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Posts posted by bedellympian

  1. Totally agree on the ice. Its interesting to see the numbers, turns out I'm pretty similar. 

    For mixed climbing we have a couple local dry tool crags, one up by Bachelor ski are and one at an overlooked cliff at Smith Rock. There is another mixed crag getting developed up on the Cascade crest but its early stages. The other thing I do is go to this less-travelled rock crag in winter and climb the mossy/chossy grooves on gear between the actual rock climbs. Done a few 2 pitch routes that way and it makes for a good bad weather adventure practice day. Also, trying to get on more mixed stuff when I go up to Canada and other places.

    I feel like mixed is one of the limiters of me doing harder routes in the alpine. Like you said, M3/4 in the alpine is fine. Getting on bolted M6/7 is convenient and straightforward. But getting on alpine M5/6 with confidence opens up a whole slew of possibilities.

    • Like 1

  2. 13 hours ago, mthorman said:

    I do pay attention to my ice pitches a lot more.  I want to make sure I have a good base for a pyramid so I keep pretty good tabs of lead climbing on ice.  I don't move up to leading the next grade much until I have a good base at the previous grade.  I know that seems common sense but it serves as a good visual reminder for me to be patient.  Ice is not a place to get in over your head!

    mthorman would you mind sharing where you are for ice pitches and what type of numbers you look for in a pyramid?

    I had the same idea and feel like my ice pitches are pretty good, but more importantly I want to round out my mixed pitches because of the more unique movement than on most ice. 

  3. I'm sure lots of you know who Dave Macleod is... one of the best all-around climbers on the planet and a training guru of sorts. I never looked at his stuff too hard as I was more focused on alpine routes than hard rock climbing, but now that I have a kid and rock climbing is much easier to access in a short time frame from my house than other things I've started taking a deeper look at what he has to say. 

    A big point of his is that you need to work on your weaknesses (duh, though a lot of people don't do that). His classic training example is when he went from 8b to 9a (that's 13d-14d) in 18 months. After years of climbing he realized his weakness was grip strength and started hangboarding consistently which he credits as the main reason for his jump. Of course, everyone seems to hangboard these days, myself included, and its not my weakness (though I'm certainly not amazing at it). He mentions that this came after a good base of climbing movement and described this as doing 1,000 routes from E1 to E4 (that's 5.9+ to 11c). I initially thought I was pretty close but decided to check. I've done a fairly good job of tracking routes I've climbed thanks to MP, guidebooks, and a log of routes. I rounded up to include anything from 5.9 to 5.11 and with some rough estimation figure I'm at about 350 pitches in this grade range, much less than anticipated. Of course if you expand that to 5.7 and up (or 5.0 and up) then the number sky rockets, but a lot of this climbing doesn't teach you much about movement and technique which is Dave's point.

    This got me thinking, a friend of mine (apparently I hang out with like minded people who like data) had taken all the routes at Smith Rock, our local crag, and put them into a spreadsheet by grade (OCD for sure, but it takes one to know one). According to the spreadsheet there are almost 800 routes from 5.9 to 11d at Smith. I went through and marked off all the routes/pitches in this grade range that I had done and it was less than 100! I was very surprised by this. At first I thought that despite the plethora of routes at Smith there is a lot of crap rock. However, I also think a lot of routes fall off the radar and aren't popular. I think I've probably repeated a lot of the routes, and they are good routes, but there are routes that are right by the car that are perfectly good (2-3 stars) that I've never done because they aren't super classic, or in an obvious spot.

    So going forward a goal of mine is to increase the number of routes I've climbed in that range, with the ultimate goal fo reaching that arbitrary 1,000 number. Obviously there is nothing magic about the number 1,000, but it gives me a big goal to shoot for in the long term that gets me working on a probable weakness. I've also decided to include boulders in the V0-V4 range as part of this, since its also teaching me movement, and is logistically easier than going cragging.

    So I guess part of me wanted to post this to put my thoughts out there to see what others think. Is this uesful? How so, how not? Also to see what others have done. Where do you think you are in your 1,000 routes? You could also apply this to ice, mixed, or even alpine (1,000 alpine routes! Crazy!). Or scale it to suite you, 5.6 to 5.9, 5.0 on up, 5.11a to 5.13d?! 

