Comments: Sandbaggio. The only gear I needed/used was a Metolius #4 (red) between bolts 1 and 2. The webbing up on the summit tree looks crispy, not to mention the tree is growing/leaning against a giant, weird perched block -- topped out, downclimbed, then lowered off Lawyers, Guns and Hiltis.
Comments: Glad you liked the climb, Elliott. I did do it without kneepads, yes, and in ratty cotton sweat pants. I used a left kneescum up at that top crux on the tufa feature. Ted has way better kneebar-tech skills and in addition to that scum had one lower down on the route with his right leg, before "the Heart." I'm guessing other kneebars have been unearthed, using pads, in other spots too. C'est la vie…er, knee.
Comments: Pretty line but a bit nebulous. It seems bolted to keep you out left on the arete, but there is a good crack and sidepulls on the right, though these make clipping way out down and left kind of hairball. You can even get in a nice hand crack at one point and rest. At a certain point, the bolt line forces you to come back left (at least high up, to the horn), though you could just keep going right with some trad gear. Maybe there is a more direct way left onto the arete lower down? Seems to be a ... more >>
Comments: Don't bother going to Buttonrock Reservoir until 2015. We drove in today, not thinking about the floods, but the reservoir and preserve are closed while they clean things up back there. We were able to drive the road almost all the way to the lot, but then a ranger turned us around. There's nowhere along the road to park either, and they don't want people back there for now. The ranger said it will open again in 2015….
Comments: It's always interesting how grades evolve on a climb, with traffic, new beta, holds in flux, etc. Who knows how hard this thing really is -- or any climb for that matter. It's always an interesting discussion.
When I first started trying this climb, it was July 2002, and while I knew Choose Life would go, I kept slipping off all the slopey holds up top in the heat because my hands were sweating so badly after 60 feet of climbing. I tried it on and off a few times that summer, gave up for awhile... more >>
Comments: Some history on this lead with no "point": in Eldo, to bolt a new route, you need approval from a fixed hardware review committee, and it's certain this route never would have passed — it would have been a "two-bolt piece of shit," as Rolo Garibotti, who did the second ascent, pointed out ... if it even passed. And neither Steve nor I felt like submitting an app for a two-bolt POS.
So, Conversions is perfectly fine as a toprope, or if you want the mental challenge, you can lead it with the hook... more >>
Comments: Thanks for fixing this pitch, Chris, and resurrecting a Dream Canyon classic! Was happy to clip all fourteen bolts. Would be a deadly proposition with only two bolts and shaky micro-cams. Four-star 12c: sustained, varied, perplexing, technical, great position.
Comments: Maybe I was just having a bad day, but this seems substantially harder than Macho Picasso. If you take the rightmost start (not the Sky Pilot one), it's fierce and bouldery all the way to the second bolt, and I'm not sure how one even goes about snagging the crimp by the fourth bolt with the correct (right) hand -- it's a full body length above the break with nothing but blankness in between.
Anyway, maybe just having a bad day. These things have been known to happen!
Comments: Kinda spicy to lead from the ground, especially getting to the last bolt with some hidden gear right before it. Possible Spoiler Alert, so don't read on if you're going for the super-pür onsight, but I think having some gear beta (or another bolt or two?) will make this a more manageable lead.
Good stopper above bolt three, kinda punchy above bolt four up to where, from the rounded jug up and left, I placed two Metolius #3 (orange) TCUs, bomber #2 Camalot in the base of the steep cr... more >>
Comments: I think this is actually an awesome pitch, especially the stretch along the finger crack on the upper half. It just needs travel, so all the crispiest part of the patina nipples can snap off (check out all the mini-pink scars on the more-traveled routes on the wall; it's just a delicate granite at first). The one thing that struck me is that this is a very committing lead, onsight from the ground-up. The "TCU nest" you can build after busting the hard crux past the third bolt was not s... more >>
Comments: Great route: long, lots of cruxes, cool airy position, great stone.
We were just — JUST — able to lower off the top anchors with a 70m, if the belayer climbs up the ramp a little bit. This will get the climber right back to the ramp, at the stance by the first bolt. TIE A KNOT IN THE END OF YOUR ROPE!!!
Comments: Nice to have a triple (yes, I said triple!) draw on the fourth bolt in this photo. Lean off the arete to Z-clip it, then come back to the rest and unclip (and reclip) the bolt under you before you head off into the punchy arete-to-traverse sequence.
Comments: Tough climb. Even without the right-shoulder-dislocating, V-Gnar-Gnar crux getting into the corner, this thing would still be solid 5.12. One of the hardest cruxes on a 5.12 around Boulder — maybe a longer wingspan helps?
Comments: Superlative rock climb. Great work, Bret and Steve. The good huecos on the lower half will make you feel like a superhero...until you encounter their evil, sloping, widely spaced cousins on the upper half. The problem is, they all look like good huecos from below; so you just won't know until you know, and then...you'll know!
Comments: Thanks, Chris, for the heads-up on the bolt. We'll be up there soon and will try to tighten, or if anyone's getting on it these are 1/2" five-piece bolts, so you need a 9/16" wrench or socket.