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Member Since: Jul 13, 2004
Last Visit: Oct 19, 2012
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All (192) | Routes (5) | Areas (2) | Photos (6) | Comments (77) | Posts (93) | Stars (7) | Ratings (2)
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Contributed Comments

 

Location: WY : Grand Teton National Park : Grand Teton : Lower Exum Ridge (5.7)
By: John Korfmacher When: Sep 2, 2013

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Comments: If you want to avoid the scrambling, choss and additional hiking that constitute the approach to P1, there is an enjoyable alternative on the west side (near side as you approach from the Lower Saddle). It is a RF corner that is visible (in daylight, anyway) as you approach; it deposits you directly at the start of P1 as described above. It's a fun pitch (5.8 with good pro) and is in character with the rest of this absolutely excellent route. The pitch finishes with a roof that appears... more >>


Location: CO : Boulder : Eldorado Canyon SP : The Bastille : The Bastille - W Face : West Buttress (5.9+)
By: John Korfmacher When: May 27, 2013

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Comments: A fine climb with exposure and fun (even the OW) movement throughout.

The 5.7 version of P3 isn't getting much love, for some reason. I found it to be enjoyable climbing on big jugs and incuts. If you want your hair to be on fire all the way to the top...well, the 5.7 isn't for you...but it's a nice finish after groveling your way up the OW.


Location: CO : Alpine Rock : RMNP - Rock : Sharkstooth : South Prow (5.7)
By: John Korfmacher When: Sep 4, 2012

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Comments: Al Wiedmann and I got on the first pitch of this route (I think) as described by Orin Salah above...by mistake. We were actually planning on a casual run up the NE Ridge, without realizing that the route starts on the OTHER side of the mountain! Anyway....

We tried two of the several RFDs in the area. They all seem to start off with about 50 feet of enjoyable climbing, then deteriorate into steep, insecure 5.10 ground with a thick encrustation of crumbly, gray lichens and less-than-awesome pro.... more >>


Location: CO : Alpine Rock : RMNP - Rock : Mt. Meeker : The Flying Buttress (5.9)
By: John Korfmacher When: Aug 30, 2012

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Comments: If this climb doesn't get your heart rate up, check with your doctor...you may be dead. Exposure every step of the way, and if you like wild, strenuous (albeit well-protected) moves over a lot of air, this route is for you.

We initially tried to Allison variation on P1. The corners, though attractive, are compact, lichenous, and not easily protected, and we settled for the standard 5.8 start.

I was a bit surprised at two aspects of the climb. First, there are some significant (though not huge)... more >>


Location: CO : Estes Park Valley : Lumpy Ridge : The Book : J-Crack Slab Area : Femp (5.9)
By: John Korfmacher When: Jul 30, 2012

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Comments: Excellent climb...much of the route protects well with stoppers, although a couple of extra pieces in the #0.5-#2 Camalot range are useful for the long, long P2. The thin corner near the top of P2 was definitely the crux for me. Except for the cruxes, much of the rest of this pitch is 5.7-5.8 with occasional non-footjam rests.

I definitely recommend the 5.10b finish (option C in the route description) which is exposed, strenuous, and well-protected.


Location: CO : Alpine Rock : RMNP - Rock : Otis Peak : Zowie : South Face (5.8+)
By: John Korfmacher When: Jun 11, 2012

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Comments: Overall, this is a high-quality climb in a great, exposed setting. There are a few chossy sections and thus protection is adequate but not plentiful--this is not a sew-it-up route. The left-facing corner start (just left of the "flatiron" start) adds a steep, sustained 5.8 to an already good climb.

For my money, the best pitch is the 5.7 dihedral/chimney (P3). The summit pitch, though exciting, is overhung, awkward, and not really my personal cup of tea. This is a full-value route.


Location: CO : Estes Park Valley : Lumpy Ridge : Little Twin Owls : Undercling Right (5.8)
By: John Korfmacher When: Mar 26, 2012

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Comments: If you do the full three-segment zigzag on this route, the lowest 10m are solid 5.9/9+. Poor feet and the angle of the cracks makes for insecure holds. The angles also make passive protection difficult.


Location: CO : Estes Park Valley : Lumpy Ridge : Little Twin Owls : Knee Catcher (5.6)
By: John Korfmacher When: Mar 26, 2012

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Comments: There are some very nice, very solid handjams available in the back of the crack. OW technique needed only by those with small hands and/or short arms. I actually thought this was quite a fun pitch.

