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Member Since: Dec 12, 2006
Last Visit: 4 hours ago
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Point Rank: # 580
Total Points: 1,073
Last Year: 42
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Areas = 15
Routes = 10
Photos = 5
Page Improvements = 3
Comments = 1



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Contributions


All 508 | Routes 42 | Areas 9 | Photos 86 | Page Improvements | Comments 88 | Posts 101 | Stars 122 | Ratings 60
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Contributed Comments

 

Location: WA : Central-East Cascades, Wena... : Colchuck Balanced Rock : The Tempest (5.12+)
By: blakeherrington When: Oct 26, 2014

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Comments: FFA/Route History

First no-falls/hangs lead of the crux pitch (clipping pre-placed protection) - Tom Ramier 8/30/09

First redpoint of the crux pitch (and no-falls team ascent of the route) - Ben Gilkison+Andrew Philbin 8/14/10


The date of FFA depends on how one defines a free lead of a traditional climb, and if that means carrying and placing protection as you climb.


Location: WA : Central-West Cascades & Sea... : Skykomish Valley : Index : Lookout Point Area : ... : A Hatch (5.12)
By: blakeherrington When: Oct 22, 2014

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Comments: Thanks, Jon! I would be happy to do the bolt move if you need someone. Obviously .11+ and .12- aren't too far apart so I could see it going either way, but it seems easier than any other index 5.12 I have been on.

We lowered over and previewed that steep face left of the topout. Pretty rock and good position but I am not sure there is a route up it.


Location: WA : Northwest Region : North Cascades : Washington Pass : Liberty Bell : Freedom Rider (5.10d R)
By: blakeherrington When: Oct 16, 2014

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Comments: The supertopo suggestion that this route takes 150% as much time as Liberty Crack is pretty arbitrary (only based on the author's single experience?) and assumes a team fast at aid climbing and slow at free climbing. My experience and that of several others I have asked is all roughly the inverse of this suggested relative timeframe. I suspect that for most climbing teams these days, the single bit of .10+ wouldn't be as taxing as having multiple aid pitches. One can join into Lib Crack after 3... more >>


Location: WA : Central-West Cascades & Sea... : Skykomish Valley : Index : Lookout Point Area : ... : A Hatch (5.12)
By: blakeherrington When: Oct 4, 2014

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Comments: Nice job and thanks for cleaning this really memorable pitch. I am not sure if anyone else had sent this yet ( hard to believe I was the first) but I'd say .11+ rather than .12-, though if you are quite short, the feet you get will be much worse through the crux.

Both my partner and I found the second bolt seemed too high and a bit too right. It doesn't protect the .11 mantle just off the ground and it is 12" from an obvious yellow alien finger crack. If moved a few feet down and a bit left, th... more >>


Location: WA : Central-West Cascades & Sea... : Skykomish Valley : Index : Lookout Point Area : ... : Solitude (5.11c/d)
By: blakeherrington When: Sep 29, 2014

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Comments: Thanks for all the hard work scrubbing these pitches, they were fun! The topo and rack both seem a bit off. On P3, where two spots of .11c are marked. I'd call the second spot easily 2 or 3 letter grades harder than the first. The crux is a short boulder problem in the middle of a short pitch, but it felt maybe V4-V5, and for a rack, I'd say leave all the stoppers behind (3 sets suggested?) and bring a double set of cams from blue alien to red alien, with singles of .75-#3 or #4 (th... more >>


Location: WA : Northwest Region : North Cascades : Washington Pass : m&m wall : The Tiger (5.12-)
By: blakeherrington When: Sep 24, 2014

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Comments: Great description Travis!

A few clarifications that might help:

The fixed wires on P9 should be considered booty - they were used as rappel directionals but aren't needed if you simply skip the belay atop P9 when rapping, and go from 10 to 8. This is also better because the Tiger Flake pitch overhangs, so you have to kick out a bit if stopping at #9.

The double-ring bolt anchor up and right from the anchor above the anchor on P8 was placed on rappel by a party several years ago. It doe... more >>


Location: WA : Central-West Cascades & Sea... : Skykomish Valley : Index : Middle Town Walls : ... : Cry Baby (5.11)
By: blakeherrington When: Sep 15, 2014

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Comments: The anchors on this route were chopped summer '14.

You've got to continue up the bolted arete above (5.12) or lower off a single bolt from the ledge where this route had ended.


Location: WA : Central-West Cascades & Sea... : Skykomish Valley : Index : Middle Town Walls : ... : Black Cat Bone (5.11c)
By: blakeherrington When: Sep 15, 2014

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Comments: Would anyone be opposed to the first bolt also getting chopped? It's 8" from the finger crack as well. I don't know why it also wasn't removed.


Location: WA : Central-East Cascades, Wena... : Icicle Creek : Prusik Peak : Der Sportsman (5.11+)
By: blakeherrington When: Sep 11, 2014

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Comments: The two bolts (and 2 pins) on P2 have been there for years.

P2 isn't an "R" pitch, but just has a few slab moves between good pro.

The belay atop P1 is horrible. It's probably better to belay halfway up P1 and link the top half of P1 and P2, or else if someone wanted to get ambitious, they could improve things by removing one of the anchor bolts on P1 (leaving the left one as a pro bolt) and then bolting an anchor 10-12' higher in the corner where one can stand.


