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7. The Slabs
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Sea of Holes T 
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Sea of Holes 

YDS: 5.7 French: 5a Ewbanks: 15 UIAA: V+ ZA: 13 British: MVS 4b

   
Type:  Trad, 4 pitches
Consensus:  YDS: 5.7 French: 5a Ewbanks: 15 UIAA: V+ ZA: 13 British: MVS 4b [details]
FA: Ed Webster and Alain Comeau 1985
Page Views: 6,050
Submitted By: lee hansche on May 31, 2007

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (33)
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N. Conway Skate Park.

Description 

A really nice route that involves lots of friction and a steep bulge near the top to remind you how to use your hands.... Put up by Ed Webster and Alain Comeau, 2 guys with eyes for good routes this one is a must do if you love friction....
A nice choice if the more popular routes are packed; however, that makes this popular on a busy day, too....

Pitch 1: (5.2) Motor up the slab for 160 ft. to a 2 bolt anchor on a stance....

Pitch 2: Continue straight up clipping a fixed pin and passing to the right of the first arch.... Belay at a 2 bolt ring anchor at the right edge of the second arch....

Pitch 3: (5.5) Smear up and left to a wide white streak and up the streak left of the head wall to a 2 bolt anchor....

Pitch 4: (5.7 or 5.8+) Move up on laybacks and left.... Continue up the slab on the left side of the white streak to the base of a shallow, left-facing corner. Clip a pin and move up and right to a bolt.... The climbing is steeper here for a few moves.... The slab above the bolt can be heady, keep it together to the overlap where you get good gear before mantling on to a mossy slab with a thin streak of clean rock just enough to help you get to the big tree with slings on it at the left side of a large tree ledge....

The 5.8 option to pitch 4 goes over the bulge on your left after the 5.7 crux... After passing the bolt head up and left and find your tricky way over the bulge and head up the slab to an obvious anchor...

Rap down...4 two rope raps....

Location 

On the left side of the slabs.... Start below twin, right-arching corner overlaps and a prominent white streak....

4 double rope raps from the tree....

Protection 

Standard rack plus tri-cams.... Two ropes for rapping off....


Photos of Sea of Holes Slideshow Add Photo
Sea of Holes topo (playing with the photo editor).  The light circles are belays on the route, the darker ones are belays I remember seeing on adjacent routes.
BETA PHOTO: Sea of Holes topo (playing with the photo editor)....
My 7 year old just over the crux of the route
My 7 year old just over the crux of the route
Dave just above the 5.7 crux...
Dave just above the 5.7 crux...
Looking straight up Sea of Holes.
Looking straight up Sea of Holes.
Looking down the 3rd pitch.
Looking down the 3rd pitch.
View from the top on a November day (2006).
View from the top on a November day (2006).
Dave pulling the crux of the 5.8 variation Finish...
Dave pulling the crux of the 5.8 variation Finish....
The third pitch of Sea of Hole. Pretty runout, but very fun. Stretch those calves out!
The third pitch of Sea of Hole. Pretty runout, but...

Comments on Sea of Holes Add Comment
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By Casey Bald
Sep 17, 2007

lee, have you ever had the chance to do the 8+/9- variation?
from the third pitch anchor move left after the flake and move up
under the overlap left of the 5.7. clip a bolt on the edge of the
overlap and make an awkward matle/rockover move. climb up and right to a two bolt anchor even with the last pitch's tree anchor......
By Jay Knower
Administrator
From: Campton, NH
Nov 14, 2007

I think the variation Casey talks about is well worth doing. If I remember correctly, the moves are cool and pretty well protected. Plus you get to go to a bolted belay instead of a tree belay.
By lee hansche
Administrator
From: goffstown, nh
Nov 4, 2009

i did the variation and im gonna add it to the description...
By Aaron L.
Feb 25, 2010

Make sure to bring Tri-cams! On the second and third pitch, there are pockets which are too narrow for most cams. Tri-cams (especially the pink one) will help a lot
By Gabe13
From: Eaton Center, New Hampshire
Sep 11, 2010

There is another nice variation (technically part of Pathfinder, but the only part worth doing i.m.o.): From the pitch 4 anchor, approach the overlap, aiming for an old-ish pin. Step up, clip a bolt over the lip, and crank one 5.9 move onto the slab. Teeter left, throw a medium tricam in a pocket, and you're golden to the rap anchor.

You may continue on a short 5.7 pitch to the final, huge overlap. Anyone ever actually done "Corbett's Crack"? It sure looks harder than 5.8...
By matthewWallace
From: plymouth, nh
Jul 15, 2013
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

Great route, I would say however that the thin strip between the moss just before the tree is very overgrown and sketchy, it might be time for a quick brushing...
By Brendan Blanchard
From: Strafford, NH
Aug 25, 2013

From the tree anchor at the top, my partner and I were able to make it to the ground in three, two rope (60m) raps. We went from the tree to the bolted belay directly below, probably about 120', then down and climber's left to the tree belay, a full 60m rap, then one more to the ground with a little rope to spare at the bottom. As always, knot the rope!

The middle tree belay is part the Stadtmuller Griffin Route, and could probably use a new sling/cord, but was still safe to rap on.
By chinos
Sep 22, 2013

another good option to get to the white zone as well
By Russ Keane
Jul 22, 2014

I wouldn't climb anywhere without my Tricams! Especially slab.

This route was fun. The 5.7 crux is way sweet. Then the 5.8 variation was bomber. Pretty tough on lead.