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Rock Climbing Photo: Low on the pitch, before the first hard moves.  Ph...
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Dec 20, 2012
By Bryan Gilmore
From: New England
Jul 12, 2008
All I'm gonna say is...Nice bolting!
By Michael Brooks
From: Sandy, ut
Feb 8, 2009
I wanna know who put the bolts in, there is a perfect crack like 2 ft from each bolt, if you ask me, that is BS.
By Tavis Ricksecker
Apr 14, 2009
It was only a matter of time until someone spouted that one...
By markguycan
From: flagstaff, AZ
Nov 5, 2009
I agree, bolting near a crack is BAD STYLE.
By Monomaniac
From: Morrison, CO
Nov 5, 2009
Tough Guys,

Feel free to lead past those bolts without clipping them. Be sure to report back here so we know how it went.

Good luck!
By Michael Sokoloff
From: Spokane, WA
Nov 11, 2009
I don't get your humor Pernell. Are you bagging on the grade, the style, something else? Oh, by the way, have you been on the route?
By Paul Davidson
Nov 11, 2009
Guess you don't get the humor or maybe you're too close to the climb ? Personally, Pernell made me lmao with that statement.

He's saying, go lead it without the bolts (tough guys) and then...

Of course, bolts next to cracks is a departure from almost 50 years of Sedona ethics. But, things change, grades grow, ethics evolve (devolve some would say) and more importantly from my limited perspective, the gear in that crack looks like it might be pretty bad.

So, I'm with Pernell, if some Trotting stud wants to step up and lead it on all gear, then they deserve to rename it.

and.. yes, that is more tongue in cheek humor
By Josh Janes
General Admin
Nov 11, 2009
As the person who submitted this photo and route, and as the person in the photo actually climbing the route, I have a few things to say.

First, Paul made a comment about ethics "evolving/devolving" and I would most definitely take the vocal stance that placing bolts where good natural pro is available is shameful. That said, I don't agree with the people complaining about the presence of bolts in this particular case. I have done this pitch several times and I don't remember there being tons of bomber gear placements in that crack... if my memory serves me, that crack is discontinuous, soft, and flaring. I, like Mono, would like to know which of you critics have actually even been on this route (let alone led it with gear). If you go making a statement about how some climb is or should be based on some low-res photo on the internet, well, it's your credibility at stake not mine.

Second, I disagree with Rick's opinion that this climb would be prettier with pins. Both pins and bolts damage rock and reduce ("subdue") the natural feature to the ascentionist's level... and this is why I think these things should be used very conservatively and with great consideration. But at least bolt holes can be patched and reused. Pin scars, like herpes, are forever. When those pins loosen up and fall out the climb is permanently changed - you either have new gear placements, new handholds, or you hammer in even bigger pins. For this reason, I think if you have to damage the rock to protect it, a bolt is ultimately the best decision when considering the long-term impact.

And that leads to my third comment, which is a question... Rick, sure bolts are less discrete than a pins, so I understand why you would say the climb isn't as "pretty", but I don't really get what having draws hanging there has to do with the quality of the photo? Are the draws really ugly, or is my style of ascent, or maybe the weird thing my hair's doing, that makes the photo bad?
By Michael Sokoloff
From: Spokane, WA
Nov 17, 2009
Just sent this route without the bolts today. Witnessed by Chuck Claude. Some buttshots should be up soon.

I wrote a TR:

Nothing motivates accomplishment more than naysayers. Thanks guys for telling me that this could not be done.

Pernell, I have no intention of renaming this route. IMHO this is the best climb in Arizona! Shangri-La is a fitting name for such a great route.

Josh I've seen you do more dicey leads than this one. If you're in the area you should give it a go.

Mono I've admired your posted accomplishments (i.e. To Bolt) and have always thought it would be great to climb with you. I guess now I'm reporting back.
By climnron
Nov 18, 2009
Awesome job Michael!!!!!! I always knew that pitch would go with just gear!
By LeeAB Brinckerhoff
From: ABQ, NM
Nov 18, 2009
Michael, the way I interpreted Mono's statement about "tough guys" is that it is easy to talk sh*t about some photo with out having actually been on a route, they have no idea what the gear is like and untill they sack up and try it that is all it is is spray. Well you did sack up and I notice with out any of the previous spray, congradulations! and good job. Thanks for reporting back as well to say how it went.

You state in your TR that you never felt in danger of a bad fall, though looking at your list of gear, unless this is on something other than sandstone there are only 3 pieces of gear on your list that I would fully trust and maybe one or two others that I would be comfortable on. Though apparently there are a few more that are reliable, like the #0 BD's, which I would not put a lot of faith in.

