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#47995 - 09/19/09 12:09 PM Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear
SethG Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
Sorry if this has been done to death but if it has I can't seem to find it! There are similar threads I've found for 5.8 and 5.10 but not 5.9, and the "Breaking into the grade" section of the homepage is gone.

I've led some of the obvious "easy" 5.9s: Sente (5.9-, with bolts-- still a committing move up to the first bolt), Ants' Line (pumpy but great pro all the way), and Bonnie's Roof (crux has great pro and holds). I've also led Directissima and although the 5.9 pitch is short I wouldn't recommend it to a new 5.9 leader, mostly because I fell twice at the crux move! (I later learned the trick.) And you're moving sideways from an awkward gear anchor, which caused me some concern. And the crux is protected by pins, although I did find a good placement a few feet below the pins to back them up.

I'm looking for other good ideas, thanks!
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#47996 - 09/19/09 12:48 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
caver Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 01/11/03
Posts: 260
Loc: High Falls
Disclaimer: I'm sure many will argue whether a climb is "easy" or has good gear, so any answer will always receive nay sayers, but here goes anyway......a few in the Uberfall....Nice 5.9 climb, Red Cabbage, Apoplexy,

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#47997 - 09/19/09 01:45 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: caver]
pedestrian Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 08/05/02
Posts: 2244
Loc: a heavily fortified bunker!
Roseland. Plug and chug, closely spaced small wires in the corner, followed by the pin and bomber midsize cams on the traverse. Couldn't ask for better gear. Yet still, somebody placed bad gear and managed to deck on it a year or two ago...

Directissima should have a little bitty wire in the seam next to those pins, if you want to hang out and fiddle it in...

Grand Central has PGish runs between gear, but reasonably easy moves, I thought.


Edited by pedestrian (09/19/09 01:48 PM)

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#47998 - 09/19/09 02:26 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: pedestrian]
Coppertone Online   content
old hand

Registered: 08/17/00
Posts: 1055
Loc: Newtown, CT
No Glow. Combine with the first pitch of Face to Face and you have a great climb no harder than easy 5.9.

CCK Direct. Good gear and great climbing. One move a little off of gear at the notch just above the GT but that climbing isn't hard and the rest of the climb is superb.

First pitch of the Spring. Nice corner/dihedral that is well protected.

Wasp easy 5.9. Gear is a little tricky in the first few feet but it is there and then it is G after that.

Higher Stannard. A little bouldery at the start with no gear for one move, but after that great technical climbing with good gear.

I would have to disagree with Apolplexy as the flake can freak people out. The climbing to gain and clear the upper overhang is also challenging and not straight forward. The gear there can also be a little tricky if you don't know it. That climb has seen many falls.

I would also disagree about Grand Central as the second pitch is solid 5.9, traverses around the corner out of sight of your belay and had a pretty good runout on non trivial ground if you are not good with micronuts. A superb climb, but may want to make the entry 5.9 leader wet themself.


Edited by Coppertone (09/19/09 02:26 PM)

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#47999 - 09/19/09 06:05 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
Daniel Offline
veteran

Registered: 05/23/01
Posts: 1515
I'd recommend No Glow. Also p2 of Face To Face. which is 5.9; the third pitch is 10b in the latest Williams guide, but one can avoid it by angling right to finish in a 5.5 corner, which is the version in older guidebooks. (I found p1 of Face To Face pretty darn scary; better to use p1 of No Glow to get to the GT Ledge if you want to do p2 of Face To Face.)

I'd avoid Land's End, not because it's a bad climb, but because despite the 5.9- G rating I could not find neither the "-" nor the "G."

I agree with Pedestrian more than Coppertone on Grand Central. It's a little run out at the crux if you're looking for really good gear, but one can get several pieces before starting the sequence and I thought the moves were OK; good practice for just keeping it together as you look for the next placement.

CCK Direct is a fantastic line, but I thought it was pretty PG in places. Definitely don't want to blow it at the 5.8 overhang above the GT Ledge.

This may seem like an odd choice, but I loved Keep On Struttin'. It's got some very strenuous cruxes, but once one gets up to the first roof above the GT Ledge I thought the gear was good (good test for hanging out to get the gear in). Of course, every time I've done the climb it's taken me about 10 minutes to figure out how to get up to the first roof again....


Edited by Daniel (09/19/09 06:25 PM)

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#48000 - 09/19/09 06:50 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Daniel]
ianmanger Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 04/25/03
Posts: 319
Originally Posted By: Daniel


I agree with Pedestrian more than Coppertone on Grand Central. It's a little run out at the crux if you're looking for really good gear, but one can get several pieces before starting the sequence and I thought the moves were OK; good practice for just keeping it together as you look for the next placement.


the question was about breaking into the grade, short cruxes, good gear. I don't think GC fits this bill precisely because of the 'keeping it together' requirement. The crux isn't hard, but you do have to go for a while. No Glow, no question. btw, as if it needed saying _yet_again, if you look at Swains' "book of whoppers" and see 5.9G against Amber Waves of Pain, consider that this is a huge and potentially dangerous sandbag. Getting gear at the crux is strenuous and gave rise to the name. gray Dick has this as at least 10a.
Le Teton.. short crux, good gear, wild.

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#48001 - 09/19/09 07:26 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: ianmanger]
Daniel Offline
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Registered: 05/23/01
Posts: 1515
Originally Posted By: ianmanger
the question was about breaking into the grade, short cruxes, good gear.


Well, once you've covered the few obvious early 9s then one has to start looking at other good 9s to do. I don't think there are more than a handful of climbs that exactly fit the criteria, so I don't see a problem with offering others with the appropriate caveats. I think SethG can figure out which ones to tackle.

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#48002 - 09/19/09 11:28 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Daniel]
Coppertone Online   content
old hand

Registered: 08/17/00
Posts: 1055
Loc: Newtown, CT
Daniel I'm not sure that you found scary about the first pitch of Face to Face. There isn't much gear for the first 15 feet or so, but it is only about 5.5 climbing. Once you hit the large flake in the middle of the face about 15-20 feet up it takes great gear all the way. That pitch is a wonderful pitch of 5.8 face climbing.

I don't know about Keep On Struttin as being anywhere near an entry level climb. The climbing on pitch 2 and 3 is fantastic, but runout in places and quite solid at the grade. Don't do pitch one it has terrible gear, allot of loose rock and bad climbing. Pitch one of Erect Direction is an excellent option to reach the GT in that area.

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#48003 - 09/20/09 12:38 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Coppertone]
SethG Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
I appreciate all the suggestions. I actually rapped down No Glow yesterday and I thought the second pitch looked really cool. The 5.5 R part didn't look bad. I may give that one a try soon.

A couple weeks ago I was talking with someone who'd just led MF and he said Le Teton was the most sandbagged 5.9 he'd tried...
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#48004 - 09/20/09 02:13 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
Frank Florence Offline
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Registered: 01/05/00
Posts: 528
Loc: moved to Bend
If you ever head out to Millbrook, check out Cruise Control. The pro seemed more like G than PG to me.

Grand Central is a great climb. Bring a couple of small brass nuts to cover the PG section on the second pitch. Another route in the Nears to consider is is Inverted Layback, although the consensus seems to be that this is easier if you're shorter. It protects well.



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#48005 - 09/20/09 02:37 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Frank Florence]
Mike Rawdon Offline

Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 11/29/99
Posts: 4276
Loc: Poughkeepsie
Pitch 3 of Arc of a Diver. Birdcage with the "Chouinard Variation" (escape to Birdland anchor instead of the traverse/roof crux), if you're good at stemming and reasonably tall. Raunchy (stay in the shallow R facing corner; stepping out left makes it easier than 9).

Standard advice for breaking into any grade - pro the heck out of the thing! On a climb like the Spring, it's easy to get too high above your gear in the first 20 feet or so, and your three pieces of gear is really only a single piece between you and the deck.

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#48006 - 09/20/09 04:03 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Coppertone]
pedestrian Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 08/05/02
Posts: 2244
Loc: a heavily fortified bunker!
Originally Posted By: Coppertone
I don't know about Keep On Struttin as being anywhere near an entry level climb. The climbing on pitch 2 and 3 is fantastic, but runout in places and quite solid at the grade.


Maybe not entry level (and maybe even harder than 5.9 when done this way) but the gear is adequate where you need it, if you use the climber's right side start to the second pitch, below that little 0.4 camalot pocket. The third pitch is much easier than pitch 2. If you do the left hand start I agree the gear is nonexistent but the moves are more thoughtful and controllable.

Re Grand Central: let's just say I knew somebody was going to disagree with me on that, and I understand the reasons, but it was an early 5.9 lead for me and it felt reasonable. Micro nuts? I don't really remember needing much of 'em on the 2nd pitch, but maybe I was just really comfortable on that terrain (and this was years ago.) I remember simply focusing on the footwork, relaxing, climbing/traversing maybe just a few feet more between placements than I had previously been accustomed to, and then the route opened up and offered placement opportunities. There was one Alien that I had to jam a little bit, the trigger/stem was in the way and I had placed the one that would have fit better, earlier. The third pitch is only 5.8+ if you are tall enough to have no trouble reaching through the hand/fist crack.

Now, for a nice entry level climb for the solid 5.10 leader, how about Double Crack?


Edited by pedestrian (09/20/09 04:05 AM)

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#48007 - 09/20/09 05:19 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Coppertone]
Daniel Offline
veteran

Registered: 05/23/01
Posts: 1515
Originally Posted By: Coppertone
Daniel I'm not sure that you found scary about the first pitch of Face to Face. There isn't much gear for the first 15 feet or so, but it is only about 5.5 climbing.


The start seemed very indistinct, so I may have been a bit off-route, but I thought it was solid 5.7 with no gear for more than the first 15 feet. My second (not as tall as I am) climbed at my ability level but fell before getting to the first piece of gear. There have been other instances where I didn't want to fall, but that was the only time I really thought I might get seriously hurt. But as I wrote above, perhaps I wasn't quite in the right place, which could have made a big difference. I'd be glad to defer to the consensus of others who have been on it.

In any case, p2 does, I think, have both a short crux with good gear, though one has to hang out a bit to get it in (which I found to be true on many other 9s at the cliff--decent gear, but much more strenuous to place than on the 8s).

I'll second the recommendation of p1 of Erect Direction for getting up to the GT Ledge for the other 5.9 climbs in that area. That's one sweet 5.8 pitch (and oodles of gear).

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#48008 - 09/20/09 12:04 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Daniel]
Mike Rawdon Offline

Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 11/29/99
Posts: 4276
Loc: Poughkeepsie
You definitely want micronuts for Grand Central.

If you like jamming, there are a few 9's at Lost City. Nothing like a vertical crack to allay your gear fears. Kinda hard to locate them online, so I won't get into that.

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#48009 - 09/20/09 05:07 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Mike Rawdon]
Cornell Climber Offline
journeyman

Registered: 07/12/04
Posts: 61
Threads like these always seem to turn into a "list every 9 at the Gunks" thread. I'll do my part...

Nobody has mentioned Arch Direct. Short crux with good gear.

When I talk to people about breaking into the 5.9 climbs, I first ask if they have done Birdland (with the direct finish on the second pitch), Three Doves and Modern Times. If you can comfortably send these 5.8+ climbs then you are more than ready for Grand Central (which is a bit runout at the crux, micronuts or not), Absurdland, Sente, No Glow and Roseland. All of these climbs are soft for 5.9. From there do Ant's Line, Arch Direct, Bonnie's Roof Direct, CCK Direct and Directissima. At this point you should be comfortable at the grade and can tick 5.9 to your heart's content. Save MF and Le Teton for last. When you send those, you are ready to start on 5.10.

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#48010 - 09/20/09 05:56 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Cornell Climber]
Aya Offline
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Registered: 11/18/04
Posts: 754
Loc: Climbing somewhere
Screw that. I lead gunks 5.9 but I certainly do NOT lead Modern Times! It all depends on the kind of climbing you like.
Also think there's kind of a difference between say Roseland and Ant's Line (I would call that soft 5.9 too) which have great pro and certainly you can rest but are more sustained, vs like Bonnie's Direct or No Glow which are more or less one hard move with lots of easier climbing otherwise.
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#48011 - 09/20/09 07:11 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Aya]
rg@ofmc Online   content
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 12/25/99
Posts: 2468
Loc: Poughkeepsie, NY
Cornell is right; sooner or later you'll get practically every G or PG 5.9 climb in the Gunks, partially because the grading isn't precise anyway, partially because different individuals have different experiences on the same climb, and partially because some folks just have to mention their favorite pitches, whether or not they meet your criteria.

So here is what to do: get out your Williams guides, pick a 5.9 with some stars and a rating no worse than PG, and give it a try. If you don't like what you've gotten into, climb down and come back another day. Repeat, returning to your nemeses, until you've mastered the grade. You don't need any more information than that.

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#48013 - 09/21/09 01:01 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: rg@ofmc]
AOR Offline
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Registered: 08/27/04
Posts: 392
Originally Posted By: rg@ofmc
So here is what to do: get out your Williams guides, pick a 5.9 with some stars and a rating no worse than PG, and give it a try. If you don't like what you've gotten into, climb down and come back another day. Repeat, returning to your nemeses, until you've mastered the grade. You don't need any more information than that.


What's "easy" for one may not be easy for another. This is most likely the best advice to date for leading at your next level.

