"Break-Up" climb


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Jebus H Bomz

Peavine Basecamp
Apr 1, 2013 - 11:23am PT
Coming off the top of Tahquitz a partner and I settled in to watch a guy trying to haul his girl over the horn on Traitor Horn. He should have anchored right at the lip but was well over the hump and hadn't placed proper directionals to boot. It didn't sound good :).

Social climber
Mill Valley, CA
Apr 1, 2013 - 11:43am PT
The "I thought for sure it was going to end up being a breakup climb" climb.

I took my (now) wife up Snake Dike a couple of years ago when her family didn't have enough permits for all of us to hike the cables. Keep in mind, she's super fit but had NEVER climbed before. First day warmup was the Grack, second day we went up Snake Dike.

After we parted ways with the rest of our crew, her commentary went something like this.

-This approach is not fun in running shoes.
-I'm not feeling great about this. (While sitting at the base looking up at the route)
-How the....what the....
-I thought you said this route was popular (never saw another party)
-There is no way UP is the easier way off this thing. No WAY!
-And then 6 pitches of the chorus..."get me the F*@K off this F*@KING rock now! Which at one point also included me downclimbing a full pitch to get her psyched enough to start moving again.

The first question I asked after we topped out was "Are you ok?" Answer: Yes.

Second question I asked was "Would you do it again?" Answer: Of course, that was kinda fun!

Pretty much sums up both climbing AND relationships and after all that, she still married me.

Good thing she was hungry or she mighta whacked me with that ham sandw...
Good thing she was hungry or she mighta whacked me with that ham sandwich.
Credit: Mikemcee

Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
And every fool knows, a dog needs a home, and...
Apr 1, 2013 - 11:57am PT
Haystack at the Leap.

Jebus H Bomz

Peavine Basecamp
Apr 1, 2013 - 12:00pm PT
Haystack was a "break-in" climb for me, so I'd have to respectfully disagree, Dingus ;).

Worked too well, methinks now. I should have hung at the roof, dammit! She was a true climbing snob, it would have driven her straight off.


My wife weathered a very atypical 5.11 trad onsight from me on our first date she didn't think was a date. We have only climbed worse together since then, lol.

I really thought it was a first date. It's funny how we change the facts to fit our story. Talking to her years later, I realized how lucky I was and how tenuous my purchase had been. Turns out I am not quite the irresistible man morsel I supposed. And it's only getting worse!

Sport climber
mammoth lakes ca
Apr 1, 2013 - 12:53pm PT
Cosmic lead some vertical 5.6 in the gorge that had large holds....When it came time for me to follow , i started whimpering and doing some Elvis dance moves...I couldn't follow the pitch forcing Cosmic to rap and clean the route...I haven't seen him since and did i mention the zombie pictures that ensued...? RJ

Gym climber
Apr 1, 2013 - 02:55pm PT
Dingus, sounds like you've a story to tell!

Josiah, I hate seeing 'strong' men give huge packs to their GSs in tow, makes me want to slap them around a bit (quite a bit).

I saw a couple of climbers on Central Pillar, and the second was climbing with the 2nd rope, in a rope bag, on his back. I'm like, hey, you might want to trail that thing up behind you... I just got a scowl.

Later I saw these blokes over on some 5.11.

Some folks will never learn.

Apr 1, 2013 - 03:08pm PT
the "break-up climb" usually occurs in a tent cabin in curry. all's fair in love and war. you don't lose your girlfriend, you just lose your turn.

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
Apr 1, 2013 - 03:11pm PT
If anyone is looking for one, try Generator Crack. Zero approach and a lot of breakup potential in a short distance.

The Granite State.
Apr 1, 2013 - 03:18pm PT
Yeah Jebus, apparently my first date with my ex wasn't a first date to her either. Climbing at Rocksport and then a beer at Bar of America. Seemed like a date to me. Years later, I learned that she just had wanted to go climbing. She stuck around for a good number of years though.

Glad I never put a ring on that one.

Apr 1, 2013 - 03:44pm PT
"take me climbing!" ≠ "wanna go out?"

i still see my buddies fall for that line. they crater every time.
Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
And every fool knows, a dog needs a home, and...
Apr 1, 2013 - 03:52pm PT
Dingus, sounds like you've a story to tell!

