Shield headwall pictures


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John Mac

Trad climber
Littleton, CO
Feb 25, 2008 - 09:11pm PT
Thanks for the great pics... I've got to get on that route one day...
Stanley Hassinger

Eastern US
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 25, 2008 - 09:32pm PT
Last one of my decent headwall photos. This is Jeff leading the last pitch of the headwall. I think after this it was just one more pitch to chickenhead ledge.

Ok, now that I've mentioned it I might as well include one of the oh so sweet chickenhead ledge.


Trad climber
Vacaville Ca,
Feb 25, 2008 - 09:36pm PT
Anyone else notice the increase of vegitation around the base of the Captain in the first picture compaired to the one taken in the 70's by Braun? Not sure if that's a good thing or not.

Big Wall climber
Fresno, CA
Feb 25, 2008 - 09:48pm PT
Sorry, Stanley. I'm really not arguing with Ron. I like Ron. Just making a point and that doesn't always come out right online.

Regardless, I digress. And I apologize for the hijack. Carry on with the awesome pics of The Shield Headwall! =)

Cardiff by the sea
Feb 25, 2008 - 09:55pm PT

What a steller place to get to visit

Feb 25, 2008 - 09:57pm PT
What a unique place on the Cap'n.

Drop 30mm of focal length and gain 1000 feet of wall, hehe. Three guys were on my heels at Gray Ledges, so I gunned it at 1:30 am after a few Sopporos. Finally gave up at the end of Triple Crax. Chilled while they passed.

The headwall was getting scoped hard b4 Charlie got it. He told me Bridwell told him to not nail it because it was a perfect 1" crack that would go free. Charlie being himself shined that advice and the rest is history. With a good belly laugh he said he got back to his car where the windshield wipers were busted off. Haha...classic.

Psyche, Tommy!

Werner, I don't get it. It shows up for me. ??? Sure it contains errors...I'm on my portaledge in the middle of the day and my shoeslaces are in knots. Oh well, not like it's a new pic, it's been rotated of the homepage for what, six years now = 0

PS: Tommy, I'd love to meet ya down there with those cats, but I'll have to relegate myself to taking pix or something...not a board surfer. Too many years in the desert?? Let me know. Gabe's out this weekend, maybe next? I'll swing ya an email.

Feb 25, 2008 - 10:15pm PT
Mike. Mike. Mike. Mike. Mike. Mike. Mike. Mike. Mike. Mike. Mike. Mike. Mike. Mike. Mike. Mike.

The image cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Stanley Hassinger

Eastern US
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 25, 2008 - 10:18pm PT
No worries, Nefarius.

Cool picture, T2! When was it taken? Is that another party behind you guys low down on the headwall?
Toker Villain

Big Wall climber
Toquerville, Utah
Feb 25, 2008 - 10:38pm PT
Sorry to redivert from a celebration of the communal unspoken chipping project, but "constructive scarring" referred to minimizing the detrimental effects of unavoidable nailing.

I was not, for the umpteenth phucking time, ADVOCATING scarring.

(Now lets confuse this further by bringing in drilling why dontcha! Sheesh.)

Cardiff by the sea
Feb 25, 2008 - 10:52pm PT
Stanley: I believe we did the climb in 98' I remember blasting the day of Walt Shipleys memorial. I was fortunate enough to get to lead the whole climb, what a gift for such a beautiful climb. Yes that is a party blow us that had just turned the roof pitch. I think that picture of yours on your blog turning the roof is a outstanding photo.

Mike: We should meet up with our friend Ammon sometime soon. Do you surf? If so lets go surfing near Ammon and Gabes.
The Warbler

the edge of America
Feb 25, 2008 - 11:04pm PT
I watched Porter for a while on the FA of the Shield Headwall. I had heard round camp that he was up to something, but never saw the line til he was up there. I was blown away... I grabbed a pair of binos, and I'll never forget my amazement at how thin the line was. And how it just goes and goes - straight up.

I can just imagine Charlie grinning and talking to himself as he made the very first placements over and over again in that incredible crack system. What an ultimate route to pioneer. Charlie Porter was way ahead of his time.

Big Wall climber
Reno NV
Feb 25, 2008 - 11:21pm PT
I hope to go up ther some day and slam a few pins in that beyutiful crack! ;)

..and Mike. Fix your piture!
The shot straight down between your legs on the portaledge is my favorite all time EC picture.
Clint Cummins

Trad climber
SF Bay area, CA
Feb 25, 2008 - 11:41pm PT

Charlie Porter on the Triple Cracks during the FA, 1972 - photo by Gary Bocarde


The article "El Cap Update" and photos I remember were in Mountain Magazine, with Burton and Sutton on the second ascent, where Sutton used many knifeblades with red tie-off slings in a row (vs. RURPs for Porter on the FA). This is photo #59 in Yosemite Climber, but there were other good photos in the Mountain article.

By 1975, I heard it was "beat-out" already, taking baby angles.

The pin-bashing up there is a touchy subject. People just have to do it as clean as they can. Carrying pins doesn't mean you have to use them or beat extra hard on them. Doing the route entirely clean could be a tall order, but people shouldn't feel too defeated if there are a couple of placements they can't manage clean. It might be good if people reported which of the headwall pitches they were able to do entirely clean (with existing fixed gear), or how many placements they had to use a hammer on for the other pitches. That would give others a standard to compare with.

I remember before I did it in the late 80s, there was a story about how somebody had zippered the A3 groove pitch. I led that pitch almost entirely clean, using TCUs, nuts and fixed gear, plus resetting a couple of the fixed heads that had loosened over the winter. The crux was threading the hole on a fixed RURP - I used the very thin wire of a tiny steel nut.

In photo #8 of the supertopo photos linked above, the caption reads:

"A climber in the middle of the notorius Groove Pitch during the last rays of light of The Shield. While the crack appears big from a distance, it actually only takes copperheads, birdbeaks, and knifeblades."

I swear there was some clean gear on this pitch.

Feb 25, 2008 - 11:49pm PT
I know it's in here:

Damn, time to update that thing again.

Sweet perspective as always, Clint.

I watched some French guys bail from the Groove the while I sat there. You can see em in the pic. The guys that passed me let the new guy lead the next pitch. He took 4.5 hours on the lead. I placed too many hand-paced angles to count on that pitch. I even pulled one out somehow while effing with my aiders. A brass nut caught me by my daisy...not that it would have mattered.

vvv Rescue's in your blood, Werner.

Feb 25, 2008 - 11:55pm PT
Oh .... so it's this one .....

Double D

Feb 26, 2008 - 12:27am PT
Sahweeet photo Werner! cool that must have been to watch! I always regret not doing an early ascent of that thing when it was still a rurp crack.


Feb 26, 2008 - 12:39am PT
Approach pitch to the Shield Roof:

Cleaning the Triple Cracks:

Shield headwall bivy view in the AM:


Feb 26, 2008 - 01:32pm PT
Is this thread done? Really? Sorry the first one is poor quality. It was a throw away camera.

danglefest on the roof

Close-up of our bivy at start of triple cracks

I could look at shield pictures all day.

Gym climber
Otto, NC
Feb 28, 2008 - 04:21pm PT
Me too. Ok, this one's back on the list.

The bottom of a bottle of Bear Whiz Beer
Feb 28, 2008 - 06:03pm PT
Messages 21 - 40 of total 55 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
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