Vantage: There for the Light

Four of us and a dog crammed into a car on Memorial Day weekend to cross to the other side of Washington State in search of some climbing. We pulled into the campsite, just as the sun sent golden rays across the valley, next to our friends with an American flag flying high from their car. For the next two days we climbed basalt pillars in Vantage, Wash. Some of us climbed for the first time, others put up their first leads, and one of us (Annapurna the dog) learned how to chimney (kind of).

This trip I focused on taking interesting pictures in camp. It’s important to be able to capture beautiful scenes that aren’t about peak action or extreme locations. I also took the opportunity to try harder routes and teach some of my friends how to belay, so I became lost in the moment rather than engrossed in capturing the moments while at the crag. In this age where everything seems to be photographed, I think letting go of the documentation to be in the now can lead to a different enriching experience.

So here’s to the downtime and approaches:

Zach Pike-Urlacher and Ari Blatt make lunch while Annapurna takes a nap, tuckered out from hiking in the hot sun.

Zach Pike-Urlacher and Ari Blatt make lunch while Annapurna takes a nap, tuckered out from hiking in the hot sun.

A climber watches the sunset above the camp at Vantage, Wash.

A climber watches the sunset above the camp at Vantage, Wash.

Annapurna the dog looks down a drop with trepidation while Morgan Foster prompts her to get over her fears and leap down.

Annapurna the dog looks down a drop with trepidation while Morgan Foster prompts her to get over her fears and leap down.

Zach Pike-Urlacher and Ari Blatt check out the sunset at Vantage, Wash.

Zach Pike-Urlacher and Ari Blatt check out the sunset at Vantage, Wash.

Ari Blatt sets up her tent in the dying light.

Ari Blatt sets up her tent in the dying light.

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