Climbing at Cathedral & Whitehorse +Flying Kites at Cape Cod

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Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Topic Author's Original Post - Jun 20, 2007 - 11:10pm PT








I once had dinner with Henry Barber and after a good Brunello and a bit too much of some fine Armagnac, Henry cheerfuly ate half a wine glass. Nice trick: he says it's all about commitment and once you start, you cannot escape until you have carefully chewed the shards into fine sand.

Somewhere during our rambling conversation he noted that throughout my travels I’d entertained the various highlight destinations of the west: Yosemite, The Needles of Dakota & California, Taquitz, Tuolumne, Joshua Tree, Devils Tower, Veedawoo, Eldorado, Canyonlands, The Diamond and so forth. I’d lived in the Valley for 10 summers and spent 10 years in short striking distance of Eldorado Canyon.

“Sounds like it’s high time you head East young man, to round things out, as that is sorely missing from your repertoire”
… how true I thought.

I’d been fortunate enough to meet during my travels the likes of Hot Henry & Ed Webster; I’d hung out briefly with the venerable Jimmy Dunn and was likewise acquainted with the fabled talents of Neil Cannon, Alison Osius, Jimmy Surette and others from my generation who’d made their mark developing climbs on the East Coast and upon New Hampshire granite in particular. I was excited to one day go and sample the atmosphere surrounding these spirited climbing achievements and taste for myself a bit of this much heralded region.

So when Lisa this year planned to go after the Masters Title on the Mt Washington Hill Climb in the White Mountains of Northern New Hampshire, I emailed Chiloe and he scheduled for us an opportunity to meet up for a day or two of climbing at Cathedral & Whitehorse Ledges in the White Mountains, wherein I could continue to chew into sand the shards of my own little stony goblet.
Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 20, 2007 - 11:13pm PT
On the drive towards North Conway, which is the principal town servicing Mt Washington Valley, Lisa and I stopped briefly for some good late afternoon light and a taste of sweet air at Lake Chocorua:






The map from Ed Webster's guidebook:


Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 20, 2007 - 11:15pm PT
From Ed Webster’s Rock Climbs in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, second edition:






Some particularly nice words quoted in Ed Webster’s Guide:


Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 20, 2007 - 11:18pm PT
Cathedral’s Ledge’s tallest section of rock, The Prow, on the left:




Whitehorse Ledge, from across Echo Lake:




Cannon Cliff, located a bit northwest in Franconia Notch,
This cliff is 1000’ high. As it is that big, I guess they no longer call it just a “ledge”!


Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 20, 2007 - 11:21pm PT
Our chosen climb for day one at Cathedral Ledge would be a route up the central section of The Prow called Recompense, with the Beast Flake variant, a combo known as “RecomBeast”. All in all a worthy 5 pitch route with some nice spots of 5.9.

Here’s Chiloe & Eric havin’ a look see up at the route:




Chiloe, getting us up the long first pitch:






Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 20, 2007 - 11:22pm PT
Eric coming up to join us on pitch 1:





Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 20, 2007 - 11:25pm PT
After Eric valiantly toted the rope for us up the tenuous undercling entry leading up into pitch 2's Beast Flake, I took these shots of the boys negotiating the spooky step across of pitch 3:



Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 20, 2007 - 11:27pm PT
Eric following pitch 4’s tasty layback:








I think Chiloe has a few snapshots to help fill in the blanks...
Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 20, 2007 - 11:34pm PT
...it is a beautiful place.
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Jun 20, 2007 - 11:41pm PT
great Tar... brings back fond memories.
Mighty Hiker

Social climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Jun 20, 2007 - 11:44pm PT
Very nice! And the kite flying bit....? Or was that hat flying?
Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 20, 2007 - 11:46pm PT
Yes, well, you know Anders,
In a pinch the hat makes a great drag chute should speeds become excessive.
Brian

climber
Cali
Jun 20, 2007 - 11:48pm PT
Thanks!

I just posted in the LA thread about how much I loved my two years in New England. Cathedral and Cannon are incredible crags, and the ice in New Hampshire and Vermont is not to be missed.

I think it is easy for West coast folks to look down on New England climbing (I did before I moved there, basically out of total ignorance). However, climbing in New England was, IMHO, incredible. Other than the lack of big mountains (a big problem for me) the crags back East can stand toe to toe with most of the places I've climbed in CA, UT, and CO. Plus, the community of climbers back there is pretty cool. Something about being crazy enough to climb in truly shitty weather, the kind of weather that would keep most folks out West indoors, breeds brotherhood (and/or sisterhood).

I've got too many memories to start listing routes, but Recombeast is a fine line. I hope you got to get on some other things as well (and hope the race went well).

Brian
Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 20, 2007 - 11:56pm PT
I think you are right about that stuff Brian.

And yes, thanks for asking, Lisa took first place in the Master's Division.

Mighty Hiker

Social climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Jun 21, 2007 - 12:07am PT
Well, I climbed at Rumney one cold spring day, and have snowshoed up Mt. Lafayette, right across from Cannon. (Before the face thingie fell off.) Just like here, climbers seem to adapt to what's on offer.

It was nice hiking up a mountain named for the Marquis. Lots of history to see in Boston, too.
Chiloe

Trad climber
Lee, NH
Jun 21, 2007 - 04:18am PT
Guidebooks, back stories and all -- it's a real TR! Especially because I know from the title he's only 1/3 done.

I'll get organized soon and post up how things looked through my camera. Some priceless shots of dude running out 5.9s in a cowboy hat. Only regret is I don't think we have photos of us kicking back with beers by the lake at day's end, talking over life, the fate of the cosmos and stuff.
goatboy smellz

climber
colorado
Jun 21, 2007 - 04:38am PT
Cool beans, thanks for sharing.

stich

Trad climber
Denver, Colorado
Jun 21, 2007 - 04:45am PT
Awesome man. I was wondering how the trip was. Back in 2003 I went up there with my old woman around Halloween and took this ridiculous train ride to a pumpkin patch. It was quite beautiful with the Fall foliage, however. From the airplane it looked like nothing else I'd ever seen.
Chiloe

Trad climber
Lee, NH
Jun 21, 2007 - 04:51am PT
A. Crowley:
I'd love to climb there with you guys.

If your travels ever bring you out this way, send a note.
Chiloe

Trad climber
Lee, NH
Jun 21, 2007 - 05:32am PT
Some other perspectives from Cathedral Ledge last Friday:

Eric makes quick onsight work of the Beast Flake:




He’s belayed by this dude:




Finishing the tricky traverse pitch:




Wootles will know our bright rope.

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