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Everything posted by crazedmaniac

  1. hey Chris.... DONE? it took us (Ken Strong, Mike Rose, #1, and Walter Brischgi from Switzerland) over 4 years doing everything from ground up, on this route Ken and i called, BAD SIGN. Cause every time we went up there, between 93 and 96, we saw a "BAD SIGN"! Not the 70,s, started climbing up there regularly in 1986. (THE skitzo route used to be called 7 pins, as it was done once with just 7 pitons, and other reasons). This means, putting in all the bolts, ON LEAD. Have watched you over the years hanging from the ropes drilling bolts and guessing, replacing ours. Sure you missed some of my 3/16 button heads, cause i used to, all the time when leading out 60 or 80ft on a small 1/4" bolt, and get totally terrified, looking at a 120+ft tumble and scrape bounce. We have done all but about 30 or 40 ft the way you did. Also, the top of the 3rd pitch (our 3rd)was where i said to Ken, look at this, this wall is an Illusion, which was how it got its name. The last 2x,s we went back to climb it again, i could not lead out to the 1/4"bolt i could see, with NOTHING BUT QUICK DRAWS, that i drilled many years earlier, with over 40lbs of gear on. Tried 4 or 5 times, only to come smearing back or slide to the end of the rope. I cried, (literally) cause it meant i wasn't the climber i used to be...say, A.G.E.? Ken told me then and there, "yup, you used to have major balls and bold grips". Guess i have no excuse to go back now! Have also climbed many pitches (about 10 or 13) between BAD SIGN, and 7PINS. This route is also the place where Ken rapped off the end of his rope, FALLING OVER 50FT onto a small ledge, bouncing 3 times with a old 300ft 5/8 fixed line in his pack we had up there for 2 years. We were rapping back down, after solo freeing "PRIMAL SCREAM, on the south face, and kens screaming while falling was how that got it name. I also was rapping down a old black fixed 3/8" static line one night, 3rd pitch(after major rock cleaning way up on the wall) and the rope turned white going thru my robot at high speed (rope got cut by rock)then i was free falling to my death, only to have the 2 climbing ropes "appear" next to me, as Ken had thrown them off the belay before i went off the end of the rope, saving my life ... AGAIN!
  2. [TR] Squire Creek Wall, Darrington - Excalibur 6/20/2016

