Compiling a list of every Yosemite Big Wall

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Chris McNamara

SuperTopo staff member
Topic Author's Original Post - Dec 29, 2003 - 01:43pm PT
I'm working to compile a list of every single Yosemite Big Wall. I started an excel sheet that Jake Hector just updated (thanks jake!).

To take a look at a PDF file of what we currently have, click here:

http://www.supertopo.com/forumphotos/yo_walls_complete.pdf

If you use windows and would like to download the Excel sheet and add to it, click here:

http://www.supertopo.com/forumphotos/yo_walls_complete.zip

If you use an Apple computer and would like to download the Excel sheet and add to it, click here:

http://www.supertopo.com/forumphotos/yo_walls_complete.sit

Thanks!
Strider

Big Wall climber
Bay Area, Ca
Dec 29, 2003 - 05:32pm PT
You might want to add a section for the Glacier Point Apron. As I recall there was one route there called Galactic Hitchhiker, ~35 pitches I think. There is a Trip report from the FA somewhere on the net. When I get home tonight I will see if I can find it.

-n
bigwalling

climber
Dec 29, 2003 - 05:46pm PT
I didn't really add any free routes to it. Only the aid routes that had been freed on El Cap. I noticed I must have forgot to save it once because some of my mistakes are on that one. Oops!

If someone has the American Alpine Journals they can add some of the missing info/routes.



can't say

Social climber
Pasadena CA
Dec 29, 2003 - 07:15pm PT
I thought Urmas et al put up a route on Half Dome called Sugar Shack or something like that
Greg Barnes

climber
Dec 29, 2003 - 08:10pm PT
hey, didn't some guys named chris & mark put up a big traverse on El Cap?
Minerals

Social climber
The Deli
Dec 29, 2003 - 09:06pm PT
Mmmmmmmm. Fun project.



(-Homer)
bigwalling

climber
Dec 29, 2003 - 09:44pm PT
Greg, there are a few topos in the obscurites on this site that I forgot to add in. Chris route is one of those.

Here are some routes I know of but don't have much info for:
-New route by gerberding and others in Catherdral area 5.12 A4+? It's got info in American Alpine Journal 2001, I think.
-New route by Coiler on the Column, Tora Bora VI 5.10 A3+?
-Traverse of Half dome by Jay Smith

Routes I forgot to put in:
-Laughing at the Void (ribbon falls)
-Spire it Up(cathedral)
-Operation Bravo(cathedral)
-Soul Shakedown(watkins)
-Gridle Traverse(el cap)


can't say, I don't know of Sugar Shack but there is a Psychedelic Shack. It's in the list. But for some reason my computer is leaving out words and shows it as just "Shack", same with White Trash Vacation just "Vacation". Anyone else have this problem?
Jonny D

Social climber
Lost Angelez, Kalifornia
Dec 29, 2003 - 11:17pm PT
how'bout Hole World (near West Buttress)
Chris McNamara

SuperTopo staff member
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 30, 2003 - 03:51am PT
Seems like the best thing to do is for all of us to keep spitting out routes. Then someone posts "Not it", everyone else posts "Not it" and the last person to reply has to collect all the info and enter it into the excel sheet... or something.

oh yeah, forgot to put in el cap girdle, FA: Chris McNamara, Mark Melvin, Aug 98. VI 5.10 A4

anyone have a better name than "Girdle Traverse"? I'm open to suggestions.
Buzzardboy

Trad climber
Lancaster, PA
Dec 30, 2003 - 09:02am PT
Maybe someone should consider re-naming the Falls Wall to the Kohl Wall. It seems as though he owns most FA's in that area...
Ammon

Big Wall climber
Bay Area
Dec 30, 2003 - 01:40pm PT

Underneath Chinese Water Torture, where Jim Bridwell's name is should be Dark Star. Put up with Giavante ? (sp?).

Cool project Jake, keep it up. I'll look for more info later.

Cheers, Ammon

Minerals

Social climber
The Deli
Dec 30, 2003 - 02:21pm PT
This is fun! I have started to update the spreadsheet already and if no one else wants to, I'll be 'it'. Or, I can send updates to Jake.

I talked to Klaus yesterday for some more updates. Pretty damn impressive. He's got 15 new routes on the Falls Wall, 11 of them put up solo.

Keep throwing out routes and we'll try to get this dialed. I'll call Coiler and JonnyB to get more info.

