Bolting at Cragmont, Berkeley

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clustiere

Trad climber
berkeley ca
Topic Author's Original Post - Aug 11, 2012 - 12:37pm PT
Someone bolted farewell to arms, it looks to have been recently equipped with (4) titanium bolts with RE-500 resin. I wasn't really sure how mindful the placements were as it looked like a dangerous fall could be made between the third and fourth both. My guess is that it was placed there due to rock quality. A further interesting part of using these kind of bolts is that it requires making an additional slot adding to rock damage. Do people plan to bolt the rest of the climbs making it a sport climbing area, or was that just for the interest of one person? Honestly if the other routes were bolted it would make for an interesting little sport crag, but who's making these decisions? I also noticed a bolt placed at the top of the lower Remillard rock up the street. Things are changing in the Berkeley Hills. More than anything I'm curious how these decisions are being made?
The user formerly known as stzzo

climber
Sneaking up behind you
Aug 11, 2012 - 02:49pm PT
Let the bolt wars begin.

I don't have the guide in front of me, wonder if the FA is on supertopo.

Which rock at Remillard?

There have been bolts on top of that lower side rock for years (the one with the plaque)... Is it a new bolt in addition to the old ones?
Matt Sarad

climber
Aug 11, 2012 - 03:11pm PT
I wouldn't call it a war. Chuck Ostin top roped me on Farewell To Arms 25 years ago at the beginning of my climbing.It is one of my fondest memories. Bolting it is an abomination.
clustiere

Trad climber
berkeley ca
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 11, 2012 - 03:20pm PT
I do hope nobody goes out to damage the bolts, at this point it would damage the rock as well. The best you could do given the glue in and surrounding chiseling is to bend the bolts over and that is always a sad shame. It's be nice to have a discussion rather than one group busting the rock for this reason and another busting it for that.
tarek

climber
berkeley
Aug 11, 2012 - 05:12pm PT
I'd also like to know who is doing the bolting, which I regard as undesirable. Just toprope those short faces.

Was sorely tempted to chop the bolts at the top of the 5.9 face 15-18 years ago, as topropes around there were all being set up using long slings back from the cliff edge. Trees were also used, The slings may have contributed to the trees' demise, but I don't think so. I've seen similar age bays dying in other Berkeley parks.

Anyhow, I didn't do anything with those bolts years ago (extra large metolius hangers and all) because I figured they were used to teach classes and it just seemed like too much of an ego move to chop.

But I wish people would consult with a few others who've been around before drilling on main faces.

As for Remillard, there have been 2 sets of bolts there for many years, they are for topropes and seem fine. If someone places bolts at the top of the main face for convenience--instead of using the pole further back--I'd be in favor of removing those.
The user formerly known as stzzo

climber
Sneaking up behind you
Aug 11, 2012 - 05:36pm PT
The best you could do given the glue in and surrounding chiseling is to bend the bolts over and that is always a sad shame. It's be nice to have a discussion rather than one group busting the rock for this reason and another busting it for that.

There must be some solvent that will soften the glue. No?

Not that I'm pushing for yanking them, just wondering -- if someone were so-inclined -- whether there's an innocuous removal method.
crasic

climber
Aug 11, 2012 - 06:19pm PT
Cragmont and Remillard is used extensively by local groups and camps to teach rock climbing.

I wouldn't be surprised if one of them put up the bolts to facilitate their business by teaching sport climbing or what have you.
phylp

Trad climber
Millbrae, CA
Aug 11, 2012 - 07:12pm PT
There is absolutely no reason for those faces to be bolted.

My two cents.
bergbryce

Mountain climber
South Lake Tahoe, CA
Aug 11, 2012 - 07:20pm PT
That's a bummer.

I wonder what possesses someone to bolt something like that? Is it cluelessness or just plain disregard?
ontheedgeandscaredtodeath

Trad climber
San Francisco, Ca
Aug 11, 2012 - 07:23pm PT
What is shocking to me is that anyone would go to cragmont more than once.
bergbryce

Mountain climber
South Lake Tahoe, CA
Aug 11, 2012 - 07:32pm PT
I went twice.
Okay, three times.
Remillard twice.
Spider Savage

Mountain climber
The shaggy fringe of Los Angeles
Aug 11, 2012 - 07:37pm PT
I think many will agree that bolting short TRs is lame.

