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Kor Roof on a windy day. Hard to tell which way is up here! Basically into the photo, up about 45 degrees, rotated 30 degrees clockwise.


Member Since: Oct 3, 2009
Last Visit: Apr 15, 2014
Contact Mark P Thomas


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Areas = 15
Routes = 10
Photos = 5
Page Improvements = 3
Comments = 1



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All 842 | Routes | Areas | Photos 4 | Page Improvments | Comments 107 | Posts 67 | Stars 366 | Ratings 298
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Contributed Comments

 

Location: CA : Yosemite National Park : Yosemite Valley : North Dome
By: Mark P Thomas When: Feb 3, 2014

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Comments: Unless you are wanting more pitches to climb (e.g. Royal Arches linkup) or you are staying in the Valley and the time for driving up Hwy 120 is too unappealing, for any route on this dome I don't see why people don't just hike in and out from Hwy 120.

Coming in, it was a nice and scenic hike on an easy trail, and it only took me 2.5 Mammoth Brewery IPAs to reach the summit (about 2.5 hrs, including stops for pictures and giving hikers & trailrunners beta), and heading back after sunset, even wi... more >>


Location: CA : Yosemite National Park : Yosemite Valley : Camp 4 Wall : Tweedle Dee (5.8)
By: Mark P Thomas When: May 24, 2013

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Comments: Bryan, I think you were off-route on the first two pitches. I have climbed it twice, linking pitches to do it as two, and the rotten rock wasn't that bad and limited to the middle of P1. It is actually one of my favorite chimney climbs in Yosemite! I took the left line, a bit farther away from Doggie Do & Doggie Diversions. I once tried climbing the line that starts directly above Doggie Do, that eventually merges with the line, and I backed off because it was so awful. I wonder if you took that... more >>


Location: UT : Moab Area : Castle Valley : Castleton Tower : North Chimney (5.8)
By: Mark P Thomas When: May 4, 2013

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Comments: Great climb, although I think this climb had me more afraid of injury or death from loose blocks than Kor-Ingalls. P2 beyond the OW seemed the worst with loose death blocks. P3 was fine in that regard. OW is fun and climbs much differently than the one on Kor-Ingalls.

Regarding pro for the OW, I brought a #5 & #4 C4 Camalot. A #4 isn't that necessary if you brought a #5, but I would have preferred a #6. Seriously, while you can get by with a smaller large cam, if... more >>


Location: UT : Moab Area : Arches National Park : Elephant Butte : Standard (West Fins) (5.3)
By: Mark P Thomas When: May 4, 2013

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Comments: Crux is thought-provoking but easy enough to do in hiking shoes. No real point in bringing pro on the climb, just a rope for the 2 rappels.

Fun route with some nice side canyons and squeeze chimneys to explore, and a great rest day detour. At a relaxed pace we were on the summit in less than two hours, and less than an hour getting out.


Location: UT : Moab Area : Arches National Park : Bullwinkle Tower : West Chimney (5.6)
By: Mark P Thomas When: May 4, 2013

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Comments: The crack seems surprisingly hard for 5.6, but if you have some wide technique and commit, you can really sink a leg in and sit on it while you work out the next move.

Current anchor conditions: 1 bolt is gone, the other has a shaft protruding from the rock and I could wiggle it. The third bolt still looks good.


Location: UT : Moab Area : Indian Creek : Donnelly Canyon : Elephant Man (5.10-)
By: Mark P Thomas When: May 4, 2013

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Comments: 3-4 star route anywhere else, but in the Creek, only 2 stars for me. Very well worth doing if you're in the area though!


Location: CA : Yosemite National Park : Yosemite Valley : Arch Rock : Gripper (5.10b)
By: Mark P Thomas When: May 4, 2013

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Comments: Start really felt more like sustained wide 5.9 to me compared to other climbs in the Valley. Chimney is not that hard and pulling the roof wasn't as tricky as expected. What got me was the thin flaring crack after the roof 'crux'. At least for me, I couldn't stay secure or get rests, so that part was really tough for me. We linked P2-3 as a very nice long pitch. Definitely don't stop after the first pitch!


