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First Ascent Ethical Conundrum - Here's your chance keyboard jockeys


Original Post
Vas Carmicheal · · Mexican Hat, UT · Joined Oct 2016 · Points: 6

This topic will attempt to describe the facts surrounding the first ascent of a coveted crack climb in a very off the beaten path area. In the below text, we will use Climber A and Climber B


Background & Facts / Series of Events

  • the route is on private property, the location will not be divulged (FYI, the point of this thread isn't about the ethics of talking about "secret" or private spots on the internet)
  • the route is surely the hardest crack climb in the state, the crack clocks in around mid 5.12
  • This route was toproped in the 90's, although it was never climbed clean on top-rope

At this point I will show a picture of the route. (removed)



What I assumed to be the "original route" is shown in yellow. The yellow route follows a crack system that offers protection the entire way, however it becomes significantly easier (5.9) after the thin crack is over. Climber A decided to add a bolt out left to include 15 more feet of traditionally unprotectable 5.11 face climbing, if this bolt was not added it would not be very logical to climb out to unprotected 5.11 face, looking at a groundfall, when protectable 5.8 is blatantly an option. I know the left variation "looks" protect able, but the horizontal is actually heavily flared and this is extremely soft sandstone. 

  • Climber A cleaned the route
  •  Climber A added a bolt for a variation
  •  Climber A added anchors to the climb 
  • Climber A started "projecting" the crack before Climber B
  • Climber A invited Climber B to work the route with him

Climber B then decided to take the first ascent, of the bolted variation the very next day, without consulting Climber A, Climber B posted a video on instagram of them sending. 


Now YOU, my faithful internet keyboard jockey, get to decide. 

Kevin MP · · Redmond, OR · Joined Nov 2013 · Points: 357

What's the question?

Kind of a dick move, especially to spray about it. Climber B was invited to work the route; was it stipulated that they weren't allowed to send it? I assume you are Climber A?

The route looks about 20 feet tall in the picture??

King Tut · · Citrus Heights · Joined Aug 2012 · Points: 430

Butthurt over 30' of munge. SAD.

Vas Carmicheal · · Mexican Hat, UT · Joined Oct 2016 · Points: 6

Climber A & Climber B didn't have a discussion about the FA the day they worked it together. 

Vas Carmicheal · · Mexican Hat, UT · Joined Oct 2016 · Points: 6
King Tut wrote:

Butthurt over 30' of munge. SAD.

O great King Tut. It is not the size of the rocks that matters in this story. 

I can only hope in my age, I become as good of a keyboard jockey as you ;)

King Tut · · Citrus Heights · Joined Aug 2012 · Points: 430

You asked for it!

:P

Allen Sanderson · · Oootah · Joined Jul 2007 · Points: 1,146

Did climber A scratch their way up to the top of that 30 feet of munge, regardless of fails, aid, or on TR before climber B? If so then climber A gets the FA. Climber B gets the FA of what ever was left.  

Ryan Swanson · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jan 2018 · Points: 50

All I know is TR FA's don't mean shit.  Anyone who posts a route on MP or gets into a guidebook as a TRFA has some ego issues.

Greg D · · Here · Joined Apr 2006 · Points: 867
Vas Carmicheal wrote:


  1. Climber A invited Climber B to work the route with him
  2. Climber B is a better climber than climber A and gets the send first. 

3.  Climber A gets bruised ego.               




Vas Carmicheal · · Mexican Hat, UT · Joined Oct 2016 · Points: 6
Greg D wrote:





Note quite. Climber B came back before Climber A had a chance too ( and for the record climber A is stronger ;)


These are the kind of opinions I'm looking for! Bring it on keyboard jockeys.

Señor Arroz · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jan 2016 · Points: 10

You should both be congratulated on a nice boulder problem.


Vas Carmicheal · · Mexican Hat, UT · Joined Oct 2016 · Points: 6
Señor Arroz wrote:

You should both be congratulated on a nice boulder problem.



Another Hot Take! I'm assuming you solo'd those 35' routes at the Grotto last weekend. lol. 

Ryan Swanson · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jan 2018 · Points: 50
Vas Carmicheal wrote:


Note quite. Climber B came back before Climber A had a chance too ( and for the record climber A is stronger ;)


These are the kind of opinions I'm looking for! Bring it on keyboard jockeys.

to*

Jon Rhoderick · · Redmond, OR · Joined Jul 2009 · Points: 865

Perhaps if Climber A hadn't used the micro take he wouldn't have had this problem

caughtinside · · Oakland CA · Joined Nov 2006 · Points: 1,450

B burned A. Extra hurtz because A showed the route to B. So some poor judgment by A as well. 

Jack C. · · Calgary, AB · Joined Mar 2013 · Points: 325

Can you link the video?


Marc801 C · · Sandy, Utah · Joined Feb 2014 · Points: 65

That choss pile looks so inviting that the only ethical thing to do is to remove all traces that it ever existed. 

Charlie Egan · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Nov 2012 · Points: 295

No conundrum. If you don't want someone sending a route you cleaned, don't invite them to work it with you.

Everett · · Chicago, IL · Joined Jul 2016 · Points: 10

This is just another way to spray about secret climbs.

Come on, dude, share it.

Señor Arroz · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jan 2016 · Points: 10
Vas Carmicheal wrote:


Another Hot Take! I'm assuming you solo'd those 35' routes at the Grotto last weekend. lol. 

But, see, I'm not making an "ethical conundrum" out of someone bagging a 30-foot climb in the middle of nowhere on private land ahead me. Maybe you're in Nebraska or somewhere, and that photo really shows the best thing in the state at its grade, but you can find endlessly better than that, and unclimbed, all over any real mountain state. Point being have whatever feelings you want about it, but it's not an ethical conundrum.


JordyC Clements · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jul 2015 · Points: 5
  • This route was toproped in the 90's, although it was never climbed clean on top-rope

I think that's the real crux of the topic right there. If Fiona Apple climbed it on TR, then it's a Fiona Apple route, and there's really no two ways about it.

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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