The first ascent of The Central Pillar of Frenzy

Search
Go

Discussion Topic

Return to Forum List
Post a Reply
Messages 21 - 40 of total 57 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
bvb

Social climber
flagstaff arizona
Dec 12, 2008 - 02:00pm PT
oh my, but that is a fun route. best rock EVAR. starting the 2nd pitch, circa '77 or therabouts:

Roger Breedlove

climber
Cleveland Heights, Ohio
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 12, 2008 - 03:48pm PT
Thanks for all the kind words, but….

Peter, you have got to be kidding!!!

Klemens made affectionate comments behind my back, about ME? Talk about getting a “Deer in the headlights look.” Right here in my office. He he.

Of course, as you can all see and I can attest, a firm grasp of the secrets of the universe starts with really good optics and spotting invisible cracks on obscure cliffs far from the road.

As I re-read (and edited) my recollections, it occurred to me that the CPoF is tied other firsts: John Long launching his writing career, Geroge Meyers launching his climbing picture book career, and, maybe, Jim launching his career as the Valley impresario. If my facts are right, it is something to ponder.

I think that The Royal Scam was John’s first major story. (Is this true, John?)

Geroge organized a photo shoot on CPoF with Rik Rieder soon after the first ascent, which I think was the first time he tried to set up a shot. This is the only shot I have. It was published as part of my Middle Comentary. (I’ll post it later from my computer at home.)

Jim climbed lots with lots of partners, some of whom were younger, but I think that CPoF may have been the first where his plan was to have the younger climber(s) take the crux lead. In 1971, Jim climbed “Outer Limits” with Jim Orey and climbed “Butterfingers” with Charlie Jones, but I think Jim took the lead in both. (?) In 1972, he, Steve Wunsch, and Jim Donini climbed “Goldrush” and he and John Bragg climbed “High Pressure” but I think that in both cases, it was a team of equals. If this is true, then it might explain why he didn’t tell me his plan on CPoF. Does this sound right to those of you who were around in 1971-1973?

Kevin, it is mindboggling that you climbed up that dike in the rain. It cannot be more that 1 ½ inches of slightly lower angle rock with otherwise smooth rock around it. I don’t remember any distinct features out there. Just shuffling along on top of the dike, trying to avoid a long pendulum fall back under the belayer.

As for folks who have only done the first five pitches, if you like ‘normal’ climbing on Middle, the pitches above the 5th are very good. I, obviously, have not done the direct finish or the direct start—I am circuitous kind of guy—but the 6 and 7 (and Chickenshit traverse) pitches are good climbing. I am sure that the direct start and direct finish are excellent but are probably very hard. They are also probably only protected in the 70s heroic style (sounds like an art period, doesn’t it).

It is interesting to note the variety of styles that come up on Middle. Scuffy noted hard laybacking on the start of the 6th. I actually remember climbing it the other direction, putting my right shoulder against the little left facing corner and chimneyed with my feet against nubbins to the left. Normal climbing as Beck called it. I climbed Beverly’s Tower on the Cookie that same way. Laybacking is too scary and hard. Of course there are tons of layback moves in those upper pitches but they are partial moves mixed into everything else you have to do.

Thanks all for the nice comments. Time to go.

TL,C Roger
Chris2

Trad climber
Dec 12, 2008 - 04:33pm PT
bvb that is an awesome photo of the route...I always prefer black and whites...thanks
scuffy b

climber
On the dock in the dark
Dec 12, 2008 - 04:48pm PT
Hey, Roger, I even thought it was a right-facing corner,
so what do I know?
Roger Breedlove

climber
Cleveland Heights, Ohio
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 12, 2008 - 05:02pm PT
I wouldn't say that Jeff,

I thought that the crux bit on the 6th was right off the belay with a steep shallow left facing corner. Once the angle dropped back a bit you could get into the main right facing corners that form the bulk of the pitch. I remember those as being just regular climbing. But the bit off the ledge was short but hard. Does that sound like we were on the same climb?

Having said all that, what is most notable is that I did that pitch 35 years ago. What I remember is very clear, but that is not the same as saying it is correct.
steelmnkey

climber
Vision man...ya gotta have vision...
Dec 12, 2008 - 05:56pm PT
A little reference material to refresh memories.
Info from the Yellow Meyers guide, 1982

steelmnkey

climber
Vision man...ya gotta have vision...
Dec 12, 2008 - 06:01pm PT
Adapted/digitized from a drawing by Al MacDonald in the 1964 Yosemite Guide by Steve Roper.

Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Dec 12, 2008 - 06:41pm PT
love the art Steelmnky... the sun is rising a little bit more north than usual to get those shadows if I remember things correctly!
Chris2

Trad climber
Dec 12, 2008 - 06:44pm PT
Awesome steelmnkey I just saved that topo and plan to turn it into a poster! Very cool.
Largo

Sport climber
Venice, Ca
Dec 12, 2008 - 06:46pm PT
It seemed like everyone in Camp 4 had a hand, at some point, in the "first ascent" of CPF.

I remember when Roger finished it off, we all stormed up there to repeat it, and we all did all seven pitches including the Chickenshit Traverse. It didn't become popular to only do the first five pitches till years after Roger's FA.

I thought the first seven, the direct start and direct finish would all become mega classics because they featured great climbing and were not super hard (root stunt notwithstanding). I was wrong on all three counts. I doubt one party in fifty climbs the first seven, and it sounds like the direct start and direct finish see little if any traffic at all. Pitches 6 and 7 and the Chickenshit Traverse are all very much worth doing, but they involve that sketchy kind of combo face and crack and stemming, off wires for pro, that spook folks these days.

Go figure . . .

JL
Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Dec 12, 2008 - 08:10pm PT
"but they involve that sketchy kind of combo face and crack and stemming, off wires for pro, that spook folks these days."

"Go figure . . ."


I’ll field that ball:

1) Things like that spooked folks in “those days” too.
But getting spooked and hanging in was one of the crucial layers in the cake, eagerly devoured by anyone at the table.

2) The idea of doing a few pitches of anything, then bailing, somewhere along the line became normalized and this gave credence to the spirit of quitting, which has its own backwards allure, shored up as it is with the idea of convenience.

 Pretty much just stealing a kiss and moving on.
Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Dec 12, 2008 - 09:25pm PT
(Yes yes, to kiss and tell, I too have done just the first five pitches a bunch of times, ropeless even, um, except for the rappels)
The Warbler

climber
the edge of America
Dec 12, 2008 - 11:27pm PT
bvb,

Really like the black and white photo. Nice to see that shadow detail, and the shallow hex placement in the foreground. The architecture of those first pitches is awesome.

Roger,

Mindboggling might be an exaggeration, but amazed would describe my own feelings when I made that traverse on dry rock the second time. Some climber once told me that faceclimbing on edges wasn't any harder in the rain - maybe he was right...

I think it's kinda weak that so many people never climb higher than the ledge atop pitch 5. The following three pitches of the original route are better and harder climbing than the fourth and fifth, and leaving them out means an incomplete ascent of a classic and historic climb.

Whatever...

Gotta get back to the pizza deck, I guess.

Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Dec 29, 2008 - 07:55pm PT
Have you done it since the route lost the root?
Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Dec 29, 2008 - 08:24pm PT
As described in the other thread, we did the whole route without the root.
(Remarkably my voice-activated software just sorted the difference between with those two words...)

http://www.supertopo.com/climbing/thread.html?topic_id=740075&msg=751354#msg751354
Mighty Hiker

Social climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Dec 29, 2008 - 08:30pm PT
Probably not hard for DNS to distinguish between "rout" and "root"/"route". :-)
Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Dec 29, 2008 - 10:43pm PT
*discursive chatter bump*

Well not exactly Anders,
I pronounced them both "root", so it is surprising.
I've learned that if I want it to recognize and spell route I have to say "rowt".

(And yes I know that is how most people typically say it, but not me because I'm rowdy,
But that is no reason for us to dive into a rout over it)
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Dec 29, 2008 - 11:01pm PT
Roy- I was curious if Kevin had a before and after perspective from several trips up the upper pitches.

From the original Meyers Green guide, this topo.

Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Dec 29, 2008 - 11:15pm PT
I thought the whole thing about the root was just something Largo effected for good story, concerning the direct finish.
heh, heh, heh...
Mighty Hiker

Social climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Dec 29, 2008 - 11:18pm PT
Does that mean the story may not have been well-rooted?

I suppose that next you'll be telling us that one can't hit a golf ball from El Cap Spire and land it in the meadows.

O tempora! O mores!
Messages 21 - 40 of total 57 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
Return to Forum List
Post a Reply
 
Our Guidebooks
Check 'em out!
SuperTopo Guidebooks


Try a free sample topo!

 
SuperTopo on the Web

Review Categories
Recent Route Beta
Recent Gear Reviews