BITD we would Tr such problems with a careful belayer laying out 3 ft of slack keeping the low end of the loop just above the climbers ankles if you want to do a spicy ascent.
The user formerly known as stzzo

climber
Sneaking up behind you
Aug 11, 2012 - 08:36pm PT
I don't have a problem with the bolting of a TR -- even something short I'd rather lead than set up a TR.

I do dislike bolting w/o regard to the FA or local community...
crasic

climber
Aug 12, 2012 - 02:42am PT
I do dislike bolting w/o regard to the FA or local community...

The reality is that this is an old rock park in the middle of a built up suburban neighborhood. It is and always has been a practice crag, I have record books from UCHC (UC Hiking Club) going back to the 50's that show it was regularly used to practice everything from hammering in pitons and placing bolts to leading and rope technique, these same people went on to put up classic FA's all over California. However, this makes the place rather historic, since many early west coast climbers (going back to the beginning of the century) cut their teeth and learned rope techniques at these oversized boulders.

IMO, Bolting this short TR to set up a sport/lead practice area is well within the spirit and history of the rock park. Of course, this should be done reasonably and in moderation.
slobmonster

Trad climber
OAK (nee NH)
Aug 12, 2012 - 03:01am PT
Seriously?

Damn.

Those bolts will be chopped, justifiably, and hopefully super duper clean. That's just lame.

Curious as to the condition of the anchor bolts on TOP of Cragmont... I replaced several of these a few years ago. Same holes as the bolts previously placed, if anyone's asking, as I would too.

ß Î Ø T Ç H

Boulder climber
bouldering
Aug 12, 2012 - 03:05am PT
IMO, Bolting this short TR to set up a sport/lead practice area is well within the spirit and history of the rock park.
I disagree with you. It's more like applying the modern f'ed up conglomerate of sport and gym etc to initiate the 'gen-next' noob, and lighten his wallet a little in the process.
klk

Trad climber
cali
Aug 12, 2012 - 11:56am PT
crasic is correct about cragmont's history.

cragmont is one of the places that american "dirty" climbing began.

pitons were rare in north america until the rock climbing section and the cragmont climbing club began importing and using them. that chosspile was one of the places suburban, white-collar kids learned to whale on metal.

indian rock is an easier place to find the old practice bolt holes. i've always wondered if at least one or two of those relics weren't drilled by salathe, back when expansion bolts were mostly unknown in climbing.

later, in the seventies, after the clean climbing deal took off in california (sort of), folks quit the metal work on berkeley practice crags. so it's probably been a good forty or fifty years since locals were heading off to cragmont to try out new pins. i dont know when folks bolted that other choss pile left of farewll. seventies? so traditionally speaking, cragmont was a whale on metal chosspile. then it was a clean climbing chosspile. now, at least part of it is a sport chosspile.

so far as the new bolts go, i guess i can't work up strong feelings one way or the other. i'd probably be pretty unhappy if someone did it at i-rock. if the bolts are spaced in ways that make deckers likely, then we're more likely to see unhappy events down the road, if the bfd has to respond to climber accidents.

although the last time i was at cragmont, several years ago, one of the local fire station contingents had set up a rappel off the top-- off the trees. and the team leader was coaching folks into rapping in big jumps. i had only been there maybe ninety seconds when i got to see the first sprained ankle.


crasic

climber
Aug 12, 2012 - 12:19pm PT
It's more like applying the modern f'ed up conglomerate of sport and gym etc to initiate the 'gen-next' noob, and lighten his wallet a little in the process.

Which is exactly what this tired old rock has been used for since the beginning of the last century, except the "next-gen noob" in the 50's that used it to nail his first piton in and drill bolt holed are considered old stonemasters today.


Basically if the bolting was competent, I don't think its a problem, if its put up in away that we get a groundfall from every "ye first sport fall" then its stupid.
tarek

climber
berkeley
Aug 12, 2012 - 02:00pm PT
Well, if we use history as our guide here, we should put in some aid ladders and wail on some pins. Both are still used on the big stone and elsewhere all over the world and cragmont is a practice area, as stated.

The cracks at cragmont are a fine place to learn to lead. An instructor can place gear, and students can clip it as they examine how it was placed. I never had to be taught how to clip bolts once I'd clipped gear...

I'm with others here who are concerned about silly accidents this might bring from flegling leaders. It's a choss pile, really. Crumbly rock, ledges, etc. But this is a fun place to go alone for the moderates, and it's actually a major bummer to see those toprope bolts as you climb past. I'd be more in favor of putting in some permanent anchors away from the cliff edge, as is the local tradition for top rope anchors (IR, Mortar, Remillard).

