Lives of Quiet Desperation
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BETA PHOTO: And this is the 'aesthetic' part of the crack I de...
Lives of Quiet Desperation ascends the crack splitting the prominent roof between the Shakespearean Theatre and Revolution Buttress. The crack system is nearly continuous from the base of the climb to the rim-top, though it peters out near the start of the roof; therein the crux is getting established in the crack system proper.
The climb starts from a critter-shit covered ledge 10' above the ground reached by 5.easy climbing. The first, committing move makes use of a pocket large-enough for a single cam in a soft-rotting flake--part of which repeatedly kept flaking away with moderate funkness testing of tricam placements. During an earlier FA attempt, this first piece failed, with a ground-fall ensuing (thus the 'R' rating). The next move or two are also C2 before getting into C1 placements in good rock, with each of the opening moves having ground fall potential if blown. If not for the marginal quality of the start, this climb would get more stars; once into the good crack, the climb is much more aesthetic.
Continuing out to the lip of the roof, additional cruxes are encountered surmounting the lip of the main roof, and two smaller roof bulges above. Getting over the main roof exits out a somewhat-flared crack (tricams useful) that leads into a widening crack above. The second bulge required a few awkward free moves (5.8ish) into a wide OWish crack that curves into a horizontal crack (a single OW sized piece could help aid this-C4 #6). The next bulge widens to a #4 camalot size before getting thinner again for the final bulge that surmounts the rim.
A few notes:
-Rope drag is an issue if not soloing.
-The lip of the route is subject to water draining during snow melt--probably best to save it for a dry day.
-The aid rating given here takes into account the quality of a few key placments that have ground-fall potential.
-There are some previous swallows nests on this roof, minimize disturbances if these nests are active (in addition to any raptor closures).
-A conscious effort was made to make the FA using clean placements, nailing would compromise some of the clean placements used.
-Cleaning requires aiding the roof while seconding (with some fall potential) or doing some trickery while rappelling and down-aiding a few placements.
Downclimbs are found in either direction of the climb's top within 150'.
Stoppers, double set of TCUs/similar, 2x 0.5 C4, 2-3x 0.75 C4, 3 #1 C4, 2-3 #2 C4, 3 #3 C4, 2 #4 C4, maybe 1 #5 C4. A few medium-sized tricams. Wire brush. Some of the cams in this rack needed to be back cleaned.
The anchor on top can be built with gear (few hand-sized + pieces) or there are two trees 50' back from the lip (long slings or anchor rope).
Self-portrait taken before entering the shower of ...
Rapping down, looking estatic--may consider taping...
BETA PHOTO: L.O.Q.D. takes the obvious crack the rope is fixed...
By Tom Hanson
Feb 25, 2008
Hi Dan, I was climbing at Shakespearean Theatre/Revolution Buttress just about a week ago and my buddy asked me about this route.
It is cool to hear that you have done this one.
One of the things that I love about The Wood is that the true Castlewood aficianado can still find a line here or there that has not been done.
Have you ever considered the left hand roof crack that goes out left of Beeks-n-Feet at the west end of Wendell Spire area?
By Dan Mottinger
Mar 8, 2008
I also like that there are still plenty of new lines for those willing to look around the Wood--I've scoped the other line you mention Tom, and it looks to be of good quality.
As to going free, it probably could at a hard grade a bit harder than I can climb and would also be quite dicey for the (likely) beginning crux moves--committing to leading the first few moves (and really the whole main roof) would expose the leader to ground-fall potential.