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#48014 - 09/21/09 03:06 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: AOR]
Mark Heyman Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/23/99
Posts: 1123
Loc: South Jersey (Pinelands)
Originally Posted By: AOR
What's "easy" for one may not be easy for another. This is most likely the best advice to date for leading at your next level.


Certainly great advice if your asking on the web.
My first partner and I were always glad the other lead the pitch wed just followed.


Edited by Mark Heyman (09/21/09 04:06 AM)

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#48015 - 09/21/09 03:26 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: AOR]
MarcC Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 07/10/00
Posts: 3532
Originally Posted By: AOR
Originally Posted By: rg@ofmc
So here is what to do: get out your Williams guides, pick a 5.9 with some stars and a rating no worse than PG, and give it a try. If you don't like what you've gotten into, climb down and come back another day. Repeat, returning to your nemeses, until you've mastered the grade. You don't need any more information than that.


What's "easy" for one may not be easy for another. This is most likely the best advice to date for leading at your next level.

Alternatively, you can try to find out which of the current 5.n climbs were rated 5.n-1 prior to the 1980 guidebook. Those would be the routes that are easy for their new grade and hence good starter climbs in that grade.
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#48022 - 09/21/09 01:16 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: MarcC]
gunkie Offline
member

Registered: 07/19/00
Posts: 120
Loc: New Hope, PA
I think Grand Central is a good early 5.9 with good gear, if you're good at placing gear. It's not too strenuous around the 5.9 section and is a classic climb.

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#48026 - 09/21/09 02:53 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: gunkie]
quanto_the_mad Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 05/14/02
Posts: 2628
Loc: brooklyn
Hmm... seems like my earlier reply got lost.

Wasp is a single 5.9 move and then 100' of 5.5G climbing. Pleasant, but not all that exciting.

Higher Stannard was a lot harder but I enjoyed it a lot more.

Sente... I dread the thought of climbing Sente, it's not for me.

The old "Breaking into the Grade" had 4 routes for 5.9, and since Marc mentions it, two of them were downgraded to 5.8+.

Groovy- short and sweet, but not for everyone. Watch the tat anchor, there's something sharp back there cutting the webbing. Bring some webbing and replace what's there.

Dirty Gerdie- thin and short, not very well protected.

The Spring p1 - not sure if that should be on the list, I wouldn't want to lead it.

Ants Line - haven't actually gotten around to it...
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#48027 - 09/21/09 02:58 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: gunkie]
SethG Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
Actually a lot of suggestions here, some variations on other climbs I never would have come up with myself. I'll sysnthesize the suggestions here.

Suggested routes that are easyish for 5.9:

Trapps, with the numbers from the Williams guide:

9b Nice 5.9
19 Red Cabbage
37 Apoplexy (with dissent. I have to agree with the dissent. Apoplexy is one of the very few climbs in the Gunks I've toproped, and while I thought the climbing was good, varied, and no huge problem, I thought the gear seemed really tricky.)
130 Arch V1 through roof aka Wick's Banana
236 Raunchy V1, 5.9 up the corner instead of to the left
274 Sente
310 Face to Face P2 (and P1 is either a good way to get there or a scary 5.7R)
311 No Glow P2
320a CCK Direct (except first roof off GT ledge is a poorly protected 5.8)
350 Ants' Line
353 Bonnie's Roof (standard 5.7 finish)
400 The Spring P1
429 WASP

Nears:

19 Inverted Layback
22 Grand Central (with dissent that small gear and a slight runout are required)
44 Roseland
53 Birdcage V1, escape to Birdland anchor after 5.9 section

Millbrook: Cruise Control

And apparently some vertical cracks at Lost City.

Some 5.8's have been suggested as good preparation for 5.9:

Birdland
Three Doves
Modern Times (with dissent)
Absurdland
Double Crack
Erect Direction P1 (which was suggested because it is good, not because it is a good lead-in to 5.9, but I did it recently and I thought it was pretty pumpy for an 8 and a great route)
Dirty Gerdie
Groovy

And it has also been suggested that these routes are not soft 5.9's but good mid-level 9's: Ants' Line, Arch Direct (Wick's Banana), Bonnie's Direct, CCK Direct, Directissima, and Higher Stannard. And that Le Teton and MF are to be saved for last as they are hard 5.9s.

And finally it has been suggested that one should just walk up to whatever and climb it if one can.


Edited by SethG (09/21/09 03:03 PM)
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#48028 - 09/21/09 03:04 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
quanto_the_mad Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 05/14/02
Posts: 2628
Loc: brooklyn
Inverted Layback? Yep, easier if you're shorter, but still, that's one heck of a committing move for a new 5.9 leader.

Might as well add (with dissent) to all the routes listed. grin


Edited by quanto_the_mad (09/21/09 03:05 PM)
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#48029 - 09/21/09 04:34 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: quanto_the_mad]
Julie Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 01/16/00
Posts: 2090
Loc: SoCal
Lots of good advice here.

Mike, the initial corner of Birdcage then traversing right to the anchor is 5.9? That corner has always looked so appealing to me. I'd be psyched to get on it that way.

Nate wrote good honest caveats about why he listed GC, but here's another generality: people often list their first 5.N climbs, as they were working up the grades, but don't realize that even though that particular route was their first 5.N, they were in reality already a stronger climber than 5.N. Such as, saying a first 5.8 was Modern Times; it may have been someone's first 5.8, and gosh, it's safe, but clearly that person was already stronger than 5.8 to begin with. In other words, consider the source.

About Higher Stannard: the right-hand entry is reachy 5.9(+)R. I just found out yesterday that the left-hand start, which always looked approachable to me, is also too tall for me (if I get the left hand hold, I am too close to the wall to smear). I would like to think I'd be able to lead the route sometime, but now I'm thinking I'd have to scramble up Something Interesting and traverse in, and that would be ... pathetic. Arg.

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#48030 - 09/21/09 05:09 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Julie]
Jannette Online   content

Cliffmama
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 10/03/00
Posts: 2225
Loc: Gardiner, NY
I think No Glow's crux is tricky if you're short. I'm 5'6" and can just barely (with walking fingers) reach the hold over the overhang. The run-out start off the GT ledge isn't hard, but it would be a nasty fall onto a ledge and that would make me too nervous. I won't lead that one.

I love leading Sente because it's more like a sport climb, but definitely not for those who don't like really thin face moves (hi Tabo!).

I second Mike's comments on The Spring. While the crack takes small gear, it didn't seem totally bomber to me and I have seen others have gear pop out of the crack. You're not far enough off the ground to avoid decking. I waited until I felt really solid on it on TR, then led it. Funny thing is a couple of months later I TR'ed it again and slipped off in the corner. Oops.

I'm surprised no one mentioned Golden Dream at Peter's Kill. Beautiful 5.9 crack, eats gear. If you find it hard, you can place gear and hang at every move. If that crack was in the Trapps, there'd be a long line.

If you don't get good gear behind the flake on Apoplexy, it's close to a ground fall if your belayer doesn't run like hell down the carriage road as you're falling. I've caught a big fall when the leader was standing just above the flake, and we both ended up suspended about a foot off the ground. Plus it's pumpy to place gear near the top. I'm chicken, I only led it with the gear pre-placed.

I agree with recommending Bonnie's Roof and Ant's Line - well protected, short cruxes. Just a little sustained on top if you run out of steam quickly. But with all that gear, you can hang and rest.

Since I'm also breaking into Gunks 5.9s (on good days), I find this thread very interesting.

Jannette

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#48031 - 09/21/09 05:36 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Jannette]
Julie Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 01/16/00
Posts: 2090
Loc: SoCal
No Glow is reachy, yes.

Spring - there's a finger pocket midway up to the rooflet, where no matter what I place (Alien, nut even tho there's no anti-zipper piece), it pops out later. There's bombproof gear at the rooflet. But like Mike said, our other friend Mike hit the ground from pretty far up, too. It's funny how some routes are closer to the ground than others; the Spring is definitely one of them.

Yeah, I'm thinking about re-re-breaking into 5.9s too these days. Maybe. If I get to climb more than every 3rd weekend.

Julie, whinier than usual today.

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#48034 - 09/21/09 06:43 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: quanto_the_mad]
MarcC Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 07/10/00
Posts: 3532
Originally Posted By: quanto_the_mad
Wasp is a single 5.9 move and then 100' of 5.5G climbing. Pleasant, but not all that exciting.

IMHO there's a little more to it than that - like the 5.7+ bit that gets you up to the 9 crux, which I feel is more than just the one move. Also, if you carry a few big-ish cams, you can traverse to the right at the big horizontal and step down to the tree on the pedestal at the start of <the 5.2 to the right that I can't recall the name of>, saving the mellow trudge up to the GT. Obviously you risk killing your second if you don't set belay anchor quality pro at the start of the traverse.
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#48036 - 09/21/09 06:53 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Julie]
Coppertone Online   content
old hand

Registered: 08/17/00
Posts: 1055
Loc: Newtown, CT
Are you all using the undercling on No Glow or is it that reachy even with the undercling? Hard for me to tell as I have a good reach. Even if a bit reachy it is extremely well protected there with pins that have been replaced within the last 6 or 7 years and plentiful gear options. Also the move off of the GT can be protected with a large nut/cam in the corner and can be extended. This would only be recommended if you have double. Probably allot of rope drag with a single.


On the Spring all you need is a first piece that is good for downward to protect one move. Once you reach the little overlap you can load up with multiple pieces of bomber gear in several locations. If the first piece lifts out once you sew it up with additional gear, so what. I have seen people have gear lift out but I have never had that problem. If you place all nuts you might have some issues, but if you mix it up it should not be a problem.

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#48037 - 09/21/09 07:04 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Coppertone]
Julie Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 01/16/00
Posts: 2090
Loc: SoCal
Yes, even with the undercling - reachy. IIRC, there's really almost nothing in between the undercling and the jug, and the feet are pretty undercut, so stepping up higher isn't a great option.

Spring: I've seen others' gear pop there, as well as my own (not always, I guess, but I think of it as always-suspicious). It's a weird little pocket - I honestly can't see why it pops, aside from rope movement. It does protect a move (and slinging it longer renders it pointless). Maybe a narrower C3 will be better for it, I haven't led it since we got ours. I guess I just think of myself as mostly bouldering until I reach the rooflet. It's fine if you know that's the case, but not quite a clear-conscience recommendation.

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#48040 - 09/21/09 07:45 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Coppertone]
Jannette Online   content

Cliffmama
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Registered: 10/03/00
Posts: 2225
Loc: Gardiner, NY
Originally Posted By: Coppertone
Are you all using the undercling on No Glow or is it that reachy even with the undercling?


Without that undercling I wouldn't have a chance of reaching anything useful, and it certainly wouldn't be 5.9.

Jannette

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#48042 - 09/21/09 07:50 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Jannette]
Aya Offline
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Registered: 11/18/04
Posts: 754
Loc: Climbing somewhere
I'm 5'8 and I find it reachy, too. Have led it, but would not have been able to without the pin at the crux!
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#48049 - 09/21/09 09:59 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Aya]
wombat Offline
member

Registered: 05/27/08
Posts: 147
Loc: gardiner
How about 9's that should not be anywhere near the first lead?

I have led all the 9's discussed here except Overhanging Layback since I am tall and always find something else that seems more attractive.

Got on Honkey Tonk Woman (next to White Pillar) this weekend...and went up and down from the bolt about a million times before traversing off right, up through the munge and back left at the top to TR it. It is PG per swain and Williams select with something about thin wires at the crux. Swain of course uses the more dickish "if you are good with gear" line. BUT, even on rap and TR, my partner and I didnt find anything close to taking gear at the crux, which is a bit tricky and would have a rather unpleasant fall.

This seemed to me to be seriously R. Am i completely missing this, or did something change on the climb?

Also, i know its a chimney, but a PG rating for White Pillar? it takes one cam down low and then its zip to the top!

There was a 10 round the corner on the front of WP with a G in Swain that i couldnt see much gear on from the ground. is there a separate White Pillar area scale?

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#48051 - 09/21/09 10:10 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: wombat]
Dana Offline
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Registered: 07/13/00
Posts: 619
Which 5.10? The one on the left side of the block is Hang Ten and it is well protected. The one on the right -Shooting the Curl - is a bit harder and not as well protected.

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#48054 - 09/21/09 10:34 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Dana]
caver Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 01/11/03
Posts: 260
Loc: High Falls
HTW =R

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#48057 - 09/21/09 10:51 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: caver]
wombat Offline
member

Registered: 05/27/08
Posts: 147
Loc: gardiner
thanks. hang Ten think. ok, didnt see it from the ground which i guess is why you are s'posed to climb it after all. the right one looked cool too although micros under the roof looked a bit scary


Edited by wombat (09/21/09 10:52 PM)

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#48058 - 09/21/09 11:04 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: wombat]
RangerRob Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/06/00
Posts: 3764
Loc: Ulster County, NY
Commando Rave is NOT a breaking into the grade 5.9, just in case you were wondering

No one has mentioned Columbia yet. It's been a bunch of years since I have done it, but I seem to remember it being pretty mellow for 5.9

It's interesting, 5.9 seems to be where the grading gets really subjective, and you can get yourself in trouble. There are a bunch of 5.10s that I would do before some of the 5.9's listed here. Higher Stannard scared the crap out of me. Then again, I hate thin runout face climbing

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#48062 - 09/21/09 11:31 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: RangerRob]
Frank Florence Offline
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Registered: 01/05/00
Posts: 528
Loc: moved to Bend
Not breaking into the grade 5.9s have, for me, included:

Zachariah. How was this ever an 8!? A photo of Ivan Rezucha's solution to the crux is in the new Williams guide.

