Sept 24, 2004. For whatever reason, I think I was taking yet another rest day, I told Jeff and Rusty that I'd give them a two hour head start and then walk up to the top of Nutcracker to take pictures of them. Jeff was waiting for his partner to return from SF for another go at the Nose, and was using the downtime to actually learn how to crack climb.
So I laze around, even do a little bit of captioning and story writing, and eventually wander down to nutcracker and saunter up to the summit. A party of two is just leaving, so I take up residence, expecting them within an hour or so tops.
A party of two comes up. A doctor and a friend from Merced, having a lovely time, but the party behind them is a threesome with two girls. There is apparrently a party still sitting at the top of P2.
The party of three finally comes up. They had no-one chasing them, but a party of two looked like it had just left the P2 ledge.
I eat the last of my snacks, and start building rock stacks, and staring at half dome.
Finally! Jeff sticks his head up over the mantle and starts coming up to me. Of course the sun has almost gone down by this point. Rusty comes up too, and we all head back for some dinner and beers. The climb was wonderful they said. They just didn't find the start for a couple of hours. :) Despite us all telling them that the approach was 5 minutes tops, and more like 2 or 3, they spent a good hour wandering around the base of the Three Brothers, because they hadn't worked out that the mileages from the "gas station" meant from camp 4. Oh well. I got a good day out in the sun anyway. And they got one of the Valley's nicest climbs under their belts. I think I even climbed again the next day.
Climber #5 acts for the camera
rock stack #1