West Face C2F 5.7

  • Currently 4.0/5

Leaning Tower

Yosemite Valley, California USA

Trip Report
The West Face Of Leaning Tower Solo
Wednesday June 18, 2014 7:50am
Credit: The Climbing Doctor

It had been a year and a half since my last climb. Previously, I had spent six months in South America on a climbing rampage. I climbed difficult objectives that I once only could dream of. And then, all of a sudden, I just stopped climbing. I lost interest in the supertopo forums, deleted the mountain project and climbing weather apps off my phone, sold all my ice climbing gear and shoved my big wall rack deep into my closet. Itís difficult to tell what separated me from my passion. Was it fear of injury and death? Burn out? Or was I just developing other interests? Whatever the reason, I wasnít climbing.

Over the past year and a half, it started to become clear that a part of my life was missing. Climbing is, was and will always be my freedom. When life burdens me with questions, I find the answers within myself in the mountains.

Last year I prepared for this climb, approached, sat at the base staring at the route and then walked away. The passion was gone and I didnít wanít to climb it.

So I came back this year with more motivation. I knew I couldnít walk away again. This time I wanted it, I needed it.

You can read the full report here:

F.Y.I. My previous post name was JspencerV but has been changed to TheClimbingDoctor

  Trip Report Views: 3,140
The Climbing Doctor
About the Author
The Climbing Doctor is a trad climber from Santa Monica, CA.

Wade Icey

Trad climber
  Jun 18, 2014 - 09:23am PT
good work Doc..

Sport climber
  Jun 18, 2014 - 10:40am PT
Great TR Doc. Stay free...

Trad climber
Nothing creative to say
  Jun 18, 2014 - 11:22am PT
That's the oldest trick in the book leaving the gear at the base. ;)
Ed H

Trad climber
Santa Rosa, CA
  Jun 18, 2014 - 11:31pm PT
Glad you got your stoke back!

Climbing gives me inner peace. I feel like just a man in nature and that brings everything in balance.

Peter Haan

Trad climber
  Jun 19, 2014 - 07:17am PT
Good. I remember the worse part of soloing was the swollen hands, as you show. Every morning almost impossible to carry on at first; I guess their typically at their worst after the first bivouac.

Big Wall climber
  Jun 19, 2014 - 08:52am PT
well done, curious as to why you chose to solo a wall while being unsure if you were still psyched on bigwalling. Go do a party wall!

Trad climber
Fresno CA
  Jun 19, 2014 - 11:26am PT
Great to read your report and have you back claimbing -- and sharing on ST. I need to remember your trick of leaving stuff at the base of the first pitch then going back for the pig. That may diminish the likelihood of my yellow pointing.

Thanks for the TR, pics and inspiration.

Sierra Ledge Rat

Mountain climber
Old and Broken Down in Appalachia
  Jun 19, 2014 - 01:47pm PT
I had a similar "awakening," and decided that soloing the Leaning Tower was the ticket to my spiritual salvation.

That was 35 years ago when I topped out in a winter storm.

I know where you're coming from, bro.
mouse from merced

Trad climber
The finger of fate, my friends, is fickle.
  Jun 19, 2014 - 04:58pm PT
"My hope was when I arrived at the base, it would all come back to me; and it did!"


And Harry, good on you, too!

Social climber
Ridgway, CO
  Jun 19, 2014 - 07:13pm PT
Way to go bro.
The Climbing Doctor

Trad climber
Santa Monica, CA
Author's Reply  Jun 19, 2014 - 07:52pm PT
Peter Haan: Yeah, swollen hands are terrible. Still trying to find ways to combat it. Massage, NSAIDS, clipping my nails etc.

Jaysen: Unfortunately I get psyched when I push myself, so a party wall wasn't going to do it for me

Sierra Ledge Rat: Whoo man. A winter storm is tricky on Leaning Tower. I guess the only way is up!


Trad climber
Santa Cruz, California
  Jun 19, 2014 - 08:02pm PT
Good TR.
Leaning Tower - West Face C2F 5.7 - Yosemite Valley, California USA. Click to Enlarge
The West Face of Leaning Tower.
Photo: Corey Rich
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