Proctoscope and Procter Silex. Similarity in names and equally difficult. These are now both rated 9+.

Art's Route. Tried this late in the day. Maybe I was just tired, but I had a heck of a time getting over the roof.

Le Teton. I like this route a lot and was glad I waited until I'd done a variety of other 9s before I climbed it. That reduced the pump factor.

Keep on Struttin'. See Le Teton.

Friends and Lovers. Holds are all there but the pro at the crux is below your feet.


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#48063 - 09/21/09 11:50 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Frank Florence]
SethG Offline
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Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
Columbia is an 8.
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#48064 - 09/22/09 12:02 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: RangerRob]
MarcC Offline
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Registered: 07/10/00
Posts: 3532
Originally Posted By: RangerRob
Commando Rave is NOT a breaking into the grade 5.9, just in case you were wondering
....
There are a bunch of 5.10s that I would do before some of the 5.9's listed here. Higher Stannard scared the crap out of me.

Interestingly, both Commando Rave and Higher Stannard were rated 5.8 in the 72 guide.
Originally Posted By: RangerRob
Then again, I hate thin runout face climbing

Then why on earth are you climbing in the Gunks?
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#48065 - 09/22/09 12:04 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Frank Florence]
rg@ofmc Online   content
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 12/25/99
Posts: 2468
Loc: Poughkeepsie, NY
Not for breaking into 5.9: Midnight Cowboy, Triangle Direct, Lito and the Swan, No Existence (because of 5.8X), Wild Horses.

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#48067 - 09/22/09 12:51 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
Dana Offline
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Registered: 07/13/00
Posts: 619
And Zachariah was 5.6 in the 1972 guide.

Lito is poorly protected? It's been a while.

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#48068 - 09/22/09 01:10 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Dana]
Jannette Online   content

Cliffmama
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Registered: 10/03/00
Posts: 2225
Loc: Gardiner, NY
Another recommendation to NOT do when breaking into 5.9 is the first 5.9 I led at the Gunks... one of those "what the hell was I thinking" events - Maria Direct. After the first horizontal, it's sustained difficult climbing with groundfall potential until you can get a stance to put in gear. I had no business leading that one. Somehow I survived it. Haven't gone back.

Jannette

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#48073 - 09/22/09 06:01 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: wombat]
Aya Offline
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Registered: 11/18/04
Posts: 754
Loc: Climbing somewhere
Dunno, Honky Tonk Woman was the second 9 I led at the gunks after Wasp... as long as you trust the bolts (dubious), I didn't think it was too bad... I do recall fiddling in a few wires and a 00 TCU, think they were sort of off to climber's right.

I need to go get on Le Teton. See if all this ice climbing has increased my ability to not pump out...
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#48074 - 09/22/09 11:31 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: rg@ofmc]
Lucander Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 04/03/09
Posts: 224
Loc: Stone Ridge, NY
Originally Posted By: rg@ofmc
Not for breaking into 5.9: Midnight Cowboy, Triangle Direct, Lito and the Swan, No Existence (because of 5.8X), Wild Horses.


These are good recommendations for ways to get broken on a 5.9

I've heard spooky things about the second (5.9) pitch of Splastic too.


DL

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#48075 - 09/22/09 01:47 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: rg@ofmc]
MarcC Offline
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Registered: 07/10/00
Posts: 3532
Originally Posted By: rg@ofmc
Not for breaking into 5.9: Midnight Cowboy, Triangle Direct, Lito and the Swan, No Existence (because of 5.8X), Wild Horses.

At least with Wild Horses one can diagonal left on to the upper part of Raunchy and avoid the friction-nubbin crux and potential 30 footer. That just leaves getting the tricky pro correct on the 5.8 section. That would be the pro that prevents, at minimum, ledge, or possibly ground-fall. And gee, there's also that unprotected 9-ish slab start.
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#48076 - 09/22/09 02:15 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: MarcC]
rg@ofmc Online   content
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 12/25/99
Posts: 2468
Loc: Poughkeepsie, NY
Originally Posted By: MarcC

At least with Wild Horses one can diagonal left on to the upper part of Raunchy and avoid the friction-nubbin crux and potential 30 footer. That just leaves getting the tricky pro correct on the 5.8 section. That would be the pro that prevents, at minimum, ledge, or possibly ground-fall. And gee, there's also that unprotected 9-ish slab start.


And then there's P2, which, if I recall correctly, has its crux before you get any gear.

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#48077 - 09/22/09 02:41 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: rg@ofmc]
Coppertone Online   content
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Registered: 08/17/00
Posts: 1055
Loc: Newtown, CT
Originally Posted By: rg@ofmc
Originally Posted By: MarcC

At least with Wild Horses one can diagonal left on to the upper part of Raunchy and avoid the friction-nubbin crux and potential 30 footer. That just leaves getting the tricky pro correct on the 5.8 section. That would be the pro that prevents, at minimum, ledge, or possibly ground-fall. And gee, there's also that unprotected 9-ish slab start.


And then there's P2, which, if I recall correctly, has its crux before you get any gear.


You can actually get in a brassie on Wild Horses that cuts the fall down a bit. Probably still R just before you reach salvation, but probably more like a 20 footer.

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#48079 - 09/22/09 04:07 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Coppertone]
GOclimb Offline
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Registered: 03/26/01
Posts: 2359
Loc: Boston
A few thoughts:

1 - I've started one of these threads before, and I found the comments invaluable.

2 - I'm going to disagree with some about Higher Stannard. I've led this twice, and both times I found the gear thinner than I'd like. While the moves are all there, it definitely does *not* qualify for the OP's request of short cruxes, good gear. IIRC, it's very sustained at 5.8 with ten plus foot stretches with *zero* available gear, and then at the end of those stretches, the gear is pretty finicky.

3 - I'd recommend Bonnie's Direct. It's definitely not the easiest 5.9 at the Gunks, but you've already done a handful of 5.9s, so if you're ready for more, I recommend it because it's a cool short sequence, and well protected.

GO

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#48081 - 09/22/09 05:03 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: GOclimb]
Coppertone Online   content
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Registered: 08/17/00
Posts: 1055
Loc: Newtown, CT
Originally Posted By: GOclimb

2 - I'm going to disagree with some about Higher Stannard. I've led this twice, and both times I found the gear thinner than I'd like. While the moves are all there, it definitely does *not* qualify for the OP's request of short cruxes, good gear. IIRC, it's very sustained at 5.8 with ten plus foot stretches with *zero* available gear, and then at the end of those stretches, the gear is pretty finicky.


I have to disagree with you about Higher Stannard. Outside of the start there really is no place on the entire pitch that is not well protected. There is gear whenever you need it and it is all very good. I also don't think that the gear is finicky as the majority of placements are straight in horizontals and gear placements are all at stances. The climbing is also not really sustained as it is low angle face so you are always over your feet and never really hanging on your arms. I do agree that it has allot of of 5.8 climbing on it, but that should not be a problem if you are looking for a 5.9. I led this as an early 5.9 as did my wife and I have recommended it to others as an early 5.9 and no one has had any problems. No matter what, whenever your choose to do this climb it is a fun and engaging pitch.

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#48083 - 09/22/09 05:43 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Coppertone]
Julie Offline
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Registered: 01/16/00
Posts: 2090
Loc: SoCal
Of the 4 or 5ish people I've belayed on HS, I have not noticed many people seeming to fuss over finicky gear. Though, I have noticed that given the wandering of the route, double ropes really help to keep you 'closer' to your gear.

I just wish I had a decent way to get on it!

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#48084 - 09/22/09 06:36 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: GOclimb]
chip Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 10/06/01
Posts: 2676
Loc: Sittin' Pretty in Fat City
Originally Posted By: GOclimb
A few thoughts:

3 - I'd recommend Bonnie's Direct. It's definitely not the easiest 5.9 at the Gunks, but you've already done a handful of 5.9s, so if you're ready for more, I recommend it because it's a cool short sequence, and well protected.

GO


Yes, Bonnie's Direct is short and very well protected with nothing but air if you blow it. I find it pretty stiff for a 9, but the consequences are nilch if you fall. There is even lots of nearby tat to lower off if needed. Just be aware that you are not going to swing into the lower station very easily and need two ropes to make it down from the nearby anchor. You would be better off aiding your way out.

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#48093 - 09/22/09 10:24 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: chip]
RangerRob Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/06/00
Posts: 3764
Loc: Ulster County, NY
Marc, I climb at the Gunks because of the Roofs man!!!! And also because I live 5 minutes from the cliff. Kind of makes it a no brainer. I just happen to hate the type of climbing I am most good at. I love crack climbing, and I suck at it.

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#48277 - 10/04/09 02:06 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: RangerRob]
Leemouse2 Offline
addict

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 459
Loc: Rosendale, NY
I'd second the mention of Golden Dream at Peterskill. Short, and you could place gear every foot if you wanted to (and had enough gear). Although really, the 5.9 climbing is maybe 30 feet (the first 15 - 20 feet are really easy).

I thought Bonnie's Roof was a 5.8, not a 5.9? Damn, having a toddler is tough. Been a while since I've done that one.
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#48279 - 10/04/09 02:18 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Leemouse2]
caver Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 01/11/03
Posts: 260
Loc: High Falls
Direct is a nine, otherwise, 8+ IMO

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#48281 - 10/04/09 01:09 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: caver]
RangerRob Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/06/00
Posts: 3764
Loc: Ulster County, NY
Concur.

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#48291 - 10/05/09 02:47 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: RangerRob]
SethG Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
The 2004 Dick upgrades Bonnie's first pitch to 5.9.
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#48733 - 10/16/09 05:57 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
SethG Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
I was just flipping through Dick's guide on a boring rainy Friday and I noticed Filipina is rated 5.9- G (second pitch, the first pitch is 5.7). What do people think about that one? I've spent very little time down that far in the Trapps and it could be done in a day that includes Bold-ville, Double Crack, the Nose, the Spring....


Edited by SethG (10/16/09 05:58 PM)
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#48735 - 10/16/09 07:07 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
MarcC Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 07/10/00
Posts: 3532
Originally Posted By: SethG
...Filipina is rated 5.9- G (second pitch, the first pitch is 5.7). What do people think about that one?

I got lost trying to find the second pitch - not once, but 3 times.
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#48736 - 10/16/09 07:33 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: MarcC]
rg@ofmc Online   content
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 12/25/99
Posts: 2468
Loc: Poughkeepsie, NY
Do it in one pitch, starting on The Nose.

I don't think the minus part of the grade is right.

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#48737 - 10/16/09 07:42 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: MarcC]
SethG Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
A lot of routes do seem to converge in the same area there. And having never done any of them I find Williams' descriptions confusing and hard to match to the lines on the photos.
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#48740 - 10/16/09 09:10 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
caver Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 01/11/03
Posts: 260
Loc: High Falls
Look up at the overhang with two thin almost parallel cracks, one traverses several feet to the right and pulls over there. This is a great pitch!! I have lead it twice this summer with various starts, the most direct being The Nose with 5.9 crack variation.

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#48743 - 10/16/09 09:52 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: caver]
wombat Offline
member

Registered: 05/27/08
Posts: 147
Loc: gardiner
re: fillipina: i also think the minus is not correct. not that it technically matters for the grade, but the G involves some very pumpy gear placements which makes the whole effort more challenging. you know you are in the right place when you reach the pin that is about 1/3 driven into a crack which would make a great aid piece or foothold but nor sure I would want to fall on it.

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#48747 - 10/17/09 12:38 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
Dana Offline
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Registered: 07/13/00
Posts: 619
Fillipina is not desperately hard, but it didn't seem like an easy 5.9 to me.

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#48749 - 10/17/09 03:15 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Dana]
Frank Florence Offline
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Registered: 01/05/00
Posts: 528
Loc: moved to Bend
Caver has it right. The parallel, angling cracks in the overhang are the guideposts on the second pitch. The traverse that you take to get to the exit on the overhang has thin feet that, if you make use of, can minimize the pump factor. The position is terrific: airy, thoughtful climbing.

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#48750 - 10/17/09 04:31 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: wombat]
Daniel Offline
veteran

Registered: 05/23/01
Posts: 1515
Originally Posted By: wombat
re: fillipina: i also think the minus is not correct. not that it technically matters for the grade, but the G involves some very pumpy gear placements which makes the whole effort more challenging. you know you are in the right place when you reach the pin that is about 1/3 driven into a crack which would make a great aid piece or foothold but nor sure I would want to fall on it.


Agreed with the beta others have given. I got stuck at the parallel cracks for a while before figuring out to pull the roof to the right. That pin did seem, ah, questionable...

And the route is G with the caveat that the placement that makes it G is strenuous (this seems to me to be frequently the case with Gunks 9s). But once one has the gear, I think the minus is appropriate; in any case, it's certainly not one of the harder 9s.

Agreed with rg: one pitch starting on The Nose (not that I've done it any other way).

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#48759 - 10/17/09 01:48 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Daniel]
RangerRob Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/06/00
Posts: 3764
Loc: Ulster County, NY
So if you do it RG's way and you start on the Nose, do you stay in that right facing open book and go up to the tat anchor to the ;left of the pedestal? That is the only place I can see belaying anywhere in the immediate area.

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#48761 - 10/17/09 02:27 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: RangerRob]
rg@ofmc Online   content
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 12/25/99
Posts: 2468
Loc: Poughkeepsie, NY
Rob, you start in The Nose corner, move right and go up the open book, step left, up to the ceiling, step right and over the ceiling, and up to the anchors above the ceiling, all in one pitch.

