Trip Report
In Soviet Poland, Hulk Climbs You!- Polish Route, Escape From Poland
Tuesday October 2, 2012 5:19pm
Well boys and girls, it's that time of year again. Rocktober is upon us and my attentions are being pulled to lower elevations. This heat might hold, or it might snow tomorrow- either way this last weekend felt like a bit of a goodbye to the high country for the season- at least for me and my schedule.

Mr. B recently moved back to the Bay after a year and a half in Tanzania. After running into him at Ironworks we made plans to get after it. Warmed up in t-shirts on Crying Time Again, stuffed ourselves at the Mobil and then crashed out.

Thanks for the rad season- see ya next year TMNP
Thanks for the rad season- see ya next year TMNP
Credit: snowhazed

We left the Mono Village parking lot at 7 am, and at a leisurely pace made it to the base of the Hulk at 10 am. Thank you nature for allowing us the temps to climb a route that is in the shade until 330PM! I have no idea why it took 11 trips to the Hulk to finally get on this route, as unsurprisingly it is yet another mega-classic on one of the finest chunks of granite in the range.

We took our sweet time racking up and eating- there were already 9 people spread out across the big 3, but no one to compete with in the Eastern Bloc. The first pitch is a beauty- 5.10 fingers and hands forever. I linked through pitch 2, stretching the 80M rope to the belay.

P1
P1
Credit: snowhazed

Mr. B cast off through incredibly fun sequential climbing to gain one of the coolest OW splitters anywhere. He blew right through the pitch 3 belay and stretched every inch of the 80M to link through the 4th pitch for 262 feet of unparalled crack heaven. Butterfly stacks forever with insane position- what more could you ask for?

Zoomed in pic on P3- I think he got his knee in :)
Zoomed in pic on P3- I think he got his knee in :)
Credit: snowhazed

SPLITTER. You can see Mr. B as a spec at the belay.
SPLITTER. You can see Mr. B as a spec at the belay.
Credit: snowhazed

Looking down
Looking down
Credit: snowhazed

Now before you old-schoolers get all panty-twisted about long ropes and how 50 meters was plenty back then and should be plenty now and is just as fast- these 2 mega pitches were some of the most fun I've had on a rope- minimal drag, not too heavy at 9.4mm, perfect amount of rope to reach ledge belays, and now we are 525 feet up the Hulk in 90 minutes! As evidenced by picture taking I was not rushing- taking it all in, loving the climbing on and on in the alpine.

I was on the ground 2 pitches ago? Mind=Blown
I was on the ground 2 pitches ago? Mind=Blown
Credit: snowhazed

At this point the Polish route continues up for 1 pitch, or you can opt for a 2-3 pitch variation called Escape From Poland. I downclimb to the right a good 25 feet, make a sweet traverse into an incipient corner and stem all the way back up to parallel with the belay. The climbing is great 10+ with stemming, layback, and overhanging hand jamming leading to strenuous flared corner climbing. I have to fight pretty hard to send, and I'm starting to feel like maybe I escaped Poland into war-torn Chechnya, or as my friend put it- "felt like an angry Yugoslav border cop."

Starting the Escape
Starting the Escape
Credit: snowhazed

Mr. B pulls the 10+ Iron Curtain roof and then punches through easier ground and then a short section of mildly heinous OW to the ridge- we are definitely still blue collar climbing in the eastern bloc.

Credit: snowhazed


Sick position pulling the Iron Curtain roof
Sick position pulling the Iron Curtain roof
Credit: snowhazed

A downclimb to the top of the Polish tower and 6 raps with the 80M (mandatory) down Blowhard and we are on the ground. We bask in the warm sun and absorb the life flowing through the hallowed terrain around us. Goodbye hulk- see ya next year.

Credit: snowhazed



  Trip Report Views: 1,327
snowhazed
About the Author
snowhazed is a trad climber from Oaksterdam, CA.

Comments
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Vitaliy M.