    have "camped" there ... called "big tree", at the base of "go no go slab", way over 50 times, getting there way after midnight. The big cedar tree that the place is named after, is long gone. Like many of the VERY old cedars on the "new way" to the base of illusion, and many of the blueberry bushes that we used to feast off of. There are still about 20+ pitches on illusion that are still NOT bolted up, (as of 2010, that we did in the early to mid 90,s) that can be a lot of fun, if you know how to build your own belays, and when to stop for/at a good belay place... AND have an OLD SCHOOL (clean climbing)SENSE OF ADVENTURE!!! Left plenty of loose rock for others to enjoy sending off .... one of the best things about squire... lot of loose flakes. "holyGreyhell" USED to be called, "7 pins", because it was done with just 7 pins ... and other reasons... long live Chris! i think it is the "best/most fun way" on illusion, even if it has bolts now marking the ... way.
  3. single nut rap, on a rope pinch device? your .... NUTS! i hear im crazy... better than . nuts!! GET a ROBOT, OR go back to a biner stack.(like a breaker bar rack, using your biners) being smooth is the way for dangerous raps, you nut.
  4. Eric, please take me with you next year... i love that place. spent 15 days up there in 76. my bro and i wanted to get some of the titanium pitons they left behind. Has always been 'early' for me in there, thanks for sharing the pics! ... so i can see what it looks like w/o snow. 2 ppl caring gear is way lighter, too. We started out one trip with 110 and 120 lb. packs, off the ferry at the harbor. (they weighed em) Yea, NO fancy plastic clothing, lightweight hi-tec gear, and small cameras then, or, for the self funded teen agers. I had 28lbs in camera gear, and 5 rolls of film for about 37 pics ea. compared to now? ... thousands of pics on a mini card the size of your finger nail, and micro grams. We had plenty of meat, steel in pitons and hammers, our gold line ropes and extra food and fuel for the big gas stoves for 3+ weeks. Kids 'now days', ... have no idea, pansies. Love seeing your trip reports!!!! thanks again.
  5. AND UH ... Pete Dorish is the MAN OF INDEX!!!!! he did some REALLY HARD CORE ROUTES up there ...
  6. nice. brought back some great memory's with my bro up there, from the 70,s. One time up there, 2 brothers were climbing north peak and one of them fell to his death, only bouncing off the wall cpl times before his last bounce. Of course, everyone back home heard the news, and thought it was one of us. will never forget pulling in at home and the neighbors coming over to my van to see which one it was. Met the guy whos uncle it was last week at costco. He was up there and his mom saw him fall from the hwy. He was 4 and his memory of that is well burnt in! Said he will never forget his mom telling his dad," this is your LAST CLIMB!" We had just talked to them 1/2 hr before his 'fall'. The hwy noise SUCKS there .... tried to land a helicopter on top with my hang glider strapped to the skids, to take off from the top ... and the pilot said i was ... crazy!!! The traverse rocks and can sand bag you with route finding!
  7. yes! that is a HUGE amount of vertical. Took Ken and i more than 4 days of work to go all the way up Illusion (from the bottom up). When we did what is now skitzo, about 18 years ago, it took us about 14 hrs, NOT 4.5 HRS.... AND of course, we didn't have pre placed gear (bolts), beta, and HAD HUGE runabouts. I move way slower, with my last pin or small angle 60 to 90 feet below. And, i would NOT have been able without having a world class European climber lead most of the top pitches. They seemed to be more than 10+, but we were sticking to where we could get a good piece in. Remember getting scared out on the chicken heads, looking at a great crack just to the right, but to scared to just move over to it. Several pitches of this route Ken Strong and i did as we were exploring the north end of Illusion. All of the bottom we did in the dark, before bolts. There are many more ways to go there. I have gone up the north end of Illusion, over 6 different ways. Just go for it, and don't look for the "line of bolts", like some one is doing to the very first route Dave J. and i did on Zips wall, more than 26 years ago. What ever happened to "CLEAN CLIMBING?" AGAIN, WAY TO GO FOR IT .... kids.... If you don't think the pre-placed gear (shinny way to go trail), and beta made any difference, then get your butts over to the main center wall, (lot of 20+ pitches there!) or to the n.e. face of 3 fingers!!!! You will be challenged there!!!!
  8. NOT the masses. just '4 ME'. cause im old, and way less bold. Old injury's (spinal cord)are screaming at me. Point i was making, if a piece failed on me like this, i probably wouldn't be here telling you about it. Have only broke 3 biners in falls (crossing on bolt hangers, and already stress cracked, cause of being dropped/hit on rock or ?) and 'allmost allways', place a nice HEALTHY old school biner when im looking at a long fall above that. The past cpl of years, it looks like the MASSES have been up to squire walls, tho. Was told the other day that in only the past cpl of years, there has been more people using the engineers trail to big tree, (up from the old parking lot, logging landing)than all the years combined before that. I did some quick math, and i highly doubt that. i have personally taken up more than 80 DIFFERENT people up there, of which way MORE than 1/2 of them have gone back MORE than a doz. times, and bringing others with them. i have personally gone up 'that way' more than 400 times, and with MORE THAN 3 people, almost ALL those times. (you do the math) Good times, and you couldn't tell it, as we didn't take saws and prunning tools, and we went different ways, except for the obvious places, that have now been been 'marked' with tree removal. We actually enjoyed losing our way, cause it was a test, to see how we did in the devils club and knawly thick bushes and tree falls. more of a attitude test. It NOW looks like the MASSES have been there. One bent cedar tree, that had become polished by having MORE THAN 1,000x,s, hands rubbing on it over the years (before a cpl years ago) on a steep slope, was cut last year, cause it was "in the way?" i counted the rings SAME DAY this climb here was going on, and it was about 80 HEALTHY yrs old (where it had been cut, so way more than 80,s yrs old). It hadn't changed much over the 28 years i HAD been pulling on it. Only getting stronger with all the pulls on it, as we swung around it. I have a great story to go along with that one. There has been way to much marking of the trails, by removing thick moss on rocks, my 'favorite' super sweet mass producers OF blueberry bushes, small old firs and super old cedars, ... '4 ME'. By the way, one of the first accents up Squire Wall's was done just to the left (south) of this route, big daddy, w/o any 'beta' or bivy gear. 3 days of climbing to the top and back down,(dinkin around slabs)not the easy way. Dj and friend. A lot of the climbing here in the pacific north west, is about the APPROACH, as much as it is about the rock, and getting off. i can tell you , more? LOVE YOUR PICS, high life! THANKS!!!
  9. you guys are not first up there this year. it has seen a lot of traffic in may. i see climbers using this superlight weight gear all the time, and i ask them if they fall on it a lot .. they usually reply, Fall? Never! i have taken many falls over 70 feet on squire and seen a guy from germany fall about 90ft after zipping out his kb,s onto a 1/4" bolt i had to talk him into placing there, just for that reason, on zips wall. Now that i am getting much older, and WAY LESS BOLDER, i have been going back and placing Mass bolts on many of my routes that i used to solo free climb. The cheese grater stuff can rip you up, if you dont know how to fall on it. Saw 4 bolts this year ripped out by rock fall on squire so far, THIS YEAR. yea, we were up on "something amazing". surprised you dint hear us. i love to yell, esp. in the morn and night ....
  10. [TR] Whitehorse Mountain - Standard 1/20/2014

