Why Is This So Frightening?


Discussion Topic

Return to Forum List
This thread has been locked
Messages 21 - 37 of total 37 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>

Big Wall climber
Seattle, WA
Nov 2, 2008 - 12:54pm PT
He's got one leg and poop in his pants...

Nov 2, 2008 - 01:27pm PT
One of those routes like Jacob's Ladder or something?

Bob J.

Trad climber
My Inner Nut
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 2, 2008 - 02:48pm PT
So, it's Steve Grossman on a 5.11X in Sedona

Another hint: He's doing a first ascent...

Trad climber
Kayenta, Arizona
Nov 2, 2008 - 04:54pm PT
"Lucky Goes to the Creamery", 5.11X [S. Grossman, P. Davidson, J. Haisley. and T. Coats 1980s]


Not far from Dresdoom . . .

Trad climber
San Francisco, Ca
Nov 2, 2008 - 05:33pm PT
Looks like Oak Creek Canyon??



Trad climber
My Inner Nut
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 2, 2008 - 06:52pm PT
Ding! Ding!

Riotch nails it!

3 pitch/300 feet. Description simply reads: Extremely runout arete.

As far as we know, this route hasn't seen a second ascent.


Chalkless climber
the Gunks end of the country
Nov 2, 2008 - 07:03pm PT
Maybe. But your picture does not tell that story.

Looks kind of low angle arete.

My first look at that picture looks similar to the start of Raubenheimer's Special 5.7 R at the Gunks. Only 1 pitch, but the crux is blanker than your picture and it a was well above the start.

Miss the crux and you actually might hit a ledge, and/or you swing around the arete to the left.

Trad climber
San Francisco, Ca
Nov 2, 2008 - 07:09pm PT
Looks like we have a contender for the second ascent.

Dresdoom was scary enough for me.


Trad climber
Albuquerque, NM
Nov 3, 2008 - 06:17pm PT

5.7R, lmao.... ho ho ho...

Lucky was a guy working in a creamery.
Creamery blew up, Lucky lived.
Seems like he lost some digits.

There's more to that story but I forget.
Steve ???

That rock is probably 85 degrees, Coconino sandstone.
One or two placements, then Steve drilled one of his amazing placements.

Dresdoom is 5.8 for the 5.10 leader.
This is 5.11X for the hardman.

Grin Reaper, Midnight Cowboy, Dresdoom spire, Keenie's Corner, all good training if you want to get Lucky.

FWIW, I recall this as being soft 11.
It's not the moves, it's the lead.

5.7R, I'm going to need a jump start if I don't stop laughing.

Trad climber
My Inner Nut
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 3, 2008 - 09:59pm PT
Thanks for the info, P - notes taken.



Trad climber
Albuquerque, NM
Nov 4, 2008 - 09:49am PT
Here's a view of most of the route.
It's the sunlit buttress in the foreground.
The pitch Steve is leading is the upper tower but I believe the pitch is just to the left of the skyline.

In the pic, Steve has to do a testy step up on sandy Coke with down sloping pinches before he can get the first nut in.

If that image doesn't show, here's the link:

Trad climber
San Francisco, Ca
Nov 4, 2008 - 12:29pm PT
What a line!

MisterE- I sent you an e-mail re the mushroom, did ya get it?

Trad climber
My Inner Nut
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 4, 2008 - 12:37pm PT
No I didn't, but just shot you an e-mail...

That picture really does the line justice - makes my fingers sweat a little, Yikes!

Trad climber
Albuquerque, NM
Nov 4, 2008 - 02:42pm PT
Steve never needed (still doesn't really) much encouragement for leading the desperate pitch.

A bit of the history:
Larry Coats was also in on the first ascent.
In fact, he should get second billing.

I believe he had led the first pitch, at some good 5.10 and then come down and talked us into going up with him by raving about this great climb he had started.

I think I re-led the first pitch. Larry was rightfully proud of it. It didn't look like much but turned out to be good climbing, interesting moves and no give away. Seems like a run out mantle at the top maybe ... Don't quote me on that.

