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Comments by illusiondweller (151)


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I met up with Tom one morning back then when he was starting his crack circuit and stayed up with him on the first half, starting with; Entrance boulder, 5.10d (seam), Sunny Afternoon Boulder, 5.9 (layback), 5.8 (flake), I Hear My Train a Comin' 5.11c, Black Finger 5.10b, Left Longs Crack 5.10d, Robbins Crack 5.10a, Driving South 5.11c, Monkey Crack 5.10c, California Night 5.11b and Jaws 5.10d where I petered out! I believe Tom eventually finished with The Crucible 5.10c at the summit of Woodson where he puts his leg over his head to get in to the offwidth section way above!

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this route is a 10c/10d!

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Did Mr. Atwell do this pre 90's? You familiar with Dave "Spray" Robinson? He has reputedly ticked this back in the early nineties!

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Note Climbing Magazine contributer/photographer Phil Bard in the background at the '86 Mt. Woodson bouldering contest.

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I can remember, while trying to wire this alone, getting stuck standing atop the ledge/flake, frozen in my shoes, scared shitless, yelling for help hoping someone would come along and throw me a rope or something! I actually backed off it and downclimbed back to a hanging postion from the flake and dropping to the ground. I never prayed so hard! I eventually learned to solo it without cheat stones or using that young birch that grew up next to the stone. Remember that? G. McCay

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Gotta love 'em! Dug up some old albums and found these. I took 5th place in the open division that year winning a set of HB nuts.

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This is not in the American Express Boulder area. I really don't know the name of this boulder with the 5.9 undercling and the 5.10c/d offwidth on it's south face.

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Ron Kauk, having succeeded on all of his problems, walked home with first place and a new rope at this '86 comp, hours before the rest of the experts ever finished their circuit!

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Word has it that R. Piggot was to free solo this route for pictures back in the day but the photographer never showed up. He soloed it anyway, imagine that!

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This photo, by C22, was copied from the photo gallery in order to add it to the proper section only.

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I remember bouldering out the crux start to this one day and found myself commiting to the moves above! Although an easier upper section definitely highball! Not insane, just focused (see photo in Moby Dick section).

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The top left of the photo was touched up poorly with Paint program to repair a flaw in the photo.

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Yes sir, a M-1 Abrahams and it's name stenciled on the 120mm cannon! I asked the guys if they could pose one in front so that we could get these pics!

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Actually, I, HM2 McCay came up with the idea and created this wall. I had Bondo sent to me from stateside. This is a traverse wall so the holds do not go to the top. The feet stay below the red painted line for safety reasons. HM1 took these pictures for me so I could submit them to Rock and Ice magazine. Unfortunately, the turn out for the wall was pretty low but near the end of the deployment it picked up. I hope those after us are maintaining it and having fun. I know I did!

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Well, not quite the Twenty Point Problem! See the barely visible, chalked depression in the upper right corner of the picture? The TPP starts under the start to the ramp (sit start) and aims directly up to the afformentioned hold (utilizing a figure-four or other creativity) then tops out above at 5.11c!

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You sure that's your wife Bob? If I remember correctly, this gal didn't seem to be a very accomplished climber when she stepped on to Lemon Chiffon that day. Isn't your wife hard core, lol (lot's of laughs)?!

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Hmm, I believe Keith Bruckner gave me that information back in the day '81ish. The middle rectangular slot that interrupts the seam, seems to fit the manufacturing claim. Is Mr. Bruckner still alive?

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Haven't seen him since then either.

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Uh, hello? Spectators as in crowds that weren't as prevelant back then, just a few socal hardmen such as M. Paul, et al.

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I gotta get back!

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Beautiful!

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Again, this problem is 5.10c, 5.10d at it's hardest.

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This problem was never 5.11 in my day. 10c or 5.10d at it's hardest.

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The Pump Wall is 5.11 taking the pump in consideration. Especially near the right end. Multiple laps have been done on this. Just doing one is impressive!

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Have you tried the upper finger crack Dan? Aid the bottom then lead the top, classic!

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Nice perspective

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5.10d guys, 5.10d, if you hit all the locks and footholds correctly!

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On an unfortunate note the 3/25 Marines relieved us after our tour to FOB Hit. They lost 48 of their men. God save them.

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Laborrosa, "Shotest" is that something like a "Shat"? Confused.

