Dihedral Wall - FA + extras

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Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Original Post - Aug 25, 2007 - 10:54am PT
The Dihedral Wall is another of Glen Denny's greatest hits and the first El Cap route established by "outsiders," which is to say non-Cali boys. Lots of history here as the third big line done even though this one doesn't see many complete ascents these days. Outstanding photographs with Ed and Glen on the team.











Mighty Hiker

Social climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Aug 25, 2007 - 11:05am PT
Thanks, Steve!

Ed Cooper has written a photo-essay book that will be published by Falcon this autumn, called "Soul of the Heights".

http://www.globepequot.com/globepequot/index.cfm?fuseaction=customer.product&product_code=0%2D7627%2D4527%2D4&category_code=

Including many pictures and stories from his climbs in the 1950s and 1960s. I saw it at the Outdoor Retailer, and it looks really good.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 25, 2007 - 11:18am PT
Too cool! A veritable wave of sixties history in word and image coming right at ya from all angles these days.........Thanks for the heads up Anders.
'Pass the Pitons' Pete

Big Wall climber
like Oakville, Ontario, Canada, eh?
Aug 25, 2007 - 11:48am PT
"....even though this one doesn't see many complete ascents these days.

Petie jumping up and down, waving his hands: "We did! We did!" Cybele did a particularly good job of upstream swimming on one of the finishing pitches. The top pitches go through a deep gully that is unique on El Cap, similar only to the pitches on Cosmos just below Thanksgiving Ledge.

On the penultimate pitch, I had so much rope drag that I couldn't move, and had to put my jug on the rope to pull up slack, then rope solo to finish. It later turned out that my rope was almost hopelessly snarled through all the dead trees that had collected in the bottom of the gully! I ended up going the wrong way around the final overhang, and had a bit of a bushbash epic, with desperation mantels made by grabbing twigs. Even though it was grungy, the finish is unique, and if you're going to climb the route, you really ought to climb the route! We did not haul the final section, but rapped it in the dark, then moved all our crap along Thanksgiving Ledge whence we rapped Lurking Fear with our pigs [tricky but doable].

Dihedral Wall was far from one of my favourite routes - in a lot of places the climbing just isn't that good. Todd Skinner's overbolting litters the route, with 3/8" fatties a measured fifteen inches from perfect red-yellow Alien pods on the pitch above The Ledge. I didn't use the bolts, pretending to make the pitch still A3. The bolts need to be removed and the holes filled with epoxy - unfortunately I didn't bring my bolt replacement kit with me when Cybie and I climbed it.

What's incredibly rad, however, is that these necky buggers climbed the thing 45 years ago, and did so bivying in hammocks. Holy!
Raydog

Trad climber
Boulder Colorado
Aug 25, 2007 - 02:50pm PT
good one Steve - remember the classic shot - I think from Climbing In North America - of Glen Denny cleaning, this huge rack of pins on a 1" sling? Great moments, that pic is etched in my mind.

cheers,
Ray
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 25, 2007 - 04:24pm PT
Two Dihedral shots from Climbing in North America.


Steve Roper during an early attempt.
yo

climber
The Eye of the Snail
Aug 25, 2007 - 06:26pm PT
Man, that topout shot says it all. Says it ALL.

The conqueror and the conquered. hahaha
Raydog

Trad climber
Boulder Colorado
Aug 25, 2007 - 08:21pm PT
Big wall impedimenta.
deuce4

Big Wall climber
the Southwest
Aug 25, 2007 - 09:51pm PT
mind boggling how Denny looks so dapper after the days on the wall. White shirt and all.
gunsmoke

Trad climber
Clackamas, Oregon
Aug 26, 2007 - 08:35am PT
Funny how ethics and remembrances change over time. DW was heavily criticized for siege tactics, unlike the second route on The Captain (Salathe) that went up in great style. Now it seems that those who put up DW are incredibly rad, too cool, and way dapper.
Mighty Hiker

Social climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Aug 26, 2007 - 09:44am PT
It will be interesting to read what if anything Ed Cooper has to say about it in his new book, with 40+ years perspective. Both Roper and Robbins have said their piece, but it's just possible that there are other sides to the story.
elcap-pics

climber
Crestline CA
Aug 26, 2007 - 11:26am PT
BITD the DW did take some flack for the tactics used but when the detractors actually climbed the route they were the first to admitt that the climbing was done in the best of style with the min of bolting, and also admitted that the route, done with the equipment of that time was probably not possible without the tactics used. Seems it is easy to dis routes one has not done themselves! I did the route in 92 with Brad Jarret... or I should say that Brad hauled me up the route... before the extra bolts were installed for the free climbing attempts and found it to be a great route. I wonder why people are so willing to muck up a route just so a few elite climbers can have a shot at free climbing it... This route was really screwed up just so it could have a free ascent... what kind of ethic is that? Think of how impressive it would have been if it had gone free as it existed instead of making it a big sport route. As an example... how uncool would it have been to bolt the Salathe headwall every 15 ft so that it could have been free climbed without relying on the natural protection available? My feeling is that if a route has been climbed before using natural protection and minimum bolts, even though it was aided, then free attempts should be done on the route as it exists... adding a bunch of bomber bolts because you don't want to face the route as it is is a form of reducing the route to a lower level. But this is just the opinion of someone who is merely an observer and whose day is long gone.... but an opinion for what it is worth.
yo

climber
The Eye of the Snail
Aug 26, 2007 - 11:30am PT
They are rad. They're way radder than you.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 26, 2007 - 11:36am PT
The currency of lasting value is just that, experience and opinion, good as gold. Doesn't seem to lose its luster either.
elcap-pics

climber
Crestline CA
Aug 26, 2007 - 12:17pm PT
I agree with you YO... they are ALL radder than me... thanks for pointing that out, it added so much to the conversation. BTW I started the post with the greeting "Yo" which I use as a greeting... kind of like saying hello for me... perhaps you thought I was posting in response to your earlier post... I wasn't... it is just a greeting... so I removed it from the start of the post.... sorry if it caused you some confusion.
yo

climber
The Eye of the Snail
Aug 26, 2007 - 03:11pm PT
haha, yeah Ansel, I've noticed Yo is your trademark opener. I was ripping on the other feller. They're bad for putting it up and you're bad for getting after it later. Good on ya!
gunsmoke

Trad climber
Clackamas, Oregon
Aug 26, 2007 - 03:36pm PT
Yo, I made no judgment regarding the radness of the FA, merely observed that they were dissed and their route demeaned for something that is now commonly accepted. Actually, I'm quite impressed with their tenacity and quality of the final product. Same thing with Bachar-Yerian. Aid was employed to assist in placing the FA bolts. Gasp!
Raydog

Trad climber
Boulder Colorado
Aug 26, 2007 - 06:27pm PT
any more great Dihedral wall pics?
'Pass the Pitons' Pete

Big Wall climber
like Oakville, Ontario, Canada, eh?
Aug 26, 2007 - 06:52pm PT
I could upload some from my ascent with Cybele if you like. Yes, no? If you're lucky, they'll be pix of her, not me.
Raydog

Trad climber
Boulder Colorado
Aug 26, 2007 - 06:53pm PT
go for it Pete - seems totally appropriate.
Mighty Hiker

Social climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Aug 26, 2007 - 06:57pm PT
Post the pictures please Pete!