Cheers all,

M


ps - Yes, it is Psychedelic Shack... I saw the two missing names (White Trash...) and thought it was a PC thing (not my computer...).
Minerals

Social climber
The Deli
Dec 30, 2003 - 02:35pm PT
Ammon, what is the name of the route that you and Dean and Mark put up on Lost Brother? They did another one too. I thought I had topos - have to look. There are also some old-dad routes farther to the right...?????

Dean...?
Mark...?
James

Gym climber
City by the Bay
Dec 30, 2003 - 07:03pm PT
Minerals
you should talk with ted at the mountaiin shop. He claims he has topos for all the wall routes in the valley. He definitely has some obsucurities. You might need some pale ales though as he is reluctant to divulge any of them. Also try talking to Trundlesby about some of the stuff he did.

James
Minerals

Social climber
The Deli
Dec 30, 2003 - 11:43pm PT
Thanks for the info James!

"He claims he has topos for all the wall routes in the valley."


Some topos don't exist. It would be great if Ted could pass along any information that he has – a topo is not needed at this point – just the basic info, as outlined in the spreadsheet.

Talked to JonnyB and Coiler today and got dialed on several new routes. Does Trundles have any routes other than the ones that he has done with Coiler?

I’m sure that there are other routes out there so word of mouth and as much input as possible will help us to complete the list. I’ll have a list of trivia questions to post soon in order to try to fill in the gaps.

Anyone and everyone:
Please ask around to friends, etc. for any info on new Valley routes and have them pass on the word. Any help is greatly appreciated. Post info here or email any of us.

I started another column titled “Originally started by:” so any trivia buffs please chime in. New Dawn, Wyoming Sheep Ranch, ZM, Yosemite Pointless, etc. – these sorts of routes…

Anyone have any of the Roper guides? I'm looking for the obscure old-dad routes that we never hear about. They're out there...

Thanks all!!!
Strider

Big Wall climber
Bay Area, Ca
Dec 31, 2003 - 02:40am PT
Here's an idea, how about adding some reference info for each climb. I can understand the desire to keep the list brief, but without references this list just becomes a mythical and historical list of climbs rather than something we can all use.

I am more than willing to do what I can. The AAJ index is available online from 1987-1996 which I have downloaded and I'll do the Supertopo references as well. I also know Chris has made some obsurities available, so these can be added as well. But that's all I have and that covers only about 25% of what's there I imagine. Can anyone with some older guides help out? You can post info here or email it to me and I'll compile it. Then I'll email it to whoever has done the error/updating work. Or send me the updates and I'll fill in my part. For the ones that have no published topo or no other information available we can just put "unknown" or whatever.

-n

Also, are the routes in any type of order? I notice that the El Cap listing seems to go in order from SW corner (Lurking Fear) to SE corner (Eagles Way) with the Nose in the middle. But I don't know all the routes on El Cap so they may not be in order and I wouldn't know. How about the other formations, are they in any kind or order?
Minerals

Social climber
The Deli
Dec 31, 2003 - 02:54am PT
That is a good idea. If there is a published reference to the route then it should be listed. For many of the newer routes, there has never been a publication so it's pretty much straight from the horse's mouth or the horse's buddy’s mouth. As for Supertopo, the Obscurities, the Reid guide, and Clay's posters, I've got that all down but if you want to add the references then that would be cool. The hard part now is going to be to find the stuff that hasn't been published.

Jake or Strider, do you have the AAJ with the Sylvester Falls route?

Strider, the routes go clockwise around the Valley, starting at Ribbon Falls. Left to right. Some confusion arises when we consider where the routes start (in relation to each other) or where they top out, or where they cross each other. The hardest part of all of this seems to be the ratings - it's not consistent and I think we need to re-rate a lot of the routes so that it is consistent. No point is creating a new list with old information.
Strider

Big Wall climber
Bay Area, Ca
Dec 31, 2003 - 06:24am PT
Minerals, I will email you with my copy of the list with publication credits added. Everything will be in column E so hopefully you can copy everything over without a problem. I don't know what the AAJ references have, whether topo's, route describtions, etc... so if you find a published topo then delete the AAJ reference. Otherwise the AAJ references are better than nothing.

Can anyone do some leg work on the older AAJ Index's? If Minerals gets the Reid and Meyer guide, Chris's Obscurities and the Clay maps then that is most of what is out there. Other than the hand-drawn, beer stained napkins that is. Maybe someone can get "Ted from the Mountain Shop" drunk and copy some of his topo's and give them to Chris Mac to add to the Obsurities.


