WOEML and the Compressor route

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john hansen

climber
Topic Author's Original Post - Jan 26, 2011 - 09:56pm PT
This will probably sink in a hurry but,,

Woeml was finished Nov 18th 1970, the compressor route was finished Dec 3rd 1970.

Robbins and Lauria did the second ascent of Woeml in Feb of 1971.

I was wondering if Robbins had heard of the compressor climb before they went up on woeml, and if this may have been part of his reasoning.

Were the Vally regulars of the time in Yosemite aware of the Cerro Torre climb before Robbins chopped the bolts on El Cap?

Peter Haan

Trad climber
San Francisco, CA
Jan 26, 2011 - 10:04pm PT
John I think this is a really interesting question. I don't remember. There is a strong likelihood that we were aware of Cesare's clown wagon down there; it's not like he was modest in his preparations and plans. Probably easily determined by looking into the history of Maestri's activities. Those docs have to be widely available.

But back then, before new-wave aid and the rest of what we have now, there was a distinct concern that bolts might proliferate and "re-interpret" rock climbing. The next levels of extreme aid just weren't there yet and yet there was tons and tons of unclimbed rock all over the place up to that point that seemed vaguely to also be our future....we just did not know. So either way, there was a grave concern back then at least---now too obviously in other ways---that we would watch these enormous wild places simply die right in front of us.

But as RR found out, Warren's route was not a bolt-up. It was a superb line stuffed with awesome and difficult climbing and as he and Don L. worked their way up the new line, they began to eat their hat, so to speak. The real fights were yet to come.
donini

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
Jan 26, 2011 - 10:10pm PT
I seriously doubt it, Patagonia was still under the radar and Yosemite was luxuriating in a cocoon of self importance.
Peter Haan

Trad climber
San Francisco, CA
Jan 26, 2011 - 10:12pm PT
Do, hardly. We had Dougy T and YC down there well before then, coming out of there with a movie even. Cerro Torre was well known to us then. But it is true about the cocoon. I guess if you just evaluate how focused we were on Patagonia and looked at the dates of ascents, there probably aren't that many prior to mid-late seventies?? pls advise.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Jan 26, 2011 - 10:14pm PT
Why not ask Royal directly?
john hansen

climber
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 26, 2011 - 10:15pm PT
Steve,, I am,, sorta..
WBraun

climber
Jan 26, 2011 - 10:31pm PT
Warren's route was not a bolt-up

I beg to differ.

Warren went berserk up there. There were dead 6.0 (A1) cracks with bolts right next to them.

There were times I was nailing along A1 and then moving up in my aid ladders and suddenly a rivet or bolt would appear next to the crack I never even noticed.

Charlie Porter chopped a bunch of rivet/bolts of Hardings when he did New Dawn.

You could really tell the difference between Caldwell's leads and Hardings.

Hardings leads were littered with drilling ....
Peter Haan

Trad climber
San Francisco, CA
Jan 26, 2011 - 10:32pm PT
No John, RR will respond. He loves this kind of stuff plus he tries like crazy to be fair to climbers he doesn't know. It might take him a week or two though, he is of course busy. The real problem is that he may not remember however.
Cracko

Trad climber
Quartz Hill, California
Jan 26, 2011 - 10:38pm PT
Werner,

Really?? Never heard this before.....bolting next to A1 cracks ??? Easy to tell the difference between Caldwell and Harding leads??? Are you just Fing with us ???

Cracko
WBraun

climber
Jan 26, 2011 - 10:46pm PT
Why would I do that (fukin with people) with a topic like this?

There's no reason at all.

Just face it, Harding loved to drill .....
Peter Haan

Trad climber
San Francisco, CA
Jan 26, 2011 - 10:52pm PT
I believe Werner.

Cracko, WB has been in the Valley since this route went up. Continuously. And continuously active as an expert climber. I just wish we knew long ago how it actually looked when WB went through there. First time I have heard this.