  4. Just had our first and we have an old carrier pack a friend passed on, however I would love to be able to do a lot of longish hikes with the kiddo (maybe with extra weight) and am curious if people have things to consider or models that they find really good.

  5. Looks like Adrien changed his Instagram post. Good for him, and knowing the guy, I bet he just didn't care enough about social media to make the change right away. 

    Cptn, you quoted a post I made on the "Do summits matter?" thread. To be completely transparent I've made the same mistakes of assuming FA-ship in the past, its an easy mistake to make in the scheme of things. In fact, this past winter I claimed a couple "Second Ascents" which could very well be 10th ascents for all I know. That includes the Emde-Ablao on Middle Sister that Adrien and I did without any knowledge of the prior ascent and which I promptly sprayed about, so I'm probably a hypocrite here... though I do like the idea of preserving the adventure as I said, especially in Oregon where resources are limited. 

    Anyway, mainly I'm psyched to see Adrien, Matt and others getting after it this winter and I think it would be awesome to have an Oregon crew competing for grants and making trips to bigger ranges like the Karakoram in the next few years to try exploring more off the beaten path objectives and getting some more good adventure stories here. 

    • Like 2

  6. 4 hours ago, genepires said:

    and I have see it in late july with 4 wall to wall crevasses that had sketch bridges that failed before our return back from summit.  the hydro dynamics of glacier flow through that notch guarantee that there are crevasses that you may or not see.  if one was forced at gun point to solo a glacier, the sulphide glacier on shuksan would be a better choice.  or eldorado pk.

    traveling on glaciers in late august thru september is very enlightening to exactly what one has walked over just 2 months previous.  recommending a glacier as "chill" without seeing that same glacier bare of winter coverage is reckless advice.

    Good points. I retract my recommendation! 

    • Like 1

  7. 4 hours ago, genepires said:

    going solo through hells highway on fisher chimney route would be terrifying. 

    When I did it in June '16 it was pretty chill. Boot pack on easy snow. Seems like you can stay far enough from the edge to not worry about anything but a fully catastrophic serac failure? I have a few guide friends who are very risk averse but have enjoyed that route as a romp. 

  8. WA pass approaches will be on snow. Bring boots or GTX approach shoes and light crampons for any steep/exposed approaches. Probably a light axe too, though if you are comfortable you can always do the rock trick ;)... gloves should be obvious, and a spare pair of socks in the pack. 

    • Like 1

  9. Recent FA claims have me thinking of this thread. The desire to spray about your FA just because no one else has sprayed about the same line, and the desire to continue to claim an FA or similar accomplishment seems to stem from a lot of the same themes discussed here... self-aggrandizement, ego, and lack of honesty. 

    For some reason this seems to be a common issue on Mt. Hood where you have many experienced climbers who have used it for training over the years and would never have thought to report a few moderate pitch variation as an FA and now those of us who have come up in the age of instagram assuming there are undone lines simply because it didn't show up anywhere on the internet. 

    I experienced this issue a few years ago when I went to publish known routes on MP and was asked not to. Part of the reason given by developers and other regulars there was the parking access situation, but the other reason was to preserve the sense of adventure. The community by-and-large did not want to know what was there so that they could continue to practice ground up adventure climbing. Every ascent felt like an FA, until you found some old pins or a bolted belay station, but you had to mentally commit and prepare in the same way. Maybe, for scant resources like Mt. Hood ice routes this same ethic would preserve that sense of adventure. People could simply say "I climbed the Eliot" and post some cool pictures instead of worrying if that exact rock step or ice flow has been done before. Then everyone could go have an adventure and we can build skills for bigger adventures in bigger mountains (which I thought was the point and might actually lead to real FAs).

  10. May is not a great time for rock yet; I would doubt you can get into Forbidden easily either. Weather is also less stable this time of year so that would dictate my climbs. If N Ridge of Baker is a goal I would do a steep snow climb, then a steep snow with glacier climb, then that one. You could do all those on/around Baker. That said, weather could just be junk too so you might do the first two on Hood or another volcano. For alpine rock I would look at the Stuart Range as access can be better this time of year and it will be drier than N Cascades (still a hike). 

