with Nick and Ed. Ah, but this year, there was a twist. The whole big pot was vegetarian. I ate two heaping bowls full. I did not hear a single complaint from the carnivores in the group. Nick and Ed not only fed us, but also entertained us with their music. Thanks guys. Maybe next year we can add Contra Dancing ...

Sunday morning, Jon and I went to a cliff that was not being used by the Workshop to climb a couple of routes. It was fun climbing in a relaxed atmosphere. Only my belayer saw me climb and we had nothing to lose or gain by success or failure. It was refreshing.

After spending a couple of hours on the cliff we went for a run. First though we had to change clothes in the slowly filling parking lots. I moved the truck to a not so busy area and started changing clothes. As soon as I pulled my pants off to exchange them for my running shorts, a car drove next to us in the parking lot. Oh well.

On the run, I had quickly settled into an easy pace through the woods when I stumbled a bit catching my foot on a log laying across the path. I immediately thought, 'well, that is one of the advantages of going second, you can see where the other person trips. It's the 'second man theory.''

Seconds later, Jon stumbled over the same log! So much for that theory. We laughed.

The trail ended near where Ray and the gang were at the workshop. He was belaying folks on the rappel, a boring job indeed. After a short visit with the group we bid them adieu and continued our run.

As we ran a circuit we joined a paved bicycle trail. A young boy was proudly stopped at the top of a short but steep hill. He was obviously waiting on some others.

I asked, "wow, did you ride that hill?"

"Yes" he replied in a glowing manner, "but they didn't."

He was waiting on mom and dad who were pushing their bikes. The mom commented that the son was in a little bit better shape than they were.

The parents did not look unfit, I think the parents did not know how to ride their bikes as well as the son. He changed into his granny climbing gears and they didn't!

We left the bike path and joined a trail that lead to the section of trail we had worked on a few weeks earlier. The area had received substantial amounts of rain in the last couple of weeks and we were interested in how our designs had weathered. After inspecting the work, we were quite pleased with our efforts.

Back on the trail we returned to the truck to head for home. Oh, we went to Ray's to change clothes before the trip home. We didn't want to exposed changing in the parking lot!

Happy good day on the trails


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