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I'm embarassed to say that I actually performed a SaveAs on this pic, zoomed in and looked for Potter!

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Damn, does this look like Mission Gorge in San Diego California or what?

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At first glance...I thought this was "The Cave", 5.11b on Mt. Woodson in southern California with the Captains Chair in the upper right hand corner! Very similar setting.

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Steep too! Memories, sigh*

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For I am the Lord thy God! Beautiful!

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Laybacking Jaw's...tsk, tsk! Learning to finger stack off-finger cracks is a crux in itself!

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No, actually, I wasn't on that page at all. Learning the moves, types of jams, technique required for a particular climb may take a bit to learn. Particularly the finger cams/stacks required for Jaws off-finger section. Once you've learned these techniques/moves you then put it all together and give the climb a rating based on it's difficulty. Jaws, I believe is not quite a 5.11 climb based on that. It's always been rated 5.10d since I've been climbing circa '81. Let's keep it that way.

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LOL! R/X without the bolt? That last cam behind the flake will keep you from hitting the ground. Been there, done that without the bolt! That was the scariest part of the climb, committing to the reach to the crack! A cam can be placed once in the crack, circa '81 . LOL, loose some weight lard @rse!

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Wow, that's a tough one. A-16 use to carry it back in the day. I think mine is barely intact somewhere!

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5 out of 5 stars Like the new photo, good job!

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I like the colors...different for Robbins Crack!

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If you want the ultimate in an "airy" arete go over to Tahquitz and try The Edge, 5.11a, a barndoor fest with thirty foot runouts, and a drop off the "Edge" of about thirty feet into the Open Book, omfg! I followed this and was scared out of my gourde just belaying not forgetting to mention the climb itself! Can't imagine what my partner was going through!

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Brings back memories...circa '80's

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The sequence at the right end of this wall is where the Wall gets it's rating. On one visit, late 1980's, I ran into a local cat who knew of those that had done 3+ laps on this! 5.11 is definitely not a sandbag rating for one lap having reached the crux myself then working throught it after stepping off.

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She produced a great shot either way, thanks.

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Kinda looks like the pos I "ass"umed the last time I had to take a dump out in the bush!

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Why no more photo's of climbers on this prob? Nobody interested in this anymore?

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Can't forget that "piece" of carpet to keep the dogs clean. That's all you use to see climbers carrying around! The good ol' days!

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4 out of 5 stars Now THAT'S the Pump Wall! Gorgeous shot!

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3 out of 5 stars Yup, that's Mission Gorge for ya! Must have chalk! There is some friction to be found here but don't rely on it on this metamorphosed volcanic rock.

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Hey guys...The Nutcracker is the righthand of the two cracks, Gallwas is the left.

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Great shot Dana, thanks.

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The Nose's Great Roof on the right, no?

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You sharpened the edges a bit for better focus?

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Mr. Belford, where the heck are you these days?

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A poor scan of an old slide, damn it Jim! I've learned a new technique so, improvements to come...I hope!

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5 out of 5 stars The ground is a good 20+ feet below. Definitely something you don't want to fall from!

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What is the name and where is this problem located?

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Sorry, I had to chuckle at your comment Curt (those damn youngsters, what do they know)!

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5 out of 5 stars Very nice shot...I had heard of rumors that Rick had done this back then and seeing this just substantiates the claim!

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Your memory serves you correct yanqui!

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I remember committing to this and thinking, "Now look at what you got yourself into stupid ass!"

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5 out of 5 stars Bob, your balls are bigger than mine!

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Do some gardening Dan! Clean the place up!

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3 out of 5 stars The crack is offset.

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It was 1615, 15 min's remaining at the '86 GWBC...

"Hey Greg (Epperson, standing with camera in hand), help me out, I need one more problem before time runs out, what do you suggest?"

"I saw you do 5.10a on the Outside the other day. It gave the experts a run for their money!" he replied.

So, I grabbed a judge/belayer and ticked this thing to complete my scorecard taking 5th place in the open division winning a set of HB nuts, wohoooo!

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4 out of 5 stars That move right there with the left toe was weather dependent! I'd get it about 50% of the time to that sharp left pinch on that black plate above, ouch! A bomber edge for your right hand set you up for the delicate top out...phew!

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You guys sound like kids arguing over who's toy it is.