Do you have any taken at more or less the same spots as those posted from the FA?
nick d

Trad climber
nm
Aug 26, 2007 - 07:21pm PT
Thanks for posting this up, Steve! It is always impressive to think back on how heavy duty the pioneers really were,

I notice that many contemporary climbers are readily willing to put each other down for their percieved lack of style, but the reality of it is that none of their accomplishments hold a candle to the commitment displayed by those in earlier days.

Lets all remember that they could not call Werner and co. on a cell phone if things got necky. How many of you would be willing to make the same commitment now? I am pretty sure not too many present day spraylords would be heading up there.

PTPP is willing to run down Skinner for bolting to free climb (of which I don't approve) but I notice in another thread he is recommending to one of his friends that he nail up Mescalito. It's my understanding that good style on this route is to climb it clean.

So, it's ok to hammer the rock if it's one of your friends doing it, but not if it's someone you don't like?

Just curious about that.

Michael
gunsmoke

Trad climber
Clackamas, Oregon
Aug 26, 2007 - 07:36pm PT
Michael, Your PTPP criticism is mixing apples with oranges.

Major Edit:
The point is that, as a basic principle, a climb is what it is at the time of the FA; other parties shouldn’t come along and presume to have the right to change it. Mescalito is a nice, mid-level trade route. Just because someone comes along and manages to do it clean, does that mean that everyone else has now got to face multiple 50 footers to do the route in the new style? I say no. To say yes is to say that the basic nature of the climb is now changed, only hardmen may apply. DW, on the other hand, has been an entry level EC route for decades. But Skinner changes all that by taking a route available to the masses and turns it into an elite free route, doable by less than 1% of the climbing population. “Don’t clip the bolts,” you say. Great response, for a robot. I’m not a robot. If I’m on a climb and a fat bolt is staring me in the face, the essence of my experience is changed, and in the case of DW not changed for the better.
nick d

Trad climber
nm
Aug 26, 2007 - 08:07pm PT
Gunsmoke, your post exactly illustrates my point about flexible ethics. Mescalito was not a "mid level trade route" at its inception. It was cutting edge aid. Now the cracks have been hammered to the point that they accept nuts.

It seems to me that if you wanted to experience the same kind of risk the first ascenders took you would be clean aiding it. Isn't hammering it now degrading it for no reason, other than adding it to your tick list?

I said I did not approve of Todd's climbing ethics; he was my pal and I let him know my opinion on numerous occasions. I'm just curious how come he gets slammed and Pete's buddy gets the ok.

Also, {"Don’t clip the bolts," you say.} Sorry, but could you point out to me where I wrote that? I must have, since you put it in quotation marks.

Michael
gunsmoke

Trad climber
Clackamas, Oregon
Aug 26, 2007 - 08:46pm PT
Michael, Sorry for seeming to attribute “Don’t clip the bolts” to you. I just anticipated the response, guess I’ve heard it too many times before. That Skinner bolts DW can’t be justified, IMHO. As far as Mescalito goes, seems that the FA happened in 73, preceding PO and thereby giving some credence to your view. Nonetheless, Mescalito was a mid-level route throughout the 80’s and 90’s, and I doubt that the FA party was taking 50 footers (maybe someone can come forward to correct that assumption), which seems to be the standard you’re calling for. The main reason for Mescalito falling from the top tier was that other climbs like PO and the Sea, both done later that decade, raised the bar way past Mescalito, thereby make it no longer “cutting edge.” Mescalito has been what it’s been for about the last 30 of its 35 years, and nailing on it is not an example of flexible ethics.
nick d

Trad climber
nm
Aug 26, 2007 - 09:30pm PT
I don't think your reasoning is correct. Mescalito actually got easier. It was originally rated A4, and I think that is because it had some very difficult thin cracks and seams as well as some scary hooking.

It has been hammered so much that now there are pin scars where there were once only seams. I think the current rating on it is usually given as C3, which implies fairly difficult clean aiding.

This is just another example of modern climbers feeling entitled to ticking off climbs that are, in reality, beyond their abilities. Continuing to hammer things in only destroys the crack systems more.

I also agree that installing bolt ladders next to cracks to enable free attempts is wrong, but that, unfortunately, is the legacy of the whole sport climbing movement.

Michael
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 28, 2007 - 08:08am PT
"Pound a pin, save some skin." Same old lame, tired crap that I have been hearing for thirty years.
"Pitons have been the great equalizer in American climbing. By liberally using them it was possible to get in over ones head and by more liberally using them to get out again." YC,TF and DR 1972
The heavy hand has never been acceptable and yet we collectively endure the scarring. Everybody is responsible for their actions and should be willing to be called to account for them if climbing is to evolve.
Enough vitriol, back to the Golden Age........
Nefarius

Big Wall climber
Fresno, CA
Aug 28, 2007 - 09:54am PT
Pete's not gonna post pics... He *still* owes us a TR from the Sheep Ranch. I think there's a saying to the tune of "Over deliver under promise".... All talk, I tell ya! ;)

See ya in a few weeks, Pete!
BadInfluence

Mountain climber
Dak side
Aug 28, 2007 - 10:09am PT
does that crack in the roof go free?
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 28, 2007 - 07:47pm PT
After a fashion....
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Sep 1, 2007 - 10:39am PT
In 1964, Royal Robbins and Tom Frost did the second ascent of the Dihedral Wall in five days. Despite an abundance of detailed information in the published accounts of the FA, significant details got overlooked. In order to conserve bolt hangers, the FA party left three dozen or so bare studs behind. Ed Cooper had reasoned that the 1/4" nuts would have weathered in place preventing the next party from adding hangers but no mention of the need for nuts or hangers appeared anywhere! By mere luck, Royal and Tom brought six nuts along and were able to deal with the challenge.
Somehow the bolt total was also underreported by the FA party but, as was their customn due to constant improvements in equipment, Royal and Tom removed over a dozen unnecessary bolts to essentially restore the reported number.
Mighty Hiker

Social climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Sep 1, 2007 - 11:21am PT
Two of the three on the FA of the Dihedral were Jim Baldwin and Ed Cooper. They'd done the FA of the Grand Wall on the Stawamus Chief a few years earlier, and in doing so created a long bolt ladder leading to the base of the Split Pillar. About 100 metres worth of bolts, on a steep slab. That's a lot of bolts, and hangars. They used mostly 3/16" bolts, and removed the (mostly home made) hangars from about 2/3 of them, though in most cases left the nuts on.

