History of the lightning bolt on midnight lighting

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john hansen

climber
Topic Author's Original Post - Jun 11, 2007 - 01:25am PT
Who drew the original lighting bolt ,and how has it been maintained thru the years. Yabo saw the route , Kauk climbed it. ..whats the story on the lighting bolt.
The Warbler

climber
the edge of America
Jun 11, 2007 - 01:31am PT
Probably Mike Graham. I remember him drawing those bolts all over the place at that time. Maybe Bachar or RK.
WBraun

climber
Jun 11, 2007 - 01:35am PT
Yabo drew it
Jude Bischoff

Ice climber
Palm Springs
Jun 11, 2007 - 01:35am PT
My daughter and I saw Lynn Hills first female ascent and on the same day a European climber did the first downclimb of Midnight Lightning.
john hansen

climber
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 11, 2007 - 01:39am PT
I'm glad Yabo drew it. If werner says it is so,, it is so.

He was there.
WBraun

climber
Jun 11, 2007 - 01:49am PT
Not that it's gospel truth that Yabo drew it John.

Could have been the others too.
Russ Walling

Social climber
Out on the sand.... man.....
Jun 11, 2007 - 01:51am PT
First down climb? Unlikely....

I go with Yabo or MG.
Jude Bischoff

Ice climber
Palm Springs
Jun 11, 2007 - 01:58am PT
I saw the downclimb in action, the guy sent it and then downclimbed it. Poetry in motion I might add.
Chaz

Trad climber
So. Cal.
Jun 11, 2007 - 01:59am PT
I had heard you were supposed to draw over the image with chalk after you failed to climb it.

Anyway, that's what I did after I *tried* it.
Russ Walling

Social climber
Out on the sand.... man.....
Jun 11, 2007 - 02:01am PT
Not to split the thread... but Lynne did the thing eons after it was originally done and what makes you think a Euro downclimb was the first? I've seen plenty of guys down climb the thing from the mantle.... so it is not much of a reach to believe it was downclimbed years before Lynne was there.
Jude Bischoff

Ice climber
Palm Springs
Jun 11, 2007 - 02:06am PT
Lynne made an announcement it was the first downclimb, but you could be perfectly correct. He did it from the top. And yes time wise, this was maybe 6 or 7 years ago.
Russ Walling

Social climber
Out on the sand.... man.....
Jun 11, 2007 - 02:09am PT
Hey Jude.... (killing myself with that one... sorry!)

Was this when Lynne was on a top rope? Or am I just mixing up an ascent or two...? The first time she did it is what you saw? Got any pics? That'd be cool....

As for the downclimb... I'm 98.587% positive she was mistaken about the Euro.
Jude Bischoff

Ice climber
Palm Springs
Jun 11, 2007 - 02:14am PT
Forgot my camera that day. Ron Kauk was taking the photo's from a ladder. I guess she practiced on top rope earlier in the day, but sent it after two falls.

Russ Walling

Social climber
Out on the sand.... man.....
Jun 11, 2007 - 02:16am PT
Crowley. Please try to control yourself. I know it is hard for you. You are not adding anything, once again, to this discussion between Jude and myself. So kindly, step back, relax, and fuk off.

Timeframe edit: I think Lynne did it in 1998 the first time.
Russ Walling

Social climber
Out on the sand.... man.....
Jun 11, 2007 - 02:23am PT
I've always wondered why the Park Service allows that obvious "graffiti" to stay??
mojede

Trad climber
Butte, America
Jun 11, 2007 - 02:27am PT
I'd guess that the Rangers viewed it as "removable", and it fell into that grey area--my .02.
Mighty Hiker

Social climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Jun 11, 2007 - 02:54am PT
It's not graffiti, it's a pictograph. A historic and cultural icon. Just like Camp 4 is a national historic site or whatever.
rlf

Trad climber
Josh, CA
Jun 11, 2007 - 08:21am PT
If that's the case then half the routes in Joshua Tree would have my initials spray painted all over them.
bachar

Trad climber
Mammoth Lakes, CA
Jun 11, 2007 - 10:03am PT
Werner has smoked too much hippie lettuce...

I drew the original bolt on Midnight Lightning....

Yabo indeed "found" the line first and had the vision to see that the problem was possible. He showed it to me and Ron - we thought there was about as much chance of doing it as there was the chance that a lightning bolt could strike at midnight (like in the Hendrix song 'Midnight Lightning") - so I drew a bolt on it in chalk....

That's it - pretty stupid huh?

Cheers, JB
Tahoe climber

Trad climber
a dark-green forester out west
Jun 11, 2007 - 10:54am PT
That's crazy John!
Thanks for that!
Wow!
Crimpergirl

Social climber
Hell on earth wondering what I did to deserve it
Jun 11, 2007 - 11:22am PT
I'm glad you guys decided it was as likely to be done as lightening hitting at midnight instead of say, pigs flying. I think that a pictograph of a pig flying on the rock just wouldn't be as cool.

:)
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Jun 11, 2007 - 01:06pm PT
Anyone have a shot of the Midnight Lightning on the East Ledges descent route?
G_Gnome

Trad climber
Knob Central
Jun 11, 2007 - 02:16pm PT
So then.....