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5 out of 5 stars 1975. We're hanging out down at the Ski Mart on Garnet Ave, where Largo works. There was a primitive bouldering wall carved into the brick wall upstairs. so we're hanging out there one night and JL is holding court. Me and my buddy Doug are talking to him about climbing and new routes and the life well-lived, and at one point -- I swear to God I'm not making this up -- he gets quiet, gazes off into space for a few moments, then murmurs as if to himself, "You gotta have vision, man. you gotta have vision." Me and my buddy were so starstruck we used that quote as the frontispiece to this horrific little supplement to the M Mission Gorge guide that we hacked together a few months later, the immortal Scumbag Digest: Story by: BVB

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Great to see some new posts at Santee...keep 'em coming!

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5 out of 5 stars Ken! Dude, that's you in that gorgeous pic! G. McCay here! I just popped your name into Google and viola! I'm in New Jersey with the new family after returning from Iraq March '05. Struggling to stay in climbing shape in these parts. Talk to you soon!

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No, no, I see the smoke, look again! See it, ya see it? It's right there...yeah, right there! See it?! The reefer always created great discussions, lol!

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Go to: illusiondweller.blogspot.com for a copy of K. Brueckners guide

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cool picture, keep 'em coming!

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nice how the climber and even the rope warms against the darker backdrop!

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Hey guys, I see an opportunity to teach and I'm all over it...I had Black Diamond's spec's on creating tubular webbing runners way back but don't know what I did with them so I found these on REI's website:

"To make the three sizes of tied runners, cut the following lengths of webbing:
Single runner: 5.5 feet


Double runner: 9.5 feet


Triple runner: 14 feet
Sewn runners are stronger than tied runners because tying knots in webbing reduces its overall strength. Sewn runners are less bulky than tied runners, but they are more expensive. Your budget, climbing style and end use will determine which you select."

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Tsk, tsk, tsk...trad guys, trad...lol, rule number one, keep your rope in a direct line by the use of slings/runners when ever possible. Carry single and double length runners over your shoulder on trad climbs not only for this purpose but also for creating equalized anchors and various other uses (prusik knots, a hasty gear sling and retreats to name a few). Zig-zagging creates, as you found out, friction, hence horrible rope drag. Rope drag will literally stop you on a route and you'll find yourself belaying the next guy up while hanging off of a single bolt/piece and then one of you will have to resume the belay off of that single bolt/piece too! No style points for that, lol! Be careful out there guys. Peace.

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An excerpt from a recent email I received..."The original name of that climb was "Worsman's Roof". Ed Worsman was the first to toprope the moves between the two of us. At that time, there was still the stump of a tree sticking out of the upper crack (I had cut the tree off and left the stump as a part of the climb). Eventually the stump rotted out and left that just less than perfect sized crack. I got the first free lead and actually used the stump as protection by slinging it. I doubt it would have held even a small fall! Fun times, those were." Andy

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Classic photo Andy...put's a smile on my face.

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Nice Easter picture. Thanks.

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5 out of 5 stars Still 5.10d by utilizing the far right traverse into The Ramp.

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Scott, call me...609 385 6309

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Now u know why Im still involved in climbing after 27 years! Very humbling.

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As a visitor from Japan to SoCal once said, "Must climb crack, must climb crack!" Heel hooking not allowed, lol!

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Pleasant picture. The 5.6 downclimb is actually on the west side of the boulder.

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The Cave

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The area is unsafe as stated above with tattered ropes still in situ as seen in the photo. Boxes containing rusted cans of Bondo, holds and misc gear still remain from a bygone era.

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5 out of 5 stars That's a beautiful picture!

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5 out of 5 stars Thx lightrack. Help me out, what is his real name?

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5 out of 5 stars Hey guys...easy, I think I used the wrong adjective, "solo". I changed it to high ball. I hope that tones things down a bit.

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5 out of 5 stars Uh, it was submitted by me but not taken by me, George.

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5 out of 5 stars Let's get this on the front page...what do u think?!

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5 out of 5 stars No mohawk, that's his trademark bandana!

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Actually, laybacking a crack doesn't surprise me these days. As far as it being harder to layback is moot IMHO. The width of this is obviously OW (that's Off Width for the gym climbers). Cracks are a totally different animal to master...and then there's OW!