D: Is that your boyfriend up there?
She: Yes
D: He's a complete prick for doing this to you.


Trad climber
Fresno CA
Apr 1, 2013 - 04:00pm PT
As mentioned above, Cathedral Peak has to be a contender. I personally know of two different guys who dragged their girl up, which subsequently turned into a last date. In both cases he was have a fantastic day leading heroically to an impressive summit, and she was doing fine... just f*#king fine.

A funny story was that Galen Rowell nearly had a first/last date when he dragged Barbara up the backside/descent in what must have been around 1981. She insisted on roping up for the entire approach and he was gripped with fear that someone might witness the bizarre scene they were making. Somehow they survived, got married, and she loved to tell the story any time someone asked if she was a climber.

I'll have to show this one to my wife. The backside/descent was her first climb to a summit (she'd done some top-roping around Swan Slab the day before). We were engaged at the time. Unlike Barbara, though, my then-fiancee scampered up ropeless, except for the summit area, where we roped up. As I started belaying her, the rope stopped moving just when I could no longer see her, then I heard the whimpers, and had to coax her a few feet further to the cracks leading to the summit. She was in tears when she got there.

I thought I'd blown it for sure but, fortunately, she got a hold of herself, forgave me (probably because the scenery was so beautiful), got down without incident, and even has gone climbing again without drama.

They used to say that before they marry, a couple should do two things: Go camping, and play bridge. When they go camping, they'll see what each other is like when they're dirty, rather than all dolled up. When they play bridge, they'll see what each other is like when they're really mad. Unfortunately, this day and age that doesn't work. It's too hard to get a campground reservation, and no one under 60 knows how to play bridge. Climbing, though, is still a worthwhile pre-marital test.


Sport climber
Almost to Hollywood, Baby!
Apr 1, 2013 - 04:15pm PT
It wasn't a climb that triggered my divorce... I do have to say to my ex's credit that she was pretty tough when she was gripped out of her mind and totally trusting me on some scrappy 3rd/4th class on the west face of Lembert Dome.

Between that and our first climbing date at Castle Rocks, where I made her belay me with an (incorrectly constructed) biner brake because I forgot my shoes, harness, and belay device, she was destined to never be a climber. You live and you learn.

Trad climber
Apr 1, 2013 - 05:59pm PT
A cold belay in the dark this winter on the bastille almost did me in with my lady. I was pretty cold and took a BIG fall. She caught me but she got pretty banged up in the process. Hasn't belayed me since lol!

Trad climber
Las Vegas
Apr 1, 2013 - 06:12pm PT

Even though we had sex on a ledge early on the route...

The wet, splooge at very top of Royal Arches:

All I said was 'Just be cautious, it's a long ride'.
She demanded we pull the rope back out and that she get an anchored belay until we were well into the woods.

Social climber
Joshua Tree
Apr 1, 2013 - 06:28pm PT
Dang, that pic of Wacky says it all.

Cat in the Hat did the trick once for me (she claimed to be a 5.8 multipitch climber..how was I supposed to know she couldn't follow 5.6 and would have full on metldown on a belay ledge the size of my driveway?)

Trad climber
Apr 1, 2013 - 07:11pm PT
that photo says "worked"


Social climber
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 1, 2013 - 07:48pm PT
My ex would cry at least once per long route. Always loved it afterwards. Not once made me feel like it was my fault (because, you know, she AGREED to go...).

A bad ass female friend of mine said that her and her girl friend, when they climb, sometimes after a hard pitch just have a good cry. Then they finish the route. Sounds a lot cooler than the brooding, angst-filled warblers dudes are prone to.

Trad climber
Oaksterdam, CA
Apr 1, 2013 - 10:36pm PT
I think I was on Scimitar at the Leap in '07 when I watched a couple rage at each other on East Crack or East Face or something over to the right of me.

The boyfriend was leading, maybe 50 feet out and still climbing as they screamed and screamed until finally the girl says "F#ck you this is over!!" as she continued to feed rope. BF still climbing "F#ck me?! F#ckme??!! No! F#ck you!!"

So f#cking funny.

Trad climber
Oaksterdam, CA
Apr 1, 2013 - 10:39pm PT
My climbing partner and I have joked about recreating the scene elsewhere to make some people believe we were gay and breaking up. Jared was going to add "Oh yeah! I've been cheating on you!!"
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