How hard is the Diamond?

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Messages 21 - 40 of total 75 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
eeyonkee

Trad climber
Golden, CO
May 16, 2018 - 04:49pm PT
The whining during event 1 typically goes something like "Are we there yet Dad?" The whining during event 3 typically goes something along the lines of "My feet hurt!" The whining during the end of event 2 really isn't a true whining. More like an expression of terror and focused purpose to get your ass lower than you are -- aka DOWN. This can often lead to up to a half an hour reduction in time span for event 3.

Oplopanax; If only it was so easy to shed those lbs.
matlinb

Trad climber
Fort Collins, CO
May 17, 2018 - 08:54pm PT
So what would be an equivalent climb be in the Sierras? I have climbed the Casual Route, Tuolumne, and the Valley and all three quite different. Would The Diamond be more like the Incredible Hulk with the Casual Route being similar to Beeline? I was on the Diamond the day Jon Siegrist did the second ascent of the Full Dunn/Westbay at 5.14a. It was the most incredible thing I have ever seen in my life and totally immortalized my memory of the place.
skywalker1

Trad climber
co
May 17, 2018 - 09:27pm PT
^Don't ask me but I remember climbing Curving Vine on the Diamond and watching as Tommy Caldwell and Topher Donahue climb 5 routes on the D over like 10hrs. They even climbed Curving Vine once we topped out and "unclogged" it. LOL

S...
BruceHildenbrand

Social climber
Mountain View/Boulder
May 17, 2018 - 10:47pm PT
June might be a bit early to get on the Diamond, especially the Casual Route. It's best to get really good intel on the snow situation(maybe check at Neptune Mountaineering) before heading up there. Every year is different so it is best to check on current conditions.
skywalker1

Trad climber
co
May 18, 2018 - 12:37am PT
^^^In the most respectful way I disagree completely. June is fine. The cracks are dry left of D1 by June. Again strategy. Where can you leave crampons or boots? Broadway? Yes! Rap the wall and pick them up on the way down. Yes! Check topos and talk to the right locals, yes!

The first ascent of Enos Mill Wall was done 60 years ago in winter. June is not a big deal just altitude.

I think sometimes we need to remember to be positive and cheering on those who look for help and want to do cool things.

S...
dauwhe

Trad climber
Greenfield, MA
May 18, 2018 - 05:11am PT
Useful info on preparing: https://www.mountainproject.com/forum/topic/107079222/training-for-the-diamond-on-longs-peak?page=2
Jebus H Bomz

climber
Sacramento, CA
May 18, 2018 - 05:55am PT
10 on the Mohs scale.
BruceHildenbrand

Social climber
Mountain View/Boulder
May 18, 2018 - 06:33am PT
Skywalker,

I once did the Casual Route in mid-July and had to climb a 40-foot vertical snow wall in rock shoes with no pro right off the belay on pitch 4. It all depends on what kind of snow year they have had in Colorado so you really have to check with the locals.
wbw

Trad climber
'cross the great divide
May 18, 2018 - 07:39am PT
I think sometimes we need to remember to be positive and cheering on those who look for help and want to do cool things.

Being positive is important, but being realistic is too. For most years, most of the Diamond is wet during June. It is the most demanding alpine rock venue I've ever experienced. It starts at around 13K, not 12K which is a big difference that you feel. It is very steep, as in scraping-your-nose steep. Besides being significantly higher than say the Hulk, the rock is generally not as good. The N. chimney approach can be quite serious, especially with other parties above. And afternoon T-storms are a real and consistent thing on the Front Range during the summer months.

When being positive becomes sandbagging, I have to disagree.
skywalker1

Trad climber
co
May 18, 2018 - 08:23am PT
Maybe so. I just get fired up and want to go and go.

S...
JLP

Social climber
The internet
May 18, 2018 - 08:25am PT
June has been fine in the past, but most years it's not. From a distance, possibly from a web cam, if snow is still visible on upper Kiener's, then the free routes probably still have wet sections, best case.

