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Terrace, The S 

Blueballs at Christmas 

YDS: 5.11c French: 6c+ Ewbanks: 24 UIAA: VIII- ZA: 24 British: E4 6a R

Type:  Trad, 1 pitch
Original:  YDS: 5.11c French: 6c+ Ewbanks: 24 UIAA: VIII- ZA: 24 British: E4 6a R [details]
FA: Jim Shimberg 1994
Page Views: 1,253
Submitted By: lee hansche on Mar 23, 2007

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Blueballs is a super committing lead on very small gear for the first 40-50 feet. Most people toprope it, and it's probably a good thing because not everyone has the skills and cool head that is required to climb a hard R rated route like this. I worked it out on toprope first, then led it with one piece of gear (a purple TCU) and a few draws for the bolts at the top. I hear the TCU is bomber, but I don't wish to test it.

Starting to the right of the classic, Romancing the Stone (5.10c), climb the face on tiny crimps eventually meeting up with Romancing at its right trending traverse, at which point you will have some bolts to clip. Crimpy, crimpy, crimpy.


Climb the face just right of Romancing the Stone (5.10c).


A few draws and small gear, I used a purple TCU in a letter box slot about half way up the face section. I hear you can get other stuff in too, such as micro wires, but I didn't see them.

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By Jeremiah Johnson
From: Contoocook, NH
Mar 5, 2008

C3's work great on this route. And, there's a good C3 placement up at the top (once you're in the Romancing the Stone traverse), so you can lead this without clipping any bolts at all and still stay safe at the top.
By twellman
From: Cambridge
Mar 10, 2010

I did the blue balls start today on toprope up to the romancing traverse, and it was real awesome climbing. Good reachy crimpy tricky stuff. I would say it felt easier than 11c, and it's actually in the new guide as 11b which is probly what I'd pin on it. Certainly the moves would have been harder to commit to with some questionable trad gear backing me up... maybe some day.
By Eli
From: Lives in a truck
Oct 18, 2015

It seems like there are two ways to go on this route, right or left, and they both involve pretty big dead points to decent holds (if you catch them right). I decided it was better to starve the ego and just TR this death route, props to those who have led it.
By S. Neoh
Oct 18, 2015

I think going left (as is commonly done) is .11c for us shorties. I know a person who has led it. Basically one hasa to regard the lead as a ropeless solo until the route joins RTS. Too bold for me to lead that is for sure.

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