Climbing in Dreamland

Trip Start Apr 01, 2010
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17
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Trip End Jul 01, 2010


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Flag of Namibia  , Erongo,
Thursday, June 24, 2010

Having spent a couple weeks in Cape Town watching soccer and drinking a lot of beer, I decided to get my butt off the couch and head up to Namibia to do some climbing at a place called Spitzkopp...I had heard about this place as I had traveled and climbed around South Africa...and the pictures I had seen sealed the deal! 



So, for the finale of my SASA trip, I hopped on a bus with a South African guy named Kevin Dingle(met him on climbing.co.za) and headed up to Windhoek...a 20 hour bus ride from Cape Town.  A long bus ride for sure, but the on-bus entertainment kept us amused, and Kevin and I came to realize that we share the same sense of humor.

After a day buying food and getting a rental car, we headed off on the 4 hour drive up to Spitzkopp, which is located in central Namibia, pretty much in the middle of nowhere...



As we approached Spitzkoppe, we could see it in the distance...from 30 miles away, it looked like it was quite close...



But as we approached, the mountain became more and more visible, and more and more enticing....by the time we arrived at the gate to Spitzkoppe (it is managed by indigenous locals) we were convinced we were in a dream.  The landscape was like nothing I had ever seen before...flat, desolate desert...with huge granite rock formations jutting out of the nothing-ness...

It felt like we were on Tatooine, where Luke Skywalker lived before he bacame a Jedi and I believe Jabba the Hut "lived" there as well...anyways, thats another story...



We set up camp in the shade at the base of Dinosaur Rock, and set off to do our first climb...an easy slab climb on a rock formation called sugarloaf...





On our second day, we decided to climb the Great Spitzkopp by the "Normal Route". The Normal Route is pretty easy...6 pitches of 5.8 climbing, but the wind was incredibly strong...and the approach was long and circuitous...we were relieved when we had finished our 4 rappels without getting our ropes stuck...we were actually quite lucky...



The summit of Spitzkoppe was so windy we didnt want to stay long...we got back down to camp and after a short nap we had enough energy to try a nice sport climbing route called Rumors Of Rain...it was about a 10b slab climb.  Fun, and steep enough to get your attention!!


That night, we were lucky enough to find a TINY local establishment with satellite TV.  We were able to watch the US play Ghana in the round of 16...quite a surreal experience, to be in the middle of nowhere in Namibia watching soccer with cold Windhoek beers in hand while sitting in chairs that were so weary they were about to break into pieces below us...

Out last day in Spitzkoppe, we climbed a route called To Bolt or Not To Bolt, on the Grand Pontok.  The Pontok are boob-shaped rock formations, about 2000 feet tall.  You can imagine the jokes we make about Pontoks as we headed up to the climbing route!  Men in the desert can be quite crass and immature sometimes....



TBONTB was a great climb.  Easy, but fun and it wasn't was windy on Great Spitzkoppe...so we really enjoyed the day.  We spent a lot of time on the summit and took in the beauty of our surroundings.







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Comments

benkunz
benkunz on

Flag on the summit shot! Classic mate!

Love the burning of the jeans. I should do that with my pants instead of taping up the entire behind with duct tape. Lindsey'd be happy that's for sure.

Crazy place!

benkunz
benkunz on

btw - I'm pretty sure there is a TBONTB at Smith. Probably at Red Rocks too.

Generally the default answer should be NTB!

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