I first did the route in 1974, before the Split Pillar had been freed, or the approach via Mercy Me had been discovered. There wasn't really enough room behind the by then rusty nuts to even loop a tie off, so the trick was to make up a bunch of loops using parachute cord, and use them. Naturally they got a bit frayed. At least by then some of the bolts, and the belay bolts, had been replaced by "reliable" 1/4" Rawl split shafts and decent hangars.

Anyway, it may have been the precedent for their removing hangars from Dihedral Wall bolt ladders. That, and limited budget for equipment. Not much later, people started using bat hooks and eventually dowels, interspersed with bolts - much the same effect.

The Grand Wall bolt ladder is now recognized as a historical artefact.
Jonny D

Social climber
Lost Angelez, Kalifornia
Sep 1, 2007 - 11:23am PT
thanks for the post SG, dihedral was my first wall and unfortunatelly we had to bail at thanksgiving ledge due to bad weather and giant bushes clogging up the last pitches (this was mid april). does anyone had photos of those last pitches?
thanks again, excellent post!
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Sep 1, 2007 - 12:16pm PT
The rumors of excessive bolting on the Grand Wall contributed significantly to the cool reception given the first team of non-locals to venture on El Cap. The missing nuts were a curious source of adventure for several parties as I will be posting later.
3/16" bolts by the sea----Yikes!!!
Todd Gordon

Trad climber
Joshua Tree, Cal
Sep 1, 2007 - 12:56pm PT



The ledge....Dihedral Wall.





Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Sep 1, 2007 - 02:20pm PT
Nice spread and old school haulbag Todd!
Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Sep 1, 2007 - 06:18pm PT
The Troll!
Did he keep his cigarettes in a tuperware on that one Todd?
Todd Gordon

Trad climber
Joshua Tree, Cal
Sep 1, 2007 - 06:35pm PT
The Troll ran out of smokes the last day of the climb;..he was crabby on the hike out. We did that climb 27 years ago;......he was an excellent wall partner and we had a great time on the climb.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Sep 3, 2007 - 10:16am PT
And now to the third ascent. From Summit Sept 1968.











Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Sep 7, 2007 - 07:33am PT
Bump for the extras.......
'Pass the Pitons' Pete

Big Wall climber
like Oakville, Ontario, Canada, eh?
Sep 7, 2007 - 08:29pm PT
Here are a few photos from my ascent of Dihedral Wall with Cybele in the spring of 2006.



Cybele takes the lead heading up towards the triangular-shaped roof on P6. To her left and above you can see the Pinnacle of Hammerdom on the left skyline. Is that a cool name for a bivi, or what? I understand the name has nothing to do with nailing!



Cybele made snowballs for us one morning! We got dumped on pretty hard for a few minutes. All the snow crystals slid down the Wings of Steel slab and deposited themselves in a deep pile at the base.



Climbing into the Black Arch, with the fearsome Wings Of Steel slab beneath. Note the new bolts which I have shamelessly clipped. I'm leading in blocks, so after hauling the rack up to the station which you can see just below me, I have taken off on solo belay while Cybele gets ready to follow and clean.



Cybele begins the classic dihedrals in the mid-upper section of the route...



...and charges onwards as she solo leads her "block" of pitches. The climbing in this section is OK, but never really great. Overall I was not impressed by the quality of climbing, nor the route. Never Never Land is a hugely better excursion if you're looking for something of similar difficulty in the area, and Cosmos is OK, too.



That's the Pinnacle of Hammerdom to my left.



This little critter had made himself a comfy nest in the crack, and decorated it with a single flower blossom. Not sure what kind of critter he is, but very cute!



When Cybele returned my camera after this pitch, I was rather surprised to find no fewer than ten photos of this feature. Perhaps she liked him as a textbook example of natural pro?



Here we enjoy morning coffee on Thanksgiving Ledge. Note: "Morning" begins around 10am and can carry on well past noon. It felt good to be able to walk around for the first time in so many days.



Above Thanksgiving Ledge the character of the route changes considerably as you enter a huge and wet chimney system. Cybele did a superb job swimming up this pitch, which was running with water in several places.



Above this next bit, you climb up a huge gully that was completely filled with dead trees. My rope became so entangled I had to attach a jumar to it to pull up slack, then short fix the rope and continue soloing to finish the pitch. I managed to get off route at the very top, and turned the final overhang on the wrong side. Remember to stay left!

And here's our Summit Photo!



Enough photos of climbers and gear on the summit, arm in arm with beers in hand! No more aluminum-covered hands fondling skyhooks, I say! Let's see a proper summit photo - Cybele's trashed fingers and her belly button full of dirt.

Buy me a beer and I'll email you the shot of the bruises on her hips! Bwah-ha-ha-ha-ha!

We didn't haul the final four pitches up the swim and the gully, but rather schlepped it all across Thanksgiving Ledge, then rapped Lurking Fear. I've descended twice this way now, and it is emphatically the Better Way down from Thanksgiving Ledge, provided Lurking Fear isn't crawling with parties.

Cheers,
Pete
Mighty Hiker

Social climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Sep 8, 2007 - 10:50am PT
Very nice! What is that little furry critter, anyway?
'Pass the Pitons' Pete

Big Wall climber
like Oakville, Ontario, Canada, eh?
Sep 8, 2007 - 11:01am PT
Bill Murray and Steve Martin dressed as hayseeds:

"What the, what the hail is that thang?"
Raydog

Trad climber
Boulder Colorado
Sep 8, 2007 - 09:55pm PT
thanks for the cool pics Pete!
eddie7

Trad climber
London, Ontario, Canada, eh?
Sep 11, 2007 - 05:28pm PT
Nice photographs Pete!
Keep 'em coming.

cheers!

bp.
'Pass the Pitons' Pete

Big Wall climber
like Oakville, Ontario, Canada, eh?
Sep 15, 2007 - 01:02pm PT
Right, so here is the current state of affairs on Dihedral Wall.



The whole route is festooned with bolts. This is typical of what you will find in a lot of places, although this example is particularly grievous.



This is the pitch above the ledge, the former A3 pitch. As you can see, the placement accepts a wire, a green Camalot and a gold Camalot. The bolt is a measured sixteen inches away. You don't need a bolt to avoid buggering up the handjam, since the move is protectable with a wire.