Location: CA : Yosemite National Park : Yosemite Valley : Arch Rock : Entrance Exam (5.9)
By: Mark P Thomas When: May 4, 2013

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Comments: The climb is very well protected. I brought cams through #6 and was able to push them most of the way on all pitches. There is only one part where you need larger gear to place (#4 Big Bro), but it is short and easy enough that if you are comfortable on this route, it is much easier to run through that section than to hang out placing a bro.

P3 crux flare was really fun to work out!


Location: CA : Tahoe Vicinity : Sugarloaf : Sugarloaf, East Face : Harding's Chimney (5.7 R)
By: Mark P Thomas When: Feb 16, 2013

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Comments: I thought the crux was passing the bulge after turning the roof. Unless you bring a#4 Big Bro, there is no pro after the roof pitons until the anchor (apart from a tiny cam in a thin flake near the very end).

With a well-placed #4 Big Bro, climb is probably PG13, without a #4 Big Bro, it seemed like an R, although the climbing does get easier and more secure as you get higher. I found it best to change sides just above the crux, which was a tad spooky to do.


Location: CA : Joshua Tree National Park : Quail Springs Area : White Cliffs of Dover : White Cliffs of Dover - Lef... : Jack of Hearts (5.9)
By: Mark P Thomas When: Jan 27, 2013

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Comments: Start is steep, but you don't get better jams than those! Definitely 5.9, no way 5.10 if you know how to do steep cracks (its all about how to use your feet). Upper wide takes small gear, so don't bring anything larger than a #3.


Location: CA : Yosemite National Park : Yosemite Valley : Arch Rock : Application (5.9+)
By: Mark P Thomas When: Jan 26, 2013

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Comments: From the top of Supplication it appeared that this route is capped by a chockstone and a large hummock. Assuming these two routes share the same anchor, that would be a really crappy end of the climb. Or does this one have separate anchors before/beside that thing? It sure looked like fun, otherwise.


Location: CA : Yosemite National Park : Yosemite Valley : Arch Rock : Dirty Little Secret (5.9)
By: Mark P Thomas When: Jan 26, 2013

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Comments: Opening moves are real fun. Unfortunately the climbing deteriorates quickly into grass & grit. Fortunately the pitch isn't that long :-P It is worth doing once though, just for fun!


Location: CA : Sacramento Valley/Foothills : Cosumnes River Gorge : Buck's Bar Dome : Test Piece (5.8)
By: Mark P Thomas When: Dec 10, 2012

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Comments: If you jam, then the crux is the first 6 ft, and the pod halfway up is the nicest rest on the entire route. Use broth cracks to start, including your left foot/toe in the corner crack while stemming with the right foot. It is very easy this way.


Location: CA : Sacramento Valley/Foothills : Cosumnes River Gorge
By: Mark P Thomas When: Dec 7, 2012

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Comments: For those that prefer pretty pictures over reading, here's how to get there: Map

Just drag the "A" icon to where you want to start from.


Location: UT : Moab Area : Island In The Sky : Washer Woman : In Search Of Suds (5.10+)
By: Mark P Thomas When: Nov 22, 2012

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Comments: We have your green rope. PM me and maybe we can get it back to you!

Also, the summit register is back in action with a fresh pen.


Location: UT : Moab Area : Arches National Park : Dark Angel : West Face (5.11)
By: Mark P Thomas When: Nov 22, 2012

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Comments: P2 starting mantel is a very awkward 5.7. After that, the bolts are easy to french free on. No need for any special aid gear. After the first 2-3 bolts, the climbing eases up quickly and can be climbed at low 5th with one more well protected 5.9-5.10a crux near the end.


