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Leading Morning Thunder. January, 2005. Photo: Pat...
The longest route in the Grotto. Climb the slight overhanging corner using crack, stem, and chimney moves. There is always a 'small' placement possibility in the corner. It will take small nuts and TCUs. Use 2' slings on all placements and the rope drag will be acceptable higher up, otherwise you might be stopped.
You will be standing/stemming in body tension a few times. The crux is getting onto a left edge low on the route. It isn't over yet, and the route continues for a ways through two more overhang sections. The upper section is a sustained crack.
Belay in a small alcove.
To descend, face climb out of the alcove to the left past a pin and belay on a big platform. Rappel off long fixed slings toward the anchor for Book of Changes.
TCUs from 0, Cams to 3, Nuts from 3, 1" and 2" for anchor.
Morning Thunder in the overhanging corner
Past the hard section on Morning Thunder. January,...
|Comments on Morning Thunder
|By gregory huey|
From: Pasadena, CA
Apr 18, 2010
rating: 5.10d PG13
Got back to BHMG today, and decided to try to lead Morning Thunder - bagged the redpoint. The pro is better than I thought it would be, but still a little tricky. Up until the first bulge the back of the chimney is thin, but in a few spots does take small nuts. I don't know why the guidebook says to bring pitons - whats up with that? I was able to protect the route well with a set of nuts, tricams and doubles up to BD #2. I'd recommend two #3s & two #2s for the anchor. One will also probably want to extend the anchor about 6' or so to reduce rope drag. Due to the length of the route - unless you have a rope much longer than a 70m (I have a 70m) - the leader will need to belay the follower from the top. I note that the route description above says to 'Belay in a small alcove' - instead I recommend to climb up and to the left out of the alcove, clipping the fixed pin, and belay on the large ledge above. I think from here the anchors are easier, the belay more comfy and the descent less sketchy.
The pro is there, but a bit tricky - probably its best to be comfortable leading 10s before leading this one. I didn't think any single move on the route was particularly difficult, but it is long and sustained, with multiple cruxes. The guidebook calls it 10d - it might be a bit easier by JT standards. I've done a number of 10ds at JT with harder moves than appear anywhere on this route. Good stemming/chimneying footwork skill is a major bonus here.
To descend, walk around to climber's left. You will find a sketchy white rap sling which you can use, or do a 20' sketchy downclimb - your choice :). Then walk towards the top of "Book of Changes". You will see the next rap station, but not be able to (easily) get to it directly. Continue walking around in the climber's left direction further than you might think necessary, then manage a downclimb with a perfect short handcrack or faceholds to a ledge that leads back climber's right to the top of "Book of Changes". From here a 60m rap will just barely get one to the ground.