Royal Robbins Falling while Soloing I-12 at Indian Rock

Search
Go

Discussion Topic

Return to Forum List
Post a Reply
Messages 61 - 80 of total 195 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
FredC

Boulder climber
Santa Cruz, CA
Mar 6, 2010 - 07:24pm PT
Hi Randy,

Jim was one of the most graceful climbers I ever knew. He finally had to stop because his retina was detaching and falling became super dangerous for him.

Jim and Bruce were both amazing guys. They also both very generously befriended a 15 year old kid from Oakland.

Bruce and I worked out a concept that never seemed to catch on. You always heard about people being "benighted" on climbs, sometimes this was an excuse for not finishing the climb. I remember he and I coming up the idea of being "bedayed". Somewhere there is a slide of me downclimbing the beginning of Nerve Wrack Point. I was totally bedayed.


Tom,

I followed the link to your page. That sure is Bruce, but who is the young hippie looking guy talking to him? Wow, what a shirt! I also read a bunch of your stories there. Very cool times.

Fred
BBA

Social climber
West Linn OR
Mar 6, 2010 - 07:46pm PT
Rankin also climbed the peak in 1957 and gave his affiliation as the Mother Lode Chapter of the Sierra Club which is out of Sacramento. In all probability it's the same person who got Harding into the game.
LongAgo

Trad climber
Mar 8, 2010 - 08:29pm PT
Guido,

I've pulled the old photo (5X7) and will try a scan once computer difficulties are solved. But even in the small pic, note the lats on Bruce popping through his shirt. He could do one-arms.

Fred,

It would be so fun to hear of various "bedayed" climbs from whoever would weigh in. We all are quick to tell of feats and successes, but failures are equally interesting and instructive. Yes, Jim Crooks was a wonderful climber and subtle wit, especially when mixed up with Bruce. I climbed with them both at Pinnacles many times, and had little prayer of matching their ribs and jibs, as I was way too impressed with myself when young and dumb and they found all the chinks in my armor. Jim's wife Afton still lives in Berkeley and we are seeing her for dinner soon.

Tom Higgins
LongAgo
storer

Trad climber
Golden, Colorado
Mar 10, 2010 - 10:15pm PT
Indeed that's Jack Rankin of the Mother Lode RCS who introduced to climbing. Adolf Baur (DAV: Deutscher Alpen Verein) went on numerous trips and I believe died climbing in the Alps.

I wrote the following in the thread "Warren Harding's Letter to the AAC..."

As I recall, he (Harding) came to several "dynamic belay practice" sessions Jack (Rankin) held at some property he had down in the Sacramento river bottoms. We'd hoist a 200 lb concrete block up a tree using rope wrapped around a washing machine agitator bolted to Jack's car wheel. The belayer would request slack be let out (say, 20 feet of white Columbia) and the block would be dropped. The belayer used a hip belay with a leather butt patch and gloves. Smoke was produced, the belayer most often upended, and the lesson, in those days, was "the leader must not fall!" Times have certainly changed!

The pics show Jack during belay practice:

Credit: storer

By the way, Jack passed away recently:

(Rankin obituary: http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/sacbee/obituary.aspx?page=lifestory&pid=131730225);
Peter Haan

Trad climber
San Francisco, CA
Mar 10, 2010 - 10:55pm PT
I have said it before here but Jim Crooks was a wonderful cagey friend and climber. He actually even knew my artist Uncle, Jack Stangl(e) up in Seattle. Jim was in the copywriting profession for ad agencies and was bright as hell but way subtle too. For example, he would do copy for Scientific American, I recall. He must have been almost 50 years my senior. One day he, Bruce Cooke, myself and a young friend even did Machete Ridge in Pinnacles Nat Mo. even, a venture away from Indian Rock. I loved these older mentors and always looked forwards to seeing them on the weekends at Indian R. Great to hear that Afton is STILL alive, wow, TH. Who would have thought.

best to all, p.
The user formerly known as stzzo

climber
Sneaking up behind you
Mar 10, 2010 - 11:18pm PT
This thread is wonderful.

Good god, this is Cragmont?



It's so different now. Lots of trees and shade. I'll go take a pic when I can.