But yeah, if someone thought to bolt I-12 or 13, That's when a whole bunch of people would be out for blood.
crasic

climber
Aug 12, 2012 - 02:54pm PT
Well, if we use history as our guide here, we should put in some aid ladders and wail on some pins. Both are still used on the big stone and elsewhere all over the world and cragmont is a practice area, as stated.

And my point is that I wouldn't be surprised if someone does. I don't see a problem with a practice area evolving with the sport. If I wanted to learn to pound in pins on lead, I would do it at cragmont. Its history is that it its a fricking beater pile for practicing everything from pounding pins to setting up belays before you hit the big rocks.

As stated by others its a chosspile, its value is in that its a great "first outdoor climbing" area for bringing beginners and practice pile for the rest of us.

I mean, for christ's sake, there is a basketball court at the top of it.
tarek

climber
berkeley
Aug 12, 2012 - 06:37pm PT
after the "clean revolution" I'm not sure whether it's ok to beat pins anywhere other than at a quarry for practice. You just get on a route that requires them and go.

if you did that at Cragmont, it would change the nature of routes I free climb, and that would be...well, it'd be a damn shame. Likewise, bolting any of the main faces there for leading would be unacceptable to me, but I'm just one person. Never knew any route names but I guess Farewell to Arms is down at the end/West?

Why not grid bolt the whole place? Could easily be done from stances (1) Because even choss deserves some love, (2) Enough people have fond feelings about how the rock looks that they'd be red hot pissed.

Climbing there even has a vaguely Valley-like feeling for the way the trees are and so on, not to be experienced elsewhere in Burke.
The user formerly known as stzzo

climber
Sneaking up behind you
Aug 12, 2012 - 07:06pm PT
Crasic, as part of the current UC Hiking Club (now named CHAOS), I'm very curious about those record books.
doughnutnational

Gym climber
its nice here in the spring
Aug 12, 2012 - 08:17pm PT
Let em bolt that choss up, then maybe they'll less bolts to bring over here.
crasic

climber
Aug 12, 2012 - 11:02pm PT
Crasic, as part of the current UC Hiking Club (now named CHAOS), I'm very curious about those record books.

After our recent shed clean out I took the legacy archive (big yellow crate) home to sort, catalogue and partially scan/photograph. I'm a current member, what do you want to know?

edit: And just to clarify, I'm not saying I'm in favor of bolting this climb or gridbolting the whole rock, I guess I was just trying to see, maybe, in what framework this might be understood if not accepted, devil's advocate if you will. If the bolter did his work in order to turn the TR route into a beginner lead, well, like I said, that is in the spirit of the place even though it may not be in very good style.
The user formerly known as stzzo

climber
Sneaking up behind you
Aug 12, 2012 - 11:26pm PT
After our recent shed clean out I took the legacy archive (big yellow crate) home to sort, catalogue and partially scan/photograph. I'm a current member, what do you want to know?

Haha. Mostly, I wanted to get more info into the hands of the guy who just took all the books out of the gear shed and is embarking on researching the club's history ;-).

I thought you were an old member of the UC Hiking Club who had some private books.

I guess we'll meet sooner or later, but now that I know who you are, I don't need more information on the log books...

Kent
tarek

climber
berkeley
Aug 13, 2012 - 12:09am PT
Well, I think you have it about right, Crasic. Hopefully the helpful bolter won't decide that one success should beget another. I'd favor removal of any bolts that appear on the other climbs.

btw, Gomer's Pile, the hardest of the 3 traverses in Berkeley is on Cragmont choss, has rules, "no cracks or crack-related holds" and is also a stellar problem. I hope no one decides it's "improvable" because it looks like "crap."
dfinnecy

Social climber
'stralia
Aug 13, 2012 - 12:36am PT
tarek wrote:
Anyhow, I didn't do anything with those bolts years ago (extra large metolius hangers and all) because I figured they were used to teach classes and it just seemed like too much of an ego move to chop.

I've thought the same thing, oh, those bolts are for teaching so they are OK. Afterall, it is good to introduce people to climbing. After thinking on it more my opinion has changed 100%. Bolts for classes set students expectations and make the extreeme! rock! climbing! hobby accessible. No need to learn a craft or take responsibility for yours and your partners safety, any dope can clip a rope.

I taught climbing classes for a bit of time. TBH more just experience days, get a kid on a rope, have them rappel, belay, climb, cry and whimper, taste a bit of success. Good times.

