As We Liked It
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Beyond the difficulties.
Follow the directions to the "North Buttress" of the West Ridge, by the area favorites Xanadu and Chockstone.
Identify the route Xanadu at the right-hand end of the SouthWest facing portion of the North Buttress. Xanadu is a hanging dihedral with a small crack and a small "Dr. Seuss" looking tree growing out of it 60 feet up. The next major crack system to the left (~15' NorthWest) is in a series of left facing dihedrals. This is S&M (5.7). Another 10' or so to the left of S&M is a thin crack capped by a four-to-six-inch flake with a seam beginning it. Above that the thin crack is seam-like and there are a few small ledges with bits of grass growing in the cracks behind them. This system is 'As We Liked It.'
The route is more or less a "hard start" variation to S&M and skips the so-so climbing at the bottom of S&M.
Climb the thin crack to where it becomes an undercling under a hanging flake. Place a few more small pieces and move up and slightly right into seams and on to a small ledge for rest. The moves are a little tweaky, and probably harder than the 10a grade given by Rossiter. I'll say 5.10 and leave it to you to subdivide. From the rest, the climb moves up into a hanging dihedral above and finishes in that system, heading left into a second dihedral as the one overhead becomes less desirable. This is the same as for the route S&M.
The bottom moves of this route are protected on thin gear. Several small nuts can be placed to protect, but these may be difficult to put in. I did not use micro cams at the time, but they may work. I believe that Ball nuts would add ease and security to the protection at the low crux. A standard rack will protect the rest.
The landing at the base is pretty good, so a spotter and crash pad could probably prevent any real injury.
|Comments on As We Liked It
|By David Houston|
From: Boulder, Colorado
Nov 18, 2001
I led both Chockstone and Xanadu without falls yesterday but was completely rebuffed by this thing. The feet are thin which makes getting pro difficult and the hands are good but small making a pretty strenuous move. If this was in Dream Canyon it'd be a .12 for sure! ;)
|By Shane Zentner|
Aug 5, 2003
I have also led Chockstone and Xanadu and was baffled as well. Tricky start with a good landing (bouldery). I used a blue Metolius and small stopper to protect this. Combined this route with S&M and walked off to the right.
From: Sacramento, CA
Nov 9, 2003
I think the 10a rating is fair. The first 15' make for a 2-1/2 star route, but the rest isn't anything to write home about. 1 star overall.
|By Ivan Rezucha|
From: Boulder, CO
Feb 22, 2005
Very hard for a 5.10 climber to onsight lead this. I can think of several Eldo 11as that felt easier to me. Perhaps mid-10 (not 10a I think) on TR, it's very difficult to stop on the lead to place gear. You need either iron fingers, impeccable footwork, or deviousness. Lacking the first 2, I was able to find a very unobvious stance that allowed me to let go with one hand. I was unable to get good cams in the overlap so instead placed 2 very good brass nuts above the overlap. Even when you get the "jams" (very disappointing jams), it's not over. It's hard to let go with one hand to place a piece. The final move may be only 5.9, but it feels 10 with the pump and stress.
We were short on time after spending so much time working the crux section, so I placed a good but not obvious nut and cam above the ledge, traversed right to the S&M corner, and downclimbed placing gear as I went.
As we walked away, my partner Luke said, "At least we weren't defeated." I said, "Not defeated...humiliated."
|By Michael Amato|
Jun 3, 2005
The key for me at the start was to work my feet up very high off of nearly straight arms on the undercling to get the most surface area from my shoes and the best purchase because the feet are very thin. From there it's a matter of finding a couple of small edges to straighten up on and then stepping back and right to a "ledge"with the right foot to allow stepping up with the left foot and snagging another ledge up and left with the left hand. The grass-choked slots didn't help the hands any. My pro was a #0 Metolius TCU in the flake, a good BD micro-stopper placement in the thin crack above the undercling and a bomber #1 Camalot in the slot above. Hard.