Mountain climber
San Francisco
  Oct 2, 2012 - 05:43pm PT
Thank you for posting! Really wanted to get on this one this season, most likely is moved to next year though. Great looking splitters!!!
MH2

climber
  Oct 2, 2012 - 06:25pm PT
Somehow reads like pornography, cool!
Marlow

Sport climber
OSLO
  Oct 2, 2012 - 06:33pm PT
This must be dope for crackheads. Very well sent and shot.
RP3

Big Wall climber
Twain Harte
  Oct 2, 2012 - 06:35pm PT
You got me salivating! Awesome climb + TR!
Hawkeye

climber
State of Mine
  Oct 2, 2012 - 06:37pm PT
TFPU!
climbski2

Mountain climber
Anchorage AK, Reno NV
  Oct 2, 2012 - 08:15pm PT
Awesome! Love that pic looking down from the Iron Curtain roof.
micronut

Trad climber
Fresno/Clovis, ca
  Oct 2, 2012 - 09:02pm PT
You strong like bull. Good times man! Way to keep smashin great lines out there. Grand storytelling too. Love your stuff.
marty(r)

climber
beneath the valley of ultravegans
  Oct 2, 2012 - 09:45pm PT
Damn, I was just about to email you about this. Beat me to the punch! Looks great; looks blue collar.
Roadie

Trad climber
Bishop, Ca
  Oct 2, 2012 - 09:56pm PT
Nice write up Snow! Good job on that one, thanks for clueing me in.
Something to keep my fingers, and elobows and knees itching over the winter.
Salamanizer

Trad climber
The land of Fruits & Nuts!
  Oct 2, 2012 - 10:12pm PT
Man, that polish route looks awesome. We got rained off the approach last year. Something about climbing OW's in a thunderstorm didn't sound too appealing. I know, lightweights.

Nice TR.
snowhazed

Trad climber
Oaksterdam, CA
Author's Reply  Oct 2, 2012 - 11:05pm PT
Yeah Salamanizer- I'm pretty sure we met that day as you were hiking out and we were hiking in for Sunspot- we talked about the swirling weather- tr herehttp://www.supertopo.com/tr/Sunspot-Dihedral-30-TStorms-a-Deer/t11168n.html

You'll love the Polish when you get around to it!
Ezra Ellis

Trad climber
North wet, and Da souf
  Oct 2, 2012 - 11:22pm PT
Fantastic Job, you must be way solid at 5.10 to run it out like that.
Thanks!!!
RyanD

climber
Squamish
  Oct 3, 2012 - 12:16am PT
You say Ukraine is weak?! Ukraine is not weak! I smash your little game!!

Nice TR & rad pics. Long ropes = the future.
pvalchev

Social climber
Truckee, CA
  Oct 3, 2012 - 01:14pm PT
Nice, we saw you from next door on PV, thanks for the entertaining read and great pics. Where was the loose block you trundled? Sounded pretty big/scary from over on PV? I think my next rope will be an 80 meter... who makes it and is it bicolor for easy rapping?

Adding the Polish route on the list, with another Eastern Bloc partner perhaps..
snowhazed

Trad climber
Oaksterdam, CA
Author's Reply  Oct 3, 2012 - 06:24pm PT
The second pitch above the 10 fingers and hands starts off as loose 5.9 but eases quickly. While seconding, Mr. B knocked off a football sized block- it struck at a good angle and catapulted away from the wall and impacted pretty far down the talus and bounced a ways after that. Not too bad- but I'm sure it sounded good!

Sterling makes an 80M 9.2, but the sheath fell apart on me after 3 hulk trips. I'm now trying the BlueWater hyalite 9.4- it held up really really well from this trip so I am hopeful. It's only 160 grams heavier than the 9.2.

I know Mammut makes an 80M 9.5, and also the 8.9

The 80 is clutch for the hulk because you can rap venturi, solar flare, and blowhard all with one rope- saving you from having a knot that a) can come undone (though unlikely) and b) can get stuck while pulling lines on rappel (very likely). Plus you carry in just one rope :)
mountain dog

Trad climber
over the hills and far away
  Oct 3, 2012 - 06:28pm PT
Very cool looking climb. Nice report.
phylp

Trad climber
Millbrae, CA
  Oct 3, 2012 - 08:46pm PT
What a great trip report. Thanks and great job!
briham89

Big Wall climber
santa cruz, ca
  Oct 3, 2012 - 11:50pm PT
Now there's some crack porn!!! Those 80m pitches look wild...you may have converted me.
dianilesa

Social climber
Cherry Street, Room 318 Atlanta Georgia USA 30332
  Oct 4, 2012 - 03:11am PT
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