We built natural anchors, massively redundant, inconvenient spider webs using ridiculous amounts of webbing and gear. Part of the experience was talking the group through the anchor set up, to inspire confidence and to show the kids, 'this is how it's done'.

I can't claim a higher ethos than other outfits, it was just the way the group I was with ran shop. We could build anchors which satisfied the insurance companies and provided top ropes. What reason was there to put in bolts?

The pursuit and commodification of convenience is at the root of so many of the ills of the world. Sigh.
Mr_T

Trad climber
Northern California
Aug 13, 2012 - 12:37am PT
I normally call out most choppers as either the bolting taliban (as in the case of chopping the first bolt of Serenity Crack) or old dogs who can't handle new/better kids on their turf. And I almost always advocate leaving the bolts in. But WTF - four bolts on Farewell to Arms at Craigmont?! You could lead that as an R/X with one cam half way up. I'm guessing it's been soloed countless times and it'd be a crap sport lead, a piss poor choice for teaching leading on. Whoever did that is just a moron.

Chop away, but do it right.
Ratagonia

Social climber
Mt Carmel, Utah
Aug 13, 2012 - 12:44am PT
I've heard you can heat the glue up with a propane torch, and spin the bolt out. Can also fill the bolt hanger with glue, and leave a note asking for contact.
shipoopoi

Big Wall climber
oakland
Aug 13, 2012 - 12:45am PT
i don't buy the philosophy that cragmont rock in berkeley is a chosspile. rather, it is a gem of the bay area, with some superb, classic climbs, and plenty of bolts and trees on top for anchoring. i would hate to see this place made into a little sport climbing area, its sets a bad example for other bay area crags.

as for farewell to arms, i'm not that familiar with it, but let's just see what people have to say about the new bolts, and have more discussion.

ss
bergbryce

Mountain climber
South Lake Tahoe, CA
Aug 13, 2012 - 12:57am PT
Keep an open eye on those Bay Area crags then... There was a new bolted line put up in Pine Creek at Diablo which crossed Yabba Dabba Dudes, a route that's been there for a good while.
Greg Barnes

climber
Aug 13, 2012 - 01:06am PT
i don't buy the philosophy that cragmont rock in berkeley is a chosspile. rather, it is a gem of the bay area
Actually the two opinions are not mutually exclusive...at least not in the Bay Area...
tarek

climber
berkeley
Aug 13, 2012 - 01:09am PT
Yeah, Steve, I call it choss just because of the nature of the rock in places, but I learned to climb there, learned to "highball" there, and love the feeling of the place. Scott's traverse, GP, as I mentioned, looks terrible but is fantastic. On the main climbs, though, some of the rock is bullet.

dfinnecy, I agree. We learned something setting anchors up there. Even if they were half off of trees.

You can learn to sport lead in a gym these days quite adequately.
QITNL

climber
Aug 13, 2012 - 02:14am PT
Since this is a "practice crag," would this be a good route to work on my chopping technique? From stance - no rap chopping, naturally. A Farewell to Bolts, fair game?

And for filling the holes, locals, help me out: what's the correct ratio of epoxy and kitty poo?
Clint Cummins

Trad climber
SF Bay area, CA
Aug 13, 2012 - 03:59pm PT
The best you could do given the glue in and surrounding chiseling is to bend the bolts over

Actually, a cleaner option is to use a dremel tool to cut the bolts off flush to the surface.
We did this once a couple of years ago, when we inadvertantly placed a belay anchor very close to an existing route.

I like the idea of dissolving/melting the glue, but don't know if that would work. Test on the same glue elsewhere first, I guess....
klk

Trad climber
cali
Aug 13, 2012 - 04:29pm PT
I call it choss

heh

indeed. choss is pretty personal. but if cragmont doesn't qualify, then we're moving the bar down pretty low.

the best arguments i can see so far against the bolting--

1. it was done without input from at least some locals who actually care about climbing at cragmont; and

2. n00bs can practice leading in the gym and so practice crags should be clean climbing only.
The user formerly known as stzzo

climber
Sneaking up behind you
Aug 13, 2012 - 09:00pm PT
The practice argument can itself be defeated by precedent.

Didn't the traditions created by those "practicers" go through a clean climbing revolution? Now Cragmont is for practicing clean climbing and practicing respect for the FA and local ethics ;-).
all in jim

climber
Aug 14, 2012 - 10:42am PT
I put the bolts in.