Here's a view looking down the A3 pitch above The Ledge. The bolts are all within fourteen to eighteen inches of the crack. The crack would probably go clean given a few more Hybrid Aliens - I ran out of gear and had to use the pinstack you see.

I made a point out of not clipping the bolts, but it seemed like a pretty stupid exercise. Unfortunately, the person who placed the bolts - Todd Skinner - is no longer with us. I wish he were, so we could take him to task over this. Now please note that I am not attacking the identity of Todd - from all accounts he was a pretty cool dude, though I never met him. I am, however, condemning his behaviour, which is deplorable.

I've climbed 32 El Cap routes, and never seen anything like this. The Hubers are known for free climbing El Cap aid routes with bold climbing - they don't retrobolt like Todd did. The Hubers sack up and run it out, and are known for taking huge falls. I hope this sort of thing isn't happening on other El Cap routes.

I asked Tommy Caldwell - who made the first free ascent of Dihedral Wall - if he placed any of the bolts, and he said he didn't. But he told me he used them. Tommy made a pretty big splash in the climbing mags about climbing El Cap's "hardest" route at 5.14-whatever. But I don't think that new routes should come at the expense of turning them into a convenient sport route. While technically not as difficult, some of the other stuff the Hubers have done, and Tommy too, are a lot more difficult and sporting.

Unfortunately, I didn't have my bolt replacement kit with me on Dihedral, so I wasn't able to remove any of the bolts. It was my plan to ask Todd to do so. Perhaps his partner would be willing?

It's too bad the magazines gave this ascent so much publicity - one wonders if they would have if they had been aware of the huge ethical transgressions. The bolts need to be removed, and the holes filled with epoxy to render them as invisible as possible.

Peter Zabrok
Oakville, Ontario
Raydog

Trad climber
Boulder Colorado
Sep 15, 2007 - 02:44pm PT
neat pics Pete.
'Pass the Pitons' Pete

Big Wall climber
like Oakville, Ontario, Canada, eh?
Sep 19, 2007 - 06:29pm PT
Where's Coiler when I need him?
Clint Cummins

Trad climber
SF Bay area, CA
Oct 4, 2007 - 04:23pm PT
Thanks for posting the photos, Pete.

A simple solution to the bolts next to protectable cracks on the Dihedral Wall could be for the next person up the route who feels like dealing with it to have the follower remove the hangers from those particular bolts, then tighten down the nut. Maybe even add another nut on top if there are a lot of threads showing. Then it will effectively be unclippable unless someone is determined and has a wrench with them. But if someone else decides they want to clip some of them for free climbing, they can reinstall hangers.

[Edit: if I'm a "nobody" who cares, that might be about right! :-) ]
'Pass the Pitons' Pete

Big Wall climber
like Oakville, Ontario, Canada, eh?
Oct 4, 2007 - 08:35pm PT
Hmmmm, nobody cares I guess. [Except Clint, who is never a nobody]

You know what? I'm gonna go up Horse Chute, and I'm gonna whack in a bunch of 3/8" bolts next to cracks and stuff cuz I feel like it.

Since nobody cares.

Or maybe I'll get yelled at, cuz I'm just a Regular Joe Climber, and not a Superstar. Cuz nobody seems to care if you're a Superstar.

Or so it seems....
Todd Gordon

Trad climber
Joshua Tree, Cal
Feb 5, 2008 - 07:20am PT
'Pass the Pitons' Pete

Big Wall climber
like Oakville, Ontario, Canada, eh?
Feb 5, 2008 - 09:55am PT
Nice photo!

If you guys haven't read it yet, go back to the second page of this post and read Don Lauria's account of the third ascent that Steve scanned from Summit Sept 1968. With eighty pitons and of course zero cams, Don and Dennis Henneck knocked the route off in an amazingly fast five days, which forty years later really puts Big Wall Gumbies [like me] in our place!
Clint Cummins

Trad climber
SF Bay area, CA
Feb 5, 2008 - 06:24pm PT
Pete,

Shortly after Lauria and Hennek, Madsen and Schmitz did it in like 2.5 days.... Supposedly, on that A4 crack that Hennek led at dawn, Madsen wielded his 2-pound sledge and made it A1 with Lost Arrrows.
Todd Gordon

Trad climber
Joshua Tree, Cal
Feb 6, 2008 - 06:09pm PT
Russ Walling

Social climber
Out on the sand.... man.....
Feb 6, 2008 - 06:18pm PT
Pete... how many bolts total did you see near cracks? Are we talking 4 or 5, or more like 20? (one would be bad enough, AFAIC)
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 6, 2008 - 08:57pm PT
Nice pics folks. Gotta hate those Futuristic Little Utility Bolts. Them's FLUBs in my book but hey.....Pre-protecting on aid or figuring it out while hanging there the old fashioned way would be way more inspiring when the placements are clearly there. Somebody will come along one day and burn those FLUBs off by climbing proudly right on by them. As Captain Beefheart once said "the dust blows forward."
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 17, 2008 - 07:28pm PT
Bump since Lauria is on a roll....
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 8, 2009 - 07:12pm PT
And now Henneck too!
survival

Big Wall climber
A Token of My Extreme
Feb 8, 2009 - 09:06pm PT
The dust blows forward bump!
Chris McNamara

SuperTopo staff member
Feb 8, 2009 - 09:13pm PT
Great post! I added a link to the Dihedral Wall Page

http://www.supertopo.com/climbing/postbeta.html?r=ybeldihe
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 8, 2009 - 07:49pm PT
Dihedral Bump! Thanks, Chris!
The Warbler

climber
the edge of America
Nov 8, 2009 - 08:25pm PT
The furry critter's a Pika methinks.


Kind of a cliff rat.


Fits right in with this crew.
Dave Sessions

Big Wall climber
Berkeley, CA
Nov 21, 2009 - 06:06pm PT
isn't that picture of Roper on the FA of the West Buttress.....?
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 21, 2009 - 09:44pm PT
Which picture of Roper are you referring to?
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 4, 2010 - 10:57am PT
Henneck Bump!
Pate

Trad climber
Apr 4, 2010 - 11:22am PT
What a killer thread. An awesome resurection!

Thanks for all those stories and pictures guys.

PTPP, that's the most eloquent statement about retrobolting that I've ever read. Way to lay it out straight!
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Apr 4, 2010 - 11:25am PT
So Marc, about your use of that resurrection word today...
hoipolloi

climber
A friends backyard with the neighbors wifi
Apr 4, 2010 - 08:09pm PT
Those bolts are a shame, have they been chopped since you were on it Pete? That WAS 4 years ago...doubt it, but seems like it should happen...
mazamarick

Trad climber
WA
Apr 4, 2010 - 10:34pm PT
"Pop the topths, man!" By the way, where's the Miner's lettuce that Robbins and Frost found so plentiful?

