Beacon Rock in January, Awesome Link-up – “Free For All” – “Dod’s Jam” p2 – “Dastardly Crack”

Amazing winter day of climbing at Beacon Rock!  We did the amazing link-up of “Free For All” 5.10a start to “Dod’s Jam” p2 5.10c to “Dastardly Crack” 5.9 and finished on the hikers trail.

David emailed and said the forecast “required” us to go climbing – being my 44th birthday I quickly checked his requested climb site, Horse Thief Butte, and replied “I’m in even it’s it cold and foggy”.  As the day approached I longed for blue skies which led me to check the forecast to Beacon Rock and the forecast was “50’s and sunny”!  When David climbed in my truck in the Kennewick Freddy’s parking lot I asked him if he cared that we drive a bit further for stellar weather and rock!  Beacon is the birthplace of my climbing so I was excited when David said he was up for anything!

We climbed an amazing link-up, of which I had climbed the first 2 pitches previously but hadn’t climbed “Dastardly Crack” 5.9.  I was a bit apprehensive but game… Hey! What better way to spend my 44th birthday than climb at my home turf?!

We climbed 444′, 4 pitches in 4 hrs and 44 min. (some numbers are fudged to better compliment my 44th birthday)

Me on the 5.10a variation start to “Free For All”


David approaching the “Dod’s Jam” bottom of p2 anchor.


Getting ready to launch into the off-width 5.9 section of p2 “Dod’s Jam”


Looking down p2 of “Dod’s Jam” the 5.10c crux pitch.


David climbing the crux pitch of “Dod’s Jam” which starts out with strenuous 5.9 offwidth and finishes with 5.10c tight hands


David approaching the top of p2 “Dod’s Jam” about to arrive at “Big Ledge”


Hanging out on “Big Ledge” Beacon Rock

“Dastardly Crack” 5.9 (my butt!)

The crux is just above me on this “Dastardly Crack” 5.9 old-school sandbag

Me not quite to the crux of “Dastardly Crack” which I blew on-sight!

Looking down “Dastardly Crack” 5.9 (old-school)

Topping out “Dastardly Crack”

Ancient hardware on “Dastardly Crack”

Looking at the last “non-pitch” that lands one on the hikers trail. (I read a comment that this pitch should not be taken lightly) so true!