Who drew the lightning bolt on the roof of the Iron Door Cave at Josh first?
bvb

Social climber
flagstaff arizona
Jun 11, 2007 - 03:23pm PT
i'm pretty sure skip guerin downclimbed midnight lightning during the early-to-mid 80's. not positive on that one, but i do recollect....
Standing Strong

Trad climber
real eyes realize real life
Jun 11, 2007 - 03:36pm PT
does anyone have a tattoo of the bolt from midnight lightening?
bachar

Trad climber
Mammoth Lakes, CA
Jun 11, 2007 - 03:41pm PT
I could draw one for ya' !
klinefelter

Boulder climber
Bishop, CA
Jun 11, 2007 - 03:45pm PT
The Bolt
Standing Strong

Trad climber
real eyes realize real life
Jun 11, 2007 - 03:46pm PT
that would be an honor!
Chaz

Trad climber
So. Cal.
Jun 11, 2007 - 04:43pm PT
BvB writes:

"i'm pretty sure skip guerin downclimbed midnight lightning..."

Was he wearing shoes?
marty(r)

climber
beneath the valley of ultravegans
Jun 11, 2007 - 04:47pm PT
I think they just knocked off Gerry Lopez' surfboards:
http://www.gerrylopezsurfboards.com/classic.htm
Wonder

climber
WA
Jun 11, 2007 - 05:59pm PT
Didn't the Stonemasters use the the lighting bolt as their standard? I remember it getting flashed around Idyllwild BITD.
James

climber
A tent in the redwoods
Jun 11, 2007 - 06:03pm PT
When I squint at the mirror, the long scar on my back looks like a lightning bolt.
maldaly

Trad climber
Boulder, CO
Jun 11, 2007 - 06:52pm PT

This is the logo from Michael Misel's company, Lost Arrow. Michael is a pretty badass climber and has what seems to be the definitive guide to the Arco area.

Interesting logo, eh. I wonder where they got the idea...
G_Gnome

Trad climber
Knob Central
Jun 11, 2007 - 07:09pm PT
Wonder asked ' Didn't the Stonemasters use the the lighting bolt as their standard?'.

Yep. I think Graham started it all.
Wonder

climber
WA
Jun 11, 2007 - 07:17pm PT
Thanks G, I think so. Someone might have even had a lighting bolt pierced ear?
Walleye

climber
The Land of the Big Stone
Jun 11, 2007 - 07:37pm PT
The Lightning at Midnight


Photo: Walter Flint
WBraun

climber
Jun 11, 2007 - 07:41pm PT
So, .... I saw Yabo draw on the lightning bolt.
Tom

Big Wall climber
San Luis Obispo CA
Jun 11, 2007 - 08:31pm PT
I think that bolt qualifies as Audience Participation Artwork. I remember, way back when, seeing people dip their finger in chalk, and then trace the bolt, to maintain its white shiny crystal beauty.

It may have been done as an homage, or as a karmic warm up to trying the problem later. Or, it may have just been a generic good-luck ritual, sorta like rubbing the nose of a certain bronze pig near the Ponte Vecchio in Florence, Italy.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Jun 11, 2007 - 08:42pm PT
I was present when Skip sent ML the first time and no downclimb that day for him. Up was enough!
Jude Bischoff

Ice climber
Palm Springs
Jun 11, 2007 - 09:26pm PT
A true pictograph for the modern age.

Soon there will be a fence around it and grafiti spray painted initials of gang slang. In 50 years your photo's will adorn the fence. A bronze climber statue will be erected. A shrine will be built over the site. An audio tour will be available. A VW bus with manaquin posers and gear and hippie lettuce will be on display. The Japanese tourists will have their photo taken nest to the lightening bolt. An annual reunion will commence and slowly, over time, there will be a lone survivor......The last of the great climbers...who will it be?
john hansen

climber
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 11, 2007 - 10:16pm PT
Posted this one before.


Nefarius

Big Wall climber
Fresno, CA
Jun 11, 2007 - 10:23pm PT
It's not real pleasant falling from there, especially as you really start to press the mantle out and are commited to it. I've done that a couple of times. Should I go back and trace the bolt then? I didn't, the times I peeled off the route. Don't want to cheat the Karma clock!
Anastasia

Trad climber
California
Jun 12, 2007 - 08:29pm PT
Bump!
ron gomez

Trad climber
fallbrook,ca
Jun 12, 2007 - 08:55pm PT
When I'm there, I chalk the stars on either end.
Peace
Mr_T

Trad climber
Somewhere, CA
Jun 12, 2007 - 09:46pm PT
Does the bolt get washed away during the winter snow?
WBraun

climber
Jun 12, 2007 - 10:04pm PT
Never goes away. It's a landmark seen around the world.
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Nov 13, 2008 - 02:56am PT
I was hanging out with Roger and Peter this weekend. We took a spin around Camp 4, they had lived there decades ago and though there have been many changes, much had stayed the same.