RR knew what Warren was like, and vice versa. What a messy situation.
Cracko

Trad climber
Quartz Hill, California
Jan 26, 2011 - 10:53pm PT
No offense Werner but can Mr. Robbins confirm bolt drilling next to A1 cracks??? Just never heard that before.
GDavis

Social climber
SOL CAL
Jan 26, 2011 - 11:02pm PT
"was luxuriating in a cocoon of self importance. "


"was"?

hehehe...
john hansen

climber
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 26, 2011 - 11:06pm PT
It would be interesting to hear from Ken Boche and Don Lauria on this topic,
Peter was there during that time also.

I am sure others here could comment on the "mood" in the Vally at that time.
Cracko

Trad climber
Quartz Hill, California
Jan 26, 2011 - 11:09pm PT
Peter,

I understand, and God help me or anyone else who questions Werner on this site. I guess I was just taken back because it is the first time I have heard this from Werner, or anyone else for that matter. Yes, I have always respected Warren Harding for his "anti-establishment" ways. Hey, somebody's got to do it !! I never knew, until Werner's post, that he actually climbed the WEML and saw first hand what occured. This is not consistent with most other accounts I have read, and I have read most.
I fully understand that Warren Harding loved to drill, but I have never heard any other account accusing him of placing bolts next to A1 cracks.
I would love to be further enlightened regarding this claim by Werner.


Cracko
Peter Haan

Trad climber
San Francisco, CA
Jan 26, 2011 - 11:15pm PT
Cracko, I mentioned on another thread, it is getting time for a party to go up on the oriinal WOEML and do kind of a creative ascent/ archaeology of it. There is a a lot of day by day info too, which I also posted last year--- it was Guido's photos of Warrens letters he would send down in cans from their bivies. Reporting on the day, roughly.

What this idea comes from is of course Conrad & company's re-do of the Mallory-Irvine early Everest attempt. Using the equipment of that day. Eventually even finding the evidence of their deaths.
Cracko

Trad climber
Quartz Hill, California
Jan 26, 2011 - 11:20pm PT
jghedge,

No I haven't. Is this a requirement for me to have an opinion of WEML or ask a question?

Peter,

Thank you.
john hansen

climber
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 26, 2011 - 11:32pm PT





A link about the third ascent of the Wall


http://www.supertopo.com/climbing/thread.php?topic_id=1363644&msg=1366174#msg1366174
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Jan 26, 2011 - 11:33pm PT
The right side of the Folly originally had lots of bolts next to A1 cracks partly attributable to poor angle pitons in those days. By 1970 that wasn't an issue anymore.

If Charlie didn't say anything after his solo of the Tower start to the Dawn Wall then how would the story get out besides climbers like Werner doing the route with his eyes open. A snipped dowel doesn't look like much of anything.

Joe-You seem to have an opinion about Space Babble...you've done it right?!? Rap bolts and all...
Cracko

Trad climber
Quartz Hill, California
Jan 26, 2011 - 11:45pm PT
jghedge,

OK, I'll work on it. For what it is worth, I'm just interested in the whole controversy and history surrounding WEML.

From Peter's past thread on the "Harding Letters", a post from Roger Breedlove, "To be fair, Harding didn’t over bolt his routes once he was on them any more than Robbins did. The difference is that Harding picked routes that he knew would have to have many holes, ones as unappealing as The Firefall Face or The Rhombus Wall as well as beautiful walls such as the South Face of Half Dome or the WEML. Robbins on the other hand picked routes that he thought would not need so many bolts and then bolted them as necessary rather than backing off: Tis-sa-ack is a perfect example. When TM Herbert told Royal that he would regret putting up Tis-sa-ack with so many bolts, Royal said, “it was worth it.” Thin ice."

This is my sense of Harding as well, and it is not consistent with bolts next to A1 cracks. Then again, I didn't live in the Valley during the time of WEML, don't know sh#t, should STFU and leave this all to those more qualified. Sorry

Cracko

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