Getting to the bottom of Scarpelli 5.11 at Vedauwoo

Search
Go

Discussion Topic

Return to Forum List
Post a Reply
Messages 1 - 17 of total 17 in this topic
eeyonkee

Trad climber
Golden, CO
Topic Author's Original Post - Jul 7, 2014 - 11:43am PT
First of all, I’m hoping this will be a “fun” thread. I think talking about ratings is fun. It’s fun because ratings are, by their nature, controversial. Personally, I’m surprised they are seemingly as accurate as they are. I mean, it’s not like market forces or evolution or something, where the “best” answer is likely to come about with some kind of mathematical backing. The FA climber rates a climb and, more often than not, that’s it. Only occasionally, it seems, does the first ascentionist’s rating get “upgraded” based on the consensus of the greater climbing community.

So, the FA guy (could've been a gal, but, in this case, not) in this case is Bob Scarpelli. He has a number of routes at Vedauwoo that are rated 5.11 something. I would have to think that most people who have been on any of these routes would call them “sandbags”, myself included. Lately, I’ve been on a quest of sorts to, not only attempt most of the “classic” Scarpelli 5.11s, but to ascertain what the “true” rating should be, and/or rank them relatively.

So far, my track record hasn’t been all that good. At the Voo (in my 50s) on Scarpelli 5.11, my on-sight average as a percent is about 20. Here’s my first cut. The list headers are climb, current guidebook rating, my rating, personal history with the climb.

• October Light 5.11b: 5.11a On-sight lead
• Big Pink 5.11b: 5.11d Failed on lead, successful on TR
• Rt Torpedo Tube 5.11c: 5.12a Tried twice and failed (but close)
• Burning Man 5.11a: 5.12a Managed to lead all of the moves (finally)
• Worm Drive 5.11b: 5.12b Utter failure

I’m planning on trying again all of these climbs that I have not yet led successfully. I may upgrade this list as I (hopefully) send one or two of these MFs (that’s mother-fuc#ers) Feel free to add to the list.
SteveW

Trad climber
The state of confusion
Jul 7, 2014 - 11:49am PT

Greg, I'll let you have another beer if you do those!!!!!

hee hee hee. . .
Travis Haussener

Trad climber
Salt Lake City
Jul 7, 2014 - 12:07pm PT
This is awesome, I wish people did this everywhere. Way to go!
Mungeclimber

Trad climber
Nothing creative to say
Jul 7, 2014 - 12:16pm PT
great thread topic!


Having seen the Scarpelli mits in person (not realizing who he was at the time), does his hand size for stacks require explanation as a factor in the rating?

How does your hand size compare? The geometry of the wyde I think plays a role.

Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Jul 7, 2014 - 12:20pm PT
Getting to the bottom of Scarpelli 5.11 at Vedauwoo

I think the guide adequately describes the approaches...
...getting to the bottom has never been a problem for me... getting to the top seems to be an issue.

"wyde" geometry corollary: "everyone has a bad size and a good size" for the wide, make sure you have enough partners to cover your "bad size".
Mungeclimber

Trad climber
Nothing creative to say
Jul 7, 2014 - 12:23pm PT
lol, roger that Ed!
eeyonkee

Trad climber
Golden, CO
Topic Author's Reply - Jul 7, 2014 - 12:24pm PT
You bring up a very good point, Ed. There is, of course, no right answer, because crack climbing, and maybe especially in the wider sizes, is so size-dependent (that's the controversial part I was talking about).
eeyonkee

Trad climber
Golden, CO
Topic Author's Reply - Jul 7, 2014 - 12:28pm PT
Let me point out that all of these climbs are quite different from each other and we know that at least one guy, Bob Scarpelli, has done them all. Somehow he was able to overcome his bad sizes.
Jaybro

Social climber
Wolf City, Wyoming
Jul 7, 2014 - 12:59pm PT
Haha interesting list Grug!
I'm mostly in agreement, with a few caveats.

Note, the Right Tube is not a Bob route. I think it's Ray jardine, but I'll have to look it up. It had already been freed when Bob and I started working on it in the seventies. Definitely a sandbag, though perhaps easier for those with enormous hands. I'd call it hard, for .12a. Harder than that if your your hands are smaller than mine, which are relatively small. I don't get fists in it, maybe one. Bob got that a little before I did, back in 1980.

