Serenity Crack Retro Trad: back to basics

Search
Go

Discussion Topic

Return to Forum List
Post a Reply
Messages 1 - 16 of total 16 in this topic
Hans.H

Mountain climber
Berkeley, CA
Topic Author's Original Post - Oct 27, 2005 - 03:47pm PT
After musing the recent posts on this forum one of my climbing partners wrote:
"I plan on free climbing serenity crack {SC} with pitons. Any interest?"

I was thinking about this and thought, 'hmmm, maybe he has something there.'

Afterall Serenity Crack is a transition test-piece after all. People loved it before clean gear, and now people love it with clean gear. If we are going to start removing bolts so people can have the privledge of climbing SC with specialized gear and boldly shouldn't we just go back to pins? Shouldn't SC be the climb that boldly brings in the new tradition?

Just think how gripping it will be, climbing up with nothing but iron and a hammer, may be a few nuts but no cams. As the placements get more and more blown out protection will get trickier and the climbing bolder. Think of how strong you will get, lugging up that iron and swinging the hammer!

I know personally that I find free climbing while placing pins is more strenous than placing a cam. Sure I've only dabeled in this technique in the mountains during winter (Scotland and Cascades), but I think my friend is on to something here.

Plus as an added bonus, maybe this will be the technique that will bring Aid and free climbers together. Think world climbing peace!

Can't wait till this winter. Yah, I'm going start rumaging through the land fills for old stove legs and such!
WBraun

climber
Oct 27, 2005 - 03:50pm PT
Whatever trips you out man!
Matt

Trad climber
places you shouldn't talk about in polite company
Oct 27, 2005 - 04:27pm PT
whomever chopped that early bolt on serenity crack is an inconsistent wuss. if that bolt were so offensive, why not chop both of the 1st 2 anchors as well? one could easily belay on bomber gear from the bottom of the 2nd pitch and the botom of the 3rd pitch, and the route can be rapped from the top of the 3rd pitch w/out using any of those bolts.

what makes any one bolt more offensive than any other?
if you are going to make a statement about ethics, than make a statement about ethics, not about compromise for comfy belay stances.


btw- my wife and i were probably the last party to see that newly chopped bolt alive, as we were climbing serenity that fiday afternoon (while lincoln was rapping through from sons). everyone says it's "30 feet" to that bolt, uhhh- no, that would be 3 stories! no funking way, it was only about 22 feet up, and if you climb right to that spot now, you can get a bomber red alien at exactly that same height. when the route is slimy, it will be a touch more spicy than before, but otherwise it shouldn't make a difference to someone who is about to lead the 10d (soft tho' it may be).
Hans.H

Mountain climber
Berkeley, CA
Topic Author's Reply - Oct 27, 2005 - 06:24pm PT
Matt,

I could not agree with you more. Man, if you can get some pegs in, or tie off a knob or tree at a station there is no need for bolts. This can make climbing pretty exciting. Every time you want to do a route, you should be totally prepared. Hey bolts get removed in nature all the time. Whether it is rock fall or some drunk dude with a mullet does not make a difference.
Climb with some pegs and a drill and all is good. Just think of how less crowded the routes will be if everyone is fully prepared. This also gets around bolting bans from the NPS!
k-man

Gym climber
SCruz
Oct 27, 2005 - 06:40pm PT
"... some drunk dude with a mullet ..."

I think we hit upon the "wrong type of climber."

Sure I can get drunk, but I can only dream about a mullet.

:- k
Matt

Trad climber
places you shouldn't talk about in polite company
Oct 27, 2005 - 06:52pm PT
i don't know about tying of a knob for a belay, but that is not the case on serenity crack.
Hans.H

Mountain climber
Berkeley, CA
Topic Author's Reply - Oct 27, 2005 - 07:41pm PT
K-Man,

So what would have been your reason for pulling the bolt? Would it have been to get back to basics like I propose? I think we all know that the longer your hair gets the bolder you can climb (this need not apply to the older hardmen that have lost their hair due to runout induced stress).

As far as knobs, I was talking in general terms. If there is a knob why do you need a bolt?
Melissa

Gym climber
berkeley, ca
Oct 27, 2005 - 07:55pm PT
Actually, Hans, for rapping the route, the Roper guide says to rap off of the single bolt achor on Sunset Ledge (presumable something else was present, but I'm fine with two fatties there) down to the 3rd class ledges approaching Super Slab and then walk off from there. Wouldn't be a bad idea as it would limit the # of parties going down on top of parties going up.
Clint Cummins

Trad climber
SF Bay area, CA
Oct 27, 2005 - 08:02pm PT
Sure, we could chop all the belay bolts as well, but those things are pretty handy for dealing with all the traffic on that route! And they do not detract from the leading experience, except maybe for hauling up a few extra cams to make the belay anchors.