But one thing was interesting, we walked around Columbia Boulder and took a look at Midnight Lightning, Roger checked out the lightning bolt and he asked "is that chalk?" and I replied yes... his response "isn't it amazing that generations of climbers have replenished Yabo's lightning bolt?"

It is amazing when you think about it. Not to be sucked into a maudlin funk though, Roger threatened to bring some yellow chalk and put a happy face on next time he was in town!

Here it is in the winter...
Jennie

Trad climber
Idaho Falls
Nov 13, 2008 - 10:53am PT
Lynn Hill on Midnight Lightning:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R8zg2n_OIuQ
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Nov 13, 2008 - 10:56am PT
The future of bouldering lies in ascents of problems in "full conditions" as the Scots would say! LOL It would make the downclimb pretty interesting too even with a heated chalkbag...
Mighty Hiker

Social climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Nov 13, 2008 - 10:58am PT
I'd guess that it's not a good place to practice dry-tooling.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Nov 13, 2008 - 11:21am PT
No, but I bet if you moisten your shrunken little boulderer's tool at the crux and let it freeze in place, it could provide a much needed rest and shake out before the excruciating exit move. LOL The birth of wet tooling ,so to speak!
Jaybro

Social climber
wuz real!
Nov 13, 2008 - 11:28am PT
Thanks for the clip, Jennnie
stevep

Boulder climber
Salt Lake, UT
Nov 13, 2008 - 12:36pm PT
The mantle would be harder in those conditions, but you'd have a softer landing if you blew it.
BASE104

climber
An Oil Field
Nov 13, 2008 - 03:41pm PT
I remember BITD when Mike O'Donnell had a little gold lightning bolt ear ring. I sewed one on a chalk bag once. They were some kind of energy mojo. And no, I never did the problem.
Fat Dad

Trad climber
Los Angeles, CA
Nov 13, 2008 - 03:58pm PT
She is so solid in that clip. Very impressive. Back in the day when I lived in OC (early 80s), we'd boulder at the Beach. Some problems I could never do because of reach, until Lynn showed up one day. Such an intuitive, resourceful climber. She'd always find some solution to overcome a long reach. I still use her sequences on those same problems.
Jaybro

Social climber
wuz real!
Nov 14, 2008 - 02:20am PT
Scott, how can I give you shiit (it's a way of life, for all of us, [you Know (!)] you do it too...) while still acknowledging the crazy shIt you've done?

You're still young and strong (since I'm a tiny bit, [increasingly less,] older, I can always pull that old guy card on you) today, what's next?

But Midnight Lightning, laps x 12? In a session?

Cheers to you! -Sincerely!

Maybe I should have worked it, when I, sorta, had the appropriate Mojo.

Anyone know how many ascents by those over fidy (# of times and/or # of individuals) that rig has grnated?
WBraun

climber
Nov 14, 2008 - 02:24am PT
It's true

I was there as witness, he fell on the 13 try.
Jaybro

Social climber
wuz real!
Nov 14, 2008 - 02:29am PT
Thanks for that, Werner.

That "Hot shot kid" really did show us how it is done, it seems.
WBraun

climber
Nov 14, 2008 - 02:30am PT
Also the the ends of the lightning bolt have illumination hashes spreading out ward like the suns rays.

Symbolizing, .... that, without the first superior penetrating knowledge given by the illuminating energy of the sun planet there would be nothing.

And thus, .....
ß Î Ø T Ç H

climber
Last >>
Nov 25, 2008 - 11:13pm PT
Toproping it has been mentioned a couple times . Does it has it's own anchor , or it's rigged somehow ? And , not to start a conspiracy theory , but might the route have been worked via toprope prior to the FA ? And would that taint the FA ? In the light of it's present day fame etc it's pretty hard to believe it was preserved as a ' ground-up ' (only) boulder problem from the beginning , or am I just off base .
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Nov 26, 2008 - 11:06am PT
Once upon a time, Columbia Boulder wasn't covered with campfire soot along the base. Mead Hargis posted this shot presumably after the first soot streak showed up back in the early seventies.



It would be a great project to restore it even though the contrast would disappear for the famous bolt!
klinefelter

Boulder climber
Bishop, CA
Nov 26, 2008 - 11:59am PT
tope roping it first is shameful

Putting things in some perspective though, pre-early 90's ascents probably did not involve a dozen XXL pads and a posse of cheering spotters ready to catch yer fall, ala the modern bring-the-gym-outdoors style.

I'd at least hope some old timers could appreciate this distinction, as I've watched highballs of the past become trivial, with stacked pads and gang spotting.
Wade Icey

Trad climber
www.alohashirtrescue.com
Feb 7, 2010 - 02:22pm PT
top roping, stack o' pads=same thing bump


edit:In years of daily bouldering around Camp I only touched ML once. Walked up to it in my tennies and put my unchalked hands on the starting holds and Schultz preparing for a lap, yells "DON'T TOUCH THOSE F*#KING HOLDS"(It was probably hot).All four million residents of camp were staring at me. Dave laughs, "spot me man" and fires it. I never touched it again, since he told me not to.



splitter

Trad climber
Hodad, surfing the galactic plane
Sep 20, 2012 - 11:19pm PT
lightning bolt, bump...
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