A little care with the early pro is needed to prevent rope drag.

Strenuous-to-place pro is one reason why I don't think it is 5.9- to lead (but I'm one of those who think the grade should reflect the leading difficulty, not merely the move difficulty).

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#48772 - 10/18/09 02:42 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: rg@ofmc]
dalguard Offline
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Registered: 03/22/00
Posts: 1515
Loc: CT
At the time, I thought it was one of my best leads. So, it didn't feel 5.9- to me, but maybe it was since I got up it clean. Maybe it's the hardest of the 5.9 minuses. Nice, anyway. I need to get back on it.

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#48776 - 10/18/09 06:14 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: dalguard]
rg@ofmc Online   content
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 12/25/99
Posts: 2468
Loc: Poughkeepsie, NY
The hardest of the 5.9 minuses...that would make it a 5.9-+, as opposed to the easiest of the 5.9 plusses, which would be a 5.9+-.

This makes me think of an extended grading system, the decimal grade followed by another number. In the above cases it would be 5.9[1] and 5.9[2]respectively. In general, the grade 5.X[n] would denote 5.X followed by a sequence of pluses and minuses. These would be determined by expanding [n] in base 2 and replacing the zeros by minuses and the 1's by pluses. So, 5.9[5] would denote 5.9+-+, which would be the hardest of those climbs that are considered to be the easiest 5.9+'s.

Just think of the arguments we could have! The Byzantine wranglings over the number of angels that could dance on the head of a pin pale in comparison.

Okay, back to your regularly scheduled programming.

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#48777 - 10/18/09 11:20 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: rg@ofmc]
AOR Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 08/27/04
Posts: 392
Originally Posted By: rg@ofmc
The hardest of the 5.9 minuses...that would make it a 5.9-+, as opposed to the easiest of the 5.9 plusses, which would be a 5.9+-.

This makes me think of an extended grading system, the decimal grade followed by another number. In the above cases it would be 5.9(1) and 5.9(2) respectively. In general, the grade 5.X[n] would denote 5.X followed by a sequence of plusses and minuses. These would be determined by expanding [n] in base 2 and replacing the zeros by minuses and the 1's by plusses. So, 5.9(5) would denote 5.9+-+, which would be the hardest of those climbs that are considered to be the easiest 5.9+'s.

Just think of the arguments we could have! The Byzantine wranglings over the number of angels that could dance on the head of a pin pale in comparison.

Okay, back to your regularly scheduled programming.


OK...so, if I'm following you right, then:
([{15x^(7/2)y - e^(x)} * 7.6e] + [38/5]e)*e(x^2+[3/2y^3])
equals a protracted and multiple crux? grin

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#48778 - 10/18/09 11:37 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: AOR]
oenophore Online   confused
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/24/01
Posts: 5967
Loc: 212 land
The hardest of the 5.9 minuses...that would make it a 5.9-+, as opposed to the easiest of the 5.9 plusses, which would be a 5.9+-.


Interesting. Since 5.9-+ < 5.9+- we must conclude that the + and - operators do not commute.
In the Extended Grading System, a convention must be used as for computer arithmetic; namely that if a binary number begins with 1, that number is negative, its magnitude that of the digits following the 1. Otherwise there would be no 5.n subgrade and 5.9 = 5.9- = 5.9-- = 5.9--- etc.
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#48779 - 10/18/09 12:30 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: oenophore]
pitfall Offline
old hand

Registered: 11/01/00
Posts: 1165
Loc: Albany
Next thing you're going to want ot do is put silly little letters after the numbers!
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#48780 - 10/18/09 01:27 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: rg@ofmc]
Daniel Offline
veteran

Registered: 05/23/01
Posts: 1515
Originally Posted By: rg@ofmc
The hardest of the 5.9 minuses...that would make it a 5.9-+, as opposed to the easiest of the 5.9 plusses, which would be a 5.9+-.


I read an amusing article on climbing Kilimanjaro where the author wrote that he didn't know if it was "the world's hardest easy mountain or the world's easiest hard mountain."

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#48781 - 10/18/09 01:45 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: pitfall]
oenophore Online   confused
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/24/01
Posts: 5967
Loc: 212 land
Next thing you're going to want ot do is put silly little letters after the numbers!

One space-saving convention is to use hexadecimal grades:

hex.......dec
5.A = 5.10
5.B = 5.11
5.C = 5.12 etc.

Until the 5.16 grade is attained, one character of space can be saved this way.
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#48783 - 10/18/09 07:02 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: rg@ofmc]
Frank Florence Offline
addict

Registered: 01/05/00
Posts: 528
Loc: moved to Bend
RG,

Hasn't a sort of expanded grading already been established in the Gunks? How often have we all seen Modern Times referred to as 5.8+++? So, let's see, that would be 5.8(7) if I'm counting correctly.

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#48793 - 10/19/09 02:45 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Frank Florence]
empicard Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 08/29/01
Posts: 2954
Loc: LI, NY
yea, but oeney, look what happens!

5.10a 5.Aa 5.A
5.10b 5.Ab 5.B
5.10c 5.Ac 5.C



under the last system 5.15d would be 5.X!
then what do we do if the gear sucks?
_________________________
tOOthless

Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana.

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#48795 - 10/19/09 09:45 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: empicard]
oenophore Online   confused
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/24/01
Posts: 5967
Loc: 212 land
under the last system 5.15d would be 5.X!

I don't understand.
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#48797 - 10/19/09 02:14 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: empicard]
chip Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 10/06/01
Posts: 2676
Loc: Sittin' Pretty in Fat City
Originally Posted By: empicard
yea, but oeney, look what happens!

5.10a 5.Aa 5.A
5.10b 5.Ab 5.B
5.10c 5.Ac 5.C



under the last system 5.15d would be 5.X!
then what do we do if the gear sucks.



Sounds like warehouse math to me.


Edited by chip (10/19/09 02:14 PM)

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#48798 - 10/19/09 03:03 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: chip]
empicard Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 08/29/01
Posts: 2954
Loc: LI, NY
the scale doesnt go 5.10, 5.11, 5.12 etc
it goes 5.10a 5.10b 5.10c etc
in your hexidecimal system:
5.10a 5.A
5.10b 5.B
5.10c 5.C
5.10d 5.D
5.11a 5.E
5.11b 5.F
5.11c 5.G
5.11d 5.H

etc etc

5.14d 5.T
5.15a 5.U
5.15b 5.V
5.15c 5.W
5.15d 5.X

get it?
can you tell im bored and out of work and need a job?
someone help me out!
_________________________
tOOthless

Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana.

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#48800 - 10/19/09 03:27 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: empicard]
oenophore Online   confused
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/24/01
Posts: 5967
Loc: 212 land
Originally Posted By: empicard
the scale doesnt go 5.10, 5.11, 5.12 etc
it goes 5.10a 5.10b 5.10c etc
in your hexidecimal system:
5.10a 5.A
5.10b 5.B
5.10c 5.C
5.10d 5.D
5.11a 5.E
5.11b 5.F
5.11c 5.G
5.11d 5.H

etc etc

5.14d 5.T
5.15a 5.U
5.15b 5.V
5.15c 5.W
5.15d 5.X

get it?
can you tell im bored and out of work and need a job?
someone help me out!
Er, no -- it is as I illustrated in a prior post. If fine structure letters (a,b,c,d) are used, they are in addition to the basic grade. Since the hex letters are upper case and the fine-structure letters are lower case, there ought to be no ambiguity.
..............................................................................

For those who find hexadecimal confusing, here's how it goes. If we all had eight fingers on each hand, we'd be using hexadecimal numbers and we wouldn't be using alphabetic letters to represent numerals. At the risk of boring fellow computer geeks, I'll illustrate equivalence:

dec..hex
0 = 0
1 = 1
2 = 2
3 = 3
4 = 4
5 = 5
6 = 6
7 = 7
8 = 8
9 = 9
10 = A
11 = B
12 = C
13 = D
14 = E
15 = F
16 = 10
17 = 11
etc.
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#48801 - 10/19/09 03:30 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: empicard]
quanto_the_mad Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 05/14/02
Posts: 2628
Loc: brooklyn
Hex goes from 0-9, then A,B,C,D,E,F (after which it goes back to 0).

So you're partly right. It would be something like
5.9 = 5.9
5.10a = 5.Aa
5.10b = 5.Ab
5.10c = 5.Ac
5.10d = 5.Ad
5.11a = 5.Ba
5.11b = 5.Bb
...
5.15a = 5.Fa
5.15b = 5.Fb


which Oeno said saves 1 character; you can even get rid of the "5." as well and just go from 0 to Fd and save a total of three characters...
but at that point you might as well use the Aussie system.




Edited by quanto_the_mad (10/19/09 03:32 PM)
Edit Reason: clarity
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#48802 - 10/19/09 03:41 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: oenophore]
quanto_the_mad Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 05/14/02
Posts: 2628
Loc: brooklyn
No, if we had 8 fingers we'd be using an octal system, not hex. 10 fingers = decimal system. Although there were a few societies like the Maya that did use a base 20 system.
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#48803 - 10/19/09 03:47 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: quanto_the_mad]
oenophore Online   confused
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/24/01
Posts: 5967
Loc: 212 land
I agree with Quanto here. The 5. prefix is a matter of tradition; a vestige, as it were, of an old alpine rating system.
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#48819 - 10/19/09 08:40 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: oenophore]
RangerRob Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/06/00
Posts: 3764
Loc: Ulster County, NY
OH MY GOD.....SHUT THE HELL UP!!!!

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#48820 - 10/19/09 08:41 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: RangerRob]
oenophore Online   confused
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/24/01
Posts: 5967
Loc: 212 land
Are you hearing things, Rob?
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#48998 - 10/27/09 03:07 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: oenophore]
SethG Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
Well, I think I can say that Insuhlation is not a great introductory 5.9, since I managed to fracture my ankle falling off of it on Sunday. That puts the wrap on my season! It was a good one despite the injury-- no guts, no glory, right? I'd like to thank David from Maine/Boston and Brock from Brooklyn for retrieving my gear on rappel after they finished Obstacle Delusion and for helping me negotiate the talus back down to the carriage road.

The 9s will still be there next year.
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#49000 - 10/27/09 04:28 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
anthonyb Offline
newbie

Registered: 10/21/08
Posts: 38
Loc: Paris, France
Was that you that took the fall on the second pitch a little after 1pm and got flipped upside down? I wasn't sure whether the climber that fell was on Obstacle Delusion on Insuhlation. The climber I saw fall said something to his belayer about slipping on a wet hold.

Either way, I wish you a speedy recovery and am glad that it wasn't more serious.

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#49002 - 10/27/09 12:00 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: anthonyb]
SethG Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
That was me. It was a scary fall at the crux final roof. I reached up to a small hold-- I could see the jug above, just out of reach, and then the climb was going to be over. But the small hold had seeping water inside and my fingers slipped right out of it. I flipped upside down and had no sensation of hitting anything at all. I couldn't understand why I'd flipped; I didn't think my leg was caught behind the rope. Brock from Brooklyn told me afterward that he saw me flip when my ankle hit the rock. My top piece, a green Alien, held. If it had failed, my head likely would have hit a ledge.

As I replay it in my mind, I keep confronting the thing we all know: that even if everything works perfectly-- the gear is placed liberally & holds, the belay is attentive-- you can still get badly hurt. I'm lucky I wasn't hurt more seriously, and I really can't come up with something I could have done differently, except climb something easier. I wasn't that far out from my gear (maybe 5 feet), and I was looking for a placement right at the crux, but I didn't find one before I fell. Maybe if I hadn't been at my limit I would have found something further to the right or left. I'd like to go back and see.

When I posted about this last night I'd spent the whole day at the hospital, and in my worn-out state I forgot to mention my belayer Nani, to whom I'll also be forever grateful. She kept a cool head throughout, happened to be carrying a compression bandage in her pack(!), and generally babied me all the way back to NYC.

Anthonyb, you saw the fall? Where were you? Were you part of the couple that did Sleepwalk after Nani & I?
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#49003 - 10/27/09 12:20 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
SethG Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
By the way, I'm looking forward to the above post appearing in next year's Accidents in North American Mountaineering, under a heading Fall On Rock: Inadequate Protection, and with an analysis afterward in which the editors gently point out that I should've been climbing something easier and placed more gear.

Think I'll make the book?
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#49005 - 10/27/09 12:40 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
chip Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 10/06/01
Posts: 2676
Loc: Sittin' Pretty in Fat City
I hope you heal quickly, Seth. Yeah, it doesn't take much to get hurt when the whole thing is so fast and powerful. I've never seen an individual accident from the gunks make the accidents book. Instead, the preserve usually submits a summary for the year. Seems like they are robbing you of your 5 minutes of fame!

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#49006 - 10/27/09 01:35 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
Julie Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 01/16/00
Posts: 2090
Loc: SoCal
Seth, I'm so sorry to hear about your accident. Hope the healing is fast & complete!

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#49008 - 10/27/09 02:01 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Julie]
SethG Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
Thank you both.

I don't think the Preserve will know anything about this accident because we didn't contact the rangers. Several people watching me hobble back from the High E trail to the bridge offered to get the rangers with a truck but in my climber's-mentality-macho-stupidity I thought if I can get myself out I shouldn't initiate a rescue. At the time I assumed because I wasn't in excruciating pain it must be just a sprain.
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#49009 - 10/27/09 02:51 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
chip Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 10/06/01
Posts: 2676
Loc: Sittin' Pretty in Fat City
Seth, you did just fine. I agree with the attitude of self-rescue whenever possible. This will give you a chance to really work the hang board and campus station.