Jim started the second pitch and came down. I went up and came down and we agreed it needed a bolt. Steve said nonsense and went up and led the pitch. I believe he did go into a corner where we were trying to work out the face. Still, it was some runout 5.10 stuff and we were hoping he didn't crater on all us stuffed back in the corner/ramp system.

That put us up on top of the lower pillar staring up at that blank looking arete. It looked easier and more like Dresdoom to the right but Steve thought it would go out left on the steeper ground. There is a sloping ledge to deal with, the pilar to hit and the fact that you're climbing Dresdoom type stuff but tipped up 10-15 more degrees.

Oh, and the sun was starting to set. We did the BOF rappels off the trees in the dark. Of course we had no headlamps.
I think it was a crack of noon start.

Truthfully, following the pitch I remember thinking, I could lead this. Doubt I could have drilled the bolt but now that it's there...

Ah, the foolishness of the second. I never went back and tried to lead it and almost certainly never will now.

The climb may have a bit of rep that's perhaps not quite deserved. For example, my memory is that Midnight Cowboy was probably as hard or harder and certainly as scary if you don't get the horns lassoed and maybe not as hard but just as no fall ground for doing the upper headwall.

The third pitch of Rich's Ladder, Timmy's free variation is probably worse than either Lucky Goes to the Creamery or Midnight Lightning. I was seconding that one and was in pretty decent shape and yarded on gear to get past the horror fest. Tim was screaming he was going to die. He was only about 50ft out and around the corner and I was laughing telling him he was doing fine. Finally I figured out he was serious and I STFU. That was a very intense belay. Looking at catching a 100+ whipper onto two drilled baby angles. Started thinking about trying to drill a third while he was leading. Finally he got something in that he said was lousy (it was) did the 5.11+ moves and made it up to where I think he had drilled a bolt during an aid ascent. That felt to me like a 5.12 lead.

Haven't heard of any seconds to Rich's upper third pitch.
Steiger did lead Midnight Cowboy and even on double 9s but he refused to do the lasso and instead did the sketchy stuff looking at a ground fall. He thought it was in the 10+/11 category. He didn't think the upper headwall was much though where I thought it was the real crux. He still hasn't forgiven me for sticking him on it. He forgets I told him more than once that it was X ground and he had to pull up one of the 9s and lasso the upper horns. Then you have a top rope across the crux ground. Swing potential and it's still scary but you're probably not going to die.

Anyway, those upper Sedona routes are for the most part, the real deal.


Gym climber
Nov 4, 2008 - 02:45pm PT
And I was going to say it's frightening because he's wearing Cleaver pants.

Trad climber
My Inner Nut
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 8, 2008 - 01:58am PT
Bump! Just got this from L. Coats:

"I wasn't on the FA of Lucky, so it isn't my photo. Paul was belaying, so the photographer was either my brother or Jim Haisley. I asked both of them, and neither remembered taking it, although I suspect it was Haisley's. So I would use the photo as you wish, and to play it safe credit both of them for the shot! It is a very historic shot- from the blow tube in his mouth Tim thinks that was the first time he tried to drill the bolt and couldn't free both hands. Then he tapped a baby angle into one of the overlaps which allowed Paul to give him maybe 5 lbs. of tension- enough to free both hands and drill. Tim said the bolt went in in about four hammer blows (I can attest to the power and speed of Steve's drilling, even in granite). The baby he used he cleaned by hand."

I just love Climbing History!

Trad climber
Albuquerque, NM
Jan 9, 2009 - 12:18pm PT
Dang, I was sure Larry was there on the first.
But then, I'd forgotten all those details about the hand fixed pin, slight pressure and the very difficult drilling stance.

Larry, didn't you find this climb and lead the first pitch and then take us down there to do the climb ? I have a very fuzzy memory of maybe you rapping off after the first pitch for a prior committment.
Messages 21 - 37 of total 37 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
Return to Forum List
Our Guidebooks
Check 'em out!
SuperTopo Guidebooks

Try a free sample topo!

SuperTopo on the Web

Recent Route Beta