South Face Beta. : LUSENET : Mountaineering : One Thread


I've got some questions on the South Face of Washingtons Column. If anyone has done it recently or ever any beta would be greatly appriciated. If anyone has a better topo than the one on the FISH site send it my way! I'm interested in the condition of the belay bolts and protection bolts. Also I what pitches do I have to free climb? I would like to aid everything that I can. Any tricks for the route would great...I'm mostly interested in pitches #2, #4, #5, #7, #9, and #11. I'm kinda worried about pitch five since it's supposed to be the is it? Also if youre on the short side will if be hard to do pitch 4? Can you hook between bolts if you have to? Also if rapping the route difficult? Rap anchors in good shape? I guess I asked way too many questions...oh well I've never done a wall and when I do I want things to go smoothly.

Thanks in advance for any info!

Climb smart.

-- Brian (, July 25, 1999


Bolts should be in good shape, a few years ago Kevin Thaw replaced many bolts, he was trying to free the route. You should pick up the yosemite big wall guide. It has good topos. You should be thinking about free climbing as much as you can, otherwise you will take forever to get up the thing. From what I remember from being there a few years ago you have to free 1 and 3, and at least 1 and a half pitches higher. The free climbing is not harder than 5.9. If you can free the 10a or 10b (i can't remember) variation on pitch 2 things will go much faster to dinner ledge. Pitch 5 is fun, pretty A2 crack and pendulum. The second MUST know how to clean pendulums. With the Kor roof (pitch 4) cleaning is again the tougher job. I led the Kor roof and found it a bit reachy (I'm 5'8"). Make sure that you can do the overhanging face on the boulder next to the Leconte Memorial (down on the valley floor) it is great practice. There is also an overhanging crack on the same boulder. Bring a cheater stick, it can help you with reachy moves and if fixed gear is missing. Rapping is relative straightforward but the lower section has two traverses. Other good practice routes are Rixon's Pinnacle do at least the first 2 pitches. Other parties will be a problem; start on a week day if possible. Don't bring to much stuff, low angle slabs at the top will punish you during hauling. Good first day is to get to dinner ledge and fix pitches 4 and 5 . From the top of five it is 160 feet to dinner ledge. Do NOT haul pitch four. Next day jug to high point and haul pig off dinner ledge. shoot for top. If it is late bivy at top, do not attempt descent in dark first time. Uncomfortable bivy possibilities exist in the upper pitches.

-- Dan Schmidt (, August 04, 1999.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