Going for it in less than optimal conditions - that's great - but it's also the sign of a rookie. Time and experience open up more options for all possible conditions and decreases interest pissing a precious day of your life away having a crappy experience or having to bail off something. A rookie hears about RMNP and only thinks of the Diamond, and then only thinks of the Casual - but there are actually a couple other climbs in the area. Spearhead, for example, five star 5.6-5.12, some of the best rock in the park - it's typical to be able to climb in sunshine there while the Diamond is getting pounded in hail just a few miles away.
kingtut

climber
Jingus Newroutaineer
May 18, 2018 - 09:39am PT
I lubber me some webcams:

https://www.nps.gov/romo/learn/photosmultimedia/webcams.htm


Looking good. You first, Indiana Jones.
Looking good. You first, Indiana Jones.
Credit: kingtut
skywalker1

Trad climber
co
May 18, 2018 - 09:47am PT
Mmmm tread lightly.

I agree that there are ton's of other high quality routes in the park. Getting spanked or worse is always possible. But comfort level is individual. I just disagree that June is a no go. And there are weather windows. If you are skilled and acclimated you can have a wonderful experience.

I suppose if you have to ask then don't go. Ultimately I'm not interested in an argument cause we will just go around in circles.

Cheers!

S...
jogill

climber
Colorado
May 18, 2018 - 10:47am PT
How entertaining to read this thread.

In August of 1954, at the age of 17 and just out of high school (Atlanta), and with no real knowledge of climbing, I wandered up the east face of Longs wearing JCHiggins work boots and carrying a 50 foot hemp rope - my first mountain adventure. I wondered about the Diamond as I scrambled. It was viewed with awe at the time. When would someone bold enough to attempt this fearsome challenge appear?

A few years later my friends Kamps and Rearick accomplished the feat.


And now it's "An easy day for a lady", as the Prophet declared so long ago.


;>)
Don Paul

Social climber
Denver CO
May 18, 2018 - 05:44pm PT
"It was viewed with awe at the time." I'm still awestruck every time I go up there, which I make sure to do at least once a year. It's one of the proudest walls you'll ever see. Here's what it looks like in the winter. This picture was taken from the treeline. I couldn't get closer without snowshoes.

Credit: Don Paul
NeeBraun

Trad climber
80302
May 18, 2018 - 06:09pm PT

hey there say, st00pid Americans....

10 on the Mohs scale.

Come up with your own f*#king material.
Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
May 18, 2018 - 06:40pm PT
In my opinion, always better to be conservative when branching out into a new area, especially one that involves loose rock and altitude. If you want something in the ballpark of East Buttress of Middle, then, adjusting for altitude, and given that you've never climbed in RMNP, I'd recommend Petit Grepon.

It will be clobbered on the weekends with other parties: especially the standard South Face route. Climb it during the week, and perhaps go for the less traveled route Southwest Corner. 5.9 and ~9 pitches, easily done car to car in a day. I find hiking in to a high bivouac just adds overall fatigue, so I avoid it whenever possible. Leave the car well before sunrise (4am) with a headlamp and by the time you arrive at the base of the Petit, you will be warmed up and ready to go.

I feel the same strategy works best for The Diamond, though with a considerably earlier start. I came from California and in my first year living in Colorado cruised the Yellow Wall, car to car in a day, but I'd already been up Astroman, Rostrum North Face and etc. My partner was clocking my lead times on Yellow Wall at 10 minutes each. Then he would take 20 minutes to follow, which I considered a bit too carefree, even on a bluebird day.

When people talk about thunderstorms between noon and one o'clock, they really mean it. You want to be climbing at first light and heading down between 11 AM and 12 noon. Far different from the High Sierra. So choose an objective that is easily within your range, at least for your first couple of goals in RMNP. And yes, the Diamond can be what Randy Leavitt once described as a weeping gash of rock if you get on it too early in the season. I live at 8,200' on the Colorado Front Range (Nederland). We had a weak winter, but are currently in the midst of a typical heavy spring precipitation pattern.
curt wohlgemuth

Social climber
Bay Area, California
May 18, 2018 - 07:31pm PT
I have no info to offer on the Diamond. But consider the Keyhole (hiking) route on Longs vs the Mt Whitney trail. When I did the Keyhole a couple years ago, I was amazed at (a) how serious it was (ice in August, 40F, 40MPH winds, class 2-3) and (b) how many freaking people were there on a Wednesday. All I can say is that Coloradoans are a hard bunch of folks!
i-b-goB

Social climber
Wise Acres
May 18, 2018 - 08:54pm PT
Depends what route you choose?
Kalimon

Social climber
Ridgway, CO
May 18, 2018 - 09:11pm PT
Cali dudes, listen to Tarbuster.
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