South Guardian Angel
By: Dave Jurasevich
On Saturday, June 19, 1993 a group of!! DPS'ers met at the Wildcat Canyon trailhead parking lot for a climb of the North Guardian Angel. Under sunny skies and a daytime temperature in the 80's, the group summited and got back to the Lava Point campground in plenty of time for happy hour and a big meal. Climbers included all those listed above plus Bill Stevens of Julian, CA. That evening we greeted Paul Freiman and his wife Vicki, who had just driven in from San Diego to join us for the last part of the trip. Terry Flood's lemonade daiquiris, Les Hill's tequila and Suzanne's killer chocolate brownies topped off a nice evening around the campfire.
Next morning we hiked to The Subway, established camp and spent a few hours setting up ropes on the pitches through the canyon. Threatening skies by late afternoon led to light rain and a spectacular lightning show later that evening, giving all pause to wonder if there would be list finishes for Russell and Suzanne the following day.
The next day dawned clear, without a cloud in sight; at least as viewed from The Subway. We got a 6AM start, proceeding through the watery obstacle course of the narrow canyon. Lower than expected water levels (5 ft. deep at the worst spots) and pleasant water temperatures made the journey quite easy and enjoyable, putting us on the high plateau north of the South Guardian Angel in short order. En route to the base of the Angel both Mark Adrian and I accidentally wandered into a patch of quicksand, giving rise to numerous four-letter expletives and livening up an otherwise routine hike. By late morning we were on the peak, celebrating Russell and Suzanne's list finish. Returning to The Subway camp, we all packed up and hiked the 3-4 miles out to the cars, regrouping again at the Bull Cinch, a small bar with great tamales in Virgin, UT. Parting company there after refreshments and food, Les Hill, Arthur Lin and I drove to Stateline, NV for a cheap room with a shower; Dennis Richards and Mark Adrian continued on to climb Navajo, Humphreys and Spirit later that week; Terry Flood and Carol Snyder went searching for pizza in Hurricane and were to spend the next day in Zion; Paul and Vicki left for Las Vegas and won $!40 at the blackjack table; and Russell and Suzanne left for a well-deserved R&R on Lake Powell for the rest of the week.
A special thanks to Les Hill for a great lead of the North Angel (and most of the South) and to everybody for pitching in and making the trip a big success.
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