I apologize to those who are offended.

Please consider the following before you do any chopping.

If the new bolts lead to grid-bolting (does that seem hysterical to anyone else?) I will remove the bolts myself.

At the same time I'm stoked for the dozen (or so) people I've seen lead the climb and lower off with pumped arms and huge smiles on their faces - for some (younger climbers) it was their first lead, for others it was their first 5.10 lead. I'm sure there have been others who have enjoyed leading it during the 4 months the bolts have been in.

I didn't ask here at Supertopo because I don't believe this site is representative of the climbing community as a whole.

I instead asked at Cragmont, a place I have climbed at perhaps 1000 times over the past 33 years. The overwhelming response I received (I've put the idea out there to dozens of people over the years) is that it was a great idea and would be an ideal spot for fledgling leaders to practice. It was bolted with those people in mind and is a safe lead, contrary to what's been posted here by people who have not lead it.

I learned to climb at Cragmont Rock. I've also taught 100s of kids to climb there (Cal Adventures kids camps in the summer in the 80s for about five years). Lots of those kids are still climbing today, and yes, I'm proud of that.

I love introducing people to climbing and I can't think of a better spot than Cragmont Park... can you? I don't think the gym is a better alternative. Cragmont has been used as a teaching spot since the thirties. You can practice top roping, rappelling, lead (gear) climbing and aid climbing there. Now you can make your first bolted lead there. Farewell to Arms is a steep climb, about 50 feet high on the far left side of the cliff. Everybody has to make their first lead somewhere... would you rather it be at Lover's Leap (that's where mine was, on a crowded sunday 32 years ago, and yes, I did epic and create a cluster - I should have practiced on those cracks at Cragmont first...).

If your main objection is that it is a sport climb, well, I don't really know what to say to that other than sport climbing is part of most people's climbing experience these days. Is that reason enough to remove a climb people are enjoying?

Ok, flame away!

Jim Thornburg
Randisi

Social climber
Dalian, Liaoning
Aug 14, 2012 - 10:49am PT
I remember lots of people, myself included, lowering off with pumped arms and big smiles on top-rope.

You should know better. Just goes to show that experience doesn't always lead to judgment.

Randy Burks
all in jim

climber
Aug 14, 2012 - 11:00am PT
Randy,

Thats a good point. I'm going to take a beating here at supertopo, no doubt.

You can still top rope the climb, obviously.

Can you elaborate on why you think the bolts are bad, though? I think it's more fun to lead than tr. (I've also lead it on gear (there isn't much) and soloed it).
k-man

Gym climber
SCruz
Aug 14, 2012 - 11:02am PT
Maybe we should bolt Nate's, make it harder.







This is just as lame.
Randisi

Social climber
Dalian, Liaoning
Aug 14, 2012 - 11:03am PT
Bolts are bad because I am firm believer in a no trace ethic, or at least as little trace as possible.

I also prefer my rock in its natural state as much as possible.

Sport climbing is slowly but surely swallowing up all else. The cancer cell of climbing.

These are not new arguments.

But I haven't climbed in over a year and am beginning not to give a fig. 9,000 miles away, I am only a local by proxy.
all in jim

climber
Aug 14, 2012 - 11:11am PT
Right Kelly, next I will bolt Nats.

C'mon! You've placed more bolts than I have, why would you take a shot like that?
k-man

Gym climber
SCruz
Aug 14, 2012 - 11:14am PT
Jim,
It's not that the bolts on this one small piece of rock are bad. But consider, bolting this small crag sends the message that it's OK to bolt anything, and everything.

From the gym, to city choss, to the hills and beyond.

Also to consider, this crag is an historic climbing location. Bolts had never been used in past generations, by folks whose names we all know.




2:1, this becomes one of the most lead routes in the country.
So yes, there is that positive side.

all in jim

climber
Aug 14, 2012 - 11:30am PT
There is another bolted route to the left of Farewell to Arms that has been there as long as I've been climbing. It's a weird route, but lead-able and aid-able. It's called Wipeout or something, 4 or 5 bolts.

I certainly was not trying to send a message that indiscriminate bolting is ok. I don't think it will send that message more than any other bolted route.
Randisi

Social climber
Dalian, Liaoning
Aug 14, 2012 - 11:40am PT
I certainly was not trying to send a message that indiscriminate bolting is ok. I don't think it will send that message more than any other bolted route.