    and... uh ... always dangerous, bragging about doing stuff, in super time. Wish i woulda had some big talker (found out had no experience) 'bragger' bail on us,way early, in early 90,s in very similar conditions, on n face big 4. never 'believed' a chest thumper again, after that.
  11. [TR] Whitehorse Mountain - Standard 1/20/2014

    NICCCCE! you guys friggen SCORED! doesn't get any better for conditions than ... this/that. bet ya have some really sweet pics, like this one ... SO...??? and better to have, and not need, than to not, and don't. Been there to many times in the past, so most all-ways,(cause, never again) i have mass stuff, i didn't use. The movie done just to the east here, was all based on the .. "now we don't have it, and what we guna do now???"
  12. way back ... in the 80,s, and early 90,s when we were custom building gear (mostly for Europeans), I saw a lot of 'slides' from the Cirque, and plenty from the Lotus Flower. The look in their eyes, and all the energy of being there remained written all over them, weeks later. It must be most rock climbers dream, to do that climb, just because of the pictures. Still remember the national geographic magazine story, and all the pics. Its one of the ones I wished i 'had climbed'. Then to drive over to the Bugaboos ... Major KUDOS! thanks for the wishing memory's ...
  13. and... yea, you can hear people talking from the trail, from Illusion wall north to the bowl-in-alley. Have had conversations with others, from way up on zips wall with people from the old parking lot, without yelling. and the wind also makes for ... talking voices. It's the angles of the rock. And others, from the other .. side, coming thru the other dimensions .... There is a reason we call Zephyr ledge on Illusion, Zephyr. that goes back to over 20 years ago. It has gotten much louder over the past 4 years .... way louder....
  14. "I would say "all summer" is a bit of an exaggeration. " I SAAAID, (said like 'Bunifa Latifa Halifa Shalifa Jackson' ) "The south slabs can be VERY dangerous ALL spring, and into summer, ....even in july." past previous 2 years in a row, most all of july. that's into summer, not "all summer". have been on the south wall for about 25 different summers, so far. and to curtveld, just get off the trail and get adventurous. Isn't that part of being in the mountains any more? Just, please, leave your saw at home. (if you were thinking about that) Really no need to mark the trails by sawing down cedars, small firs and blueberry bushes like others have done on the 'other side'. and, yea, they grow back, may be. really hard for a small bush or tree to take hold in such a rough territory. Especially ones that are 50 to over a 100 years old. And since i will be very lucky, IF i climb up there for maybe, 10 more years or so, NOT IN MY LIFE TIME! Had quite the shock this past weekend up there ... REALLY? leave your saws at home! it is a wilderness you know. If it is dead already, it moves quite easily. there is NO REASON to be cutting down live trees up there. if you feel you might get lost, or can't find your way back, do what others do, mark the trees with bright orange survey tape, and pretend your on mt Rainer in a semi white out. or better yet, just stay home or go somewhere else to learn how to hike in the woods. GET adventurous, its way more fun! JUST GO for IT!
  15. "I did not take a map, GPS, compass or signaling device of any type." again, sign of a true adventurer ... kudos!!!!!!!!
  16. "In the morning the girls had left by the time I got up." classic you are the kinda 'guy' i loved having test my new gear. Esp. the mineral and metals parts. Seems a true mountain man is always on the hunt, doesn't give a shit what others think about em, and puts real gear thru hell! Love your style!!! thanks. (brought back some great memory's climbing all around there in 76. we spent 13 days, then went over glacier peak to Kennedy h.s.)
  17. [TR] Jet Tower - East Buttress, 5.9 9/9/2013