Location: UT : Moab Area : Arches National Park : The Great Wall : Chinese Eyes (5.9+)
By: Mark P Thomas When: Nov 22, 2012

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Comments: Compared to other Arches routes, this is medium on the sandy scale. Not Creek quality, but not scary either with appropriate technique and protection behavior.

The wide section has plenty of cheater holds and is not hard at all (5.6-5.7). However, if you want to squeeze inside to be more secure finishing (no pro wider than a #3 Camalot needed), I recommend high tops or covering your ankles. I do a lot of OW and it was pretty unavoidable cutting up my right ankle after leading and doing a ... more >>


Location: UT : Moab Area : Arches National Park : The Great Wall : Chinese Eyes (5.9+) : Photo
By: Mark P Thomas When: Nov 22, 2012

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Comments: Don't be afraid of the crack! Be one with the crack . . .


Location: UT : Moab Area : Arches National Park : The Three Penguins : Right Chimney (5.10+)
By: Mark P Thomas When: Nov 22, 2012

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Comments: I led the P2 OW. Crux of it was extracting my leg as my calf kept getting stuck. Second pitch is much sandier than the first, so I think a lot of people rappel after only doing P1 :-)


Location: UT : Moab Area : Arches National Park : Owl Rock : West Crack (5.8+)
By: Mark P Thomas When: Nov 22, 2012

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Comments: Very steep but solid, clean, and juggy with easy gear placements. According to the photo time stamps, it took me about 10 minutes or less to onsight this. Very straightforward. This route has some of the most solid rock in Arches!


Location: UT : Moab Area : Arches National Park : Zippy Zebra Wall : Zippy Zebra (5.10a)
By: Mark P Thomas When: Nov 22, 2012

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Comments: Pretty sandy, especially the start, but very fun. Sustained and varied moves.


Location: CA : Yosemite National Park : Yosemite Valley : El Capitan : East Buttress (5.10b)
By: Mark P Thomas When: Nov 22, 2012

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Comments: I'd call the P1 chimney 5.8 at most, being generous. The only 5.9 on that pitch is the end.

Please don't be obnoxious and haul packs. It is plenty reasonable to trail packs on P1, and if they are kept small and light, it is no big deal leading with a pack on the rest of the pitches. The party in front of us hauled 2 packs for most of the pitches!

A better way to aid the crux if you're in a hurry, is to do the following (better with double ropes for the second to follow!):

From the P1 anchor, ... more >>


Location: UT : Moab Area : Kane Springs Canyon : Happy Turk Hoodoo : The Happy Turk (5.8 C1)
By: Mark P Thomas When: Nov 22, 2012

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Comments: Road is still closed to vehicles, but the bar is still there.

First reachy bolt is easier to stick clip if someone stands to the side and instructs the clipper as to the height and rotation of the stick clip.

The links forced me to sacrifice a little distance by clipping draws first and then my aiders. A third aider or clipping aiders in pairs makes the overhanging bulges much easier to deal with.

I managed to get the final reachy bolt by snagging a shallow two-finger divot on my left afte... more >>


Location: UT : Moab Area : Kane Springs Canyon : Happy Turk Hoodoo : The Happy Turk (5.8 C1) : Photo
By: Mark P Thomas When: Nov 22, 2012

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Comments: It is easier if someone stands to the side and instructs the clipper as to how to adjust the height and rotation of the clip stick. We tried clipping it for a good while before doing this, and once trying it, it only took about a minute.


Location: WY : Grand Teton National Park : Middle Teton : North Ridge (5.5)
By: Mark P Thomas When: Oct 4, 2012

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Comments: Took us about an hour to summit and about 40 min to descend. The notch was dry when we climbed it, and it was no big deal to solo it, so the rack and shoes were unnecessary, though the rope was nice to rappel into the notch. Other rappels were easy to downclimb around, so I assume people use them when the route is more snow covered?

Make sure to climb Bonney's Pinnacle and Pinocchio Pinnacle on the way down. They have nice views of the Grand and are a very short and fun scrambling detour.


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