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Now you tell me that the "dark spot" is the finish hold pn this one! I've only finished this problem maybe counting pn one hand after many more frustrating attempts! I, through self preservation, reach for the top of the dog ear, the bottom of it visible above your right hand. I just repeated it last month and again whined and whimpered through the crux waiting for my feet to explode out from underneath me and sending me flying helplessly, upside down, onto my back to the wonderful landing below! This one spooks me every time!

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Dan, Dan, Dan...shame on you! Laybacking cracks will teach you nothing about crack technique. Come on, put your pride in your back pocket and take the time required to learn this unique art and you too can claim a true ascent of this OW. Cheers!

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Now the big question...did he finish it?

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4 out of 5 stars Check out the other photo of her in Wiedenman's Gallery!

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Is it John Lennon at the east end of the Amphitheater?

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Got ta throw in one more...check out Montezuma's Revenge on the Godzilla face!

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I backed off this ropeless attempt back in the day.

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Welcome to the club!

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Keep 'em coming guys!

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4 out of 5 stars Check out the placements...live and learn "new schoolers"!

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Kenny!

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4 out of 5 stars Almost looks like a mirror image!

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Tank top tan, no bra strap lines, V-cut torso, blue shorts, multi-month road trips...come on now! Looks/sounds like Greg Epperson's itinerary if you ask me!

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Hey Mike...it looks like you're finger-stacking above the hand jam pocket just below. Please don't tell me you did that just to make it a "bit" harder! Then again, it wouldn't surprise me... kids!

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"Must be 5.12 if on a route" Hidetaka Suzuki said quietly in his strong accented english after succeeding on his first attempt back in the mid nineties. "I hardly ever hear Hidetaka breath hard on a problem. You could hear him on this one!" said a friend commenting after his success.

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Another Woodson 5.11c...ugh!

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4 out of 5 stars cool picture...looks like an early morning or an overcast day on a gray granite canvas!

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Adam, typo on #4? 5.8 on that overhanging face? Ugh! Feels more like 5.10+/5.11 to me! If you incorporate the jugs below #5 it may be 5.8 but following the line #4 depicts here is much harder. I was orignally shown this line since 1981 so I'll stick with that.

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Land of the Lost?

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4 out of 5 stars Have to give this one a serious go!

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Snow every year!

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4 out of 5 stars Why is it in this day of "pad people" (gosh, I love when J. Vawter said that!) is a Woodson 11c thought to be a sandbag? Compare it to Driving South, 11d or Starving in Stereo at 12a it's 11c!

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Hillbillies climb?

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Dan, humility is good, lol! Twenty two years is a lot time for "s--- ... (lichen, flakes, etc." to grow/change.

V11 = (14a - 14d)
V8 = 13b

(per http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grade_(climbing)

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Could be...was he at the '07 Shindig up on Woodson? If he was, then it probably is.

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Persistence pays off!

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"Uh, guys, could you please help me? You won't believe what I've got stuck in this rock!"

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5 out of 5 stars What a beautiful line!
Always intimidated me...sigh*

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Is that a belly "blob" I see peaking out from under that shirt?

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Well, considering this photo was taken in the 70's it was standard to put a rope on anything that would bust your ankles for there were no "pad people" back then.

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5 out of 5 stars Nice!

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Looks can be deceiving...and it is in this case. This is The Ramp, 5.7 on the Main Wall above Lunch Rock. If you rotate the angle 90 deg. counter-clockwise you have, approx., the correct orientation (landscape vs. portrait, note the nut tool leash/carabiner angle on his left hip).

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If you rotate the photo 90 deg counter-clockwise you'll have the correct orientation (landscape vs. portrait).

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4 out of 5 stars Yes, a 5.11a boulder problem. I'm assuming you are referring to the "V" rating system? Santee Boulders was climbed over 20 years before John Sherman developed the system exclusively for Waco Tanks in Texas. If you applied the "V" system to Santee Boulders most everything would be V0 - V3 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grade_(climbing). Some are already applying the "V" system and ratings of V5 are being applied to climbs < 5.12. You be the judge!

Although, the "V" system took off and it is the more widely used bouldering rating system today. I, myself (old school), still don't use it today.

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5 out of 5 stars Actually, Fires came to the U.S. In 1983. Amazing shot Rick! That probably hasn't seen another ascent since then!

