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[TR] Colchuck Balanced Rock - The Scoop 5.11C 9/25/2014


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Trip: Colchuck Balanced Rock - The Scoop 5.11C


Date: 9/25/2014


Trip Report:

Always fun up there...


Everyone gets excited for CBR, do people know there's this place called Squamish where you can climb way better/bigger routes 5 minutes from a parking lot? *laughs*


Jokes aside, here's what we found, topo was right on.


P1-P3. Mellow and dirty. There might have been a few short steps of 5.10 but mostly mossy 5.7-5.8. Kinda lame.


P4. The Scoop. This pitch was worth the walk, one of the best pitches I've ever done in the alpine and for sure the pumpiest lead I've ever done in mountains. Looking up from the belay the pitch doesn't look that long but indeed it is 60M and steep/overhanging for most of it. Starts fingers and widens to perfect hands, this sounds good but by the time you get to the hands part of the pitch it is well past vertical and the pump is real.


The locks on the pitch are very sharp, no greasing out. The hard choice is deciding between lay backing or straight in. I did a little bit of both but in retrospect would have lay backed more just to move quicker.


Gear is great and goes from Blue master cam to #2 in perfect order. I brought triples orange master cams and triple .75BD it worked but 4x of .75 BD might help. The belay is medium sized gear or slung block. (Might need a 70M rope to sling the block)


P5-P6. We wimped out on these pitches, looked kinda dirty and damp so we went right up a short 5.8 pitch to pillar belay (tat). Moved right again on a long 5.9 pitch that took us to the 4th class terrain and summit. No idea if other parties have gone this way but makes for a mellow way to the finish.








Gear Notes:

Double rack from Blue Master Cam to #2BD. Triple up the Orange Master Cam and .75.


1x #3 BD. No #4 needed. No nuts placed, might want to bring RPs and small cams if going up the proper finish, looks thin. Cold in the shade.


Approach Notes:

The usual.

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Pitch 5 (5.10b): move down and left on a small ledge that takes you into a slab dihedral. Small cams and nuts are useful here to move up and into a nice dihedral crack (wet in early season). Move out and left of the roof to another nice belay ledge. (~100 ft.)

(dotted line in the topo)



Maybe the sarcasm was over my head but it seems a little odd to climb half of one of the peak's shortest routes, and then complain that the routes are too short.

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hahah nice Blake. Yeah I can't resist poking a bit of fun at our friends to the South.


Jokes aside, every season big new routes go up on the Chief that are word class and there isn't a peep about it in the climbing media or the internet.


I think Alpinist must have a policy that it won't report on any FAs done within sight of McDonalds which disqualifies most routes around here.





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Nice to see another TR on this line! :brew:


When we first put up the route we actually cleaned the entire thing so there was little-no moss on it. Apparently it needs a little more attention to keep the lower pitches clean. The scoop is definitely the money pitch, but the last two pitches are very nice as well and are definitely worth climbing.



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Thanks for opening this route. I bet scrubbing those pitches was an insane amount of work. The money pitch is perfectly clean. The lower pitches not so much, not terrible but it looks like a lot of water runs down the corner systems so I'm not sure if much can be done to keep them clean.



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Beta spoiler request alert:


I also am confused by p5. Only thin at the start? Start meaning the first half? WTF am I supposed to do here:




(besides start aiding)? Stem in the corner? Stem between the corner and the left seam? Is this move height dependent or being-terrible-at-slab-climbing dependent or spent-an-hour-falling-off-the-crux-pitch-in-the-sun dependent?


Still, awesome route, thanks for putting this up. The scoop pitch was fun, this pitch would have been fun if we hadn't started the route at like 1:30 meaning we did not have time to both hangdog the scoop pitch and mess around with aiding on a "10b" if we wanted to finish before dark...



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Blake is right on. Here is the picture of Stuart leading the pitch. After you do the traverse, you get in the corner and there are a few good pieces. The online topo indicates RPs are useful, the guidebook marks them as bolts or pins (we placed neither on the entire route, so bring some nuts). When the slab gets a little steeper, stem/smear up and grab the ledge that Stuart is standing on in the picture. After that, get into the corner crack which takes good gear but always felt a little funky to me.




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Hahaha, I wouldn't have thought the 10b would be stymieing anyone who just did the 11c bit. I think it's been beta'd to death above, I really didn't think it was that bad, just stem/slab climb the corner till you get to the ledge, then enjoy hand jams and knobs the rest of the way. Once you hit that little roof at the top (above my head in the pic) it's also bomber hands in the horizontal unlike the roof on the West Face route.


Now go back and finish it! :-)

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