The bolt anchor at the top currently (as of March 2012) has some problems...one of the bolts is missing, and the remaining bolt is old and kinda weathered. It's also a spinner. The missing bolt either was removed or fell out (!). In any event, the anchor is poorly located. I'd recommend bringing a c... more >>


Location: CO : South Platte : Devil's Head : The Headstone : Chickenhead (5.8)
By: John Korfmacher When: Jun 1, 2011

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Comments: Fine climb. Second pitch looks kinda dirty and chossy from the bottom, but it's actually pretty funky--lots of wild, ass-hanging-out moves on big holds with solid pro. P3 is a little confusing at first, but stare at it a little while and you'll get it.


Location: CO : Lyons : St. Vrain Canyons : South Fork of St. Vrain Can... : December Wall : Mnemonic Plague (5.9+)
By: John Korfmacher When: May 27, 2011

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Comments: P1 of the route is in pretty good shape right now, although the upper slabby bit has some exfoliation going on which adds a little spice. A 5.9 rating is a bit stiff for this route (as are some of the other grades on the December Wall). It felt more like 5.8 or 8+ to me.


Location: CO : South Platte : Pine Area : Bucksnort Slab : Bushes of Baelzebub (5.8+)
By: John Korfmacher When: Oct 13, 2010

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Comments: Can be climbed as one pitch with a 60m rope, and judicious use of slings can minimize rope drag. Good pro throughout if you stay on route.

The OW crux felt like fair 5.8, but the awkward upper crux about 10m below the anchors felt kinda stiff for the grade. #11 hex protects the OW if you don't have a #4 cam.


Location: CO : Alpine Rock : Indian Peaks : Lone Eagle Peak : North Face (5.7)
By: John Korfmacher When: Sep 20, 2010

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Comments: If you're expecting clean, continuous rock climbing, this route will be a disappointment. If you desire a classic mountaineering line on good rock in a spectacular place, do this route; it's one of the best.

The black, 5.5 chimney above the initial ramp is a bit of a grovel but not too bad. The good stuff starts on the 5-easy stuff on P8, which has enjoyable movement and decent pro if you're not comfortable soloing the pitch.

Many people do this climb in approach shoes or boots, but ... more >>


Location: CO : Estes Park Valley : CO Hwy 7 & Tributaries : Deville Rocks : Deville 3 : Kornerstone Edge (5.7+ PG13)
By: John Korfmacher When: Jul 19, 2010

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Comments: Classic Layton Kor creation with lots of exposure, so-so pro, wild moves, and lichen. An enjoyable route if you're comfortable with the occasional runout. It is remarkably steep for a 5.7 but large knobs and incuts abound which make for a more moderate experience.

The slabby bit near the end of P1 can be protected with two equalized small wires in a crack near the bottom of the slab, just left of where one stands on the pedestal. It isn't great but it would hold a short fall.

P2 crux as descri... more >>


Location: CO : Alpine Rock : The Crestones : Ellingwood Ledges (5.7)
By: John Korfmacher When: Sep 8, 2009

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Comments: Climbed this route in excellent conditions on 9/5/09 with S. Costello...a dusting of snow made the footing on some of the shaded bits kinda tricky. The direct start probably doesn't add much time to the route and you can choose between 5.5 roped climbing and a lengthy but enjoyable 4th-class scramble up the ledges and steps.

Do not trifle with the weather--if you haven't reached the base of the climb by sunrise you are going to experience a waking nightmare in the rain on the standard-route des... more >>


Location: CO : Alpine Rock : The Crestones
By: John Korfmacher When: Sep 8, 2009

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Comments: An update on the S. Colony Lakes access road...the Forest Service is constructing a new trailhead about 0.5 km past the Rainbow Trail intersection, and installed a heavy-duty gate just past the parking area. I don't know what that implies for future 4WD access, but in any event, the lower part of the road has been recently maintained and it is now passable to skillfully-driven 2WD vehicles as far as the new parking lot. The new lot is still about 5 km from the old 4WD trailhead farther up the va... more >>


Location: CO : Alpine Rock : San Juans : The Grenadiers : Vestal Peak
By: John Korfmacher When: Aug 31, 2009

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Comments: The approach via Elk Park gets pretty difficult after turning south at the beaver ponds. The trail has a lot of down trees, and is not easy to follow, at least at night anyway (!). Look carefully where the trail becomes indistinct, or otherwise you may be bushwhacking up a steep, muddy slope above cliffs.

Persevere until you get to the upper meadow. There are good campsites there with great views of Arrow, Vestal, and West Trinity.