Also, Mead Hargis and Jim Langdon made a very rapid ascent (5th or 6th?) BITD. Might have been faster than Madsen/Schmitz by a few hours.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Sep 18, 2010 - 09:20am PT
Yet another Henneck Bump! Third ascent of this classic route after Royal and Tom did the second!
ground_up

Trad climber
mt. hood /baja
Sep 19, 2010 - 09:13am PT
DW.....bump
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 4, 2011 - 06:43pm PT
Ed Cooper is in the house!
pix4u

climber
Sonoma, CA
Jan 6, 2011 - 07:15pm PT
I'm posting two pictures at what I think is called the black arch. On the first one, I climbed above Glen who belayed me. I remember putting pitons in behind the black arch, and as I was putting another piton in, on the back swing of the hammer, the piton I was anchored to popped, as well as two or three more. I took a beautiful backward swan dive for some 20-30 feet. The wall was so steep and smooth, I was unscathed. I prussiked back up and finished the pitch (This was in the days before mechanical ascenders). The second view looks down at Glen at the very base of this arch. Considerable work was required to restore these transparencies, which were scratched , with faded colors, and had fungal spots.
Credit: pix4u
pix4u

climber
Sonoma, CA
Jan 6, 2011 - 07:16pm PT
Credit: pix4u
Eubanks,D

Big Wall climber
Jan 6, 2011 - 07:26pm PT
Lots of history here.


Thanks Ed
john hansen

climber
Jan 6, 2011 - 07:29pm PT
Nice Ladder.

How did you guys tie in? Did you have harness's ,Swami belt , or a Bowline?

I can't really tell from the photo's.
mud

Trad climber
CO
Jan 6, 2011 - 08:08pm PT
WOW!

Thanks for the photo's Ed
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Jan 6, 2011 - 10:03pm PT
This is perhaps the first time that one of those who did a new El Capitan route during the 1950s - 1960s golden age has graced us with his own stories and photos from the climb.
Wayno

Big Wall climber
Seattle, WA
Jan 6, 2011 - 11:28pm PT
Anders might be right, this is awesome. Keep them coming , Ed, this means a lot to some of us.
pix4u

climber
Sonoma, CA
Jan 7, 2011 - 07:54am PT
We didn't have climbing harnesses back then, but we did have swami belts, which were a step up from a simple bowline. An early climbing partner of mine, Tim Bond, died hanging from an overhang with a bowline. Very unfortunately, it was on his honeymoon and he was climbing in the Tetons with his wife.
While we used those ladders you see in the picture, we also used the slings made of the wide webbing to stand in. They were more comfortable and secure in most instances.
I'm attaching a nice view looking down at Jim Baldwin below the triangular roof at the 700' level.
Credit: pix4u
Eubanks,D

Big Wall climber
Jan 7, 2011 - 01:14pm PT
This being my first El Cap route, this all means a whole lot to me.

Thanks again Ed
dogtown

Trad climber
JackAssVille, Wyoming
Jan 7, 2011 - 01:28pm PT
I have only done a few routes on El Cap. Dihedral wall was the hardest. Love the old pics.
pix4u

climber
Sonoma, CA
Jan 9, 2011 - 07:44am PT
Bed with a view on fa
Credit: pix4u
Roxy

Trad climber
CA Central Coast
Jan 9, 2011 - 07:58am PT
this thread is rich!!!
pix4u

climber
Sonoma, CA
Jan 11, 2011 - 12:21pm PT
Just another day at the office.....
Credit: pix4u
on the FA of the Dihedral Wall
Gene

climber
Jan 11, 2011 - 12:44pm PT
Ed,

In the famous Glen Denny photo looking down the Dihedral Wall, who is the climber?

g
pix4u

climber
Sonoma, CA
Jan 11, 2011 - 01:25pm PT
Can you point to me where I might view the photo (or can you post a copy of it here)? I'll probably be able to tell when viewing it.
Gene

climber
Jan 11, 2011 - 01:27pm PT
Credit: Glen Denny
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Jan 11, 2011 - 01:32pm PT
There's a lovely photo of Bev Johnson at much the same spot, on her first female solo ascent of El Cap.
pix4u

climber
Sonoma, CA
Jan 11, 2011 - 02:38pm PT
The person in the Glen Denny photo is me.
pix4u

climber
Sonoma, CA
Jan 11, 2011 - 02:45pm PT
This is a picture I took looking up at Glen from just about where you see me in Glen's photo.
Credit: pix4u
Gene

climber
Jan 11, 2011 - 03:02pm PT
Thanks, Ed. That is one of my favorite wall photos.
'Pass the Pitons' Pete

Big Wall climber
like Ontario, Canada, eh?
Jan 11, 2011 - 03:33pm PT
I sure remember that pitch - it's a good one.

How long were you guys on the wall? Did you bring hammocks? Did you do the direct finish straight up from Thanksgiving, or the usual way people go now which is to walk along Thanksgiving and finish on West Buttress. [Actually, I guess that route didn't exist in 62]

What hauling system did you use? How much weight did you haul up?

Cheers, and thanks! The photos are fabulous - keep 'em coming for sure!!
Burt

Big Wall climber
Las Vegas, Nv
Jan 11, 2011 - 03:39pm PT
I just think it is BS that the FA team did not bolt the free variationsor add bolts to the pitches so it can go free... I mean come on... no vision by the FA team on that blunder... :)


Kurt Burt
pix4u

climber
Sonoma, CA
Jan 11, 2011 - 06:33pm PT
I humbly apologize for our shortcomings. I'm sure if you were there in 1962 you would have done it the right way.
'Pass the Pitons' Pete

Big Wall climber
like Ontario, Canada, eh?
Jan 11, 2011 - 07:37pm PT
Ed - I believe Burt is being facetious in reference to the large amount of retrobolting done by Todd Skinner. Are you familiar with what he did? If you scroll upward in this post, you will see some pictures I posted of Todd's bolts right next to perfectly good cracks. This allowed Tommy Caldwell to later free climb the route.

How do you feel about the bolts? They really piss me off, and I really should have brought my tuning forks and epoxy to remove them. As you will see from the photos, I didn't use them.

Were you to make a public request they be removed, it might motivate someone to do so.

And keep on posting your great FA photos - the fungus on the slide hardly shows!
guido

Trad climber
Santa Cruz/New Zealand/South Pacific
Jan 11, 2011 - 08:44pm PT
Agree with Pete-keep it up Ed this is fantastic. And Denny, what a cool dude with the shades and all, he looks so relaxed. Dam, stylin way ahead of the times.
JBC

Trad climber
Tacoma, WA
Jan 11, 2011 - 10:25pm PT
Nice job scanning the transparencies Ed! Very cool to see these!

