Ahab 5.10b?

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Messages 1 - 20 of total 104 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
Iztok

climber
Cupertino, CA
Topic Author's Original Post - May 2, 2006 - 05:12pm PT
Is the 5.10b grade on Ahab (El Cap base) a sandbag or is that pretty much what to expect for 5.10 chimney/offwidths at Yosemite? I took a whipping on toprope. I don't know how I'd protect it on lead or how Bridwell et. al. did it the first time with the gear they had.
Dingus Milktoast

climber
NorCal
May 2, 2006 - 05:14pm PT
Rumor has it Robbins 3rd classed it wearing deck shoes back in the day.

DMT
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
May 2, 2006 - 05:24pm PT
Look in Pat Ament's biography of Robbins for the story, he soloed Ahab and downclimbed Moby Dick, Center. I heard TM Herbert tell this story while holding court one day underneath MBC to a crowd of wide eyed youngin's who had fresh copies of the Climbing featuring Yosemite crack... TM is great!

...not a sandbag, it's just that people don't climb chimney much anymore... if you really want to get big eyes, go climb The Remnant, Right 5.7 at Reed's once you do that you'll see that the Meyer's rating for Ahab, 5.10a, is probably closer to truth.
Grug

Trad climber
Golden, Colorado
May 2, 2006 - 05:35pm PT
I always thought of Ahab as THE standard for 5.10a chimney/offwidth in Yosemite.
John Vawter

Social climber
San Diego
May 2, 2006 - 05:36pm PT
For pro, I seem to recall the old 6" bong as a nut trick worked on this one, but not sure about that. The crux is a short thrutch to a point where the crack goes straight up again and you can get a good chicken wing, and then get your feet under you.

As far as the rating goes, it seemed fair the first time I tried it and led it, and way off the next two times I tried and couldn't do it.

PS -- Grug, your opinion doesn't count. Your preternatural talent in off size cracks disqualifies you.
Jaybro

Social climber
The West
May 2, 2006 - 05:49pm PT
What they said. When did it get up graded?
Grug

Trad climber
Golden, Colorado
May 2, 2006 - 06:06pm PT
If I'm disqualified Jaybro is too.
bobmarley

Trad climber
auburn, california
May 2, 2006 - 06:12pm PT
ahab is harder than midterm, which is 10a. so i can see it being 10b. now don't tell me midterm ain't 10a! if it's 5.9, then steck-salathe is 5.7!
scuffy b

climber
Chalet Neva-Care
May 2, 2006 - 06:40pm PT
Hey Iztok
Which way did you face? I know it's done both ways.
Maybe one direction is favored by OW people and the
other by OW learners?
Iztok

climber
Cupertino, CA
Topic Author's Reply - May 2, 2006 - 06:46pm PT
I started facing out from the wall. But I couldn't figure out how to get passed the section where it was too wide for me to go heel/toe so I turned around and managed to chicken wing, friction, calf toe, my way up. It was an ugly scene.
John Vawter

Social climber
San Diego
May 2, 2006 - 06:48pm PT
Hey without sticky rubber, Midterm's first 15 feet are .10b. ;-)

Talk about ratings creep, how about the mantle pitch on DNB! From .10b to .11a??!! Low .10 seemed fair to me, but I could tuck my foot behind my head back in those days.
Karl Baba

Trad climber
Yosemite, Ca
May 2, 2006 - 06:50pm PT
Midterm is alledgedly 10a for the fingers at the bottom but some folks consider the crux the transition to the squeeze from the OW.

Ahab seems light years harder than Midterm to me. I think it's a world class sandbag, but I have seen smaller folks cruise it "easier" than larger types.

It's nothing like what you should expect at a similar rating on long Yosemite climbs.

It's kinda of a unique buggering, that Ahab. Good practice

Peace

karl
scuffy b

climber
Chalet Neva-Care
May 2, 2006 - 06:58pm PT
Karl
According to The Book, the fist-OW-squeeze transition is .10a
and the start is .10b. I think the start is a lot harder than
it was in the 70's, when it was also rated .10b. some flakes have
broken, it's shinier. It even looks different in pictures, whiter
than it used to be. It probably depends on your individual mix
of jam/stem/lieback.
Dingus Milktoast

climber
NorCal
May 2, 2006 - 07:16pm PT
Those two routes have served up plate loads of humble pie down through the years.

But in boat shoes???