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Two weeks ago I lowered down to see for myself this "ledge" and discovered that its a far cry from a ledge! It turns out to be two small, horizontal edges situated in a steep depression that are difficult to gain purchase on! Eppi appears to be using the outside of his left hand in this marginal mess! I can't say I'm worthy...yet!

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I've looked at this prob for years and haven't done it, one, because I couldn't figure out how to access the "ledge" above to even try the mantle! Recently, nearly thirty years later, I was with a younger climber who said he's touched the hold above by dynoing to it but that the hold is slopey and not positive...

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To answer your question rockspydermonkey162, no, crash pads/mattress' were unheard of b.i.t.d. when Woodson was established. The TR anchors were placed pre-pad days and are the standard for Mt. Woodson due to the size of the boulders and bad landings. For instance, many of Woodson's problems are leadable.

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I've braved this unroped a few times and have even bailed from it near the top once...and that was pre-pad days. It definitely requires focus.

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Oh, one more observation...Scotty is near 6' tall. I can guess-timate around three body lengths which equals 18' and he's still not topped out.

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This photo does no justice in showing the overhanging nature of this climb (prob close to 115 - 120 deg) not to mention the poor landing (no pads if you note). Having been a Paramedic for over 14 years let me let u in on a bit of my job : Adult Trauma Center Criteria - falls > 15' (one of many criteria). This means that the patient goes directly past go and to the nearest major trauma center for evaluation no matter how well he/she is/thinks they are doing. Organs start to tear/seperate from their attachments at this height and above. You might consider this the next time you "third class" your next 15' high ball!

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William Shockley - "He became an accomplished rock climber, going often to the Shawangunks in the Hudson River Valley, where he pioneered a route across an overhang, known to this day as "Shockley's Ceiling." He was an atheist" (Crystal Fire pgs. 132-133).

"Shockley co-invented the transistor, for which all three were awarded the 1956 Nobel Prize in Physics."

"Late in his life, Shockley became intensely interested in questions of race, intelligence, and eugenics" (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eugenics).

"He donated sperm to the Repository for Germinal Choice, a sperm bank founded by Robert Klark Graham in hopes of spreading humanity's best genes...However, Shockley's views about the genetic superiority of whites over blacks brought the Repository for Germinal Choice notable negative publicity and discouraged other Nobel Prize winners from donating sperm." - Wikipedia.

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Which route is that Adam?

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Although a cool photo, your description confuses me...you used the "lieback route, without actually liebacking it (not sure how you did that) then dyno'ed to the ledge" that you are hanging from? So, you climbed the the 10a Dyno to the left of the layback?

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Justin Kerr aka thinman

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I didn't take the picture. Here is the original description: "This picture is an experiment with contrast/colour tones. It was taken around 7:30 in the morning so the shadows were pretty horizontal which added to the effect that I manipulated. For the climb I used the lieback route, without actually liebacking it, then dyno'ed to the ledge that I am hanging from." Photo taken by Justin Kerr

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Adam, the rating on the left arching crack on Bullet Hole should read at least 5.10a

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Heel hooking just won't allow you to turn the top. Not saying it's not possible just seen too many people spit off that thing with a heel. Try using your toe-in on top of that hold! Sheesh, you're melon okay?

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"Undercling" as in under a flake or a layback?

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"Ma" LAYBACKING a classic Woodson finger crack (had to give him a hard time).

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"And technical jams can save you from strenuously laybacking or tenuously face climbing around awkward crack sections almost anywhere." http://www.lackhead.org/jamming/


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Just FYI, Baby Robbins is a GREAT problem to practice ring locks/ finger stacks that are necessary to unlock the crux section on this finger crack. You're not the first to layback this, but it's usually a sign of unfamiliarity with technique. We've all been there. It's a classic, that's for sure!

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Actually, that photo depicts the "pucker factor" pretty well!

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Hey Adam, b.I t.d. we worked a "low" traverse starting far right, dropping down low to the start of the lieback problem, then foot traversing the bottom over to the sick hand traverse along the flakes to the lieback crack. This would definitely be in the 11d range, and right up your alley!

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"Me?" Who's me? And what is this problem? Does it have a rating?

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The "hand crack" is above the climber or is he about to top out the problem?

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Not to mention he's in his fifties in that picture!

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The video before this still was taken can be found here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uHbMn5q4frg