I couldn't flash it in 2011 and had to work it. Nice that there's is pro that works now.

October light, yeah .11 a/b, pretty straight fwd, a grunt. I did the second ascent;
Onsight flash

Big Pink; when I did the first free ascent I called it Short but Wide (to contrast short but thin, on the base of El cap) and rated it .11b. Bob, Doug Cairns, & Bill Roberts and
I had all worked on it together, and separately, and had collectively thought that it would be .11b beforehand, as we didn't think we could climb harder ( in those days for reference, Horns mother and boardwalk were called .10d, left tube 10a, roofus .10+ etc, Bell crack ( one of my first 5.10 leads, now rated .11) was called .10a...
Bob also did 'a first free ascent' of this before heading to Jackson for the the winter one year and we briefly lost communication. Later he wrote a guidebook, "The Cracksman"- red cover, original Bob artwork, will be a
Collector's item!- in which he acknowledged that we had each done an FFA) and called it "big pink," .11b. He wrote the book, his name 'took'.
For the record, I don't think that was that off, I did it last year again and I'd call it maybe .11c- much easier and less technical than say Burningman. Sh#t, girls solo it :)

Burningman, id say .12a is fair. I got it on my fourth trip up to it

Worm Drive, worst sandbag of them all!! At Least .12b. I've been on it there times and am still unclear what to do! Note, when it was first done, there was a crystal, now gone, on which you could stand and rearrange your strategy after the first hard part. It was never updated when that broke and it became much Harder- I got that info straight from Bob himself. .11b for those with enormous fists might have been accurate back then.

Another one, not on Grugs list, is Squat, .12b in most citations. I did the second ascent in the early eighties and agreed with bob's original.11b, rating. I've done it a number of times since and think it a not quite .12. Not sure what the fuss is about :) .....

Grug, this really should a wide fetish thread. Do you want to repost it over there? Or mind if ISO
eeyonkee

Trad climber
Golden, CO
Topic Author's Reply - Jul 7, 2014 - 02:02pm PT
Hmmm. I was leaving Squat off the list as it's now rated 5.12 and all. I guess I'll have to put that one on my list and, as you say, "see what all of the fuss is about". Of course, I'll have to attempt to invert. Something I've only tried once and unsuccessfully.

With respect to Big Pink, I'm thinking you're probably right. 5.11c is probably a fair rating.
Mike Friedrichs

Sport climber
City of Salt
Jul 7, 2014 - 04:08pm PT
I really felt it was always solid 5.12 just to find Worm Drive. The first time I spent a whole day and never did find it! I also agree it is the biggest sandbag of the list. It seems to spank all suiters.

Grug - you get on Bad Girls Dream yet? One of the best!
eeyonkee

Trad climber
Golden, CO
Topic Author's Reply - Jul 7, 2014 - 04:16pm PT
I haven't got on Bad Girls Dream yet, Mike. Putting it on the list.

So, the way this will probably work is, if I can send it, it automatically gets demoted to 5.11a or 5.11b. Ratings are fluid.
slabbo

Trad climber
colo south
Jul 7, 2014 - 04:22pm PT
I told Bob that the "Crasksman " was meaningless..a line and 5.11

I spent 4 days on R torpedo with him..he did it maybe 6-8 times and i finally got it. DONE

Muscle and Fitness

and back around '83 "the Squat MAY be 5.12" aha

iI thought it was a breakthrough when BS called What the Big Boys Eat 12C..GOD that must be so hard..it looks A2

Climbing with hidetaka and BS was always a hoot
Jaybro

Social climber
Wolf City, Wyoming
Jul 7, 2014 - 07:14pm PT
Muscle & Fitness is a gem! Hard 5.11+ :) but I flashed it on the second ascent. Likewise New Maps of Hell; moderate 5.11 I'd say...
Sonic

Trad climber
Boulder, Co
Jul 7, 2014 - 07:43pm PT
If you need a partner, I'd be more than happy to head up there.

Right torpedo thwarted me last month...
Jaybro

Social climber
Wolf City, Wyoming
Jul 7, 2014 - 07:52pm PT
Next week?
Mungeclimber

Trad climber
Nothing creative to say
Jul 8, 2014 - 07:00pm PT
bump for Grug list
Messages 1 - 17 of total 17 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 Route Beta
Recent Gear Reviews