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west face el cap


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I liked this route much more than Reg NW HD.


I climbed it over 20 years ago but.....


The first pitch is an easy 11a. You can yard up on a few bolts. The second pitch is much harder 11a with that would be harder to aid. I am sure this pitch has changed since we did it. It was definately the crux in terms of leading difficulty some scary moves of of bashies and old pins. We fixed these two pitches. The next few are very straight forward. The crux pitch can easily be aided with only a few points of aid. Two pitches higher is a great pitch 11b. I think it can easily be aided. From then on the climbing is easy for quite awhile as long as you don't screw up the pitch following the big traverse. We did mad.gif and wasted time and got scared. Try to get good beta for this part. We started up too soon. The next pitches are easy and really fun and under 5.10. These end at a large ledge. One more .11a pitch with grainy rock is all there is of the hard stuff. Thanksgiving ledge soon follows. The pitches above here are straight forward and easy.


Differences from NW HD:


1. Better climbing.

2. No real chimneys.

3. No bolt ladders.

4. Less people.

5. Big ledges near the top so if you dont't do it in a day you can have a nice sleep.

6. Top pitches are comparatively easy.

7. In shade most of the day.

8. Shorter approach.


Great climb you'll have a blast.

Edited by Peter_Puget
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