Jim
Burt

Big Wall climber
Las Vegas, Nv
Jan 11, 2011 - 10:53pm PT
I humbly apologize for our shortcomings. I'm sure if you were there in 1962 you would have done it the right way.

Yes Ed, I was poking fun at the way that climbing has gone... trust me when I say that I have the utmost respect for all you guys that blazed a trail before us. So many times I have found myself scared shitless and then I think about you guys being up there with crap for gear, swami belts, gold line or worse, no cams, and it blows my mind. The pictures are awesome and thank you for taking the time to show us and also for the effort that you have put into this crazy life we call climbing. Take care

Kurt Burt
Captain...or Skully

climber
leading the away team, but not in a red shirt!
Jan 12, 2011 - 05:39am PT
Sweet pics, Ed. Definitely cool stuff. Thank you.
pix4u

climber
Sonoma, CA
Jan 12, 2011 - 09:05am PT
To respond to a few questions...
1. Our climb was in two segments. The spring attempt halted abruptly when Jim's prussik knots failed to properly grip the rope and he went into almost a free fall down over the roof at 700'. He was only stopped because the rope was anchored in below the roof. The prussik knots burned about half way through, and Jim suffered severe burns of the hands as he instinctively grabbed the fixed rope with his hands trying to slow his fall.
2. The autumn push: By this time Jim's hands had healed. We used the prussik knots with 3 loops around the rope instead of two for more secure grip. Mechanical ascenders did not become available until the following year. The fixed rope was in part responsible for the accident in the spring. It was actually yachting nylon, which had a much smoother surface than regular climbing rope. Glen joined the team, and the rest is history.

We finished the climb by going straight up from Thanksgiving Ledge. We were aware we could have more or less walked of by following Thanksgiving Ledge to its end near the top of the west buttress, but we wanted to maintain the purity of the line.

For hauling, we generally let the bags hang below us as we prussiked up the rope. With three people, two could climb and the third could haul.

Regarding Todd Skinner's bolting to turn the climb into a sport route.....I was not even aware of this until I read about it here. I had heard that the route had been climbed free, but was not aware that the extra bolts placed made it possible.

It does seem to me that it is wrong to place these bolts just so that the elite of the elite climbers could "free" the route.

I'm posting another picture of Glen. This is definitely not just another day at the office! The original picture is this color; the B&W seen earlier in this post was made by converting the color to B&W. This is on the last pitch of the climb, where rope drag became almost impossible. Jim Baldwin is seated here.
Credit: pix4u
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 12, 2011 - 09:31am PT
Beauty Ed!

So wonderful to see your classic photos in ALL their glory!

Any attempts at a belay seat or hammock in your equipment beyond strategic use of haulbags? LOL
pix4u

climber
Sonoma, CA
Jan 12, 2011 - 09:51am PT
We had a bosun's seat, an canvas arrangement like a seat that we adapted for climbing use. We spent one night below the overhang at 700' sitting in these "chairs." It was not very comfortable, and we didn't get much sleep.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 12, 2011 - 09:56am PT
Thanks Ed.

Still have one of those seats kicking around or a photo of one?
pix4u

climber
Sonoma, CA
Jan 12, 2011 - 11:54am PT
Don't think I still have one of those around. I do have some old climbing gear in the garage; next time I am cleaning it out, I'll look, but I don't think I ever saved it. I'd have to look through all my El Cap pictures to see if it shows up in one of the transparencies. Keep in mind that I lost all my original B&W negatives in a fire. So if I had it in B&W it would have to show up in one of the prints I made before the fire. I shot both color and B&W on the climb. I carried 2 folding 2 1/4x 2 1/4 cameras, one loaded with color, the other with B&W. I used the large pockets in my old army surplus pants to carry them. Fortunately I never dropped one.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 12, 2011 - 11:58am PT
If you have some of the custom hardware that you guys made for the Chief still in your collection, that would be wonderful to see as well as hardware used on the Dihedral Wall.
pix4u

climber
Sonoma, CA
Jan 12, 2011 - 12:36pm PT
Here is a picture of hardware collected for the El Cap climb. On a separate thread, Memories of Jim Baldwin, there are pictures showing the extra large pitons made by the blacksmith in Squamish,
Credit: pix4u
in place behind the Split Pillar.
'Pass the Pitons' Pete

Big Wall climber
like Ontario, Canada, eh?
Jan 12, 2011 - 01:01pm PT
Fabulous stuff, everyone - keep it coming!

OK, more precise question about the hauling - my understanding is that Royal claimed to invent the pulley plus inverted ascender setup for hauling, obviously sometime later since you didn't yet have mechanical ascenders.

Sometime before Warren Harding and crew hand hauled their loads - dang.

Did you guys use a pulley plus inverted prusik, or some such setup? Did you haul by hand? How heavy were your pigs? And I don't believe you said how many nights you were on the wall for both your pushes.

Cheers,
Pete

P.S. Pity Mr. Prusik didn't have a chance to speak with Mr. Klemheist beforehand, or perhaps Mr. K. was knot yet born?
SGropp

Mountain climber
Eastsound, Wa
Jan 12, 2011 - 01:01pm PT
I climbed the Dihedral Wall in May of '76 with Brian and Tom Conry . This was just two days after doing the Triple Direct. I think the route had probably less than 20 ascents at that point, as the cracks were still in nearly pristine condition. We did most of the pitches at least 1/3 to 1/2 clean using hexes and stoppers and slotted copperheads.

We had single point hammocks that Brian had sewn. They were pretty good, considering the alternative but by morning it felt like one had been sleeping stuffed in a laundry bag.

Tom got caught by darkness leading one of the pitches in the upper left leaning dihedrals and got to the belay long after it was pitch black. He had no headlamp. At the end of the lead we sent him his hammock and bivvy gear. A while later, something flew by in the night, followed by a curse. He had dropped his bivvy gear and had to spend a cold night. When I cleaned the pitch in the morning, I was quite impressed with his difficult lead done in total darkness,with lots of solid but tricky nut placements.

We had a very violent lightning storm and rain high up, but luckily we were a bit sheltered by the steepness of the wall.

We could see Jim Beyer and a partner climbing the Aquarian at the same time. Beyer took a big ripper when a bolt broke at the top of one of the rivet ladders. We ran into them on Thanksgiving Ledge. Other than them we had that whole side of El cap to ourselves.

We finished the original route all the way to the top. The climb took us 6 days with no pitches fixed in advance.

For some reason the route had a somewhat dubious reputation at that time , but I thought it was an amazing place to spend a week, with great sweeping views down the wall, an elegant and natural direct line up a beautiful section of EL Capitan.