Maybe, but all together they shout it quite loudly.
k-man

Gym climber
SCruz
Aug 14, 2012 - 11:55am PT
Jim,
First, I'm glad to hear that you, a local climber there for years, did the work. We can all count on the bolts being solid, and in the best locations.

I've climbed there a few times. For me, one of the most fun things about that rusted-out old crag was its place in the history of California climbing. I thought it was cool, I was learning the same way the old masters had done it.

The bolting of Farewell was inevitable. In 10 or 15 years, nobody's gonna remember who climbed there in the past, nor will they care. Still, how cool it would be to climb there in 20, 30 years, and have it be the same as it ever was.


I'm always concerned that exuberant youth will see this as a green light to bolting, and why not bolt other things like it. Nat's, ;-), is obviously an exaggeration. But I know some boulder problems nearby that I was too shy to do, and boy, I would have loved to have lead them.

:- kelly
Randisi

Social climber
Dalian, Liaoning
Aug 14, 2012 - 12:01pm PT
Let's make the Bubble a two-bolt lead.

Center Overhang, why not?

Watercourse, four bolts.

Three for Transportation Crack. (Don't want to keep the beginners from the bolted leading experience, do we?)
tarek

climber
berkeley
Aug 14, 2012 - 12:19pm PT
Let's keep respect in the discussion. (And asking on ST would have been a farce.) It makes a big difference to me who put the bolts in. I was concerned that it might be someone with much less experience in the area, ready for more, a perfectly reasonable fear. And, yeah, I haven't been back there in several months.

Jim, you have to admit, it could be really tempting to put in 2 bolts on the 5.9, or 4 bolts on the 5.8, left of the 5.4 crack, or a bolt to protect the high 10d crux. From what you've said, I don't think you'd like that, correct?

Maybe you can see why someone would object to having the big metolius hangered bolts right on the cliff face, as they bouldered past. The clear local tradition is to have bolts for tr s on top of the cliff.

I don't think it's that big of a deal to leave one new lead route, if it ends there. But if someone comes along and adds more lead bolts, only arbitrary decisions would allow their removal--whether based on a committee or seniority in the area. And everyone chafes against arbitrary decisions for good reason.
klk

Trad climber
cali
Aug 14, 2012 - 12:45pm PT
I instead asked at Cragmont, a place I have climbed at perhaps 1000 times over the past 33 years. The overwhelming response I received (I've put the idea out there to dozens of people over the years) is that it was a great idea and would be an ideal spot for fledgling leaders to practice. It was bolted with those people in mind and is a safe lead, contrary to what's been posted here by people who have not lead it.

thanks for the detail. and yr intuition about not posting on st ahead of time was obviously sound.

i am most impressed by the fact that you have climbed at cragmont a thousand times. that's pretty heroic.like papciak at mortar.

wish i had yr motivation cheers



Matt Sarad

climber
Aug 14, 2012 - 07:09pm PT
When I first started to climb, I met Chuck Ostin at Remillard. He took me under his wing and we met one day at Cragmont. He suggested Farewell to Arms. I flew off near the top and he made me do it again. He just said," Climb it faster. " I did. He was yarding in the rope as I climbed. It was my first 5.10.

It is one of my best memories from a spotty climbing history.

I miss Chuck, and I miss climbing every day as I did back in 1987.

I wish the climb had not been bolted.

Randisi

Social climber
Dalian, Liaoning
Aug 14, 2012 - 11:10pm PT
Seems to me, Jim, that you've gotten off very lightly.
slobmonster

Trad climber
OAK (nee NH)
Aug 15, 2012 - 01:39am PT
Cat's outta the bag, Jim.

You might have some solid underpinnings to your stated reasons for bolting the route, but I predict that they won't be shared.

Maybe those glue-ins would have been better (and less controversially) been utilized as TR anchors?
James

climber
My twin brother's laundry room
Aug 15, 2012 - 02:34am PT
Bolt the planet
phylp

Trad climber
Millbrae, CA
Aug 15, 2012 - 10:32am PT
Jim, I don't feel "strongly" about this from a user standpoint because, although I live on the Peninsula, I don't bother to climb outside on Bay Area rock anymore. I go to the gym for a workout and then I go "outside" to climb whereever I want to go.

It just makes me sad from an access standpoint.

It was bolted with those people in mind and is a safe lead

And beginning leaders often have beginning belayers. How long will it take before someone figures out a way to get hurt on a "safe" lead? And is it more likely to be an underage climber who doesn't have the resources to get to the ORG and clip bolts? Whose parents then want to "shut down" the climbing? This is a can of worms I know. People can figure out how to get hurt setting up top rope anchors as well. But it's specifically because this is a rare local resource in an area of high population density that the pros and cons of changes needs to be carefully weighed.