Save some energy for the descent. As with most San Juan peaks,... more >>


Location: CO : Alpine Rock : San Juans : The Grenadiers : Vestal Peak : Center Shift on Wham Ridge (5.7 R)
By: John Korfmacher When: Aug 31, 2009

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Comments: Not a difficult route--there might be a 5.7 move somewhere on that face, but we didn't find it. This is a viable solo if you are good at following the line of least resistance. We used a rope for only about 120m of this route. The rest is pretty much a really tall flatiron.

Great fun though--easy, enjoyable climbing on a very dramatic feature.


Location: CO : Alpine Rock : RMNP - Rock : Mt. Alice
By: John Korfmacher When: Aug 26, 2009

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Comments: This peak is not heavily traveled, and there is a lot of potential for new routes. The good rock high up on the peak, left of the central gully, looks especially attractive and there are a good number of lines available which would likely be 5.10 and up. Good luck, they're too freakin' hard for me!


Location: CO : Alpine Rock : RMNP - Rock : Mt. Alice : Central Ramp (5.8)
By: John Korfmacher When: Aug 26, 2009

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Comments: The 5.8 corner finish is a great pitch. It's particularly spicy with a lightning-and-thunder accompaniment.

As described above, just about all the pitches on the ramp are rope-stretchers. The full climb is only 8 pitches, but be prepared for a long day.


Location: CO : Boulder : Eldorado Canyon SP : Shirt Tail Peak : Gambit (5.8)
By: John Korfmacher When: Jul 27, 2009

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Comments: Rossiter describes two variations to the top 60m of this route (last two pitches as described above). Climbed variation 'A' with C. Schnatwinkel on 7.25.09 and found it excellent. From the top of the short offwidth, work right to the next crack system and head straight up. This crack is visible just right of the indicated line on the topo photo. The protection is good, the exposure is exciting, and the moves are very steep and sustained, but never harder than 5.8+. This is a good finish for thos... more >>


Location: CO : Alpine Rock : RMNP - Rock : Long's Peak : Upper East Face : Kiener's Route (5.3 Easy Snow)
By: John Korfmacher When: Jul 20, 2009

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Comments: Finally climbed this classic 7/19 with S. Costello. Here are a few notes/suggestions for those considering the route:

  • Like all of Long's summit routes, this route is 5000 vertical feet from the trailhead. Be in good shape for this one!

  • Lamb's Slide, as of this post, is in good shape with soft but usable snow early in the morning. I didn't see any rockfall. Those competent with an axe won't require additional protection with current conditions.

  • 5th-class climbing to the right of Notch Coulo...
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Location: WY : Devil's Tower : South and East Faces : TAD (5.7)
By: John Korfmacher When: Jul 9, 2009

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Comments: This is a very good route; I'm not too sure about it being the "easiest" route on the Tower.

P1-thought this was the better of the two pitches; the OW is short but is passed easily with some stemming. A #4 is helpful at the crux; if you're comfortable shuffling it a bit, you won't need more than one. Stand on top of the chockstone for the belay.

P2-very stout indeed for the given grade of 5.6; I think it would be a 5.8 at most other crags. There ar... more >>


Location: CO : Lyons : St. Vrain Canyons : South Fork of St. Vrain Can... : Observatory Rock : 99% Pure (5.9)
By: John Korfmacher When: Jun 29, 2009

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Comments: I second the notion that the route is a major sandbag at 5.7. It is considerably harder than Original Route (5.8-) to the right. If you've got big hands, 5.9 is a fair rating; felt more like 9+ to 10a for me. Gillett lists it at 5.9 I think.

By the time you finish the crack, the runout will seem trivial. An extra #2 and #3 are helpful if you want to sew it up.


Location: CO : Boulder : Boulder Canyon : Blob Rock Area : Blob Rock : ... : Central Chimney (5.6)
By: John Korfmacher When: Jun 1, 2009

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Comments: P2 makes the effort worthwhile--it's a nifty pitch tunneling up through the chimney with good jams, sidepulls and body friction. Pro is good throughout.

The leftmost corner/crack on P3 was nice, as is the traverse that follows. Not a super-exciting route, but it's a good tour of the Blob.


Location: CO : Boulder : Boulder Canyon : Castle Rock : Bailey's Overhang (5.8)
By: John Korfmacher When: Jun 1, 2009

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Comments: Climbed 5/31/09 with S. Costello...First pitch is excellent, probably the best moderate at Castle. The roof does need a big cam, but there are good placements below that would hold a fall. I did it left side in, with a left-foot backstep to a solid foothold, then pulled over on jugs. This is a fun and not terribly difficult move.

There IS quality climbing above the first pitch. We finished on a 40-50 foot left-facing 5.7 corner that looks kinda dirty and grassy but is actually fairly fun. The d... more >>


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