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#49013 - 10/27/09 08:25 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: chip]
rg@ofmc Online   content
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 12/25/99
Posts: 2468
Loc: Poughkeepsie, NY
Glad you're ok and congrats on not calling in the cavalry. You can send your own accident report, with as much detail and analysis as you'd like, to the AAC accident reports. Whether they publish it or not or how much editing they may do is, of course, unknowable.

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#49020 - 10/28/09 02:05 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
Frank Florence Offline
addict

Registered: 01/05/00
Posts: 528
Loc: moved to Bend
Seth,

I'm sorry to hear about your accident. Best wishes for a quick and straightforward recovery. This is doubly unfortunate since you're the one who initiated an interesting - and popular - thread: a reasonable request from someone interested in challenging himself. Yup, the 9's will be there next year. And hopefully drier.

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#49021 - 10/28/09 02:20 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
DMD Offline
stranger

Registered: 09/25/05
Posts: 16
Loc: Cold Spring, NY
Seth,

I was half the couple who followed you and your partner up sleep walk..I was on the ground watching you as you climbed up to the roof and fell...you looked totally solid on the last move at the roof, and I said to my partner "oh hes got this" and i could see you were going for your gear to set a piece and then you were gone! a small yelp and then fall/rotating upside down...

I broke my ankle not far from there almost a year ago...i was looking at you a you were being lowered and i could see there was some damage to the ankle...stiff, you were "guarding"...

having been there recently if it had to happen near the end of the season is good...

by this time next year you'll have lead that route 3 times...

best,

donald

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#49023 - 10/28/09 01:42 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: DMD]
quanto_the_mad Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 05/14/02
Posts: 2628
Loc: brooklyn
Wow, sorry to hear, glad it wasn't more serious.

Quote:
...that I should've been climbing something easier and placed more gear.


Maybe you should have kept that C3? smile

Here's to a speedy recovery!
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#49024 - 10/28/09 01:54 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: quanto_the_mad]
SethG Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
It was a .3 C4, Quanto, but I know what you mean. It wasn't an issue of any shortage of gear on my rack-- I have another .3 C4 and did not find a place for it.

I had no idea I had such an audience on this climb! Funny to hear about all the onlookers.

Thank you all for the kind words, it really means something.
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#49036 - 10/28/09 04:40 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
Timbo Online   content
addict

Registered: 12/23/99
Posts: 694
Loc: Delaware
Originally Posted By: SethG
I had no idea I had such an audience on this climb! Funny to hear about all the onlookers.


It's the Gunks. If you're a noob having an epic or climbing anything harder than 5.8, at least 20 people are watching grin

Hope the ankle heals well.

TS


Edited by Timbo (10/28/09 07:09 PM)
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#49040 - 10/28/09 06:05 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
anthonyb Offline
newbie

Registered: 10/21/08
Posts: 38
Loc: Paris, France
Originally Posted By: SethG

Anthonyb, you saw the fall? Where were you? Were you part of the couple that did Sleepwalk after Nani & I?


No, I was just spectating until later that afternoon. I had some friends in from out of town, one of which is into photography. He was taking some pictures of a climber on Ant's Line when we heard you call falling and caught the end of your tumble down the rock. It looked pretty violent, I'm surprised that you were only 5 feet above your last piece. Provides a good reality check for those of us who haven't taken an unexpected trad leader fall.

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#49041 - 10/28/09 06:31 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: anthonyb]
SethG Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
Yeah, the five feet is just an estimate, but it seems about right to me. Nani said she thought I fell 15 feet. 5 feet from gear equals 10 feet of falling plus a small amount of slack, stretch in my double ropes, plus I lifted her off the ledge a foot or two (she was anchored at the end of the short first pitch). Equals 15 feet (or more!) in a hurry. I think I've heard numerous leaders who've taken a fall on gear express it over the few years that I've been climbing: you are surprised at how far you fall-- it doesn't seem intuitively like it will be so far but it makes perfect sense when you add it up.
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#49043 - 10/28/09 11:08 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Timbo]
RangerRob Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/06/00
Posts: 3764
Loc: Ulster County, NY
So are calling this guy a Noob? I thought anyone who used the word Noob was in fact, a Noob themselves.

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#49045 - 10/29/09 01:27 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
dalguard Offline
veteran

Registered: 03/22/00
Posts: 1515
Loc: CT
I think it's pretty easy to tweak/sprain/break an ankle in a fall. Rock shoes are made of sticky rubber and if a toe grazes the rock on your way down it tends to stick, leaving your foot behind and causing flips and other uh-ohs. Doesn't sound like you did anything wrong but doesn't sound like such a horrible result either. People break their ankles slipping on ice in their driveway. My brother factured his tibia playing baseball. We're breakable creatures if we get off the couch (and sometimes even on the couch).

The season was basically over anyway. Don't let this get into your head.

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#49061 - 10/29/09 01:40 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: dalguard]
core Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 06/25/07
Posts: 204
IIRC the green alien is at your feet when you're pulling the roof. Then you have a few thin face holds before you get to the big horn at the ledge. It's very likely that you were more than a body-length over your piece.

I've browsed segments of this thread in the past, and in the back of my mind thought that Insuhlation would be an awful choice for someone breaking into nines (though from the sound of it, you have already done a bunch) because of that section of the route.

Anyway, sorry to hear about the mishap. I hope you feel better soon!

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#49068 - 10/29/09 04:12 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: RangerRob]
Timbo Online   content
addict

Registered: 12/23/99
Posts: 694
Loc: Delaware
Originally Posted By: RangerRob
So are calling this guy a Noob? I thought anyone who used the word Noob was in fact, a Noob themselves.


Rob,

If you're talking to me, absolutely not. He falls into the other category (climbing over 5.8).

I guess that was not as obvious as I thought. Why would I insult someone by calling them a noob in a thread where they described their own accident that clearly did not result from NOOB behavior ?
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#49077 - 10/29/09 11:26 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Timbo]
RangerRob Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/06/00
Posts: 3764
Loc: Ulster County, NY
Just bustin on ya Timbo! Lord knows I've been busted on many times. Relative to RG, we're all Noobs

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#49624 - 11/19/09 04:58 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: RangerRob]
GOclimb Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/26/01
Posts: 2359
Loc: Boston
Seth, sorry to hear about your mishap, and hope you have a full and a speedy recovery!

I'd like to correct a common misconception about the Preserve and ANAM. I once thought, too, that the Preserve only submits a log of accidents at the end of the season to the American Alpine Club. That is not so. It *appears* so, because that's all the AAC ever publishes. But the Preserve actually submits a full report, with a great deal of detail, including a full descriptive writeup, for every single accident... which the AAC, in their infinite wisdom, chooses to ignore every single year. I know. I've spoken to the rangers, and seen the reports.

The ANAM is heavily biased towards what they see as "relevant". At least they include the statistics from the Gunks. If you're in some states (like MA) all accident reports are completely ignored. Even in the statistics. It's shameful, but there you go, they can include or exclude whatever they like.

BTW, I'd never have suggested Insuhlation for a breaking-into-the-grade either. But my issue with it has more to do with the ankle-breaking fall potential at the beginning of the first pitch, which is extremely awkward and unprotectable, especially if you're short.

Cheers,

GO

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#49635 - 11/19/09 11:17 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: GOclimb]
SethG Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
I am sorry to hear that about ANAM. I sent them an accident report about two weeks ago. Guess I won't hold out hope that they'll print it. I'd be interested to see these reports from the Preserve. Are they published anywhere? Should I send a report to the Preserve?
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#49640 - 11/20/09 05:25 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: GOclimb]
MarcC Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 07/10/00
Posts: 3532
Originally Posted By: GOclimb
I'd like to correct a common misconception about the Preserve and ANAM. I once thought, too, that the Preserve only submits a log of accidents at the end of the season to the American Alpine Club.

It's a common misconception because that's exactly what the Preserve did for 20 years throughout the 80's and 90's.
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#49664 - 11/20/09 05:44 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: MarcC]
OldEric Offline
newbie

Registered: 05/20/02
Posts: 48
Originally Posted By: MarcC
Originally Posted By: GOclimb
I'd like to correct a common misconception about the Preserve and ANAM. I once thought, too, that the Preserve only submits a log of accidents at the end of the season to the American Alpine Club.

It's a common misconception because that's exactly what the Preserve did for 20 years throughout the 80's and 90's.

And I'm still not sure what is sent in by the preserve and how much editing/condensing is done on the raw input. I will admit that a lot of Gunks accidents are pretty similar.

In any case I sent Gabe's original rant off to Jed yesterday and got the following response:

Eric,

I would like to respond. If you can help, great. You could post this and say something yourself:

The brief answer is that I get the majority of my Gunks reports from the Preserve Ranger, Hank Alicandri. Occasionally an individual will send me a report.

I post accidents from MA if they are sent to me. I have one source source there - Tom McCrumm.

Web sites contain a lot of irrelevant material.

I would like to think I am not biased after all these years. Certainly the majority of feedback we get at AAC suggests that ANAM is both relevant and particularly unbiased.

Rather than bash ANAM, how about helping out
?

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#49667 - 11/20/09 06:20 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: OldEric]
GOclimb Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/26/01
Posts: 2359
Loc: Boston
1 - I spoke to Hank around 2004. He showed me the forms. On the front of the 8 1/2 x 11 sheets they fill out all the whos whats whens and wherefores. Then, on the back of the 8 1/2 x 11 sheet, they do a detailed write-up of the incident. But if you don't believe me, ask him.

2 - I submitted an accident report from MA around 2003. It was never published, and was not listed in the statistics at the back. I followed up via email, and was told, in no uncertain terms, that some areas just don't make the editorial cut. I mean hey, who can blame them - Quincy Quarries is just not that interesting, don'tcha know?

3 - I got curious, and looked up the statistics. At that time, there were exactly zero accidents, ever, reported in the state of MA. Amazing how safe MA climbers are, huh!? MA is not the only state with such safe climbers. Do the research yourself, and draw your own conclusions.

Quote:
Rather than bash ANAM, how about helping out?


Hmm... I think that's what all the people submitting reports that wind up in the trash bin think they're doing!

GO

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#52239 - 05/25/10 11:43 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: GOclimb]
SethG Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
Looking back over this thread, I see no mention of Pink Laurel. I know Ranger Rob hates the route, but he also hates Arrow so I don't know what to make of his opinion. Pink Laurel would seem to meet the criteria-- pitch one's crux looks hard to me but it's just getting out of the little alcove, with gear right there, and then it's 5.6 the rest of the way, right? And pitch two looks like a couple moves of 5.9 and it's over. Am I wrong?
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#52245 - 05/25/10 01:50 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
Julie Offline
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Registered: 01/16/00
Posts: 2090
Loc: SoCal
I think of Pink Laurel as pretty solidly into 5.9 (and I like it a lot). The crux is pulling out of the alcove, yes, but it's pretty sustained for the next 10-15 feet as well, and you have to hang in there and place the gear (otherwise, splat) which isn't easy.

I just re-re-re-re-broke into 5.9 last weekend (the Spring). hurrah! How is your ankle, Seth?

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#52247 - 05/25/10 02:54 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
MarcC Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 07/10/00
Posts: 3532
Originally Posted By: SethG
Pink Laurel would seem to meet the criteria-- pitch one's crux looks hard to me but it's just getting out of the little alcove, with gear right there, and then it's 5.6 the rest of the way, right? And pitch two looks like a couple moves of 5.9 and it's over. Am I wrong?

Actually those 5.9 looking moves on P2 go at around 5.7.
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#52251 - 05/25/10 03:36 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: MarcC]
SethG Offline
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Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
I really want to try the Spring. Maybe soon. The ankle is not perfect, still a tad stiff sometimes, but pretty good. It doesn't seem to interfere with climbing so that's good! Thanks for asking.

I only recently broke back in to 5.8... but I'm always hungry for more. Maybe I'll do P1 of Classy to P2 of Pink Laurel...
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#52257 - 05/25/10 07:27 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
SethG Offline
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Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
What about Jean? The roof may be hard but is it pretty casual up to the roof? A few weeks a go I saw a party working on it with a nice-looking multi-piece pro setup right at the roof.
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#52259 - 05/25/10 08:49 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
oenophore Online   confused
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What about Jean? The roof may be hard but is it pretty casual up to the roof?

It's a bit thin below the roof, but not nearly 5.9. Yes, the roof itself is well protected and very amenable to one with a decent reach and prehensile fingers.
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#52267 - 05/26/10 01:37 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: oenophore]
SethG Offline
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Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
Doing a search for something else I stumbled on this old thread about route recommendations, which has a lot of discussion about breaking into 5.9.

Many similar points to those made here, made by suspiciously similar people.

There's also an interesting discussion of the merits of breaking into new grades by leading unknown routes vs. practicing routes as a 2d or on toprope as preparation for leading them. I've been thinking about this a fair amount recently. I always like to tackle new routes, and since my partners have had no more experience than me, I've had to work my way up the grades without practicing any of the harder routes as a second. This development has been totally accidental, but I've been happy with it and I've taken a certain amount of satisfaction in knowing I'm doing all the classics on lead, without a preview. But at the same time I'm sure it's holding me back a little bit, and I bet if I'd tried to find someone I could follow up a bunch of 5.10s I might be leading some of them by now.

