My good friend Kevin Smith bailed on me last minute to go climbing on this day and I was left scrambling for a partner. Fortunately, I connected with a slightly better friend who changed his plans from Rocky Mountain National Park due to a high wind advisory. Nevertheless, I was able to join Nick and his crew in Vail, Colorado, for some ice climbing at the Spiral Staircase and The Eraser. We met at the park and ride at 6:00 am and were quickly at the Pumphouse Trailhead.
We made the approach to the Spiral Staircase through the Rigid Designator amphitheater and were the first party to the ice climb. Nick, Jerry, and I each got a lead up the Spiral Staircase, which was probably the most anemic I had ever seen or climbed it. After a bit of kicking and swinging, we hiked up to The Pencil and The Eraser above the Spiral Staircase and each got a couple laps in on The Eraser. The Pencil was thin and sounded hollow, so we left it alone.
For a Sunday morning the area wasn't that busy and the weather was fairly cooperative. I got to know Jerry and Sheryl over the course of the day and we all had a good time climbing together. We stopped at the Outer Range Brewery in Frisco, Colorado, for a couple pints before heading back to Denver, Colorado, and calling it a day.