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Gill Problem 

Hueco: V7 Font: 7A+

Type:  Boulder, Alpine
Original:  Hueco: V7 Font: 7A+ [details]
FA: John Gill, 1958
Season: Spring, Summer, Fall
Page Views: 326
Submitted By: Tony Brengosz on May 25, 2015

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Probably the classic Jenny Lake testpiece, and an historical problem for any number of reasons.

First and foremost, as far as I can tell, the small obvious crimp on the face was chipped or improved sometime in the 60s after the first ascent. Using this hold makes the problem somewhere in the V7 range, and isn't strictly speaking "The Gill Problem." That said, not using it today makes the problem an obvious contrivance, and it seems foolish to avoid it, except for historical purposes.

So then, the original Gill Problem goes from the sidepull start block at head height all the way to the lip, using what Gill called a "levered spring", or more commonly known now as a deadpoint.

The real question here is whether Gill started from the rock or from the ground. Gill himself says that he frequently did his levered springs from either footholds or from the ground, and in Stone Crusade, John Sherman briefly mentions the route, saying "The relative difficulty of the route has kept pace with the times, as ground erosion has made the starting swing to the lip harder."

This leads me to believe that Gill likely used a "flying start," though I wouldn't put it past him to have done it from a proper start. Whichever way he did the move, it was certainly an impressive effort, even by today's standards. Anyone who stands at the base of this climb and shamelessly grabs the crimp(me) can attest to that.

If anyone knows for sure, please let us know.


Pads, or not for added historical value.

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