What do you guys think? Is it better to go boldly out, on your own, or to have a rope gun who'll let you flail away behind him or her on 5.11s to build your climbing chops in a hurry?


Edited by SethG (05/26/10 01:52 PM)
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#52268 - 05/26/10 01:43 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
Aya Offline
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Registered: 11/18/04
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Unknown!!

I feel like I can usually look at most routes and have a pretty darn good idea of what's coming up - and a bit of beta (oh, don't worry, the gear's good or take a silver camalot, you might want it at some point or something like that, nothing too specific but enough to make me feel better) can help ease anxiety - and will give you a waaay better sense of accomplishment. I'd rather lead a totally new to me 5.8 than a 5.10 I've followed a bunch of times.
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#52269 - 05/26/10 01:59 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Aya]
Chas Offline
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Loc: Flagstaff
Didn't see Lisa in the mix (the climb to the right of the Sting) which probably a lot of people will disagree though. Small nuts make it reasonable and safe. Then you can TR the Sting (which I have a REALLY hard time calling 5.11d IMHO since you have a hard move at the start, a bunch of continuous 5.10'sh moves to a hard move at the finish).

I think a bit of both is probably good. Its good to develop a sense of self-relience and problem solving.

Having said that, I truely believe that most climbers are climbing at many grades less then their ability since they haven't "had their eyes opened up" by experiencing climbing at those grades with people who think that its normal.
In my trad climbing career I've had several break throughs, being the 5.9's, the 5.11's, and most recently the 5.12's and .13's and it was because I went out climbing with partners who would think it was totally normal to climb at those grades. When you climb with someone who thinks that climbing 5.(x) is normal you develop that belief yourself, and you end up finding yourself climbing at that (whatever that is) grade.


Edited by Chas (05/26/10 02:12 PM)

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#57408 - 05/11/11 05:21 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Chas]
SethG Offline
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Registered: 12/16/08
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I'm returning to this thread to report, happily, that yesterday I finally broke back into 5.9, more than a year after 5.9 broke into my ankle.

I chose Apoplexy, which I had toproped just once before in the distant past. I remembered nothing of the climbing except that I thought it wasn't too hard on that one occasion lo those three or so years ago.

Yesterday I got the redpoint or "alzheimers onsight" or whatever you want to call it and I felt like a million bucks afterward, it was such a great feeling. I'm so happy to be getting back after it. I hope to climb many more 5.9s, and perhaps beyond, this year. Thanks to those of you who were so supportive on this thread back when I broke my ankle in 2009.

I wouldn't recommend Apoplexy as an introductory 5.9, though, because the most suspect gear (at the infamous flake) comes right before a thin face move that I thought was the crux of the whole route. But maybe I chose a hard way to go? Dick says it is easier to the left but I couldn't find anything easy over there; I went straight up. I also tried to get a tricam into the little pod up and right of the flake, but without success.

A second reason for my hesitancy to recommend Apoplexy to the new 5.9 leader is that while there's good gear for the crux overhang, I found it very strenuous to hang in there and place it.

I guess I'm no longer a new 5.9 leader. Rather, I'm a graduate of the 5.9 school of hard knocks. But I'm going to keep reporting back to this thread about the other 5.9s I try.
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#57417 - 05/12/11 02:05 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
chip Offline
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#57419 - 05/12/11 02:37 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: chip]
Julie Offline
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Registered: 01/16/00
Posts: 2090
Loc: SoCal
Congrats, Seth. That's such a great feeling.

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#57429 - 05/13/11 12:48 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Julie]
SethG Offline
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Registered: 12/16/08
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Loc: NYC
Thanks, guys.
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#57624 - 05/23/11 03:35 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
SethG Offline
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Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
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I led Roseland yesterday and it is a sustained climb with great moves. I ended up taking a hang at the top of the corner before committing to the traverse. Then it went fine. I think the pro is great, so I would recommend Roseland to any leader, new to 5.9 or not. But it isn't an easy 5.9.

I also followed P2 of Grand Central, and my partner's pro looked pretty good through the crux! The traverse was a bit sketchier to me than the crux face, even though the traverse was quite a bit easier than 5.9. The crux itself isn't bad, it's just steep. Good jugs every third hold or so.

P3 of Grand Central is a great 5.9, if it is 5.9. I am 5' 7" and Dick seems to indicate that this means it is 5.9 for me. If this is true then it has a short crux and great gear! If it's 5.8, on the other hand, then it isn't a good introductory 5.9, because it isn't 5.9 at all. Whatever the rating, it is a very exciting 20 feet of climbing. My partner could reach the jug while standing underneath the overhang so it definitely wasn't 5.9 for him. (I hate that guy.)
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#57630 - 05/23/11 04:04 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
The Lisa Offline
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Congrats on getting back in business, Seth. Would it help to be 5'-9" as well as able to lead 5.9? smile
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#57631 - 05/23/11 04:07 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
jakedatc Offline
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hmm i found Roseland to be pretty tough. i suppose it depends what your criteria are for a new leader. it definitely eats pro but i thought the corner was pretty slick feeling and the traverse is definitely balancy and extending the pins is definitely needed to avoid heinous rope drag up the last bit.

i thought Ant's line was a way easier corner .9

i gotta go through more of this thread for more .9's to put on my summer tick list smile

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#57633 - 05/23/11 04:23 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: jakedatc]
SethG Offline
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Registered: 12/16/08
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Loc: NYC
I took a hang on Roseland because I was scared to make the step into the traverse to the pin. I also created tons of drag by placing lots of pro, and was thoroughly worked after leading it. I don't mean to mislead anyone. But it is a really great pitch with great pro, that's all I'm trying to say.

So no short crux. But good gear.

Ants' Line is much easier, I agree!

I thought Roseland really reminded me of the first pitch of Airy Aria, but turned up a few notches: longer, pumpier, more technical. The lower moves around the roof are committing and pumpy, then getting into the traverse is intimidating, and at the end of the traverse it ain't over; a couple more moves up to a good mantle and you're out.

I also didn't think it was too polished/slick, even though the whole cliff seemed covered in slime yesterday. Maybe in July it feels different.
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#57639 - 05/23/11 05:07 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
jakedatc Offline
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i actually did Roseland last november.. it was low 40's and felt polished to me in some spots.. i dunno. i figured it was about as best condition i could hope for and it still didn't feel great.

moving off the jug to the first pin was definitely the mental crux for me.. the actual big move across wasn't that hard for me (.11+ sport climber)

i still need to do airy aria.. i do like corners.

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#57711 - 05/30/11 01:11 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: jakedatc]
SethG Offline
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Did four pitches in the zone between 5.8+ and 5.9- on Saturday.

1. P1 of Cold Turkeys (Dick says 5.8, Swain says 5.9-)

Nice pitch, a one-move wonder. 5.4ish climbing to the top of a pedestal, then the crux move onto the orange face at a shallow left-facing corner. One thin move up and left to the corner and it's 5.6 jugs the rest of the way.

Short crux? Yes.
Good gear? Yes, at your waist, but ankle-tweaker potential on the pedestal.

But probably not a 5.9. I think Dick has it right at 5.8.

2. P2 of Three Doves (Dick says 5.8+, Swain says 5.9-)

Wonderful pitch, as everyone knows. Crux involves thin move up to the pin, then maybe two moves after that up to the roof.

Short crux? I guess. It isn't pumpy, just technical for three or four moves in a row.

Good gear? Great gear at your feet for the first thin move up to the pin. If the pin is good you're set-- I worked a micronut into the shallow flake just below the pin but I'm not sure how great it was. I was glad not to test the pin or the nut.

I think this one does deserve the 5.9-. It is definitely a notch harder than the 5.8+ face climbing on Birdland, which I did last week.

3. Wasp (Used to be rated 5.8; both Dick and Swain say 5.9)

Great pitch! Really fun moves for the first 20 feet, then pleasant cruiser climbing. Liked the 5.5 pitch two also, through the crux roof. After that it was pretty dirty.

Short crux? Actually not that short, several moves in succession-- but they come right at the start, and when you reach the little overhang you can relax.

Good gear? I thought so, I placed a bunch of stuff. I used a couple C3s, bring small pieces. And a #3 Camalot goes in the obvious pod a couple moves up.

4. Casablanca (Dick says 5.9, Swain says 5.8)

Outrageous fun. Great roof problem, just seems to get bigger and bigger as you approach it. Surprising it goes at the grade. Really fun, and I thought the climbing up to the roof was good too. I've seen some comments about loose rock and runouts but that wasn't my experience at all. Some flakes on the way up, one I thought was hollow, but there was gear to either side, no need to test it.

Short crux? Oh yes!

Good gear? Yes, if it holds. Seems like lots of folks have hung on a cam in the big flexy flake. I placed a cam over to the right to try to minimize the flex effect. There's also a pin at the back of the flake but it is really rusty, wouldn't want to test that one.

Edit to add:

The rap tree up and left of the roof on Casablanca is scary scary scary-- one live branch. I wish I'd cut the tat around it. I did half of pitch two and used the tree to the right. We could rap from there with our double ropes; a single won't make it.


Edited by SethG (05/30/11 04:14 PM)
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#57721 - 05/30/11 08:46 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
Daniel Offline
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Registered: 05/23/01
Posts: 1515
Regarding Wasp, I did the p2 Stubai To You variation which has a 5.9 roof. As I recall, it was burly but short, and I think there was decent (though not right-where-you-want-it) gear under the roof...but memory is hazy these days...anyone else been on it more recently?

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#57725 - 05/31/11 02:45 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Daniel]
Bill Offline
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Registered: 06/18/03
Posts: 85
Loc: Mass Land
Hey Seth -- Sounds like a great day! Glad to hear you are fully back at it. Speaking of 9's have you tried Nice 5.9 Climb? I have never before hang-dogged a climb. Did so on this since my partner had just significantly challenged himself on the previous climb and I figured I had to step up. When I first headed up I figured I would quickly dispatch it. The climbing didn't look that hard and the gear appeared to be great. I hang-dogged the hell out of the first crux and never did figure it out. I would have risked a fall with no hesitation at all since the gear is truly bomber. But despite numerous attempts, and a number of "features" above the overhang, I just couldn't unlock the sequence to pull over the overhang and have the pleasure of risking a fall! -- Bill

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#57726 - 05/31/11 03:01 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Bill]
SethG Offline
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Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
We looked at Stubai to You, but we didn't do it. There's an undercling flake I assume you use as you reach over the roof; looks like you could get great gear there-- #1 or #2 Camalot. Don't know what it's like just above the roof.

And Bill, I tried Nice 5.9 Climb on toprope last year and my experience was similar to yours. I couldn't make the step up at the first crux. I think I tried three times before I got it. It's a balance problem. When I finally got my weight over my left foot just so I was able to step up like it was nothing. If I went back now, I might have the same problems all over again.
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#57735 - 06/01/11 03:00 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
artisan Offline
stranger

Registered: 03/22/09
Posts: 23
stubai is really cool. tricky sequence that is counter-intuitive. i seem to remember taking a couple short falls on a purple c3 directly at the roof, backed up by an equally bomber piece not far below that.

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#57736 - 06/01/11 02:44 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
ianmanger Offline
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Registered: 04/25/03
Posts: 319
Really? I thought it totally nailed the definition of one-move wonder. And not even a terrible interesting move at that. Not on my list of do-agains. Odd how that happens.

Did you get back to Insuhlation yet? That keeps me coming back for more.

Originally Posted By: SethG


4. Casablanca (Dick says 5.9, Swain says 5.8)

Outrageous fun. Great roof problem, just seems to get bigger and bigger as you approach it.

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#57737 - 06/01/11 05:36 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: ianmanger]
SethG Offline
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Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
Not sure I'll ever get back on Insuhlation.

Casablanca is a one-move wonder; you just gotta get the jug. but I thought it was pleasant up to the roof and the one move was exciting.
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#57739 - 06/01/11 07:13 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
ianmanger Offline
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Registered: 04/25/03
Posts: 319
cmon , you gotta go kick its ass. Otherwise it wins, dude.

Originally Posted By: SethG
Not sure I'll ever get back on Insuhlation.


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#57742 - 06/02/11 02:37 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
Coppertone Online   content
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Registered: 08/17/00
Posts: 1055
Loc: Newtown, CT
Originally Posted By: SethG
Not sure I'll ever get back on Insuhlation.

Casablanca is a one-move wonder; you just gotta get the jug. but I thought it was pleasant up to the roof and the one move was exciting.


Insulation is one of the best 9's out there and has really good gear if you don't count the easy runout off of the ground.

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#57750 - 06/02/11 02:07 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Coppertone]
SethG Offline
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Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
I'm just going to go out on a limb and disagree about the gear on Insuhlation being great... I have some anecdotal evidence that the pro at the crux is, let's say PG13?

When I'm running out of other 5.9s and feeling super solid I may go back.
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#57755 - 06/02/11 03:53 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
tradjunkie Online   content
enthusiast

Registered: 04/19/04
Posts: 364
I agree with SethG - gear beta for Insuhlation please?

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#57772 - 06/04/11 12:24 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: tradjunkie]
Coppertone Online   content
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Registered: 08/17/00
Posts: 1055
Loc: Newtown, CT
What part? There isn't a ton of gear for the first thirty feet or so unless you have large cams but the start is very easy. I've always found the gear to be good and pg at the very worst. There are days where I have felt really strong and place little gear. Other days where I have felt not so strong I have always found there to be ample gear and always safe. Obviously a bad experience could make one feel differently. I think it is one of the best 9s out there and for some reason almost always open.