Take care, Phyl
FTOR

Sport climber
CA
Aug 15, 2012 - 04:55pm PT
i had the audacity to do this to a couple of routes i had put up as top ropes at cosumnes long ago. my thinking was, as jim's, that the area, largely a beginners area, could use a couple bolted leads for people to practice on. the locals i heard took great offense and promptly chopped them, thus keeping the area safe from rampant grid bolting.
Matt

Trad climber
it's all turtles, all the way dooowwwwwnn!!!!!
Aug 16, 2012 - 01:07am PT
this thread is way longer than that route
clustiere

Trad climber
berkeley ca
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 23, 2012 - 06:28pm PT
My additional two cents.

It seemed to me that both the first bolt would lead to hitting a ledge and the distance between the second to last and last bolt was both going to lead to rope drag and hitting a ledge. I seems really unnecessary given that indoor gyms have replaced the need to bolt short top rope crags. I fear that other routes will be similarly equipped and that you may be setting a new and unfortunate precedent. Send newbies to Mt. Diablo where leading has a strong precedent. The line bolted to the left of Farewell is similarly unnecessary and I believe only bolted because it was done by the FA party.

mucci

Trad climber
The pitch of Bagalaar above you
Aug 23, 2012 - 07:13pm PT
Jim-

Same BS you were touting on the rapbolting going on at pinnacles.

Funny how you pimp this "Fun credo" everywhere you go.

You just FORCED your mentality/ethic/hardware on the COMMUNITY. Those who frequented the crag, who gave you the OK are not the only members of the tribe.

Talk about narrow minded.

Leave the history alone Jim.







clustiere

Trad climber
berkeley ca
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 25, 2012 - 07:56pm PT
Moss slab next!
Nate D

climber
San Francisco
Aug 27, 2012 - 12:06am PT
Interesting thread. I've seen the curious lead bolts, and they looked well placed, but tempting as it was to clip 'em, having TRd the thing years ago, I simply don't climb enough anymore to manage the pump. Would be a stout first sport lead or first outdoor lead, IMO. I wouldn't put a noob on it, but plenty young guns will likely want to clip those bolts now that they are there, even if not up to the task.

Thanks for your guide, Jim. I've got the 1992 edition and haven't needed anything new - provided many years of play in the Bay area. Seems I do keep having to update the bolt counts, which I suppose is inevitable. Do you happen to know who put in the couple new 2-3 bolt lines on the east face of the Egg?
KabalaArch

Trad climber
Starlite, California
Aug 27, 2012 - 07:52pm PT
Back at School I slipped off of "No Fall Wall" at IR, around the back of it. Near the top of the slab, which I was using to practice for a GPA route, my ratty EB rands gave out. Made a lunge to the right, and grabbed a jug on the overhanging, but easy, dihedral. And greased.

The landing ledge gave me a hairline fib fracture.

Since I'd taken AC Transit to get to the boulder from my apt on Telegraph, that was my ride home. Started to hurt later, after a bunch of asprin, so I walked across the street to Alta Bates for an X-ray.
Randisi

Social climber
Dalian, Liaoning
Aug 27, 2012 - 09:15pm PT
grabbed a jug on the overhanging, but easy, dihedral

Overhanging?
KabalaArch

Trad climber
Starlite, California
Aug 28, 2012 - 04:51pm PT
Overhanging?

Ja, ist guntenpumpen!

Just joking - No Fall is a steep, glassy slab, pretty much on the due W exposure of IR. It's only about 15' high, rising above a good ledge, which is itself a couple few feet above grade. It's bounded to its right by a dihedral which overhangs a few degrees beyond vertical, which I guess is pretty easy on account of lots of incuts. Pretty athletic save, I'd say, to instantly rotate 90* right and latch a jug. As if in slo mo, I watched my latched fingers uncurl themselves from a catch that, were it baseball, would have landed me the MVP, had I stuck it. But I landed on the ledge instead.

Urban lore has it that a bounce from the landing ledge has dished out some spiral cervical fractures, hence the problem's name.

I'd guess, in retrospect, that the dihedral itself isn't very hard...I'd routinely downclimb it after summiting the W side problems.

