About Winds of Change

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Valerio

climber
Topic Author's Original Post - May 19, 2012 - 04:53pm PT
Hi,
I’m Valerio Folco. I read in this forum some old topic about my ascent on Winds of Change and I would to explain what I did up there in the june 1998…

If anyone is interested… of course.

In this beta there is my point of view about the rating and the Zicral rivets… it’s just based on my climbing experience.
Here I don’t want to be critical about the route or Richard. I’ve only reported what I saw and what I think about the rating without intentions to downgrade the original difficult… that is only my opinion.
I Think that the Zicral rivets on this route are bad because it’s seem very poor and little. The Zicral do not seem to me to keep falling.
However the route is very nice and straight… the granite is just perfect.


Pitch 1: Free climbing 5.7 on the left or 5.9 on the right.

Pitch 2: Long runout. There are few technical moves on hooks on a slope slab. Many drilled/enhanced hooks. Very bad fall potential.
Pitch 3: Long runout. Very nice pitch with some tiny bad flakes to hook. Bad falls as the second pitch.

Pitch 4: Copperheading in some little grooves and a free move to reach the belay.
Pitch 5: There are some technical hook and free moves to reach the vertical groove, then heads and Aliens to the belay.
Pitch 6-7-8: Classic aid-climbing on drilled hooks, heads and Aliens.

Pitch 9: Very interesting pitch. Some expanding sections especially the last section on a totaly detached pillar. Hard free moves before reach the belay ( Orange peel ) with 10 meters of rope slack from my gri-gri.

Pitch 10: Nice classic pitch on friends and Aliens with a few heads.
Pitch 11-19: I’ve not climbed these pitches so I not have rating and climbing informations about.

I’ve rappel down from the tenth belay to the base, after waiting two long and very wet and cold days in my rain fly, due to a big snow storm with more than two feet of snow on the El Cap and some rescue operations to save people on the Nose. Was a very bad and dangerous day for me…

If you have any questions or need informations about me, my ascent, topo and beta, please let me know and contact me by http://www.valeriofolco.it

Video report and my topo about Winds of Change... here

p3
p3
Credit: Valerio

Credit: Valerio

p3
p3
Credit: Valerio

belay 9 after "Orange peel"
belay 9 after "Orange peel"
Credit: Valerio
'Pass the Pitons' Pete

Big Wall climber
like Ontario, Canada, eh?
May 19, 2012 - 07:45pm PT
Sorry, don't have time to look at everything now Valerio, but huge thanks for posting this.

I can't believe that after Wings of Steel - Richard Jensen's route - and the bruhaha it generated, that this post regarding one of Richard's other routes went onto the second page unnoticed.

Proud work, Valerio. I at least am paying attention and promise to respond when I have some time. Busy packing right now for El Cap!

I don't remember if this is the correct route or not as I don't have my Reid guide in front of me, but isn't there some very fierce hooking off of a pinnacle down low? Is that the second pitch, or the first? I am told it has caused many to back off.
madboIter1

Big Wall climber
Denver, CO
May 19, 2012 - 09:10pm PT
Thank you for the posting and description, Valerio. Your description sounds right to me. After doing the Sea, we did adopt the tactic of "enhancing" hooks so that we could run things out more. So, sure enough, that's what's there.

Sorry the weather was so bad for you. It's a pain to invest so much and then be forced to bail.

Best to you!
'Pass the Pitons' Pete

Big Wall climber
like Ontario, Canada, eh?
May 19, 2012 - 11:41pm PT
^^ Hey you pathetic imposter. It is knott amusing that you purport to be Richard Jensen.

If you had half a brain you would know that Richard made a solo ascent of Winds of Change. Furthermore, it just so happens that the real Richard Jensen is currently on the Titan in Utah, presumably without internet access.

I do knott find your trolling in any way amusing. You had best not attract the ire of the real Richard, as he is known to sue people who wrong him, and win.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
May 20, 2012 - 12:51pm PT
Valerio- Thanks for coming forward with your account at this time.

How much difficult aid climbing had you done before getting up on WOC?

What interested you about this particular route and how high had any previous parties made it before you came along?

What percentage of the hook placements that you used had been clearly created with a chisel or drill and would not have been viable without such doctoring?

Inquiring minds want to know...And don't worry, Richard won't sue you. LOL
Valerio

climber
Topic Author's Reply - May 21, 2012 - 12:56am PT
Hi,

How much difficult aid climbing had you done before getting up on WOC?

here my brief CV:
45 years old
Alpine Guide since 25 years
My main job is helicopter pilots since 15 years in the Mont Blanc SAR team.
I live in the Italian Aosta valley very close to the Mont Blanc, where I climbed about 100 free routes up to 5.13.
In 1994 I climb “the Fish” 5.12 and “Tempi Modernissimi” 5.13 in Marmolada… Batman 5.12 in Wendenstocke
In 1995 Zodiac
in 1997 Sea of Dreams ( I leading “Hook or Book” )
in 1998 I try WoC in Solo
in 1999 Reticent Wall ( I leading the A5 pitch )
in 2001 Tempest with my friends Tom McMillan and Bruce Bindner. Tom was my partner in all ascents since 1997.

more info here

What interested you about this particular route and how high had any previous parties made it before you came along?

