Archive for October, 2012

NC Climbing Trip Part 2: Stone Mountain

Wednesday, October 31st, 2012

If you want to see how the climbing trip started go to: Part 1 Moore’s Wall

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Danger! Danger! 

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Carolina *Climbing* on my Mind…Part 1: Moore’s Wall

Tuesday, October 30th, 2012

NORTH CAROLINA CLIMBING TRIP 2012

Robin and I are back from a week and a half in North Carolina. We spent a weekend at the Outer Banks, enjoying warmth, sunshine, and the ocean before turning westward and tackling a few of the myriad climbing areas the state offers.

I won’t bore you with the details of our first weekend, suffice to say we had a grand time on the Outer Banks. Most of you are interested in technical climbing, and there isn’t one iota of that out there.

For those climbers who plan to visit North Carolina, I will mention one caveat. Outdoor tourism-wise, the state can be divided into two regions: the coast, and the western Mountains. Between them lies a whole lot of driving past swamp, agriculture, and the occasional city. If you surf, it might be OK to combine both venues and deal with the 6 to 8 hours of driving in between. Otherwise, just head west. Asheville or Winston-Salem are good jumping-off points for vertically-minded travelers.

Gimme Moore!

 

Fully caffeinated, we drove from Durham to Moore’s Wall in about 2 hours. The weather was exceptional: cloudless blue sky, comfortably cool, and a scant breeze. Our directions were exemplary; with nary a hitch we wound around the access road, marveling at the view of the cliffs, and arrived at the climber’s parking lot.

 

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Apparently, early to bed is mandatory in North Carolina.

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200 Routes Surpassed

Sunday, October 14th, 2012

Crane Mountain now has over 200 routes gracing its cliffs, 220 in fact, according to my latest count. 2012 was a good year to focus on the benchmark, with an early spring and prolonged dry weather throughout the summer. Autumn hasn’t been quite so good – on the contrary, it has been lousy – but we’ve managed one or two major additions all the same.

Tom and I gravitated toward the high South Corner Cliffs, finally tackling that long project I’ve longed to do. Tom sent the direct line, dubbing it Second Amendment; I circumvented both 5.10b cruxes (!!) to yield a 5.8+ version named Bill of Rights. I highly recommend climbing one or the other, this is another Crane “must-do” and an excellent introduction to this piece of the mountain. Bring plenty of QDs, green and red C3s, a selection of smaller C4s, and maybe the #4 C4 as well (optional at the belay). Two pitches, both of which have 5.8 or 5.10b cruxes (depending on which line you take). The upper 5.10b crux is well-protected, but there is some runout 5.7ish terrain shortly thereafter.

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We also spied, cleaned up, and finally sent another line about 200′ to the right, yesterday. It’s an 85′ 5.10a/b, again with cruxes at the start and finish, called Riprovando. A burly start involving a jughaul to a left-rising crack in a steep wall gives way to elegant friction crossing a face to finish off on delicate and dicey moves to a distant rail near the finish line.

We’ve a few other projects that may be finished before snow and cold put a stop to the madness (yes, Slabmeister being one of them), so I wouldn’t be surprised to see Crane’s sum total reach 225 before the year is out. We are praying for good weather and time to accomplish the feat.