I also wanted to ask you guys about a few references I found in the AAJ Index. This index only covers 1987-1996, which is a small window but I found a few index listings that only someone with that journal can decipher...
 "Ribbon Falls Ampitheater (Yosemite Valley, California) 1996, pg. 153-4"
 "Mount Watkins (Yosemite Valle, California) 1988, pg. 128"
 "Washington Column (Yosemite Valley, California) 1988, pg. 128"
 "Bunnel Point (Little Yosemite, California) 1990, pg 168"
 "Pharaoh, The (Matterhorn Canyon,Yosemite, California) 1995:142-4, 152"
 "Sentinal Rock (Yosemite Valley, California) 1994, pg 137"
 Glen Aulin Area (Yosemite National Park, California) 1988: 135-6"
 "Leaning Tower (Yosemite Valley, California) 1994, pg 137"
 "Waterfall Wall (Yosemite Valley, California) 1988:1-14"


Edit - No "Sylvester Falls" either.
Minerals

Social climber
The Deli
Dec 31, 2003 - 12:19pm PT
"Maybe someone can get "Ted from the Mountain Shop" drunk and copy some of his topo's and give them to Chris Mac to add to the Obsurities.


LOL!!!!! Classic.



Hmmmmm. "Waterfall Wall (Yosemite Valley, California) 1988:1-14" That sounds rather suspicious... Sure that's not the Sylvester route? I do remember seeing a copy of the Journal that my Uncle showed me - was the article in the beginning of the Journal...? Hmmmmm. Anyone?
Sam Shannon

Social climber
the middle of nowhere
Dec 31, 2003 - 01:57pm PT
Minerals, you're suspicions are right on track. The '88 AAJ's lead article is about Rick Sylvester's route straight up the Falls. He claims the force of the Falls was enough to erase a few bolts from a previous attempt, DAMN!

The library back at the University has every single AAJ on file, but maybe someone else can do some bookwork in the next 2 weeks before I start school again.

I'm trying to coordinate w/ Tom Frost next week for a different project but I think he has some of the old Roper guides as well as first hand info. If you ever get the chance to visit w/ Frost in his home you have to ask to see some of his photo collection. The man has an entire bookcase full of 4" three ring binders, each one full of awesome 8x10's from his time in Yosemite. AMAZING
Melissa

Big Wall climber
oakland, ca
Dec 31, 2003 - 01:59pm PT
I got J a 1972 Roper from amazon that cost less the a new Reid FWIW.

I'm defining "Big Wall" as a grade V or higher and involving aid for most mortals.

The aid climbs that were dropped from the newer guidebooks are the shorter ones. I think that the Grade V's in the book are all pretty much considered classics or at least "obscure classics".
Minerals

Social climber
The Deli
Dec 31, 2003 - 03:21pm PT
Sam-I-am - Do you have a copy of the AAJ? What is the rating on the route? FA = Aug or Sept '87? Maybe you can ask TF if he can add to the list.

Mel - I am adding grade IV aid routes too. Anything out of the Roper book would be helpful.

Thanks!
James

Gym climber
City by the Bay
Dec 31, 2003 - 05:05pm PT
Minerals and others-
A commendable job rallying all this info. Trundles climbed the High Life on Higher Spire? w Jamie Mundo last spring and I think he may have done some other stuff. Al Dude did some climbing on Watson's this year too and McDevitt and Glenn from El Portal did a bunch of stuff on fifi butress within the past 5 years. They have at least 5 routes that ascend the buttress...I didn't see any Coiler routes on the list either. He did that thing over by the thief-which saw a second ascent
Sam Shannon

Social climber
the middle of nowhere
Dec 31, 2003 - 05:52pm PT
Sorry Minerals, I don't have a copy of the '88 AAJ, I'm gonna have to wait until I get back to the library on campus at Colorado State in a couple of weeks. They have damn near every single edition of the AAJ except for the most recent one which some pudwacker has checked out until March. The cute girls in the computer lab might be able to show me how to e-mail you items of interest or I can always just photocopy stuff and mail it.

Still trying to get a hold of Mr. Frost, he doesn't answer his phone as a rule so I'm waiting to hear back from him.