Ditto for IR. I hope some of the current locals are seeing this and will post some photos.
oldguy

climber
Bronx, NY
Mar 11, 2010 - 02:00pm PT
I seem to get into these threads when they are almost as old as I am. However, I will claim to know the real story about RR and I 12. I was living in SF in 1960 (in the Army), and when RR visited me after he escaped from El Paso I took him to Indian Rock. We did a few things and then I mentioned that there was this overhanging climb, quite hard, that people did with a top rope. By the way, it used to be somewhat easier until somebody pulled off a few crucial flakes, but that was a little earlier than this story. A little later in the day, I noticed RR out at the start of I12, just having a look, I thought. Then he makes the first traversing move and, to my astonishment, keeps going. At the top he shakes out and looks down and says, "Nice climb." He then starts climbing down, harder to do because the overhang tends to obscure the footholds. When he gets to the traverse, instead of going right back to the notch, he goes left and proceeds to climb I13. (I can't remember anyone climbing I13.) The reader's own reaction to this, especially if he/she has climbed I12, will probably be a fair imitation of my own on that day. As far as I know, RR never fell off anything when drunk, although we both did some climbs when we had been drinking, as did everyone except Frost. My own experience was that it tended to focus the mind since the odds of falling seemed to increase.
tarek

climber
berkeley
Mar 11, 2010 - 02:04pm PT
!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
klk

Trad climber
cali
Mar 11, 2010 - 02:09pm PT
My God, is this Cragmont? . . . I'll go take a pic when I can.

Just do it when I'm not there-- I sometimes solo those things (DM), and I wouldn't want to add to your risk.

Heh
tarek

climber
berkeley
Mar 11, 2010 - 02:15pm PT
klk, ditto, and one time had a couple with a toprope muttering that I was going to "kill myself" on that slab, BUT

you're a historian I gather, did you read the friggin' amazing post above??!
donini

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
Mar 11, 2010 - 02:21pm PT
Ah, those driving questions that make climbing lore so special!
Did Ervine and Mallory climb Everest?
Did Maestri climb Cerro Torre?
Did Robbins fall on 1-12?
klk

Trad climber
cali
Mar 11, 2010 - 02:27pm PT
back off donini, we live at sea level four hours from the closest mountains. don't diss our love for the local choss.


and tarek: yeah, cool thread-- the pix are great.

i-rock and cragmont do actually have a place in climbing history since it's where the body belay was systematically developed back in the 1930s. chris jones's mountaineering in north america has a great photo of david brower on part of the low traverse. almost every time i do that move i think of brower.
Randisi

Boulder climber
PA
Topic Author's Reply - Mar 11, 2010 - 08:44pm PT
Joe, you have to be pulling our collective legs.

Downclimbed I-12 and finished with I-13?

Astonishing, if true.
tarek

climber
berkeley
Mar 11, 2010 - 09:04pm PT
Randy, I never tried I-13. What are the details?
richross

Trad climber
Mar 11, 2010 - 09:26pm PT
Credit: richross
scuffy b

climber
Where only the cracks are dry
Mar 12, 2010 - 11:20am PT
I-13 is slightly easier than I-12.
I would think that if you had downclimbed the meat of I-12,
traversing left to I-13 might seem more reasonable that traversing
right to the really insecure moves back into the notch.
tarek

climber
berkeley
Mar 12, 2010 - 12:51pm PT
thanks scuffy b.
Yeah, that start to I-12, with your feet at, what, 20' up, would be delicate to reverse. Still, for RR to venture up I-13 as reported above showed some major sack, not to mention endurance. He had to feel pretty confident that he could back off I-13 and go back up I-12 if needed.

Or maybe he didn't think much at all, and just climbed...
scuffy b

climber
Where only the cracks are dry
Mar 12, 2010 - 03:49pm PT
Or maybe he'd already done I-13 and knew it would be better than the
moves back to the notch.
tarek

climber
berkeley
Mar 12, 2010 - 04:22pm PT
report makes it sound as tho it was his first go at the two routes.
The user formerly known as stzzo

climber
Sneaking up behind you
Mar 12, 2010 - 05:10pm PT
Just do it when I'm not there-- I sometimes solo those things (DM), and I wouldn't want to add to your risk.

Just don't be a dick and climb over my head without first asking or giving me a chance to move out of the way...

Heh
Messages 61 - 80 of total 195 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
Return to Forum List
Post a Reply
 
Our Guidebooks
Check 'em out!
SuperTopo Guidebooks


Try a free sample topo!

 
SuperTopo on the Web

Review Categories
Recent Route Beta
Recent Gear Reviews