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#57785 - 06/05/11 11:47 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Coppertone]
SethG Offline
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Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
The problem is there's no gear right at or just above the final roof. I had good gear which held in the horizontal a few feet below the roof. Blowing it on the thin moves above the roof, I took a swinging fall that busted my ankle-- of course that fall could have worked out fine.

Maybe I'm getting solid enough to try it again..... Did Maria Direct today. Felt good.
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#57786 - 06/06/11 02:16 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
cfrac Offline
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Registered: 04/26/08
Posts: 462
From what I remember there's a #2 camalot horizontal, then the crux steep face moves, then a #1 at the next major break before you do the final roof.

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#57788 - 06/06/11 03:39 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: tradjunkie]
tradjunkie Online   content
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Registered: 04/19/04
Posts: 364
Yes to all of the above.

The crux seems excitingly above gear though a steep/clean fall, and there's that one hold. So the crux was part 1 of my question. Part 2 - SethG's experience indicates my fear of the upper part held true - that #1 camalot crack is kinda far down if something were to go wrong. So basically it sounds like no particular gear beta. Oh well. The crux is heady and the upper part is tetchy, whatcha gonna do.


Edited by tradjunkie (06/06/11 03:41 AM)

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#57807 - 06/07/11 01:34 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: tradjunkie]
Coppertone Online   content
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Registered: 08/17/00
Posts: 1055
Loc: Newtown, CT
In the middle of the overhangs there is a yellow alien sized good placement right near that pocketed hold that you can curl your finger into. I placed it the first time I climbed it and its a good placement. Now I just climb through because the holds are good but the gear is there. There is also a thin vertical seam at the base of the overhangs that takes a small wire, this placement is fair but easy to make. Hope this helps.

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#57812 - 06/07/11 12:17 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Coppertone]
RangerRob Offline
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Registered: 06/06/00
Posts: 3764
Loc: Ulster County, NY
Well if you go by the book Obstacle Delusion is also a 5.9, but man that is defnitely a step above Insuhlation for pump factor. would anyone argue if it was called 5.10?

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#57814 - 06/07/11 02:14 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: RangerRob]
SethG Offline
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Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
I'm going to have to do Alpine Diversions and try to check out these placements on Insuhlation I missed! The day I did Insuhlation I thought about Obstacle Delusion but the line on that one was less clear to me.
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#57815 - 06/07/11 02:29 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
NYZoo Offline
journeyman

Registered: 07/06/08
Posts: 59
Loc: Gunks
I think OD feels like 5.9 unless you go through the double roofs before the 5.9 crux then a move or two of 5.10.. Fun climb...
I've always wanted to try that direct finish...

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#57817 - 06/07/11 03:04 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: RangerRob]
tradjunkie Online   content
enthusiast

Registered: 04/19/04
Posts: 364
OD was 5.10 in the Black Dick, but that way is now the variation. If you go the original way it's maybe soft 10. Definitely pumpier, but not harder climbing.

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#57834 - 06/07/11 11:09 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: tradjunkie]
Mike Rawdon Offline

Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 11/29/99
Posts: 4276
Loc: Poughkeepsie
OD can be easier than Insuhlation, if you do it just right. But miss a hold at (details omitted) and it feels like 10 in a hurry.

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#57873 - 06/08/11 06:38 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Mike Rawdon]
RangerRob Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/06/00
Posts: 3764
Loc: Ulster County, NY
Yeah the moves themselves are not any harder on Obstacle delusion, but there sure are more of them in a row! The direct does look super stellar.

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#57954 - 06/13/11 05:10 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: RangerRob]
GOclimb Offline
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Registered: 03/26/01
Posts: 2359
Loc: Boston
Congrats on getting back to 5.9!

Roseland was my first 5.9 in the Gunks (IIRC - which is always suspect). I did it clean, onsight, which made me very very pleased. But what I remember most about the climb is that by the end of that traverse my forearms were more pumped than they'd ever been in my life. In fact, after I got to the rest, the pump/burn *increased* for roughly 30 seconds before it started to go down.

GO

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#58117 - 06/22/11 12:18 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: RangerRob]
Frank Florence Offline
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Registered: 01/05/00
Posts: 528
Loc: moved to Bend
In reply to Rob,

I led the second pitches of Insuhlation and OD on Sunday. Made for a nice comparison. I agree that they didn't feel like the same grade after doing them, yet the most difficult moves on each are fairly similar. The opening roof on Insuhlation seems properly graded at 9, but I'd say the rest of the climb involved moves that struck me as less difficult. I felt comfortable putting in gear every 10 feet or so and just kept on moving. Maybe that diminished the pump factor.

OD starts off with a roof problem that involved a bit of a reach for me. I didn't figure it out immediately and maybe made myself tired in the process. I found the moves above pretty sustained and then proceeded to make my life more interesting by climbing up, not left, and venturing onto the reddish face where the 10a/b variation goes. I did okay through the bottom half, but then hit a spot requiring a very long reach to a hold I didn't feel confident with. When my partner saw what I was trying, he yelled up and said the normal route (the 9) went to the left. I downclimbed and finished that way. Seemed like there were a few long reaches following that line, too, but at least the holds were very positive.

Conclusion: The crux of OD may be the first roof, but the difficulty is sustained beyond that. Squandering energy as I did certainly made the top 40 feet feel pretty hard, but not as hard as the face, so if that's a 10, then, no, OD isn't one.

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#58124 - 06/22/11 03:17 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Frank Florence]
Coppertone Online   content
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Posts: 1055
Loc: Newtown, CT
Frank I don't think that the the lower roof on Insualation near 5.9, it is probably 5.7. The upper overhang section is the 5.9 crux and is significantly more difficult. I do agree with you though that there is ample gear and you can just safely keep moving along.

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#58125 - 06/22/11 03:27 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Frank Florence]
Coppertone Online   content
old hand

Registered: 08/17/00
Posts: 1055
Loc: Newtown, CT
The orange face that you are describing that is high up on the route that is to the right of OD and the left of Insulation is the 10a variation to Insulation and a great way to top out the route. I does have some long reaches and while the gear is good you could go for a bit of a ride if you come off just before the ledge.

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#58129 - 06/22/11 11:53 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Coppertone]
Frank Florence Offline
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Registered: 01/05/00
Posts: 528
Loc: moved to Bend
Maybe I went at the lower roof on Insuhlation in an awkward way. I find that I can do that. As for the upper part, yes, it's solid climbing, but I guess I just felt pretty good with it. But I also realize that's where Seth fell last year. It's certainly no gimme.

I saw that the Gray Dick listed the orange face as a variation to Insuhlation, but routes are so close in that section that it's possible to continue straight up from OD into it (as I did.) It looks like that's a frequently traveled path.

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#58130 - 06/22/11 01:56 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Frank Florence]
SethG Offline
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Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
I am reading this exchange with interest. Of course, I didn't finish Insuhlation and my views are colored by the fact that I blew it at the upper roof. But I thought the lower, double-tiered overhang at the start of Pitch 2 was a really fun 5.8-ish section. With great pro, BTW.

And Frank, dude, you are my hero. Climbing up into the 5.10 bit, then downclimbing out and finishing on the 5.9? Nice job.
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#58144 - 06/22/11 07:31 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
Frank Florence Offline
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Registered: 01/05/00
Posts: 528
Loc: moved to Bend
Seth,

I've had lots of experience at backing off. grin

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#58148 - 06/22/11 08:48 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Frank Florence]
SethG Offline
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Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
I should post my thoughts about a few more 5.9s:

Maria Direct: pretty easy and the gear is bomber. The move before the gear is the harder of the two crux moves, but it's just off the deck. I THINK the gear for the second crux move would keep you off the ground with an attentive belayer keeping it tight, and with no extension on the pin or your back-up cam.

The Spring P1: one of the easiest 5.9's, short crux with great holds. The pro for the first moves is fiddly but these moves are easier than 5.9. I placed a nut that I thought was good for a downward pull. I figured it might lift out eventually and it did. But I think it served its purpose. There's great gear right at the crux overlap, and then there's great gear right after the couple crux moves are over. I'm pretty sure the gear at the overlap would keep you off the deck if you fell during the couple of crux moves. You might also be able to fiddle in a micronut mid-crux but I didn't bother.

Pink Laurel P1: I followed this but I think what I'm about to say is accurate. Crux is short but unusual, a little harder and polished/greasy. Great gear for the first crux move. Good gear for the next move also, but more strenuous to place.
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#58156 - 06/23/11 01:53 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
RangerRob Offline
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Registered: 06/06/00
Posts: 3764
Loc: Ulster County, NY
Seth you and I should never ever climb together! I found The Spring P1 to be one of the harder ones for me to redpoint. slick, greasy, and thin. That's not to say it isn't good, just hard for me. Same with Pink Laurel. Extremely slick and greasy.

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#58178 - 06/23/11 03:43 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: RangerRob]
GOclimb Offline
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Registered: 03/26/01
Posts: 2359
Loc: Boston
Originally Posted By: RangerRob
Seth you and I should never ever climb together! I found The Spring P1 to be one of the harder ones for me to redpoint. slick, greasy, and thin. That's not to say it isn't good, just hard for me. Same with Pink Laurel. Extremely slick and greasy.


Yeah, I too found The Spring extremely tricky. Not one of the easier 5.9s I've done.

GO

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#58179 - 06/23/11 03:49 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: GOclimb]
ShakesALot Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 04/19/04
Posts: 257
Loc: NJ
Originally Posted By: GOclimb
Originally Posted By: RangerRob
Seth you and I should never ever climb together! I found The Spring P1 to be one of the harder ones for me to redpoint. slick, greasy, and thin. That's not to say it isn't good, just hard for me. Same with Pink Laurel. Extremely slick and greasy.


Yeah, I too found The Spring extremely tricky. Not one of the easier 5.9s I've done.

GO


So along with the Roseland advice perhaps people should take caution when Seth recommends a "Breaking into 5.9" climb?

I'd like to nominate Inshulation as a good one wink

Seth - how many of these climbs have you actually fallen (not taken) on? Is there a chance you're climbing a lot stronger now than when you had your accident?

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#58181 - 06/23/11 04:50 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: ShakesALot]
SethG Offline
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Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
Gosh, maybe I just like corners? I agree that Pink Laurel is greasy, and Roseland too although I still think it is great. I'd say Roseland is harder than PL and PL is harder than the Spring. I had to take on Roseland, but I said I'd recommend it anyway because the gear is good. PL and the Spring both have trickier gear imho.

I didn't get a greasy vibe from the Spring.
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#58184 - 06/23/11 05:15 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
curmudgeon Online   content
addict

Registered: 10/27/10
Posts: 466
Does anyone ever do the second pitch of The Spring?

There was a manky piton in the large roof in the 70's and I wonder if it was ever replaced or whether there are good cam placements?

I seem to remember that it was all over after you pulled the roof.

It was an exciting lead!


Edited by curmudgeon (06/23/11 05:16 PM)

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#58188 - 06/23/11 06:32 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: curmudgeon]
deniso Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 05/19/06
Posts: 217
I assume you mean the pitch directly above P1 of the Winter? Yes, people still do it, and it's still exciting and committing. There is an old pin or two in an alcove below the crux, but they are not what you'd fall onto if you blew the crux. You can get a good cam above that, although the top piece isn't quite high enough to guarantee a safe fall at the crux. I think you'd hit something if you fell onto that cam.

It's unusual in that the hard part isn't pulling the lip, it's getting your hands on the lip in the first place. I think that move is significantly harder than anything on P1 of the Winter.

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#58201 - 06/23/11 08:53 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: deniso]
RangerRob Offline
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Registered: 06/06/00
Posts: 3764
Loc: Ulster County, NY
I pulled halfway into that crux the first time I was trying to find the second pitch of Boldville. It hardly looked 5.6 to me! I backed off and bailed on the mank below the crux with my tail between my legs. Deniso, I had heard the same thing about the gear at the crux. Don't fall because you will hit something.

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#58205 - 06/23/11 09:57 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: RangerRob]
Lucander Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 04/03/09
Posts: 224
Loc: Stone Ridge, NY
I tried p. 2 of Spring 2-3 years ago, reports tell me that my small BD nut is still on the lip. I fell three times on it (increasing in length: 6 feet, 10 feet, and 10+ feet) and never hit anything.

That nut has sentimental value, my wife found it on the Grand Teton. It's probably too mangled to use, but I got a nice 22oz or a 6-pack for anyone who retrieves it. I tried back when I was on the route, but it was welded.

D. Lucander

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#58207 - 06/23/11 10:11 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: RangerRob]
Rickster Online   content
old hand

Registered: 10/16/07
Posts: 845
Loc: Orange Cty, NY
RR, there's a reason why it's called The Spring. In very wet years of the past, water would trickle out about three feet up from the ground. With all this wet weather, I'd not be surprised to see water gushing out at the base of the corner.
An excellent route that is even better after a dry spell.
Here's Ron Sacks contemplating the moves out of the corner.

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#58208 - 06/24/11 01:18 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Rickster]
RangerRob Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/06/00
Posts: 3764
Loc: Ulster County, NY
Rick, it still is a Spring! Things don't change all that much. But then again, they change a lot don't they?