I think that the route stays the same unless one of the FA's wants to change it. Even if everyone eventually does it on gear, the bolts act as a reminder of climbing history in a similar way to the runouts on something like the Bachar-Yerian but the opposite, I guess.

Josh, maybe rickd would give a "great" if the draws were not hung instead of in place which is a bit unusual to see on a multi pitch line.
By Michael Sokoloff
From: Spokane, WA
Nov 18, 2009
Thanks Lee!

Shangri-La is different from your "typical" Sedona route in that the rock is much higher quality and there is almost none of the obligatory choss. It's more like climbing at Indian Creek than Sedona. Yes the gear was generally small. The placements were deep and I was able to double up prior to where I perceived the cruxes were located. There was no gritstone type action with partial cam lobes engaged. There was only one section where placing the gear was strenuous (before the 2nd crux). If this was a granite route perhaps I would not have felt the need to double up in spots. Safety and scariness are subjective; what's safe and comfortable to me may be completely different for someone else and vise versa. Only time and ascents will pan this out on this route.

If this were put up as a mixed route with a few strategically-placed bolts, then there would be little issue here. In reality, it was bolted as a sport climb which is where I think the issue lies. It seems to me to be far beyond what is necessary to safely climb this pitch and detracts from the purity and style. I know that someone will respond to the the last sentence by saying that the only "pure" climbing is barefoot free-soloing.
By chuck claude
From: Flagstaff, Az
Nov 18, 2009
When I seconded Mike, the gear was absolutely bomber and he could have whipped at any point and it would have been a-ok (even the grey 000 BD C3 was as bomber as a cam could ever get). On top of the gear he placed , if he would have carried a few more green (0) BD C3s he could have stitched it up oven better. IMHO the gear is about the same as it is on Shotgun and the rock is solid.
By LeeAB Brinckerhoff
From: ABQ, NM
Nov 18, 2009
Michael, I believe it is barefoot soloing. . . . .without chalk :)

At the creek I'm not real psyced with anything smaller than a green alien or blue TCU though I've seen a blue alien hold a fall in a poor placement, so I can understand the desire to double up at hard spots.
By Monomaniac
From: Morrison, CO
Nov 18, 2009

Congratulations on the send! Lee's interpretation of my comment is spot on. My point was that, until the critic steps up to do it in better style, they should keep their mouth shut. I assume that Bloom, et al chose to bolt it because they felt they couldn't get solid gear. Considering C3s are new, I wonder if there was safe pro using 1997 technology. I don't know those guys, & I've never been on the route, so I don't have a dog in this fight, but I think its lame for people to critiscize something they know nothing about based on a photo. It seems courteous to give them the benefit of the doubt until somebody proves them wrong. Generally the type of climber that has enough strength & vision to "prove them wrong" has enough class to reserve judgement. You've certainly shown that to be true!

FYI, Smith Rock is stacked with sweet trad lines. Seriously, its the best kept secret in the west. Maybe next time I'm out there I'll take you up on your offer.

PS that rack would work pretty well on the East Face, but you'll need some more RPs for the second pitch:)
By Michael Sokoloff
From: Spokane, WA
Nov 20, 2009
Thanks Mono!

I'd been considering doing this for a few weeks before this thread got going. The comments just pushed it to the top of my ticklist. I wanted to jump in "well I think this route will go without gear and am planning on trying it", but until sent that is basically just spray. I held comment until after.

If you are in AZ you should give it a try. It's an amazing route in a pristine, beautiful setting.

I'm very exited to be closer to Smith for both the trad and sport. I love technical face routes which it seems like Smith has no shortage of. Let me know when you're in the area. It would be great to climb with you!

What East Face are you referring to? I've seen pics of the North Face of the Monkey Face which have made me salivate. Have you done that one? Have you been to Trout Creek?

By Josh Janes
General Admin
Dec 20, 2012
Well, I'd just like to say that my impressions of the rock quality might be wrong on this one... I wasn't there, but heard second hand about this pitch apparently being zippered recently on an onsight attempt - certainly a good argument in favor of there being bolts =)
Photo 3 of 10
Avg Score   4.0 from 4 votes
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Low on the pitch, before the first hard moves. Photo by Bennett Barthelemy.

Submitted By: Josh Janes on Jun 24, 2008
On this route:
Shangri-La (5.12+ 7c 28 IX 27 E6 6b )
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Photo Of: Josh Janes

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