Eubanks,D

Big Wall climber
Jan 12, 2011 - 02:08pm PT
This thread is amazing!




pix4u

climber
Sonoma, CA
Jan 12, 2011 - 02:32pm PT
I looked carefully at my pictures and this bosun's seat is clearly visible in a couple of them. Look for the light colored fabric around the buttocks area. We used these when we were prussiking or stopped for some time at a fixed point. They had metal fastenings into which we could clip carabiners. I'm posting two pictures showing it By the way, how do you post two or more pictures in a thread without having to make them appear as separate posts?
The second pictures shows hauling a bunch of stuff in an uncomfortable way, but we shortly adopted the practice of hauling gear on a rope trailing below us but attached to us, when we were prussiking. (Third picture)
pix4u

climber
Sonoma, CA
Jan 12, 2011 - 02:33pm PT
Credit: pix4u
pix4u

climber
Sonoma, CA
Jan 12, 2011 - 02:34pm PT
Credit: pix4u
pix4u

climber
Sonoma, CA
Jan 12, 2011 - 02:36pm PT
Credit: pix4u
Ihateplastic

Trad climber
It ain't El Cap, Oregon
Jan 12, 2011 - 03:44pm PT
Ed... For posting multiple pics...

Select your first image and go through the process of putting it into your comment. Do NOT post your comment yet! Now, just skip down a line or two and select the PHOTO tab again to put in a second image. Repeat until tired.

Hope that helps!

pix4u

climber
Sonoma, CA
Jan 12, 2011 - 03:48pm PT
By the way, interesting bit of trivia: I picked out the line for the route from a photo in a magazine before ever arriving at the Valley.
Captain...or Skully

climber
leading the away team, but not in a red shirt!
Jan 12, 2011 - 03:52pm PT
Well, yeah. It's a Line. That's the beauty of a line. There it is.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 12, 2011 - 05:08pm PT
Ed- Would you take a guess at the proportion of soft iron to harder alloy steel pitons in the selection shown earlier. Count any aluminum angles or bongs in the steel category.
hamie

Social climber
Thekoots
Jan 12, 2011 - 06:10pm PT
Here is part of a letter which Jim Baldwin sent me at that time:

"Still working on El Cap, up 2000' now. Still very bad nailing, continuous 6.7 and 6.8 sometimes 6.9 Another man on team, Glenn Denny [Leaning Tower W. face]. We all have had leader falls. I fell once ripping 4 pins, and also my hand. The last 3 pitches have been overhanging all the way."

As you would expect, it was written on that fancy Yosemite Lodge writing paper. Big thanks to the YPCC!!!
Cheers, H.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 12, 2011 - 06:41pm PT
Nice share!
pix4u

climber
Sonoma, CA
Jan 12, 2011 - 06:49pm PT
I would guess that only 25% or less of the iron used shown in this picture was of the new chrome-moly type pitons. We were very poor, and couldn't afford the price of the new pitons by Chouinard. The rest were the old softer iron pitons from Europe. Before Jim and I left to climb the route on ryEl Capitan, we held a party in Seattle, where we asked everybody attending to bring something to help us out on this venture.

My thoughts on the free ascent of the Dihedral wall are this: Mark Maguire and Barry Bonds broke the 70 mark for home runs after using steroids. That seems analagous to the first free ascent of the Dihedral Wall.
Gene

climber
Jan 12, 2011 - 07:15pm PT
My thoughts on the free ascent of the Dihedral wall are this: Mark Maguire and Barry Bonds broke the 70 mark for home runs after using steroids. That seems analagous to the first free ascent of the Dihedral Wall.

Provocative. Are you referring to ‘working’ the route? Red point style? Better tools? No fear of the unknown?

As the FA guy of #3 route up El Cap, I’d appreciate your expanded view.

Thanks, Ed!
g

Todd Eastman

climber
Bellingham, WA
Jan 12, 2011 - 08:01pm PT
Wow! Thanks for making history live...
'Pass the Pitons' Pete

Big Wall climber
like Ontario, Canada, eh?
Jan 12, 2011 - 09:40pm PT
Or do you mean the retrobolting?

Incidentally, I asked a bunch of questions on the previous page that I think you missed.

Many thanks.
mastadon

Trad climber
quaking has-been
Jan 13, 2011 - 07:03am PT
My first foray on El Cap was Dihedral Wall in 1971. In fact, the first lead/pitch I ever did in Yosemite was the first pitch of Dihedral Wall. A friend and I hitch-hiked down from Seattle for Spring break when we were 16 years old to do the Big Stone. We had shoulder-bruising racks of iron without a single inconvenient, insecure nut. We had our 2” webbing wraps for swami belts and 1” tied aiders. Our previous multi pitch aid climbing experience consisted of a 5 pitch route on the Upper Town Wall in Washington. Thank God or whatever entity looks after young, ignorant boys that we only made it up a few pitches before we realized the immensity of our mistake. We spent the rest of the week having our asses handed to us while being schooled on slick Yosemite slabs and smooth Yosemite cracks. I can proudly say I backed off Moby Dick center because I ran out of 3” bongs.

My hat goes off to the old-school hardmen that did big walls in the 50’s and 60’s. Those guys were badass!
pix4u

climber
Sonoma, CA
Jan 13, 2011 - 07:39am PT
I really don't want to get involved in a controversy. What I specifically meant was the rebolting of the route so as to make a free ascent possible.
Wasn't that the purpose of the rebolting? As I said, I didn't even know about this until I read it in this thread. I will say, despite all, that climbing the route free was quite an achievement.

I'm really about enjoying the mountains and photography of same (not excluding other nature scenes) and not about getting involved in the discussion of climbing ethics.
pix4u

climber
Sonoma, CA
Jan 14, 2011 - 06:02pm PT
I'm posting a picture I just scanned, of the welcoming Committee on top of El Capitan in November of 1962. Regarding the personnel in the picture:
Penny Carr, I believe committed suicide, for whatever reason, several years later by putting an exhaust pipe from a running motor inside a vehicle, while she was still in it. Eric Beck, is, of course, recognizable in almost any picture he appears (his return to the Valley after being kicked out by the Park Service did not go unnoticed very long.) I think he dyed his hair red as a disguise. His favorite activity was to join the line in the cafeteria, pick up the tray and silverware, and then leave the line and wander through the restaurant surrepticiously picking up plates of food that had been left uneaten by various patrons, and then sit down for a sumptuous meal. I don't know much about David Huff, and
Credit: pix4u
I'm not sure I have even got his name right, but he seemed very weird at the time. Maybe that was just my perception. Any feedback?
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 15, 2011 - 09:48pm PT
The fine art of scarfing! Too funny!