    • Like 1

  11. Its going to be warm AF any day with sun. I would go out the night before and camp just outside the cirque. Scope the route that night so you can top out as sun hits. 9 o'clock faces east, 11 o'clock faces SE, High Noon faces south. First two are straightforward snow climbs (cornice topout is possible but should be small this time of year), High Noon is capped with low 5th rock for a pitch or two. 

    Honestly, I would recommend this as an early winter zone more than a spring zone, its just too warm this late in the season.

  12. On 4/5/2021 at 10:18 AM, yesican said:

    All responses pertain to outward representations made by climbers to other parties. Interesting.

    At 55, I can tell you from experience that the self-aggrandizing trait of humanity was less common before social media gave everyone a free platform from which to paint themselves for everyone else.


    Why climb?

    Is the fundamental goal to satisfy an inner drive, or put on an outward show?

    A mountaineer inwardly craves a summit and would deny him or herself that objective only if safety required it.

    Perhaps the distinction between climbers and mountaineers is defined by one's views on the necessity of summiting.

    23 hours ago, bigeo said:

    climbing is a game in which you can make your own rules

    Yes, BUT it also is an activity/sport with a strong sense of community and history where we acknowledge what others have done (for better or worse, for awards/$$$ or otherwise), and if you choose to be part of that community by sharing experiences and you then LIE about what you actually did then you are undermining the community (of which this website is a part). Do what you want, but if you're going to participate in the communal/historical portion of climbing then tell the truth. 



  13. Is there a reason that every time I open the forums now I get a pop-up tab with some sort of sketchy internet ad?

    It only happens with this site. Thought maybe there is something I can do on my end? I use chrome.

    Thanks in advance.

  14. Trip: Wyeast (Mt. Hood) - Linkup

    Trip Date: 04/11/2021

    Trip Report:

    Hood Headwalls: For a long time I've been thinking about linking a route on each of Wy'east's 6 headwalls in a day. Black Spider, North Face, Eliot Headwall, Sandy Headwall, Reid Headwall and DKH. I gave it a shot today and got 5/6. I figured I'd share to inspire others. Obviously someone needs to be fit, but this is only about 12k' of vert, not crazy in the scheme of things. The real challenge is finding conditions that leave all routes climbable and allow fast movement. 

    I had intended to start with Center Drip but the orange avy forecast had my partner sketched out. For those concerned with doing my risk assessment for me I will say that those watching the time-heights this week will have noticed that 90% of the weather happened below 7k' (NWAC does not forecast for the upper mountain). Also worth noting: the wind loading was from the W, and even if this hadn't scoured the approach up the S Side to check the upper mountain, the S side is not steep enough to classify as avalanche terrain until well above Palmer. But I digress...

    With no partner for Center Drip, and a small chance of pocket slabs on that aspect anyway, I changed plans to start with Reid. @zaworotiuk was also partnerless for the same reasons and joined last minute for the start. 2:15am hiking start from T-line, had us at Illumination saddle at 4am. The Reid was the usual post hole for the first couple hundred feet and then changed to nice neve. Unfortunately high winds were still hitting the upper mountain and caused quite a bit of rime shedding. I managed to take a blob to the face mid way up but it was luckily not bad. We reached the summit ridge (could have traversed lower) and Matt took off for DKH and meeting other friends for a possible Eliot route. I turned down Cathedral and descended until I could down climb to the Sandy. I hadn't been on Cathedral or Sandy before so I had to back track and down climb some ice through a rock band to reach the glacier. Sandy itself was chill (its a ski run, not sure how the guidebook called it AI3). Once I topped out I walked over to the Queen's Chair and traversed into Eliot, climbing a middle-right line (starting a little L of Adrien's from earlier in the week and finishing with the same steep section). I traversed over the summit and took a break before down climbing Cooper Spur (very good conditions for this) and using Timmy B's beta to trend skier's L and get onto the Eliot glacier. The L hand sneaker ramp past the gaping schrund is still in and R gully went smoothly (except slowly cause I was feeling a little tired at this point). Once back on the summit I took a long water break to slurp awkwardly from my bladder (I somehow thought it would be warm enough for a hydration pack setup and it froze in the hose so at this point I'd probably had ~1/2 L in 8-9hrs of exertion). I then descended Pearly and met Matt again (he had soloed DKH and Elliot and done some PMR rescue practice during all this) and we climbed next to each other up DKH #1 for my last route. 