I was a little worried about the loss of that bolt, since I've run up there and clipped it so many times without bothering to place anything before it (or close after it). But true, it's "bolting next to a crack" which is a no-no. I don't have a red alien, but I have a 1" TCU I can bring especially for that. It's somewhat nonstandard gear in my view but the missing bolt does not seem to be stopping anyone, which is the best test. The next time I do it, I'll look very carefully at the protection possibilities and post a summary on the Route Beta section.
k-man

Gym climber
SCruz
Oct 27, 2005 - 09:41pm PT
Hans.H types: "K-Man, So what would have been your reason for pulling the bolt?"

Hmm, not too sure where this question is coming from. The lack of a chance to wear a mullet perhaps?

But I guess if I'd thought about it long enough, that Senility bolt would start to edge my mind, being next to that crack and all. So yep, that's the reason I'd yard it out, if someone didn't beat me to it (and at my rate, this would always have been the case).

Now that it's gone I'll have to slow down to find what passes for pro on that first section. Through a senile haze I remember climbing the thing; I fiddled here, then there, then just said screw it and limped up to the bolt. For me it worked that way. Even though a purist I am, the fixed pro didn't bother me with all them scars living there.

Now that it's gone I think it should stay that way, although I do think it's a time-bomb that will expolde when someone pitches and pulls all their crappy gear. Sure, climbing is not supposed to be safe, or is it?

:- kelly
LongAgo

Trad climber
Nov 5, 2005 - 02:11pm PT
Info of possible use: there was not bolt there when I did the first free.

Tom Higgins
LongAgo
caughtinside

Social climber
Davis, CA
Nov 5, 2005 - 04:20pm PT
Tom,

were there pins on the route? Did you nail your own?
healyje

Trad climber
Portland, Oregon
Nov 6, 2005 - 04:20pm PT
"...but I have a 1" TCU I can bring especially for that. It's somewhat nonstandard gear in my view..."

Clint, curious what you mean by the latter phrase? Hard to imagine any size cam except the extremes on either end being "nonstandard gear"...
Karl Baba

Trad climber
Yosemite, Ca
Nov 6, 2005 - 08:28pm PT
Aliens have a narrow head that allows them to fit in pin scars. A TCU may not fit.

The fact that somebody like Clint doesn't have a Red Alien makes them somewhat non-standard gear in my mind. I've only had em for a few years myself.

The first no brainer gear is probably about 15 feet above the bolt. Some questionable cams or nuts (perhaps good if placed skillfully) are probably available lower and might catch the kind of sliding fall that's likely off the first 40 feet.

That said, careful not to flip over or trip over your gear or rope if you fall. Falling on your head can be bad for you.

I don't agree with the chopping but can understand why such an action might seem right and appropriate to folks with a different view. Since they have taken it upon themselves to decide the fate of the route for us, I believe they should have the courage to let their identity and motives be known.

Cutting down on the crowds, although that would benefit me a good deal, would be a lame motive in my mind.

Peace

karl
Clint Cummins

Trad climber
SF Bay area, CA
Nov 8, 2005 - 05:27am PT
healyje asked:
> curious what you mean by the latter phrase? Hard to imagine any size cam except the extremes on either end being "nonstandard gear"...

Karl answered this perfectly - deep pocket type pin scars sometimes fit only cams with very narrow heads (vs. standard wider Camalots and Friends). I don't usually have a 1" TCU on my rack, because such deep pockets are rare on most routes. I use TCUs to .75" (#1-3 in Metolius sizes; I carry and sometimes use one #0), then 4CUs in larger sizes because they are more stable (yes, solid shaft Friends #1.5-4 :-) ). Of course what's standard for one person may be strange to another!

I climbed it on Saturday (11/5) and it was easy to find the fairly wide/oblong pocket (18" below the rust stain from the older 1/4" bolt). My 1" TCU (same as red Metolius #4 and about the same size as a red Alien) went in there just fine. Something a little wider might also fit, but I didn't have much of a selection to try out.

Solid gear. And just a couple more moves (5') to good handjams and more gear, as people have mentioned. It was bone dry; I was glad it wasn't seeping like it often is this time of year.

Karl, I'm not sure if you've been up there recently, but Melissa and J replaced that spinner bolt on the last pitch of Sons back in March. I clipped it and I'm sure you'll like the new one! And like you said, the tree is nearly dead (not sure why) and a new anchor will be needed up there at some point.
k-man

Gym climber
SCruz
Nov 8, 2005 - 10:50am PT
Good info Clint.

When I last did SC, I must have missed the pocket (and good gear) you mention because I was fosused on the bolt.

If it really is solid gear, then I think it was a cool vision to chop the bolt.

:- k
Messages 1 - 16 of total 16 in this topic
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 Trip Report and Articles
Recent Route Beta
Recent Gear Reviews