Happy New Year Everybody!
Drinking, Not Thinking

D
bigwalling

climber
Dec 31, 2003 - 09:13pm PT
Glad to see some other people are stoked about this! Hopefully minerals will remove the errors on the existing routes. I should have looked at it closer! I knew I had bad typing skills but not that bad.

Minerals, I don't have the American Alpine Journal for the that route. But those guys were nuts to climb up that area of the wall. Same goes for Klaus, props to them! Ammon and Andrew had some cool pics on the internet of Erik climbing it.

The rateings on the list are a bit off on some of the climbs. Disorderly Conduct should be A3+ but that makes it look easier than Zenyatta and just a bit harder that the Shield! I think Heavy Metal and Tinker Toys should have the PDH rateing instead of A5, since that would be true to the reporting Jim did in A.A.J.

Just go string Ted up and make him give you the topos! Though getting him drunk might be a bit more legal, it doesn't have a garented out come.

yo

Sport climber
Fresno, CA
Jan 1, 2004 - 03:12pm PT
From the red 1964 super old school Roper guide:

Camp 4 Terror, V 5.8 A4, Bob Kamps and Dave Rearick, July 1960.

Arches Direct, VI 5.9 A5, Robbins and Fitschen, June 1960. (Royal whipped big on the FA.)

WC:
Lunch Ledge Direct, IV 5.8 A4, Chouinard and Wally Reed, July 1961.
East Face, VI 5.9 A4, Chuck Pratt and Warren Harding, July 1959.

HD Southwest Face, IV 5.8 A3, Salathe and Anton Nelson, October 1946.

Mt. Broderick South Face, IV 5.8 A3, Chuck Pratt, Joe Fitschen and Bob Kamps, May 1960.

Liberty Cap South Face, IV 5.8 A3, Mark Powell, Joe Fitschen and Royal Robbins, Aug-Sep 1956.

Sentinel:
North Face Direct (Mozart Wall?), VI 5.7 A4, Robbins and Frost, May 1962.
North Face Center, V 5.8 A3, Chouinard and Herbert, Aug 1962.
West Face, VI 5.9 A5, Chouinard and Frost, June 1960.

Lower Cathedral Spire, North Face, V 5.9 A3, Al MacDonald and Galen Rowell, June 1960 (upper face), Les Wilson and Wolfgang Heinritz, July 1962 (lower 800 ft.)

Higher Cathedral Rock, North Face, V 5.9 A4, Pratt, Chouinard and Bob Kamps, June-July 1960.

Middle Cathedral Rock, North Face, VI 5.9 A4, Kamps, Pratt and Roper, June 1959.

Rostrum North Face, V 5.8 A3, Glen Denny and Harding, July 1962.


Some of these possibly are iffy according to our definition of big wall, which I guess hasn't yet been defined. I can understand wanting to exclude free routes, but they haven't always been free. Some of these are currently free trade routes, but they were also key walls historically. The Salathe is the Astroman of 2030, know what I'm saying?

Depends if this list is supposed to be historically minded (having FA and FFA) or just a modern tick list.

One more thing: some sort of bibliography might be cool--a way to find more info on a particular route. Get on it Minerals!

Happy '04, peeps!
Minerals

Social climber
The Deli
Jan 2, 2004 - 02:17am PT
Awesome. Totally awesome!!

Thanks yo-yo!!!! ;) That's a HUGE help. I have heard of some of the routes but now have proof and the details. Back to the spreadsheet...
Chris McNamara

SuperTopo staff member
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 4, 2004 - 02:12pm PT
I just added some more obscure big wall topos to the Obscurities page. Just click on the following link and scroll to the bottom:

http://www.supertopo.com/topos/yosemite/obscurities.html

If you have more topos you wanted added to the list, just email them to me.
bigwalling

climber
Jan 4, 2004 - 02:34pm PT
The Gerberding route on Catherdral is on the North Face Children of the Corn (VI 5.12 A4+ R). Scott Cosgrave was in on it too with one other guy. Can't remeber who though.
Chris McNamara

SuperTopo staff member
Topic Author's Reply - Mar 4, 2004 - 01:03am PT
thanks to Minerals, the complete list of big walls is bigger than ever. you can view the pdf of the list at:

http://www.supertopo.com/forumphotos/yo_walls_complete0304.pdf

or you can download the excel sheet and keep working on it at:

http://www.supertopo.com/forumphotos/yo_walls_complete0304.zip
clustiere

Big Wall climber
running springs, ca
Mar 4, 2004 - 04:23am PT
Across the Universe, to Infinity and Beyond
Karl Baba

Trad climber
Yosemite, Ca
Mar 4, 2004 - 05:00pm PT
As long as folks are talking to FAists about their routes. I think it would be great to get a general idea of which ones are classics or worth repeating, and which ones are "only a mother could love."