    ALSO noticed that you have bullion lakes (upper and lower)with the title craig lakes over it. ( they might have been renamed by now too) Craig lakes are the 3 just at the n. base of north peak 3 fingers, just south of Salish, kinda still part of the s.n. ridge, being just off the west side of it. Big open spaces and flat spots, just above the lakes, (east side). i used to see weekend choppers landing with tourists for lunch. Have been buzzed several times while on 3 fingers wall, and its no fun as it is crummy rotten rock. The lakes are usually covered in snow and ice most of the year and i have always seen ice (glacier) going directly into the upper one. middle one rarely is free of ice/snow. (shadow) Haven't been up there in about 10 years now tho, so dont know about being kept at 32 deg.f. any more. (example, the glacier on the north side of Whitehorse used to be the lowest glacier (msl) in the lower continental U.S. It used to be way down the flank, before the early 80,s) The long rock slabs going down westerly into craig lake have ridges/marks from large rocks migrating down the slabs, and you can count the years by seeing how they stayed momentarily in one place/season. Know what you mean about speeding mother nature along with the rock movement and 32ft/sec/sec. Have had some wild sites/smell of rock and gravity and AIR pressure, moving rocks off Illusion wall (well, most of all Squire creek walls) in the early 90,s. At night, no moon is the best. Great light shows!! As you can tell, i really miss this place. Criag lakes is one of my favoright places to camp and chill ... Almost died trying to take a 'bath' in the lake one time, after spending a week on 3 fingers east face. Part of having a serious case of S.M.S. THANKS AGAIN FOR YOUR POST!!!
  18. [TR] Jet Tower - East Buttress, 5.9 9/9/2013

