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Devils Lake intro to leading :)
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corpse


Sep 25, 2003, 7:15 AM
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Devils Lake intro to leading :)
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I just got back last night from a great 3 day trip to Devils Lake in WI - where I hopped on the sharp end and led 3 fun routes.

I led Queens Throne, B-Minor (LOTS of wasps on that route), and Sunken Pillar. B-Minor was even my first multi-pitch (technically not that high, but a little too high for single pitch).

Many proud moments. All of my placements were very solid (many thanks to the fine crack support system on the climbs I picked out), I would have felt comfortable, yet nervous falling on the smaller wedges. At least I think so, cuz one route it took my second nearly as long to clean as I took to place it all - he almost bailed on 2 pieces (a small wedge, and huge hex - I forgot what sizes - but all taking awhile to remove, including almost destroying his nut tool). All of my tri-cam placements were awesome and bomber - great feeling. I even got to try out a cam or 2, but the cracks there aren't as cam friendly (well, at least THOSE climbs I did). Although nervous and taking way too long (as far as I'm concerned), after I led sunken pillar and b-minor I had to setup the anchors. Always second guessing my work as I was going along, but when the anchor was done it was always just right (although those fig-8's on a bite were a little sloppy). My second (30 yrs of trad'in) said he would have felt comfortable falling on any of the pro I placed - although just not hard falls on the smaller stuff :) My only real boo-boo's were placing a few biners with gate toward the rock - but that was during a couple sections I was a little sketched on one route, and just wanted to get past it.. I figure, better a little sloppy then to run it out, like I was SOO tempted too - plus, I needed the practice of placing pieces. I was particulary proud of climbing b-minor because of the all wasps flying around - 10-20 at any given time, buzzing by my ears, landing on my shirt. They were actually pretty friendly, I even found myself just watching them, in the middle of my own move, wondering "what ARE they doing on this rock, trying to pollinate the lichen?" But they kept landing on me, like they were giving me morale support :-)

The hardest stuff I climbed..
I cleaned on Dippy Diagonal (an slightly overhanging 5.7)..
I even got a 5.9+ called AAHRG - twas hard but I got from bottom to top on the 3rd try.

One of the funnest part - after I cleaned one route (I think Red Pulpit), I got to the top and was going to just get lowered - but instead I thought it would make for some fun down climbing practice - so I down climbed the whole thing :-D

I'll leave out all the non-climbing stuff, nothing exciting and I'm not a novel writer.


redpoint73


Sep 25, 2003, 7:33 AM
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Re: Devils Lake intro to leading :) [In reply to]
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Cool. Go try the Lost Face. An excellent 5.7 lead. Probably one of the best at its level at the Lake. The Bone, Brinton's Crack, and a couple routes at the Railroad Amphitheater are very enjoyable moderates as well.

I never climbed B-Minor during my Devil's Lake days. Is B-minor REALLY a 2-pitch climb? I mean, it has to be more than 150 feet and I don't think anything at the lake is more than 70 feet. Maybe its doen in 2 pitches because of rope drag.


brianthew


Sep 25, 2003, 8:08 AM
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Re: Devils Lake intro to leading :) [In reply to]
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Also, Congratualtions is a fun lead, I thought. If you're up to leading something a bit harder go for Upper Diagonal (5.9) (I suggest placing gear on toprope first, just to make sure).


under_score


Sep 25, 2003, 8:32 AM
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Re: Devils Lake intro to leading :) [In reply to]
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Wow, sounds like you had fun. Back before i climbed, when I lived in WI, i went to Devil's Lake as a Boy Scout. I remember seeing two climbers, and it looked like soo much fun. I was like 11 at the time. We hiked around the entire lake, but all i wanted to do was climb. i had forgotten all about it until i saw the subject....anyways, good climb!


ramylson


Sep 25, 2003, 8:36 AM
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Re: Devils Lake intro to leading :) [In reply to]
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First.. Congradulations on the day.

As far as additional routes, I suggest working up the grades versus just jumping on a variety of routes. It'll help you understand the climbing at the Lake, as well as improving your placements. Definitely check out Lost Face, not only for it's exposure, but it's also one of the longest faces/cracks at the Lake. There's a 5.7, and two 5.8 there that are really enjoyable. Although, I wouldn't suggest the eights until a later date when you're more confident on lead. Here are some other routes that are worth checking out as you improve..

Push Me, Pull You (5.6), Double Overhang (5.4), False Alarm Jam (5.6), Berkeley (5.6), Peter's Project (5.7), Full Stop, AKA Twin Pines (5.6), Cleo's Needle (5.6 dihedral on the south side), Brinton's Crack (5.6), Coatimundi Crack (5.6)..


corpse


Sep 25, 2003, 9:35 AM
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Thanks for the tips..

I did get on lost face, I followd on that one - another great climb.

My full tick list: (btw - how do I update my routes in my profile??)
Day 1
Queens Throne (Led)
Queens Face (TR)
Lost Face (2nd)

Day 2
B-Minor (Led) - this was a 2 pitch because of a traverse and ledge - it went up, then you'd traverse around a bend a little - so yeah, too much rope drag. This is and queens throne were awesome for n00b leads!
Dippy Diaganol (2nd)

Day 3
Sunken Pillar (led)
Red Ppupit (2nd)
AAHRG (tr'ed)

Next spring I look forward to checking out other areas.


Cleo's Needle looked great, I can't wait to try that some day.


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