DMT
John Vawter

Social climber
San Diego
May 2, 2006 - 07:24pm PT
I'm with Karl on this one. Ahab is a sandbag. I had a lot less trouble with Chin Strap Crack, a similarly leaning wide fissure (given .10c) at Tahquitz, than with Ahab.
Tom

Big Wall climber
San Luis Obispo CA
May 2, 2006 - 07:47pm PT
For pro, I seem to recall the old 6" bong as a nut trick

LOL

Yeah, you stick the bong vertically, like a big stopper, and run a sling through one of the lightening holes near the tip. There was a drawing of this in one of Robbin's Rockcraft books.


You can get those mutant aluminum bongs from Yvon, at the GPIW in Ventura.

OOPS! The battery in my calendar died. I have no idea what year it is 8-)


You can push a big cam ahead of you as you go. Bridwell once called this Sequential Toproping.

The flexible trigger wires of the Camalot and Friend allow the head of the cam to rotate, and fall out of the crack and onto your head. To fix this, replace the flexible trigger wires with a solid piece of music wire, or other spring wire (about 0.040" diameter). Allow the trigger to slide up the wire easily, to accomodate flared placements. I just stick the bottom loop of the solid wire through the hole and bend an L shape about 1/2" long as a stop. I've only done this with Camalots, but it should work the same for large Friends.
k-man

Gym climber
SCruz
May 2, 2006 - 07:52pm PT
I'm now curious about The Slack, which was mentioned here a few months ago. Big Bay trees in the first 50' prevent folks from going up there now I suppose.

If Ahab is .10a, then that green route is certainly .10+.

And yeah, solo'ed in boat shoes, then downclimbed MDC. I'd like to see that one! Apparently RR was trying to promote those shoes for climbing.
k-man

Gym climber
SCruz
May 2, 2006 - 07:55pm PT
"The flexible trigger wires of the Camalot and Friend allow the head of the cam to rotate, and fall out of the crack and onto your head. To fix this, replace the flexible trigger wires with a solid piece of music wire, or other spring wire (about 0.040" diameter). Allow the trigger to slide up the wire easily, to accomodate flared placements. I just stick the bottom loop of the solid wire through the hole and bend an L shape about 1/2" long as a stop. I've only done this with Camalots, but it should work the same for large Friends."

Tom, you gotta picture? I can't imagine what you're talking about.
Also, WTF is "music wire?"


PS. Your picture of all those big cams in that other post--I know where that pictue was taken, but I'll be damned if I've ever seen it like that.
bvb

Social climber
flagstaff arizona
May 2, 2006 - 08:02pm PT
suck it up, losers. sacher fired off the ahab with sketchier pro than we'll ever have to deal with. ya wanna know what it's rated? it's rated 1964.
Tom

Big Wall climber
San Luis Obispo CA
May 2, 2006 - 08:34pm PT
k-man: I'll post a photo in a few minutes.

Music wire is a type of spring wire. I guess the idea is that it's used for piano strings. If you go to a typical hobby shop, they'll have these 1" diameter by 3' long red cardboard tubes with brass wire, aluminum tubing, etc. Some of them have music wire in them.

Personally, I prefer stainless spring wire, because it doesn't rust. But, you gotta buy a roll at a time.


If you're who I think you are, I took that photo at your house at Yosemite West. Steve-O was caretaking the place at the time. He'd just got hired by YMS. Anna Levine, Ricardo and I were there to do SOH (June, 2004) but wound up bailing because of time constraints, team friction, etc.

PTPP and I returned in October and sent it. He was nursing the broken ankle he got on the Sheep Ranch the previous spring, so I did all but about five leads. This is why he hated the route: he was my belay monkey and hauling slave. Gotta love it.




EDIT: HERE IS THE PHOTO

This is a photo of a hand-cam that I put solid wires on. Sorry, I don't have a photo of a big cam that has been modified. The idea is the same, though.

The solid wire is bent into a U-shape, and then pressed with pliers to get the loop radius quite small. The upper ends are bent into legs that go through the cam lobes and get trimmed off and a short stub bent over to lock it in. The bottoms of the two wire loops are then fed down through the trigger's holes, and then bent over so they can't pull back out.

However, the trigger can slide up the wires. In a flared placement, the two lobes that are more compressed will have their trigger wire sticking down, like the one on the right in the photo.

This is how the small Aliens accomodate flares, with the trigger wires sliding down through that transfer plate that is near the head.






If the trigger wires are flexible (i.e., thin cable with short pieces of wire), the head of a big cam can flop back and forth. If you push one of those up a crack, the lobes tend to compress unevenly, the head rotates to one side, the lobes snap open, and the thing falls out.

The solid spring wire keeps the head from flopping back and forth. If it gets a bit angled, the wires spring it back to center. When you push the cam up the crack, it glides right along. The lobes remain equally compressed.
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