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Humungous Woosey 

YDS: 5.9 French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: HVS 5a R

   
Type:  Trad, 8 pitches, 1000', Grade IV
Consensus:  YDS: 5.9 French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: HVS 5a [details]
FA: Dave Baker and Mike McEwen - 1973
Page Views: 1,491
Submitted By: Fred Nakovic on May 26, 2009

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BETA PHOTO: Humungous Woosey From the gully.

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Description 

This is a seldom climbed route. The location is one of the best on the peak. Hike up to the north saddle from the east. The route is 10 minutes from there (and to the wonderful springs on Lyon's Ledge). Bob Kerry's description is pretty good to get you through the general line and find the belays. However there are MANY small route variants and you must make constant judgement to go either a little left or right to make the climbing safer or easier. Good route finding capabilities are a must. We climbed it 24 May 2009 and I doubt it had been climbed for many years. Much loose rock precariously balanced. There were a few jungle ledges with ancient dead branches that we busted through. If a few more parties were to send it, knock off the remaining loose rock and "garden" the jungles it would become a real stellar route. Other than the occasional loose rock the overall stone quality is very good. As you move toward the top it gets better and better.

Descent - Rap the Forbes route then head east around the north end of Babo. Two more short bolt anchor raps and a steep hike back to the north saddle to pick up the packs for the hike to the vehicle.

To do this car to car in a day would be a nice endurance feat. It's easier to hike in late the day before and bivy at the north saddle for an early morning start. You don't have to hike in much water since the spring is year round.

Location 

North East corner

Protection 

All clean. No lead or anchor bolts. Standard rack with double small to medium cams.


Photos of Humungous Woosey Slideshow Add Photo
Wading through top of 4th pitch
Wading through top of 4th pitch
looking back at the belay atop pitch 3, after the ...
looking back at the belay atop pitch 3, after the ...
Dead Tree belay, top of 6th
Dead Tree belay, top of 6th
Top of 3rd pitch
Top of 3rd pitch
cindy on the crux pitch 3, just after the "tr...
cindy on the crux pitch 3, just after the "tr...
cindy coming up to the dead tree belay ledge atop ...
cindy coming up to the dead tree belay ledge atop ...
looking across the east face toward don's crack an...
looking across the east face toward don's crack an...
Greg Kay Finishing Pitch One.
Greg Kay Finishing Pitch One.

Comments on Humungous Woosey Add Comment
Show which comments
By dcohn
May 27, 2009

How were the run outs?
By Fred Nakovic
From: Tucson, AZ
May 27, 2009

They weren't terribly long runouts. However the route is ledgy and there were a few spots you could hit them. And there are lots of angled traverses left and right, not good to take a whipper on those either. The pro I got in was real solid though, a few nuts, mostly cams. Bring a set of C3's.
By Markus
From: Roxbury, NY
Jun 4, 2009

Very accurate description Fred. I agree, expert route finding is important on this route. Thank you for posting.
By Charles Vernon
From: Tucson, AZ
Mar 15, 2011
rating: 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b R

Some thoughts:

  • This route is a fantastic adventure. It's truly wild in both senses of the word. Imagine a gnarlier, grittier version of Warpy Moople in the Sandias. I'm not sure where else in So. AZ you can find 1000 (or 500 for that matter) feet of climbing without a bolt. There are brilliant sections of face climbing on pitches 3, 5, and 6. The position is outstanding.

  • The first pitch is very dirty, loose, and uninteresting. Don't go down. There are still some loose sections above, but it gets way better. Very soon you'll be on pitch three, which is a gem--the best pitch on the climb.

  • This is a serious route. I got pretty scared leading pitch 6 in particular, and the belay atop this pitch was sub-par.

  • Don't do this route on a windy day. Surprisingly, this route gets sun most of the day.

  • Almost every pitch is a puzzle. Double ropes are very helpful. This is the mother of all micro-routefinding challenges. That's part of what makes it so satisfying.

Here is Kerry's description; don't let his opening remarks scare you off, it's a great adventure!