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#58209 - 06/24/11 11:39 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: RangerRob]
Rickster Online   content
old hand

Registered: 10/16/07
Posts: 845
Loc: Orange Cty, NY
Well fashions have certainly changed. I was glad to see lycri pass, but hey painter's and rugbies? They were so cool. LOL

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#58215 - 06/24/11 05:42 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Rickster]
Mike Rawdon Offline

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Registered: 11/29/99
Posts: 4276
Loc: Poughkeepsie
At the risk of bringing this discussion back on topic...

The question of good 5.9's comes up fairly often. I still have a summary of the discussion from 1996 (when I was breaking into 9's). All of the following had their fans:

Ant's Line
Bonnies Roof
Directissima
MF
Apoplexy
Roseland

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#58423 - 07/01/11 12:10 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Mike Rawdon]
SethG Offline
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Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
Mike, those are a list of some of the best 5.9's, but not the best 5.9's for breaking into the grade, right? I'm running out of "easy" ones but I'm still scared to try MF.

A few more:

Higher Stannard: what a great first pitch! The crux comes at you early, with two good moves up the thin face at the thin crack behind the tree. Great pro in the horizontal at the base of the crack, but the crux moves are above this gear. Fairly graded at 5.9 minus, I think. The two overhangs at the top are a bit easier, and really fun. The pitch wanders, but I found it easy to follow the chalk highway. The pro is good throughout. Fairly sustained climbing, with great moves most of which are in the 5.7-5.8 range.

The Nose/Fillipina: another high quality pitch, but not as good as Higher Stannard. The early 5.6 Nose dihedral is fun and I thought a little tough for 5.6! Then moving left from the little tree is not exactly hard but it is awkward, and I seemed to make each move more and more slowly as I got closer to the scary roof. I don't know where Dick gets the "minus" from on this climb, I thought there was nothing minus about it. The final roof problem is super-intimidating, because you can't see where you are going until you commit to move right to a thin horizontal where the feet just drop away. Then the holds are all there but it is a good three or so burly moves up through the roof. I placed two cams while traversing but the crux moves take you up a ways-- a fall from the crux would get you some air time for sure, and the slab below isn't that far away. I think this one is a sandbag, and not an introductory 9.

Friends and Lovers: I followed this for the second time, did it clean, but I still think this is a hard 5.9. Both cruxes are short but tough. I'm scared to lead the second crux even though I've now done it successfully twice. But looking back maybe it isn't any riskier than Fillipina?
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#58842 - 07/17/11 07:25 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
eparker_s Offline
journeyman

Registered: 03/16/11
Posts: 50
Seth,
I told you this the other week, and I'll say it again, you gotta stop looking at the numbers so much! (Williams may be a God but his book ain't the bible!) Eg: The next time I climbed after we did those climbs you just mentioned I sent Wegetables and then decked on WASP. Soooo... it just depends what your strengths are. Its just like comparing F+L to Fillipina. Thin face moves or steep jugs? Sure they are both rated 5.9 but the styles are so different. Thankfully we didn't have to test it out but, I think a fall on F+L would be more serious than on Fillipina, but maybe I didn't realize how close the slab on Fillipina was not being on lead...

Also having climbed together I can definitely say you are climbing stronger than you give yourself credit for. What you want/need are super G rated 8+, 9, 9+ and 10a.

But I haven't climbed long enough to give out too many recommendations, I haven't done MF myself...

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#58856 - 07/18/11 01:24 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: eparker_s]
SethG Offline
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Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
Hey Parker! I'm sure you are right. Nice job on Wegetables. Let's climb again soon.
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#58859 - 07/18/11 03:50 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
Daniel Offline
veteran

Registered: 05/23/01
Posts: 1515
Originally Posted By: SethG
The Nose/Fillipina:...I don't know where Dick gets the "minus" from on this climb, I thought there was nothing minus about it...I think this one is a sandbag, and not an introductory 9.


It's been a while, but I thought it was properly graded, and with pretty good gear. I was stuck for a while at what I think you refer to as the thin traverse right (there were two narrow cracks with two old pins, if I recall correctly, that I would not wanted to fall on). Once I figured out where to go and got to the roof, I got a good cam above but then downclimbed a little and took a hang because, as you wrote, it's hard to tell what's coming. Once that cam was in, I didn't think there would be serious consequences from falling on it (assuming it held). I agree that the moves were a bit burly, but I didn't think they were that bad once you know what's up there. Probably could have gotten it clean, but better safe....

It seems characteristic of many Gunks 9s that the gear can be good but pumpy to place (such as Keep on Struttin', which is one of my favorites though it's definitely not an introductory 9).

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#58871 - 07/18/11 01:17 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Daniel]
eparker_s Offline
journeyman

Registered: 03/16/11
Posts: 50
Yea, soon. Like October. I haven't climbed much lately but if I was, due to the heat I'd be climbing 6s,7s. Kinda spooked after my WASP experience.

You could do Land's End! wink According to Mr. W its only 5.9- G!!! Biggest sandbag my gumbie ars has been on...

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#58873 - 07/18/11 01:39 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: eparker_s]
Chas Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/22/01
Posts: 1754
Loc: Flagstaff
Originally Posted By: eparker_s
Seth,
Eg: The next time I climbed after we did those climbs you just mentioned I sent Wegetables and then decked on WASP. Soooo... it just depends what your strengths are. Its just like comparing F+L to Fillipina. Thin face moves or steep jugs? Sure they are both rated 5.9 but the styles are so different. Thankfully we didn't have to test it out but, I think a fall on F+L would be more serious than on Fillipina, but maybe I didn't realize how close the slab on Fillipina was not being on lead...
...


Please elaborate on what you call decking. If you deck (crater whatever you want to call it) you may want to back off on pushing it, until your experience level catches up with ability. I'm all for pushing ones ability (hell, I'm expecting to get my butt handed to me on a silver platter on a .14 crack next week so badly that it will be hilarious) BUT decking is NOT an option.


Edited by Chas (07/18/11 01:41 PM)

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#58874 - 07/18/11 01:48 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Chas]
SethG Offline
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Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
Parker, I assumed from the way you first wrote about it that the WASP experience wasn't that big a deal. Hope you weren't hurt.
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#58875 - 07/18/11 01:48 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: eparker_s]
Daniel Offline
veteran

Registered: 05/23/01
Posts: 1515
Originally Posted By: eparker_s
You could do Land's End! wink According to Mr. W its only 5.9- G!!! Biggest sandbag my gumbie ars has been on...


Yeah, I found neither the "-" nor the "G" on that one!

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#58913 - 07/18/11 09:54 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Daniel]
eparker_s Offline
journeyman

Registered: 03/16/11
Posts: 50
Yeah, I decked. Luckily it wasn't bad at all. I popped off before I placed any gear, below the flake where I imagine to be the first piece. I was just putzing around down there trying to fiddle in an RP before committing to the first real move that would take me up to that flake. Anyway, I had my right hand on that big crimp and all of a sudden it went POP! and I was off. I landed squarely on both feet on that little ledge, absorbed the impact in my legs and basically bounced/hopped down from there onto the ground, still upright on two feet. My partner caught me and kept me from tumbling backwards... Spooky, but otherwise OK...

I am sure WASP is well within my wheel house but, what did I learn?
1: Don't try face climbs on hot, humid days.
2: I am a ninja/cat.

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#58914 - 07/18/11 10:01 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: eparker_s]
eparker_s Offline
journeyman

Registered: 03/16/11
Posts: 50
Daniel,
Neither did I.

I found myself working into the 5.7 R-ish section with gear I thought was maybe so-so below my feet. Ended up down climbing to put in another, bomber, piece at the top horizontal before committing. I think if one was to fall from that section and a piece blew there, well I doubt it would be pretty.

The other awesome part of that climb was the looks I got when I told people I did the second pitch also...

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#58926 - 07/19/11 12:24 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: eparker_s]
RangerRob Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/06/00
Posts: 3764
Loc: Ulster County, NY
Parker, if #2 is correct, then you are FUGLIEST cat alive. I can't speak to your Ninja skills, however you did manage to sneak right up Insuhlation like a Ninja.

October baby!

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#58941 - 07/19/11 05:07 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: RangerRob]
eparker_s Offline
journeyman

Registered: 03/16/11
Posts: 50
Rob,
You don't believe me ask Mobley!
On Insuhlation I just didn't want to disturb that big ol' snake you were hanging out with...
And we know YOU would FAIL the ninja test...
Rob:"Watch me here dude", "Yip! Yip! Woooah!"
Hilarious!
October indeed...

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#59649 - 08/15/11 11:08 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: eparker_s]
SethG Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
Three Vultures: P1 is a good pitch for the new 5.9 leader. If you can get off the ground to grab the good edge, you've done the hardest move. I'm short and it took me a couple tries, but once I got the edge it was no big deal after that. Two more little thin moves to the pro and the whole pitch is in the bag. P2 (which I followed) is really the money pitch, but it doesn't have any moves as hard as P1. Mentally P2 is harder, though, with an awkward flaring crack and then an intimidating (but easy) traverse.

Keep on Struttin': P2 is not for a new 5.9 leader. Burly pitch with hard moves right off the GT ledge with poor pro; then up above the pro is good when it gets hard but it is a real keep-it-together and hang-in-there situation. I was following this but I thought it was one of the harder 5.9 pitches I've been on in the Gunks. P3 is also rated 5.9 and it's a great introductory 5.9 lead. Good face climbing with great pro, almost all of it 5.7 to 5.8-ish. One interesting but not strenuous move at the very end of the pitch and you're out.

Red Cabbage: Surprisingly fun climb. Good pro, more pumpy than you might think for a couple moves. Then you escape around the corner and it's all easy. A good choice.
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#59652 - 08/16/11 01:21 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
RangerRob Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/06/00
Posts: 3764
Loc: Ulster County, NY
Keep on Struttin' would make an excellent introductory 5.10b. But at 5.9+...no way Jose!

Any 5.9+ in the Gunks or Adirondacks should be given a very healthy respect for it's grade. They are often serious leads, with strenuous positions. let's remember that climbers back in the day were reluctant to call anything harder than 5.9.....so a lot of harder routes were bumped up into the ceiling of 5.9+. There are plenty of 5.10's that I have led that were easier than some 5.9+'s. A short list of fearsome 5.9's in New York...

Keep on Struttin'
Le Teton
Beatle Brow Bulge
Grim Ace face
Bloody Mary (Poke-O)
Phase Three (Poke-O)
The Great Dihedral (Poke-O)

The rating system should go like this...
5.9-
5.9
5.10a
5.10b
5.9+
5.10c
5.10d

approach all 9+'s like that and you won;t have any surprises

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#59657 - 08/16/11 01:26 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: RangerRob]
SethG Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
You know Rob, Dick has Keep on Struttin' as a plain ol' 5.9 in his 2004 book. No plus. I think it deserves a plus if you do it Dick's way off the GT Ledge with the start directly below the roof, and for the move right after the bolt, up to the jugs that are then strenuously followed left.
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#59661 - 08/16/11 05:54 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: SethG]
Julie Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 01/16/00
Posts: 2090
Loc: SoCal
"I've seen 5.11 divided into 11 different grades of increasing difficulty, as follows: 5.11a, 5.10d, 5.11-, 5.11b, 5.11, 5.11c, 5.9 squeeze, 5.11+, 5.10 OW, 5.12a, 5.11d" — Brutus of Wyde.

(RIP, Brutus).

And everyone knows that 5.9+ is harder than 5.11a!

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#59665 - 08/16/11 07:20 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Julie]
RangerRob Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/06/00
Posts: 3764
Loc: Ulster County, NY
oh I forgot Obstacle Delusion. 5.9+ my ass!

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#59670 - 08/16/11 09:43 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: RangerRob]
rg@ofmc Online   content
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 12/25/99
Posts: 2468
Loc: Poughkeepsie, NY
Originally Posted By: RangerRob

Any 5.9+ in the Gunks or Adirondacks should be given a very healthy respect for it's grade. They are often serious leads, with strenuous positions. let's remember that climbers back in the day were reluctant to call anything harder than 5.9.....so a lot of harder routes were bumped up into the ceiling of 5.9+. There are plenty of 5.10's that I have led that were easier than some 5.9+'s. A short list of fearsome 5.9's in New York...

Keep on Struttin'
Le Teton
Beatle Brow Bulge
Grim Ace face
Bloody Mary (Poke-O)
Phase Three (Poke-O)
The Great Dihedral (Poke-O)


You might want to add Psychosis at Poko to that list, another one whose grade is explained by your commentary.

Bloody Mary is an AMAZING bit of climbing for 1959. Turner would have been shod in shoes worse than today's approach shoes and had a few soft-iron blades and maybe a ring angle. (People go up there nowadays with cams--often doubles---up to 2" and maybe a bigger one for the crux layback.)

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#59677 - 08/17/11 08:17 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: rg@ofmc]
RangerRob Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/06/00
Posts: 3764
Loc: Ulster County, NY
I hear ya Rich. Bloody Mary still takes everything I have, with all the modern conveniences. As always, props to the old dudes!

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#59679 - 08/17/11 08:18 PM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: rg@ofmc]
Dana Offline
addict

Registered: 07/13/00
Posts: 619
I once overheard Dave Craft talking about Turner, Craft said something to the effect of "He only carried about four f___in' pitons, and he didn't seem to know how to use them very well."

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#59714 - 08/22/11 05:21 AM Re: Breaking into 5.9-- short cruxes, good gear [Re: Dana]
SethG Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/16/08
Posts: 709
Loc: NYC
Triangle isn't a bad intro 9. I thought it was more fun than expected. Gear is good if you like old pins. One hard move to get the holds above the roof, then a couple steep moves with good holds and yer out.
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