After Sea, at that time I looking for a route with long hooks section and WOC seem to me perfect.

What percentage of the hook placements that you used had been clearly created with a chisel or drill and would not have been viable without such doctoring?

I remember many classic drill holes ( for Leeper pointed or Talon ) and a few some very strange ones with a diameter more than one centimeter and deep 5/6 millimeter. Sorry but I don't remember how enhanced hooks with chisel were up there and and if there were possibility to pass without its.

ciao :)


Delhi Dog

climber
Good Question...
May 21, 2012 - 06:20am PT
Hey Valerio...

To drift for just a minute... I was in the Aosta valley (staying in Aosta) over the 1st week 1/2 of April. What a sweet spot that place is!
Went skiing at a few different areas even though we had to go high for the snow, and popped over (or through I should say) to Chamonix to visit old guide friends. You live in a really great spot. We'll for sure head back next year...

okay back to the WoC topic...
cheers
Valerio

climber
Topic Author's Reply - May 21, 2012 - 06:55am PT
Hi,
I'm glad you had some nice days here in Aosta... :)

Cheers
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
May 21, 2012 - 10:26am PT
Valerio- You have been back to Yosemite several times since 1998 why not get a partner and finish this one or did you not find the climbing worthwhile or rewarding?
mucci

Trad climber
The pitch of Bagalaar above you
May 21, 2012 - 10:26am PT
Good enough Steve?


Petty tactless questions about wall experience.

I would have told you to F*#k off.

Thanks V..

Jeremy

Social climber
Albuquerque, NM
May 21, 2012 - 11:03am PT
Just what I thought Mucci...classic...
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
May 21, 2012 - 11:19am PT
A simple and straightforward question politely asked and answered.

If Valerio isn't bothered then why are you gents?
Da_Dweeb

climber
May 21, 2012 - 11:21am PT
Oh, hey Steve. Up to the same old same old, I see?
Da_Dweeb

climber
May 21, 2012 - 11:22am PT
Oh, hang on, let me redo your original post the way it went in your head:

"Valerio- Thanks for coming forward with your account at this time. Damn, why couldn't you have given me this to work with last year!

How much difficult aid climbing had you done before getting up on WOC? (I know the answer, which is "quite a bit", but I'm leading you here in my interrogation, so I need you to spell it out for my, I mean your, audience.)

What interested you about this particular route and how high had any previous parties made it before you came along? Why the hell did you do it? To prove it wasn't a hard climb, Right?

What percentage of the hook placements that you used had been clearly created with a chisel or drill and would not have been viable without such doctoring? This is really key in making my case. Give me numbers. This route was totally unviable without doctoring, Right? If so, can you say it just like that?

My Inquiring mind really wants to know...And don't worry about Pete, he is just as whacked as Richard!"

Valerio- You have been back to Yosemite several times since 1998 why not get a partner and finish this one or did you not find the climbing worthwhile or rewarding?

Dude, let your vendetta go. Please.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
May 21, 2012 - 11:28am PT
Not for all the Pink Ponies in your playpen Dweebzie...

Valerio- Did any of my questions bother you?
Da_Dweeb

climber
May 21, 2012 - 11:31am PT
Not for all the Pink Ponies in your playpen Dweebzie....

Your call as always, dear. So long as we're clear that that's what your query is actually about.

Live and let live! =D
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
May 21, 2012 - 12:06pm PT
PeePee- Your tiny but exciting approval means the world to me...
Valerio

climber
Topic Author's Reply - Oct 12, 2012 - 09:17am PT
some new photos...

p1 - no lucky weather at that time...
p1 - no lucky weather at that time...
Credit: Valerio

p2 close the belay
p2 close the belay
Credit: Valerio

zicral rivet
zicral rivet
Credit: Valerio

p2 hooks runout
p2 hooks runout
Credit: Valerio

p9 a few hours before the thunderstorm
p9 a few hours before the thunderstorm
Credit: Valerio

p3 - 2nd belay
p3 - 2nd belay
Credit: Valerio

close to the belay... p2
close to the belay... p2
Credit: Valerio

close-up p2
close-up p2
Credit: Valerio

belay 9
belay 9
Credit: Valerio

try to stay warm and dry...
try to stay warm and dry...
Credit: Valerio

SAR helicopter for save climbers on the Nose...
SAR helicopter for save climbers on the Nose...
Credit: Valerio

Credit: Valerio


these are all the pictures I have about WOC...

Cheers

Valerio



Silver

Ice climber
Oct 12, 2012 - 09:33am PT
Valerio you are amazing! good stuff and always a joy reading your posts.

Rhodo-Router

Gym climber
the secret topout on the Chockstone Chimney
Oct 12, 2012 - 09:47am PT
But really, it was super contrived and unrewarding, right? Right?
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