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Todd Gordon

Trad climber
Joshua Tree, Cal
Topic Author's Original Post - Jun 22, 2007 - 01:38am PT
Went here last week; The place ROCKS!
Todd Gordon

Trad climber
Joshua Tree, Cal
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 22, 2007 - 01:43am PT
Todd Gordon

Trad climber
Joshua Tree, Cal
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 22, 2007 - 01:44am PT

Mountain climber
Dak side
Jun 22, 2007 - 08:42am PT
i love seneca

Vision man...ya gotta have vision...
Jun 22, 2007 - 09:34am PT
I believe it's Soler, isn't it? With an "e"?

That looks harder than Soler.

Oh man, we're gonna have to get out the Seneca pics now...what a great place!

Nice Todd!
Todd Gordon

Trad climber
Joshua Tree, Cal
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 22, 2007 - 09:53am PT
Lichen or Leave it.

Trad climber
Redwood City, CA
Jun 22, 2007 - 10:25am PT

Barcelona, Spain
Jun 22, 2007 - 10:52am PT
Seneca's a good place to get brained by tourists trundling whatever comes to hand, or just falling off themselves if they can't find any rocks. Looks like you were prepared for that. Must be a little hot and humid around there now, no?
Scared Silly

Trad climber
Jun 22, 2007 - 12:30pm PT
I grew up in West "By God - Smile when you say it" Virigina - but until last fall never got to actually climb at Seneca. Good fun. Had to do a little Ecstasy while there.

susan peplow

Jun 22, 2007 - 12:41pm PT
Todd, what's this? Photos? You? Posting photos?

We look forward to more!!


p.s. glad you had a nice trip, welcome home.
bob d'antonio

Trad climber
Taos, NM
Jun 22, 2007 - 12:45pm PT
Rich Ramano looking quite cool on the dicey Terra Firma 5.11+

D'Antonio Collection


Jun 22, 2007 - 01:02pm PT
Hey Todd-

Your post definitely eases my east coast blues!

If you get a chance, how 'bout an update on the twins?

BTW, do you keep in touch w/ Kelby? He mentioned you a while back at the gym (yea, the gym.... how can one not have east coast blues)?



a luxury Malibu rehabilitation treatment facility
Jun 22, 2007 - 01:07pm PT
One of my first leads ever was the easiest route up the Gendarme before it fell. As I recall it was a heartpounding 5.4 that you did a wide step to a ledge with a hundred feet of exposure right off the belay. Here's a pic of my bud Scott after he led a 5.9 on the other side. Note the Toys "R" Us helmet.
Going to Seneca was one of my first dirtbag fun tours. We climbed at Seneca during the day and crawled around in the WV caves at night. Lather, rinse, repeat. I'd sure like to go back for a spell - I haven't been there since 1980.
Todd Gordon

Trad climber
Joshua Tree, Cal
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 22, 2007 - 01:17pm PT
Reddirt;....the first picture IS Kelby;....gym climber.

right here, right now
Jun 22, 2007 - 01:33pm PT
Nice Gordex portrait there Todd!

Trad climber
Falls Church, VA
Jun 22, 2007 - 06:09pm PT
I recognized Lichen or Leave It, even upside down. Beautiful climb, in a beautiful place, but you'd better be ready for it, 'cause it's ready for you.

Minor Seneca trip:

Seneca. Sunny, hazy, eventual thundershowers. May 26, 27 2007

Chris and I cut short our excellent adventure/training epic to Seneca this weekend, due to a combination of a minor (we hope) ankle sprain he suffered while dramatically falling about 25 feet from the crux of The Burn, and the thunderstorms that rolled in not long after that. He was cruising nicely on twin ropes, and finished the crux but ran out of grip right then; his last piece, a good medium cam, was ten feet down, and the ropes were new, and by pure chance he had slung the piece with one of my old screamers, which tore all the way down. He had been seduced by the thought that the crux was almost over and that terrific holds would appear at the mild ledge, and they are there, but not all that terrific. Luckily he only grazed the ledge at half-height, as it is pretty steep there. He at first felt uninjured and rested for a while, thinking of trying again, but then began to feel uncertain about his ankle, and lowered off. I had been ready for the fall, but I still wasn't really expecting it, and I got my leg slammed against the rock and took a superficial flesh wound. I went up and finished the lead; I was more nervous than he, I think, and I sewed the thing up more than I would have otherwise, and barely pulled it off myself due to the extra energy expended on the pro. Not to mention that I had a little loop around the biner with the red rope as I moved on the crux, and had to desperately step down a bit to take it out, and go again. When he followed he was a little disgusted, saying it wasn't nearly as hard as he had made it.
An hour or two later rain and thunder began gradually and he was limping. Luckily we had not been able to jump on Pleasant Overhangs as we had planned due to the swarming wankers, so we were snoozing in our tents, fairly dry, when the wankers were rappelling, soaked. Notable incident: Chris was belaying at a tree and without warning a rock came about two hundred feet from the summit within two feet of his head (he wore a helmet, I did not.) A little later, down on the path near our packs, we found that it was not a rock but two large anodized nuts and a biner. Booty!
Another notable incident: we tarried by the bridge on the way out to soak our feet in the limpid stream, and we were approached by a swimming snake about eighteen inches long, brown, which came quite close and only veered off when we moved. Another omen, no doubt.
The previous afternoon we had done Simple J Malarky - great fun and exposure and Dufty's Popoff, a truly sincere 5.7 pitch of 130 feet in which you get a great deal more than you bargained for. Really well worth doing. And our primary goal, of tuning up double/twin rope management, was partially accomplished. It's still amazing how those bastards can tangle each other.
Travel note: the Byrd Megahighway has now been extended about 5 miles, to within 3 miles of Wardensville, and cycling is permitted on the wide shoulders. Could be an excellent biking expedition someday.


Two days later Chris called and said that his ankle was now a balloon, and hence our wonderful dream of hitting the Valley in two weeks must be postponed until fall. It's just as well - the following week my overenthusiastic karate instructor trashed my legs so badly that I would not have enjoyed the Valley anyway. Everything happens for a reason. Unfortunately sometimes the reason is that the Universe hates you personally. All you can do is come back the next day and bash it in the nose as hard as you can.

Vision man...ya gotta have vision...
Jun 22, 2007 - 08:47pm PT
Had a chance to visit Seneca twice, back in '93 and '94 via online blind dating off wreck.climbing newsgroup. Would love to go back and climb there again one of these days soon!

West side from across the approach bridge...

The valley below from South Peak (?). Pretty place!

As close as I got to the Gendarme. The other one fell over long before I got there.

Dale W. on the first pitch of Ecstasy (5.7)

Dale again, on the second pitch of Ecstasy (5.7)

Leading the local classic, Triple-S (Shipley's Shivering Shimmy)

Inez D. in windy conditions on the first pitch of Marshall's Madness. Cool route!

On the way down, in front of South Peak. Believe it or not, there's a 5.4 route that goes up the edge behind me!

Trad climber
State College, PA
Jun 22, 2007 - 09:08pm PT
nice pictures - its 9pm in PA and I am off to Seneca at 4.30 a.m. tomorrow....

"Gunsight to South Peak Direct" (the 5.4 route in the last photo) is now described in the revised guidebook as "a 5.5 for 5.7 leaders". Wonderful climbing and exposure!


Trad climber
LA, Ca
Jun 22, 2007 - 09:16pm PT
" ...Inez D. in windy conditions on the first pitch of Marshall's Madness. Cool route! ... "

Ah yes, Tom Marshall. I did a couple new routes with Marshall and Herb Laeger on Patterson Bluff a few years ago. Tom, of course, named them. The finger crack was called "digital exam" and the wider one was called "Wreck'ed 'em and Eject 'em.." (I choose the more polite spelling option..)

Anyone seen that guy recently? I found him to be most entertaining...
the kid

Trad climber
fayetteville, wv
Jun 24, 2007 - 01:34pm PT
gordo... first trip to Seneca eh? that place does rock... next time your this close in WV, come look us up @ the new river gorge...
good t see a j tree boy get out EAST>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
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