    WOW!! , THANKS, BLACK ROCK!!! yea, i found the one by jet tower. All these years, thought it was a 86, and only one. couldn't figure out the vert. stab part. have already told many i was wrong. Wish someone WOULDA, many many years ago. Loved hearing the "MAN" talk about it. Harold, or Harry Engels was a true legend in these parts. A huge hard core mountain man. He had storys, SHOULDA written a book. COULDA. i have spent a lot of late falls up there climbing all around. Thats how i finally ended up on the south wall on squire. Can see primal scream from there, (nice shot in one of the pics above) and it called out to me for about 20+ years before Ken Strong and i went up there one very late fall day (nov.) and went up it, all solo free. (we did have mass gear in our packs too) A very fun route. fast and way easy. I once found a jar with a note in it from the early 30,s by some one who went up to this ridge for a pick-nick. (base of the buckeye east ridge) Wrote how They left snohomish in the late morning. sure 530 was not paved then either, and there was no I-5 or a paved hwy 9. Things were WAY DIFFERENT, long time ago. Many think they are the 'first' to climb so much around these parts. Only time im sure i was 'first' is when i had to place bolts to make movement (aid) over super smooth walls. Like Harry, people were just way tougher, long time ago. I saw a lot of climbers on the walls north of the bowl-in-alley in the 80,s and early 90,s. Sure many did some fine routes there, as there are more features and ledges. Don't ever assume you are .. first, just because no one posted their climbs, some where. I have not, on about 90% of my 'climbs'. Remember some guy who was/is the 'keeper of firsts', asking me a lot of questions about squire walls in late 90,s, and he figured out a lot on his own, and by talking to others who were with me. Heard he (Klint?) posted a log some where ... to my NOT wanting that ... some one brought in a list/print out into the store one night, and blew me away what he figured out, from so little information. had to give him MASS kudos for that. I love this area sooo much, we bought 40 acres at the base of squire, where buckeye meets it. You drive across our property (we pay taxes on) to get to the trail head up squire and to east 3 fingers. Have always wanted to have a intentional community there. That ended when i broke my neck for the 2nd time. I am a very slow mover now. very slow, and very care-full. Have had to many SUPER CLOSE CALLS, in this beautiful valley, on my favor-right type of rock, quarts die right. Have spent a lot of days trying to climb the east face of 3 fingers, from the bottom of the 45, or straight up the huge wall of death. Usually got sucked into the walls just up from, or around the 'big boulder', by the water falls. Placed a lot of pitons around there, left/lost a lot of micro gear. Heard Chris was working on a new route there. they might be/of been bolting up one of our 'routes' ??, like he did (and others) on Illusion wall. We were just trying to find a 'faster' way up to Craigs and n. peak of 3 fingers. SOOO glad they stopped the choppers from landing there and having ... picknicks with wine! that was really rude, i thought. yea, i am a whinner, or, "the king of rant!" Zip
  19. [TR] Jet Tower - East Buttress, 5.9 9/9/2013

    after looking at a pic. of a 89 scorpion, i think it was a f-89. i could never figure out the tail part, cause it didnt seem to be from a 86. I was told by many older than i, and who had been there much earlier than i, that it was a 86. Never found a 2nd jet, only parts from 1. Also heard 4 died, so must have been 2 jets?? DJ, who has hauled 100,s of pounds of parts/aluminum from there, said it was a 86, so i believed him, cause he had so many placards. Remember one that had a engine number that was not an engine they used in a 86 (j-47, one of my favs)that i knew of, but there are many variants and one offs when it comes to jets of that era. I think you are right in saying it was a scorpion, and not a sabre. dont know for sure, but the tail is way different than a 86, and i always had a problem with that. I never found parts on the west side (anyone??), which throws other stories i heard about it going thru the gap and missing it. Have seen many do that over the years. I did find granite embedded with aluminum on one climb, and slabs broken off by force, where im sure it hit first, as that fitted with the way parts are scattered about. They might have helioed out the other jet? We only found the 3 tires (2 large, one smaller)in the late 70,s too. I DO KNOW, that is one of the top 10 storys that Engles liked to tell, how he beat the "seattle climber boys" up there, all beat up and spent, with a case of beer to share. He was "lounging about", when they "finally showed up", as Harold and friend started much latter. I have approached the ridge from 6 different ways. The 'best' way is using the 'old' Frank Loso trail he and his son spent a lot of time on. The funnest, is up the steep rock from big boulder basin (the area i think would be 'cool/good' to 'rename' in Chris's honor. heard Chris bolted up a route that way, ) I Have gone from car to jet in a little more than 3 hrs using the Frank Loso trial, taking our time, moving slow with plenty of 'breaks'. Frank is the one who put in the steel cables on the ridge just north of squire walls. They saved my ass one time, when the rocks gave way under me, being last with 4 just ahead of me. He said he knew it was going to go anytime, and thats why he put them there, after i asked him why he went to so much trouble hauling them up there. He also spent a lot of time with Harold exploring the squire creek area. They used to have a trail that started from our property on Squire creek, and was fun to hike. now it is a real BITCH, with the famous D town brush grown up over it. I dont believe there are any bolts on the towers on this ridge, and hope/wish it can stay that way. Climbing these towers using gear you remove, leaves it more 'wild' for the next ones to do so. I have also seen others climbing this route, or right next to it before. there are lot of parts from a heilo they used in a movie they made from Whitehorse in buckeye basin still. If you havent seen that movie yet, it is a 'must see' for any climber. High Ice! It all about , dropping the gear, or worst nightmare when climbing big walls. Loved your pics and story about the climb. Thanks!!!!!
  20. [TR] Jet Tower - East Buttress, 5.9 9/9/2013

