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Ascent Notes for: Bulimia - 5.13a Average Rating = 4.00/5 Average Rating : 4.00/5

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  Difficulty 5.13a
  Safety Rating G
  Rock Quality
  Fun Factor
Red Point Red Point ascent by: jb2100 on 2014-10-19 (View Climbing Log)

4 out of 5 stars Not a 12c


Got on this about a year ago when I was just breaking into the 12c grade. Couldn't do a single one of the crux moves, and due to the location of the crux couldn't even cheat past to the finish. Came back today after having sent nine 5.12c's and feeling like I have a pretty decent grasp on the difficulty of the grade to give this another try. Still couldn't do the last of the crux moves (really big throw to an edge), but was able to do all the rest. This thing could possibly go at HARD 5.12d but more likely at 5.13a. I suspect that the FA was more of a boulderer than a sport climber, hence the intense sandbag. The 3 move crux on this climb is probably around V6 in difficulty, so a strong boulderer would likely not see the entire route as being super hard, but from a sport climber's perspective a crux so hard and so short just doesn't belong in the 5.12 grade, especially when you throw in a hard intro and a hard exit.

For comparison, the most bouldery 12c's I've sent are Grinch and Flinch which are 3 and 4 bolts long respectively. Both climbs have bouldery cruxes at the end with each clocking in at around V4-V5. Looking at Grinch the route breaks down into a 3 bolt 5.11+ intro, to a V5 run to the chains. So far I don't know of anyone calling Grinch soft, just bouldery. When comparing Grinch to Bulimia, Bulimia has an intro of similar difficulty but one REALLY hard move which makes the whole intro harder, Bulimia has a harder crux (as well as less moves in the crux) and is quite a bit longer. Therefore if you take Grinch as the benchmark for near-vertical, bouldery, 12c this climb is clearly a notch or two harder. I'll get a full opinion of the whole thing once I send, but I don't expect it to go down too soon.

*Update* 11/30/13
Got on it again today and was able to figure out the crux beta and actually clip the chains. Still a massive hangdogging effort and no send, but it feels doable now. Two possible beta's, one bear hugs the arete and might be easier (than the alternate V6 beta) for people around 6 feet tall or so, the beta I used is around V6 and goes on the right side of the arete on incredibly tiny crimps and a slopey compression sidepull ending in a deadpoint to a 3 finger pocket. The V6 crux breaks down to 5 moves, and utilizes a pretty crucial kneebar. Still feels at least 13a, harder moves than the crux of SuperCruiser (though as a whole this route is less pumpy) and harder than anything on House of Pain.

*Update* 10/19/14

Finally sent this thing today. I don't think the bear hug beta mentioned previously is possible. I used the V6 (or maybe V7?) beta with the kneebar to send. I climbed this and re-sent Astro Zombie in the same day. If Astro Zombie is 12c this is 13a. If this is 12c Astro Zombie is 12a. After this send I went to Reimers Proper and got on Elephant Man, an established (though very different style) 13a. I didn't send Elephant Man, but I clipped the chains and fell on the last move of the top out, essentially one move away from having sent it, so I think I have a pretty good idea in my head (even just from today) what 12c and 13a feel like and I'm confident in saying that this thing is harder than 12c and for me at least 13a is fair. Hopefully with an upgrade more people will jump on this overlooked but very fun route!

(Also, now that the permas are gone, clipping #3 or #4 if you count the bolt in the lower choss section, has become quite difficult. I typically hang a long draw on it by pulling on the dogbone for #2 and dynamically popping the long draw in. Then on subsequent attempts the long draw can be clipped from the big pinch or even the left hand jug below. Another option is to climb insane tree hugger and traverse over to the anchors on Bulimia, clip them, and place the draws as you lower down. Speaking of which the anchors of Bulima are rusted and very difficult to open, they need to be replaced.)

Added: 2014-10-20

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