The "Cringe"


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Social climber
The West
Feb 24, 2007 - 02:30pm PT
I tried to follow it on TR in fall'79. I was happy with my progress, but deemed it unfathomably hard.

One guy in our group (which included Kevin Bein and Barbara Devine, BTW, who of course cruised it by the time the TR was set up)
fell off repeatedly and finaly beat his hand on the rock, drawing blood and yelled, "Godamit when will I ever get good?"

We were embarassed for him.

Feb 24, 2007 - 02:35pm PT
Maybe Largo remembers that morning when I had to lead the Cringe in the hot sun to fix a rope for his video camera?
Bruce Morris

Social climber
Belmont, California
Feb 24, 2007 - 02:50pm PT
Remember that the late Gary Sacher used to come up from the Bay and lead the "Cringe" every weekend in the late 70s/early 80s.

right here, right now
Feb 24, 2007 - 03:00pm PT
Bruce, I think Gary's last name started with a "Z"?
Shoot, he's gone too?
Man we're a bunch with a short fuse.
Bruce Morris

Social climber
Belmont, California
Feb 24, 2007 - 03:54pm PT
Dunno, Roy. Have to ask Mike Arechiga when I see him at Planet Granite. Mike knows for sure. Gary S[Z]acher, of the Sacher Mantel at Castle Rock, left us last year due to liver failure (about 6 weeks). Not too pleasant. I'll check with Mike soon about the spelling since I want to spell the name of his mantel correctly in the new Castle Rock Guide. What was that W.B. Yeats said about his own "Tragic Generation" dedicated to moments of vivid intensity?

Sport climber
Venice, Ca
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 24, 2007 - 05:27pm PT
Wow, too bad about Gary Sachar (Zachar??). A very good fellow and great crack climber in his day.

I remember Warner leading the Cringe so we could film Suzuki on it and Warner had to follow it yet again. My first time up was with Lynn H. and she pulled bomber hand jams through that rattler section before it arches left. The thin lower section is what give you the flash pump. There's probably no move on the thing harder than .10C but there's 200 of them.

Mighty Hiker

Social climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Feb 24, 2007 - 05:30pm PT
"How come you never hear anything about the Crisomed Cringe anymore."

Actually, JL may have been trolling. You don't think he'd mis-spell "Crimson", do you? There's probably some little known unrepeated route called "Crisomed Cringe".

The Crimson one is well beyond me. But nice to look at, in a pretty area.

Social climber
flagstaff arizona
Feb 24, 2007 - 06:29pm PT
didn't barber atually name fish crack "cold turkey", but his name never stuck?

Feb 24, 2007 - 07:57pm PT
bvb, yes
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Feb 24, 2007 - 08:19pm PT
The Fish Crack was another classic Henry Barber heist. The thing used to sport at least two fixed pins which made it a much more reasonable proposition as a rounded layback problem on lead.

Hugh Herr tried to do it before he lost his feet to frostbite and had to hang to get it. Two years later, the amazing Hugh sent it with mechanical feet! Hugh's climbing ability greatly outpaced his skill with hardware back in those days and I followed his lead cleaning each placement with a stout downward pull followed by a "Hugh, you're a lucky boy." It isn't easy to protect on the lead due to its shallow, flaring nature.

One of these days, the Fish is going back into Cascade Creek as the entire feature is detached; Fish Crack left side, Free Press right. It seems that every time I was up top, the anchors were different and it didn't take long to figure out where the old ones went. They kept loosening and falling out!

Feb 24, 2007 - 08:29pm PT
Yeah Steve

Henry is a F'cking thief. You hear that Henry. You are a prick for stealing that climb.

Me and Kauk didn't clean out that climb 2 days earlier so that you could just waltz up there azzhole.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Feb 25, 2007 - 02:09am PT
Some things are just too good to be true no doubt! That puts the stink back in the old Fish Crack. I had a feeling something was up with that particular line. Bummer!

Social climber
El Portal
Feb 25, 2007 - 01:10pm PT
Good morning Werner...remember the bolt was replaced by our local comrad "after the whipper" and if my memory is correct it was re-chopped "yet again" by an "interestingly kooky local" (Brian Knight a.k.a. Mr. Way) then our friend went up and replaced it and there she sits ready to clipped or not!

Werner, did'nt Lydia P. take the same fall and hurt her ankle? -she was soooo wicked strong!

Hey Largo, you must come up here again and get on the's never to late to get massively pumped on 5.10


p.s. "clippin instead of whippin"!
Off White

Tenino, WA
Feb 25, 2007 - 01:21pm PT
I can't tell ya'll how wonderful it is to get the history from the horses mouth.

Trad climber
the pitch above you!
Feb 25, 2007 - 01:34pm PT
saw a dood on the "cringe" last fall...completely done with the crack...gear all used up...totally smoked...just restin' and lookin' like he wanted to quit and come down...i didn't even want to hang around and watch the ending...didn't seem fair
Bruce Morris

Social climber
Belmont, California
Mar 8, 2007 - 01:22am PT
Roy and Largo, you're both right, Gary's last name was Zacher (not Sacher). So his V4 mantle at Castle Rock around the bulge from the "Spoon" should be called the "Zacher Mantel". I wonder how many times he led the "Cringe"? Asked Mike Arechiga tonight (March 7th) and got the correct spelling. Think Gary used to run a demolition crew down in the Bay Area that also employed quite a few Yo climbers, including John Barbella, during the off season. Recall an incident in which they dropped a compressor into the Bay mud during one of their projects under Gary's supervision. He made them retreive it. Of course, it turned into a major epic.

Trad climber
Mar 8, 2007 - 01:29am PT
I followed Alan Watts when he did a redpoint of the Cringe and got so pumped it made me sick. The first part of the route looks like it's manufactured pin-scars.
Karl Baba

Trad climber
Yosemite, Ca
Mar 8, 2007 - 02:36am PT
Looks beautiful and I hear Werner cruises it.

A friend of mine went up there and wore one type of shoe on the right for the crack and one type of shoe on the left for the face.



Trad climber
Mountain View, CA
Mar 8, 2007 - 03:07am PT
A bit more on Crimson Cringe history.....

Ray Jardine originally led the route in four pitches which probably explains the anchor bolts that some felt were extraneous.


Trad climber
Mammoth Lakes, CA
Mar 8, 2007 - 10:41am PT
Why did I chop the bolts I did on the "Cringe"? Fair question!

I chopped three bolts on the "Cringe". Two were at the beginning of the undercling and were intended to be belay anchors. Remember, Jardine did the first ascent in four pitches - now it is commonly done in one pitch. These bolts were next to bomber #10 and #11 hex placements - hence no need for bolts if you wanted to belay there.

The third bolt was near the end of the undercling and was placed on rappel. No one at the time was placing bolts on rappel in Yosemite - you had to place them on lead. (Later we found out Bridwell had placed some rappel bolts at the Cookie on the "Wheat Thin"). Furthermore, there already existed underclings far more run out than this in Yosemite and elsewhere.

Anyway, I don't regret chopping these bolts. Placing bolts next to easily protected cracks was considered excessive in those times. Great efforts had just been made to eliminate pitons and the destruction caused by them. I and others felt placing bolts next to cracks was a bad precedent so in the style of the day I removed them.
Peace, JB
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