And yet, when I first began, we used Goldline, first, then a 30' stretch of 8 mil perlon, replete with a single waist loop on a bowline, to TR the book. Which, apropos of this thread, is how a more experienced climber who was trolling for a nOOB, became my 1st, and possibly best, partner.

Tom was to show me yet another friction problem, about 150' right of No Fall - sketch 5.7, and committing.

I guess I forgot to draw any conclusion from my post: if sport climbers, or any climbers at all, wish to find the lead, I think they should leave the HDWR/ropes at home until they visit YOS or Pinns.

Before I got all technical and one thing and another, I used to go to IR thinking I was "practicing" for 3rd Sierra summits (which can actually involve bits and pieces of 5.9). I used to climb "Beginner's Crack" in waffle stompers - one day I pitched from quite near the top. (There used to be, and prolly still is, a vertical pounded in flush about 1/2 way up) No idea about PA's - aka "roller skates." Some guys, as I was to learn, were still in Kronhoffers, soled w/ "cat's paws."

BTW, I've met and known Dick Leonard and David Brower. But this ain't the '30s, guys. No bolts, for any reason, are needed at the Berkeley boulders, Mts Tam/Diablo. If any concerned wish to lead, I'd submit that the dues are payable when you do.
Mr_T

Trad climber
Northern California
Aug 28, 2012 - 05:08pm PT
On second though, leave the bolts. Whatever.
tradmanclimbs

Ice climber
Pomfert VT
Aug 28, 2012 - 05:09pm PT
This whole argument sounds so feckin weak. Someone bolted a few TR problems so that they can be lead.. BFD........ ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
Mungeclimber

Trad climber
the crowd MUST BE MOCKED...Mocked I tell you.
Aug 28, 2012 - 06:10pm PT
Good context point Phyl about population density as a factor to access.



I don't think it matters who put the bolts in. Though people tend to shout less at folks they know about such things.


I don't think I've been there but twice, so I'd weigh my opinion accordingly, but if the route had been solo'd before, wouldn't the history of the style of the area be considered ground up (unless considered a strictly "Top Rope" area)? Did the bolts go in ground up?

If not, since it's not a designated top down area, I say add the bolts, just put them in ground up, by someone that knows how to drill, unless there is evidence of a population density issue about bolting and not just a theory that it wouldn't go well.

Some thoughts,
M
kev

climber
A pile of dirt.
Aug 28, 2012 - 06:47pm PT
Jim,

Although bold it is leadable with natural pro. I'm sure it's been done many times over the years but regardless I know it's been done before. Apologize for retrobolting and remove your bolts so someone else doesn't have to come clean up after you.

kev
Cbeezy

Trad climber
Berkeley
Sep 22, 2012 - 10:14pm PT
I climbed at Cragmont today and was shocked to see this route bolted. The Berkeley rocks are known for bouldering & top roping. You definitely imposed your personal 'ethics' on the local climbing community.

For what it's worth I grew up, learned to climb and still live in Berkeley. I didn't hear anyone asking around if it was okay to start retro bolting routes...

Chop em & do a good job.

Charlie

A shot I took of FTH pre-bolting
http://www.flickr.com/photos/26712210@N05/4362075846/
jnaftzger

Social climber
Berkeley
Sep 23, 2012 - 08:59pm PT
I guess if lead climbing bolts get chopped the top rope bolts should be removed with them. There's natural pro for a top rope.

And why should a frikin top rope trump a lead climb, I vote leave them.
zBrown

Ice climber
chingadero de chula vista
Sep 23, 2012 - 10:36pm PT
Another take:

Cragmont Climbing Club - History

Leonard, by now the leader, used his piton hammer to knock "a series of nicks" on the knife edge. These manmade footholds allowed him to move upward about twenty feet without placing much outward strain on the Flake, and soon Leonard waved to his companions from the top of the pitch. The trio reached the top a few hours later.

The three men thought nothing of altering the rock to suit their needs. "Safety first" was their motto,

http://www.cragmontclimbingclub.org/history
clustiere

Trad climber
berkeley ca
Topic Author's Reply - Oct 13, 2012 - 09:20pm PT
Three new bolted routes.
Minerals

Social climber
The Deli
Oct 14, 2012 - 08:36pm PT
I have no say in this bolting debate, however…

“I've also taught 100s of kids to climb there (Cal Adventures kids camps in the summer in the 80s for about five years). Lots of those kids are still climbing today, and yes, I'm proud of that.”


Yes, they are still climbing today. : )

(Well… tomorrow, actually…)

Thanks, Jim!
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