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Travis

Widowmaker Arete

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Headed up the Widowmaker on Sunday and ended up bypassing the last headwall on the west side and topping out in front of the Camel. Uncertainty about the route, late hour and our small rack prevented us from taking on the crack systems on the headwall itself. I'm still not clear on the route.

 

Any beta on the last headwall would be greatly appreciated, (The description of the start and route in McLane is pretty vague) and there were many backoff slings below it so I'm sure I'm not alone in this.

 

The alternate finish is certainly not optimal, in fact it is loose and dirty, but it was easy, and it beats retreating.

 

Still fun, but staying on route would make it stellar.

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Widowmaker... how the hell did it get that name? [Roll Eyes]

 

Some of those names make no sense to me. Anybody know how Cutthroat got named?

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quote:

Originally posted by Travis:

Headed up the Widowmaker on Sunday and ended up bypassing the last headwall on the west side and topping out in front of the Camel. Uncertainty about the route, late hour and our small rack prevented us from taking on the crack systems on the headwall itself. I'm still not clear on the route.

 

Any beta on the last headwall would be greatly appreciated, (The description of the start and route in McLane is pretty vague) and there were many backoff slings below it so I'm sure I'm not alone in this.

 

The alternate finish is certainly not optimal, in fact it is loose and dirty, but it was easy, and it beats retreating.

 

Still fun, but staying on route would make it stellar.

I think you were on route if by that you mean how it was first done. You can always climb the Camel from the side you arrive at. I looked carefully at the West side and saw potential looseness and no sign of traffic. It would be an exciting finish and probably has been done but don't think you did the 'alternate' finish.

 

A Cairns

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quote:

Originally posted by Cairns:

I think you were on route if by that you mean how it was first done. You can always climb the Camel from the side you arrive at. I looked carefully at the West side and saw potential looseness and no sign of traffic. It would be an exciting finish and probably has been done but don't think you did the 'alternate' finish.


The W. side has a few routes, and when we were there it had at least one back-off sling below some roofs just around the corner. The routes I've seen described are approached from the South, I suspect we ended up on one of those.

 

Interesting if that's how it was originally climbed, it might explain why Fairley's description seems like such a sandbag now.

 

In any event, we were attempting the route as described in Alpine Select, which mentions some 10a at this point. There does look to be a long'ish hand (or fist?) crack above but we couldn't confidently identify the start. McLane doesn't mention any cracks or other features except for a vague description of a loose blocky start. However, I believe this is where people normally go. But, by that point in our day I was unwilling to lead it on-sight without being more certain. (Perhaps if we'd been faster routefinding at the bottom.)

 

So, what I was hoping for was another point of view on the start and route on the last headwall, it looks like a fun pitch (or two).

 

Anyway, I've resolved to do the route again with with or without beta. With new knowledge of the lower route we'll be faster getting up there and have plenty of time to get off-route and still finish in daylight.

 

[Cool]

 

Thanks,

Travis

 

[ 08-22-2002, 12:48 PM: Message edited by: Travis ]

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