Yeah, everybody likes the smell of their own farts but ...

Peace

karl
Ben Rumsen

Mountain climber
Sacramento, CA
Mar 4, 2004 - 05:53pm PT
One monumental but worthwhile task would be to attempt to collect a topo and route location drawing for each and every one of these climbs ( that would be worth paying for )!
dave

climber
Oceanside
Mar 4, 2004 - 07:31pm PT

I have topos for Dean Miller and Marks' route on Lost Brother, "Magic and Loss VI 5.10, A3" says the topo, have'nt seen Dean for a while but the topo is from him. Also a route, I think is on Higher Cathedral Rock, done by Bob Gaines and Alan Bartlett. Called "Promised Land V+ 5.9 A3" finished in june 2000.
klaus

Big Wall climber
Pacif*#ka Muthaf*#ka
Jul 30, 2013 - 09:42pm PT
So where is this list? Is it now complete?
klaus

Big Wall climber
Pacif*#ka Muthaf*#ka
Jul 30, 2013 - 09:51pm PT
So all that trash that's still up at Lost Brother Is Dean Miller's?

I emailed Ken Yager last Summer that it should be a facelift project to remove the hundreds of pounds of trash that's up there but got no reply.
eKat

Trad climber
Less than a second shy of 49 minutes
Jul 30, 2013 - 10:02pm PT
GoodGod. . . Dean Miller?

Where in the SamHill is he, these days?
deuce4

climber
Hobart, Australia
Jul 31, 2013 - 02:06am PT
You might want to include the Cyclops Roof Direct Finish to the Wyoming Sheep Ranch. Xaver Bongard and I did the FA. Three new pitches through the biggest roof in Yosemite. Took me 10 hours to lead that pitch, mostly due to a failed adjustable harness which was choking the hell out of me the whole way.
john hansen

climber
Jul 31, 2013 - 02:50am PT
The more I look..


Very impressive .Chris. Lot's of history here..
deuce4

climber
Hobart, Australia
Jul 31, 2013 - 05:38am PT
Also, you're missing Quinlan's route that takes off from the Seagull on Mescalito. Prior to Steve's ascent, I had soloed the first new pitch of it (it starts after the first five pitches of Mescalito), but got battered by a storm and came down. I forget all the details at the moment, save for the fact that I had a different line picked out from the one Steve ended up doing.
klaus

Big Wall climber
Pacif*#ka Muthaf*#ka
Jul 31, 2013 - 09:55am PT
seems like there are a lot of routes missing.

anyone still working on this list?
Ian Parsons

climber
UK, England
Jul 31, 2013 - 10:06am PT
To deuce4 - Adrift, presumably?
klaus

Big Wall climber
Pacif*#ka Muthaf*#ka
Jul 31, 2013 - 10:14am PT
and there are a lot of mistakes on the list as well
deuce4

climber
Hobart, Australia
Jul 31, 2013 - 03:57pm PT
Yes, Adrift is the name of Steve's route.

I had a line picked out in the old days, not sure if it's yet been done, but never got to it, and likely never will (though I do hope to revisit some of the El Cap classics before I truly retire my haul bags of big wall fun). It would have been a link up with around 8 new ptiches, the most significant of which were the lower (then unclimbed) pitches of the Black Dihedral leading up to the NA wall pitches, then of course out through the Cyclops roof.

Have those lower pitches of the Black Dihedral become part of another route?

When looking at the whole wall, to me it was really one of the major lines--a continuous diagonal line up the SE face.
deuce4

climber
Hobart, Australia
Jul 31, 2013 - 03:58pm PT
Klaus, I noticed quite a few errors too==perhaps a job for the master of detail Clint Cummins to help with?
ElCapPirate

Big Wall climber
Reno, Nevada
Jul 31, 2013 - 04:46pm PT
GoodGod. . . Dean Miller?

Where in the SamHill is he, these days?

He lives in Carson City these days and doing really well. I just hung out with him at my house a few weeks ago.

He also lurks here, so maybe he will chime in.
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