ON ROCK: Speeding in the park

By on August 15, 2013

81413onrockJACKSON HOLE, WYO – I predict someday there will be a new speed record for climbing Mount Moran (12,605 feet) in Grand Teton National Park. There is already one for the Grand Teton. Why not Moran?

My friend, David Gonzales, started the Teton Triathlon, where he rides a bike from town, swims Jenny Lake, climbs the Grand in a day, and then does it all in reverse! I foresee someone doing that with Moran by swimming/canoeing across String/Leigh Lakes, running up the trail from Leigh Lake towards the Falling Ice Glacier, and taking a quick break at the CMC campsites. Then, scrambling through the small cliffs, up the terrible talus filled trail to The Drizzlepuss, down to the notch, and up the CMC/East Face (II, 5.5) to the summit. After taking a quick picture for Facebook, you would run/rappel back down to the West Horn, back to the lake, and back to the parking lot. I am sure over time there would be rules made, such as no shortcutting from the campsites, but I predict it can be done in eight hours. It takes my pathetic body, round-trip from just the campsites, about 12 hours, and that’s pushing it. But I like to take my time. The campsites at tree line are some of the most spectacular vantage points in the park. I like to enjoy the remoteness and quietness. I like to hike without feeling nauseous, and keep a clear head. Swimming across Leigh Lake does not sound too appealing, either. I like to enjoy the views while rowing peacefully.

For gear: 50-meter rope, helmet, small rack/or not, canoe/kayak, and first aid. For beta: “A Climber’s Guide to The Tetons” by Ortenburger and Jackson. Rock On!

About Kevin J. Pusey, Jr.

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