    I had thought about looking at the Spider after all this, but I was too bushed to safely consider soloing Center Drip and my friends Lindsey and Riley had tried it earlier that day and bailed due to lack of ice. Wy'east could have been subbed as an alternative but, that is more of a ridge climb and just a lot of snow slogging after so much good ice, so I declined and plodded back down to our cars. 

    Matt topping out Reid


    Coming up Sandy


    Looking down Leutholds




    Summit views


    Down Cooper


    R gully


    Summit again


    DKH w/ Matt


    Final summit


    Strava map


    Strava track: https://www.strava.com/activities/5111832990

    Gear Notes:
    pointy things and a helmet

    Approach Notes:
    • Like 1
    • Snaffled 1
    • Rawk on! 5

  15. 2 hours ago, Stefan said:

    Sounds like all a bit verbal language.

    Climbing a peak does not necessarily mean you summitted.  You can climb a route on peak and not touch the summit.  I would still consider climbing a route... "climbing a peak".

    If you want to "summit" then you actually need to touch the top of the peak.

    Peak and summit are synonyms. Saying you climbed the peak, regardless of your thoughts, is mis-communicating what you did. Just say you "climbed the route". It's more descriptive of what you did and does not mention a peak or summit, so no confusion. 

  16. Got a week off coming up and the border to Canuckistan still closed so a buddy and I are considering the "long" trek from Oregon to Washington to get all alpinistic on things we can't normally do in a weekend. Obviously I've been checking weather and avy but I'm hoping for some boots/skis on the ground conditions. Any tips on what elevations and aspects are seeing ice or neve form, vs staying snow, or just melted to bare rock would be appreciated. Especially interested in the Enchantments and 6-8k' elevation on the W side of North Cascades NP, though any location in the range is helpful for getting an idea.

    Thanks everyone! :wave:

    Edit: I'm pretty unfamiliar with access outside of the Enchantments and roadside routes this time of year. I'm assuming the gate is closed on 8 mile in the Enchantments? What about the Chiwawa River Road? Cascade River Road? I'm guessing both are gated or impassable at certain points, wondering if anyone has recent knowledge before I go calling FS or NPS on my lunch break. Thanks!

  17. Trip: Middle Sister - Emde/Ablao

    Trip Date: 03/06/2021

    Trip Report:

    Probable second ascent of the Emde/Ablao with Adrien Costa. This is the ice smears and columns to the L of the Direct NE Face route from Oregon High. Perhaps some other people know of someone who has climbed it? Steep snow above the schrund (currently covered) leads to a varied and engaging 60m pitch (difficult to protect) with a couple overhanging bulges. Above this we traversed L on snow to join the E Rib. AI4/4+ R/X seems about right. 


    Me approaching the route, NE Face Direct's couloir is to the R. Photos of me by Adrien (obvs).


    Me starting the crux.


    Approaching the crux bulge.


    Adrien topping out the crux pitch.


    Adrien leading easier terrain above between spindrift pulses.


    Coming up the E rib.


    Adrien approaching the summit.


    The thing you do when you top out.


    North Sister with sun setting. Still got a few miles back to the car. 


    Road conditions beta.


    Gear Notes:
    screws, cams, pins, nuts

    Approach Notes:
    long skin from before Pole Creek TH (17 miles and 4k' round trip from where we got the truck stuck)


    • Like 2
    • Rawk on! 5

  18. I agree with Jason that if you don't touch the summit you did not climb the peak. I also agree with Gene that if you get home safe and have fun that is more important. 

    I will add that if you're going to spray about your trips just be honest about what you did and don't try to couch it in a way that implies something other than the truth.

    I got within spitting distance of an unnamed summit in India a couple years ago soloing, certainly closer than the Challenger scenario you mentioned. I turned around when I got to a loose rock band just below the top. I did not summit, I did not climb the peak. I accomplished everything I wanted to by staying safe, having fun and testing my body at altitude. 

    If you need to hide the truth to portray a certain outcome then your ego is much too involved and you should probably do some serious self-reflection. 


    • Like 2
    • Rawk on! 1