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[TR] Squamish - Grand Wall 5/18/2008


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Trip: Squamish - Grand Wall


Date: 5/18/2008


Trip Report:

A great trip except for some shenanigans at the border.


It was baking hot and humid on Saturday the 17th. A dozen parties stacked up on the Grand Wall, slowly cooking like hotdogs at the Quickie Mart. We were glad not to be one of them.


Sunday the 18th was much cooler. We went up the Grand Wall, with a botched attempt at Cruel Shoes as noted below. Except for one other party that rapped off from the base of the Split Pillar, we didn't see anyone else on the upper wall the whole day. Morning clouds burned off as we finished the Split Pillar, and it was nice and sunny in the afternoon.


Twas a trip to remember. Thanks Blake!


Blake leading The Flake p1. Trickier than expected.



Blake accidentally leaving Cruel Shoes for some 11d. We backed off, rapping back to go up Apron Strings because we couldn't find Cruel Shoes. Now we know where we should have gone...



Apron Strings p2.



At the base of Merci Me.



Merci Me p2.



Blake on the traverse to the Split Pillar.



Exposure at the base of the Split Pillar.



Split Pillar start.



Split Pillar school of jamming.



Upper Split Pillar.



The lower Sword.



The upper Sword.



Exposure at the top of the bolt ladder.



Blake leads Perry's Lieback with no hangs.



Bellygood ledge.




Gear Notes:

Doubles in the 0.5 - #3 camalot range, though the second #3 is not really needed if you're willing to run out the fist section of the Split Pillar. We didn't bring or need the #4.


Approach Notes:

10 minutes from the campground.



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SP goes from thin hands to 4" and then to a chimney. It is really very friendly, with enough constrictions for great jamming and a nice edge to lieback. It's hard to imagine a more moderate way to free climb a vertical wall.

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The Split is straight forward and starts of as fingers widening to bigger than fist (for me).


Oh the memories. I'll be back on that one later this summer to see how my climbing has progressed/regressed.


There were some hangers missing from the traverse to Perry's last summer IIRC. Looks like they've been replaced.

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DO NOT follow the written description for Cruel Shoes in the McLane guide. Upon reaching the RF corner on P1 climb UP the corner, not down and right as described. 5.11d runout slab is hard.



FYI, no bolts on the Sword pitch, despite what some had led me to believe. I didn't miss them. The gear is all there.


Rad, I think there is a bolt on the sword, shortly after the crux and you clipped it. I think it's part of the belay on the Free Grand, at a no-hands rest stance.


The Flats and Sail Flake were the best pitches because belays were shaded!


Now for a quiz... what is wrong with this second picture?






Answer: he removed his lower piece of gear before falling. :crazy:

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Hmm. I don't remember that bolt, but then I'm old and senile and it's already been three days...


The lower piece is missing in the second shot. Perhaps the lower shot was the first attempt and the upper shot was taken after the leader placed a second piece before going back up for another attempt.


Where were these shots taken from? Looks like well above the belay.

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Well done guys. Yes cruel shoes has some interesting route finding. Since it was bolted on lead there are many places where you climb up to clip a bolt then down climb to get back on route.


You will have to try again as it is an exceptionaly fine route.


The flake pitch is strenous, nice to not have a pack tho, I think its harder than p1 of Apron Strings.


I find it funny that with the forecast as it was that anyone would be on the grand on sat and not on sun..cuukoo

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When we did it my partner and I clipped a water bottle and a small stuff sack with power bars and a jacket to the back of our harnesses. I found that to me much better than a pack given all the lie-backing in that climb.


(Don't worry, we didn't clip the plastic cap of the Nalgene and endanger all those below)

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