    they were called saber jets. then the super saber. they saw a lot of dog fights in the korean war with the russian 17,s. They kicked butt. They were also the VERY FIRST to go thru the sound, just weeks before the bell rocket jet dropped from a bomber. It was kept from the public, because of all the $$$ being spent on the x-planes. A very good read is "aces wild", by blackburn, about the pilot george welch, who took it away from chuck yeager, for real. Another example of how we are lied to all the time by our government.
  21. [TR] Jet Tower - East Buttress, 5.9 9/9/2013

    I first saw this ridge in 1970 and was quickly up there getting trapped into parts exploreing from the 86. The parts were much more 'in place' in the early 70,s. (only a little more than 10yrs) After talking to the "MAN" (harry engels) about him racing up there with a case of beer, beating the airforce who was going up to figure out what happened, and collect live rounds and guns, i have put together a detailed account of what happened. Many times from the walls of squire, i have seen ea6's and other navy jets doing the same type of ... run. It is breath taking. A few times, i have seen a p-3 orion doing calibration runs, over the steel and aluminum parts from Squire walls. After climbing all over jet tower and the other towers, looking for aluminum embedded into the granite, we established Camp 86. It is also a place for bears to do there stuff and mark their ground. A great place with running water and flat ground. There used to be live rockets all around the place, and we still find some. It supposedly had over 500 live rockets whenit crashed. It would be near impossible to figure out how it happened now, as the parts are spread out all over the place, by ice/snow/climbers, and 32ft/sec/sec. Warning. it is a big blackhole. Can get sucked into it very easily. I have done about 6 different ways up jet tower looking for clues before mid 90,s. I am sure i was not the first one to climb any of the routes i have done on all the towers there. There is only one jet, not 2. It came from paine field, where i heard many taking off in my youth, growing up just a few miles away. Especially during the cuban missile crises. They would go supersonic right away, cause it was a ... crises. We even found the pilots boot a few years ago. I have 50+lbs of parts we brought back down, by way of big boulder basin, or n.e. 3 fingers. I think i should be renamed, in Chris's honor.
  22. [TR] Vesper Peak - North Face 8/18/2013

    Seems like just the other day we used to drive up the s.e. side of vesper in my 64 vw camper van and spend the night, by a huge bonfire with left over scraps from greedy loggers. Then run up to the top and back. Now I think only loggers can use that road, if there still is one. How times have changed, esp. the bikini climbing, from leather and wool. Soooo enjoyed reading your report! thanks!!!
  23. [TR] Lemah Mountain - Main Peak 8/3-4/2013

    SWEET! spectacle lake and surrounding area is one of my favorite spots in the alpine lakes. We are very lucky to have such a wonderful place to visit, so close to 'home'.
  24. [TR] Daring-A-Ton - Half Dreaming 8/3/2013

    'generally accepted protocol for, um, pruning in Darrington?' if what happened up on squire ... 4 years ago ... after no chopping or cutting down of old cedars, bushes that i VERY ENJOYED brushing thru, and watching how they formed to the brushing of my packs over the 30+ years of going thru them like a 'door', and seeing many bushes and trees that i personally planted and natured, get chopped for a 'marked trail' .... says anything ....
  25. [TR] Daring-A-Ton - Half Dreaming 8/3/2013

    just follow the 'rock' around the north side. stay in the drainage. it is that simple. Have done it over 30 times.... some times, found ourselves way up on the rock, looking down where we wanted to be for our stashes ....