Death of the Blues
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This climb is what remains of the old climb Blues Drift and it's an obvious highball. Starts on a great flat jugs with decent feet. Move left hand to crimpy lower side pull and high hand-foot match with right foot. Grab slopey crimp with right hand followed by a bump to a higher side pull with left hand. The crux starts with locking off the left hand while standing tall and reach up and right towards good side pull (intermediate crimps could help). Bring left hand up to a dirty crimp and bump right hand higher to the good arrete. Walk feet up to small foot holds (a right toe hook on arrete helps) and slowly bring left hand to flat jug at the top for a good top out.
From the trail looking at the Yosemite Boulder, the problem is located on the left-most face on the smaller of the 3 boulders. The start holds are hard to miss, just left of the crack that separates the boulders. Climb down by making your way behind the boulder down the chimney.
At least 2 pads with good spotters are needed for this problem. Because landing is sloped with jagged, protruding rocks laying all over the landing area, good coverage is necessary. It helps if spotters elevate one side of the crash pads with their knee to keep the landing zone "even" and softens the fall. Also make sure the right side of the landing zone is protected. If left hand pops during crux, climber will most likely pull himself to the right.
It is also advisable to clean the top out as moss and pine needles often blanket the top.
BETA PHOTO: Photo with route guide and holds.
Side view of problem.
|Comments on Death of the Blues
From: Portland, ME
Nov 19, 2012
rating: V4 6B
I think this is actually to the left of Old People With Soul. It climbs the face left of the offset offwidth feature.
Also, I did a pretty obvious sit start from a crimp on the right side of the arete down low and a left hand sidepull on the face. One long move reaches the flat jugs. Might be V5. I thought the stand was more like mid-range V4.
|By Adam Winters|
From: the Shire
Nov 20, 2012
Yeah my mistake. I've always done it from the sit-start, seems like one route with a couple variations. Either way this was climbed in the 90's...
|By Steve Wong|
Dec 1, 2012
Hey guys. Thanks for the input regarding the beta as well as a bit about its history.
I'll give the sit start a run to see how it goes. Initially I kind of had the idea that there would be a low start somewhere, but considering that this may be a possible FA, I figure just establishing the most obvious line would be more important.
It's a shame that this problem isn't in the books nor on any beta sites. IMO, it's a good climb and shame that it's not climbed more often (if it was previously ascended). My buddy and I had to clean the heck out of it before we even put chalk on any of the holds. Moss, dirt, leaves, and slime covered most of the face and top out. If anyone knows who did the FA on this, please let me know and how I can get in contact with him/her so that I may give credit where it's due.
From: Manchester, NH
Dec 3, 2012
This is where Blues Drift, a classic V4, used to live before a freeze/thaw cycle calved it from the boulder about 6+ years ago. Its remains form the pile of jagged blocks that give the current face a bad landing. What remains was promptly climbed 6+ years ago but I don't think anyone cared enough to name it. Maybe it deserves a 2nd chance...