I owe a large measure of sustenance in the olden days to the ever present supply of bacon forsaken by Japanese tourists!
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 29, 2011 - 01:04pm PT
BBA's red Roper guide has this interesting route description for the Dihedral Wall in its original condition.



guido

Trad climber
Santa Cruz/New Zealand/South Pacific
Jan 29, 2011 - 01:08pm PT
Ed- That probably be Carl Huff. Yep Beck and I both climbed with him and there were some weird times even for us weirdos.
Pass the Chongo, Chongo

Social climber
LOVE, TRUST, PIXIE DUST
Jan 31, 2011 - 03:39pm PT
bumps,,, thanks for the great climbing thread mr. grossman!

xoxo

CHONGOLITABallerinaCoolitaOrcalitaHumpBackValdezTheUnCHONGO

Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 31, 2011 - 05:10pm PT
yOu RRRR vArEEE wElCuMMMMM

What's up the funky posting style anyhow? Hard to take you seriously but that's likely the point.

Cheers
pix4u

climber
Sonoma, CA
Jan 31, 2011 - 06:31pm PT
My memory of events past (almost 50 years now) is not perfect. I guess that is why I got Huff's first name wrong.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 3, 2011 - 07:16pm PT
Bump for a Huff Tale!
steve shea

climber
Apr 22, 2011 - 10:20am PT
Super Topo continues to amaze and entertain. What a trip down, up memory lane. Dihedral Wall was my first El Cap route. Matt Donoho and I did it in 5 or 6 days in May of 1970. We had lots of stuff from Degnan's, his father's store. Broasted chicken and soda bread. I'm unclear on the time because we got to the big ledge and were so tired we fell asleep for 24 hrs. We had no water left and traversed somewhat left to get off quicker. We did not climb the entire first ascent line and I don't know where we summited but it was a few pitches off the ledge. We booked for snowmelt on top. I don't think I've ever been that dehydrated since. It was actually our second attempt. We got stormed off from the first bivy. I remember Schmitz and Bridwell coming down at the same time. They were trying a new route to the left of DW. Awesome and memorable climb.SS
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 24, 2011 - 09:13am PT
Hidden amongst the piles of political horseshit are 101 dandy little historical nostalgia festivals. Glad that you like dancing around in this one!
the goat

climber
north central WA
Apr 24, 2011 - 10:17am PT
This is still one of the best posts on ST. Wish we had a few more like it!
EC rocks, I'm looking forward to getting his book.
steve shea

climber
Apr 24, 2011 - 12:58pm PT
Yeah man, some of the crap posted is beyond me and I have to tune out for awhile. Schmitz and Bridwell were doing the Aquarian Wall when we were up there. And I could be wrong on the year but for sure 70/71
guido

Trad climber
Santa Cruz/New Zealand/South Pacific
Apr 24, 2011 - 01:08pm PT
From the original El Cap Register-microfilm courtesy Mountain Record Collection, Bancroft Library UC Berkeley.

Courtesy Mountain Record Collection-Bancroft Library, UC Berkeley. cop...
Courtesy Mountain Record Collection-Bancroft Library, UC Berkeley. copyright Bancroft Library, UC Berkeley
Credit: guido
Welcoming committee first ascent Dihedral  Wall. <br/>
Courtesy Mountain R...
Welcoming committee first ascent Dihedral Wall.
Courtesy Mountain Record Section, Bancroft Library.
copyright Bancroft Library, UC Berkeley.


Credit: guido
D.Eubanks

climber
Apr 24, 2011 - 01:12pm PT
What an AWESOME thread!!
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Jul 17, 2011 - 10:26am PT
Bump...
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 29, 2012 - 05:15pm PT
Fiftieth anniversary bump...come November!
Scole

Trad climber
San Diego
Jan 29, 2012 - 06:47pm PT
My first memory as a child is of scrambling up the left side of the Captain with my parents (1962). As we were headed up, several giants (to a 4 year old) were coming down, carrying packs, ropes, and racks of pins. I was fascinated, and they were kind enough to talk to me for a moment.

That memory burned in my mind for years, until I got a chance to try climbing myself. I never looked back. I recognized greatness the first time I encountered it, and was inspired to spend my life climbing as well.

When I did the Dihedral Wall in 1980, it was the fulfillment of my childhood dream. Dihedral in not the hardest route, or even one of the most pleasant routes on El Cap, but the line is un-deniable.

What Todd did to Dihedral Wall is a travesty. It used to be considered very bad style to add bolts to an existing route, has that changed? I liked Todd as a person, but his ethics sucked, and those bolts should be removed.
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Jan 29, 2012 - 11:08pm PT
Hopefully there will be some sort of 50th anniversary event in the Valley this autumn, to mark the ascent, and Ed and Glen can speak at it. Maybe at the FaceLift? That would be rather cool!
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 12, 2012 - 10:28am PT
Legends of Stone...
Truenorth

climber
Dec 17, 2012 - 11:35pm PT
Amazing to see a photo of myself, (Carl Huff) and Eric Beck and Penny Carr and the others at the top of the Dihedral Wall more than 50 years ago. Ed must have forgotten that I spent one abortive morning with him on the bottom part of the wall when he recruited me for belay duty early in the climb. I confess it seems a little strange - though very likely an accurate description - to be called weird by one of the oddest people I have known. Odd in a positive sense. I recall the walk in to the top of El Cap as stunningly beautiful with banks of snow here and there and that sharp pungent smell that comes out of the ground and off the trees when the sun warms the earth. Then the chasm, fantastic, 50 years ago, or today. Finally they topped out and on a perfect morning we all stood around made somewhat mute by the setting and the accomplishment. Or at least that is how I remember it. In any case thanks for posting this as I had no idea such a pic existed, and it does stir long dormant memories.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 18, 2012 - 07:46am PT
Welcome Carl!
McHale's Navy

Trad climber
Panorama City, California & living in Seattle
Dec 18, 2012 - 12:51pm PT
Trivia question; Anyone else here climbed the Dihedral twice like me? It reminds me of Walla Walla - a town so nice they named it twice! I liked the Dihedral awot!

Here's a Link to me and Jerry Yesavage doing it in 1972;

http://www.stanford.edu/~yesavage/Yosemite.html
(Not sure why this link does not work but save and post it in browser)

We both wanted to solo it but were probably too young at the time ( me 19 and not sure of Jerry's age). I wanted to break the 2.5 day record but we forgot the 2 lb. sledge hammer - haha. I tried to solo it in 1975 but got stormed off too early in the year in March. I came back and soloed it in June 1977 ( a year before Bev Johnson soloed it ) in 5.5 days after fixing several pitches. Both times did the West Buttress finish.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 23, 2012 - 01:36pm PT
Lauria 80th Birthday Bump!
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