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pope

The Edge of Wart Wall (Icicle Creek)

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A few years ago, a superb sport climber named Stephanie decided to try this hairball 5.10R slab, even though neither slabs nor big lead outs particularly appealed to her. She took several enormous tumbles, any one of which would have caused a less determined climber to sell his rack. She could have quit, she could have bitched about the tremendous distance between bolts; instead, she persisted and eventually clipped the belay. She gained my respect, not only for her display of courage, but mostly for the way she was able to try playing the game by respecting another set of rules.

The Edge has provided a sense of accomplishment for many who have dared to tread between its sparsely placed bolts...not just for macho, arrogant trad climbers, but also for sport climbers, and also for women. Saturday, I hiked up to climb on Wart Wall, and was less than impressed to see that somebody had failed to acquire the skills necessary to meet the Edge's challenge. Somebody had failed to recognize that many other climbers appreciate the Edge for the focus and composure it historically required. I'm sorry to say that this climb has been reduced from a grand, slab climber's test piece to what appears to be a bolt ladder for short people. With so many well-protect clip climbs in the area, I just can't see why this must be. Please, if you're responsible for this, we need to talk. I fully intend to restore this route, and I'd like to compensate you for your hardware.

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The Edge is the left edge of the slab, left of Five Gray Knobs and left of the big pine, but just right of Liquid Nitrogen.

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1) Contact the original first ascencders. Did they agree on adding the extra bolts? If they did you are out of luck on the consensus bolt removal. Go put up a runout route somewhere else to counteract this trend.

2) If they didn't agree to the new bolts you are going to need a crowbar or metal saw plus some handy stuff to pull or grind flush the extra bolts and/or fill in the holes. The crowbar also comes in handy for fighting off pissed off sportclimbers.

(PS I "retrobolted" two of my own runout routes last weekend but it was only 2 bolts per route added and just to protect the groundfall sections. the routes were originally put up without a drill because my buddy's broke the weekend I was scheduled to borrow it. the climbs are both still gear climbs. BUT anyone who wants, can chop the bolts if they disagree with this. send me $20 and I will tell you where the routes are wink.gif )

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Pope (?),

I admire your efforts to restore the route in the "light of day". However it might lift the veil a bit more and assist the retrobolters in contacting you if you made your email address or real name available. Don't you think?

Chuck

 

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aaah, yes as expected, granite is being disgraced in the Snow creek wall area, Soon the safety of the indoors will be found at your favorite crag. "Dude, it's the future so get over it" right?

It's hard to sit by and watch the sport I love become just another motor sport.

Let's see, I'm trying to put this in perspective; I can let the place go to shit or I can write a letter to the U.S forest Service and suggest enforcing a no motor drill law. I guess I'm ready to pay that permit fee, if it means better protection of granite resources. Hmmmm, parking at snow creek lot $10 dollars, then climbing permit $7 dollars per day. That's only $34 dollars for a weekend at Leavenworth. I guess I can handle that; I do work at microsoft after all.

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Speaking of Liquid Nitrogen...

Does anyone know if it has ever been onsighted?

Scott

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sorry, but you're out of luck on the Edge. Yoder originally led this onsite (impressive) but couldn't drill til he did the crux. These were pretty funky bolts, too. In fact, when he came back years later with his girlfriend she popped off and decked, breaking her ankle. He talked to Briody about it and Gordon retroed it. No matter what you or I may think, chopping the bolts will just trash the rock, stir up petty controversy and insult the local climbers who have volunteered their time and money in the stewardship of their local crags. Personally, I'm not sure about this, I'm sorry that someone's experience was ruined. This forum is a great way to communicate that and other routes that have been retroed have had some feedback before the fact. Let's keep talking - the last thing we need are ugly bolt wars like those chumps in Colorado or Connecticut seem to enjoy.

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Viktor,

Sure, a bolt war would be a terrible thing. But look at the Icicle and what a mess it's become. Too many guys (equipped with bolt guns and the illusion that they're doing everybody a favor by making the cliffs safe for girls) are smacking in bolts on every slab in the Canyon. Many climbers I talk to enjoy bold leads and clean rock. They don't want to clip a bolt every three feet. The number of over-protected, over-promoted joke climbs is pathetic. I personally know of climbers who bolt and name climbs they can't lead. What the hell is that? I've been climbing in the Canyon for nearly 20 years, and I know some of the characters whose names you so eagerly drop. Sure, Yoder's lead was a great achievement, but many climbers who repeated the route also feel the satisfaction with being able to honestly handle climbing at that grade. The latest trend, of adding chicken bolts to climbs which require a higher level of skill and composure, has got to stop.

I don't agree that a first ascentionist owns the rock and has jurisdiction over future modifications. Once a route has been established, many, many people develop the skill necessary for safe passage, and the route becomes part of the local tradition. I feel great sympathy for Yoder's gal, but one climber's mistakes don't justify modifying a route. Anybody can get hurt any place on any climb. If 5.10R is not the right kind of challenge, there are so many well-bolted climbs in the canyon. Please, let's not continue this ridiculous trend.

I know Jim, but I don't know Gordon. I certainly want to get along with everybody. But the exponential increase of bolts and, in particular, the transformation of traditionally bold leads into girlfriend climbs is out of control. I don't see the bolt slingers engaging in some kind of forum before they permanently deface the rock.

Viktor, please send me a private message detailing how I can get a hold of Jim and/or Gordon.

 

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People should be aware that Marlene (Yoders girlfriend) has swung leads up probably fifteen El Cap routes, including the NA. I am also unaware that she ever broke her ankle climbing.

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quote:

Originally posted by viktor:

sorry, but you're out of luck on the Edge. Yoder originally led this onsite (impressive) but couldn't drill til he did the crux. These were pretty funky bolts, too. In fact, when he came back years later with his girlfriend she popped off and decked, breaking her ankle. He talked to Briody about it and Gordon retroed it.

I ran into Jim today, and he was completely unaware that this route had been "retroed". One of his old girlfriends did fall off the route, but she completed several more climbs the same day. When I told Jim of my intentions to restore this route, he said, "Do a nice job."

 

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