Location: WA : Central-West Cascades & Sea... : Skykomish Valley : Index : Lower Town Wall : ... : TPMV (10% Meteorological Vi... (5.13- R)
By: blakeherrington When: Aug 18, 2014

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Comments: I'm 5'8" and found the 2nd pitch/extension past the anchors to be harder than 5.12, so I don't think that the FA grade is only for shorter folks. As far as a wire or cam to protect this section vis-a-vis leaving room for fingers in the slot - I couldn't begin to get my (fairly small) fingers into the slot, so a cam, wire, or even both would be fine and not make the moves any harder.

I removed a bunch of the blackberry vines on P2 and figured out that if you extend the anchor down 10' with a cou... more >>


Location: WA : Central-East Cascades, Wena... : Colchuck Balanced Rock : Let it Burn (5.12-)
By: blakeherrington When: Jul 29, 2014

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Comments: For the extra credit verison, you can skip the final two easy pitches and move right after P5 (the overhanging hand traverse to the flake) and climb the crux pitch of the West Face and the final overhanging chimneys on that route.

It is also possible to move right after P4 (the first of the .11+ pitches) and climb some 5.11/5.11+ cracks on the right, up through a roof, to reach the belay stance under the crux of the West Face. (Accendo Luna variation)


Location: WA : Central-West Cascades & Sea... : Skykomish Valley : Index : Lower Town Wall : ... : Batskins (5.12b)
By: blakeherrington When: May 3, 2014

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Comments: P2 is an seldom-done classic. It can easily be reached without leading P1 by rapping 10m diagonally left from atop Godzilla.

2 bolts protect the first balance crux, stemming off knobs. The topo in SVR shows 3 bolts in this section, and the existing 2 bolts seem a little oddly-placed for freeclimbing. The upper crux protects great with small cams or wires, as well as a 3rd bolt which is clipped just after the crux. This is also new hardware, but replaced an old bolt drilled as an aid piece. I t... more >>


Location: WA : Central-West Cascades & Sea... : Skykomish Valley : Index : Lower Town Wall : ... : It's a dog's life, but you ... (5.11c)
By: blakeherrington When: May 3, 2014

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Comments: A singles rack from tips to .5 camalot or Red Alien is perfect.


Location: WA : Central-West Cascades & Sea... : Skykomish Valley : Index : Lower Town Wall : ... : Iron Horse (5.11d)
By: blakeherrington When: Apr 14, 2014

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Comments: I replaced the tat on the two pins with blue 1" webbing on 5/1/14 - I know it looks unsightly, but both pins are driven so deeply into the crack that they are impossible to clip with a carabiner, and it requires some effort to even get webbing or cord through the eyes. Changing this out every year or so seems like a good decision, the old stuff was faded and crusty. If the pins were gone, I don't think they would need to be replaced, but since they are still there, and still BOMBER, they may as ... more >>


Location: NV : Red Rock : Juniper Canyon : Cloud Tower : Cloud Tower (5.12-)
By: blakeherrington When: Apr 1, 2014

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Comments: Topout beta / Rainbow Wall Link Beta

From the standard end of the route after the hand crack:

P6 - Overhanging ~.12d on sandy rock and fragile flakes - easily pulled through due to close bolts. Also easily combined with the 35m hand crack pitch below.

P7 - Climb the smooth 5.10 OW/Squeeze above, which would be hard to protect with anything smaller than a #6, and even that might not work. Or simply walk to the right 10m and then follow a 5.easy corner leftish to the same large led... more >>


Location: NV : Red Rock : Black Velvet Canyon : Black Velvet Wall : Fiddler on the Roof (5.10+)
By: blakeherrington When: Apr 1, 2014

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Comments: 70m Rap Beta if you top out: Rap Prince of Darkness, a stone's throw to the left. A couple raps are super close to 35m

70m Rap beta from atop P4: We bailed easily from atop P4 by rapping rightish to join Sour Mash (30m Rap), then made 3-4 raps straight down to the ground.


Location: WA : Central-West Cascades & Sea... : Skykomish Valley : Index : Lower Town Wall : ... : Model Worker (5.11c)
By: blakeherrington When: Nov 25, 2013

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Comments: The full P1 is ~40m (an 80m might let you lower off, but I doubt it). You can easily lower to the short (~15m) anchors on Model Worker or the anchors atop Numbah Ten and belay from either before rapping. Several moves before the short anchor each feels harder to me than the move on the 2nd part of the pitch.

A good 5.11 continuation is via Tadpole and Newest Industry.


Location: WA : Central-West Cascades & Sea... : Skykomish Valley : Index : The Country Area : ... : Angora Grotto (5.11a)
By: blakeherrington When: Nov 10, 2013

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Comments: The bolt protecting the roof move ( below climber's left foot in the photo) is visibly corroded. Other bolts on this thing may be bad as well - they have the same KONG hangers which lead to total failure under bodyweight on an UTW route or two.

There are adequate gear opportunities to lead this without worrying too much, but I wouldn't place much faith in the bolts themselves.


Location: CO : Boulder : Upper Dream Canyon : Lost Angel : Archangel (5.12c)
By: blakeherrington When: Aug 4, 2013

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Comments: I'll preface my comment by saying I've never placed a single bolt, yet I have found myself bailing from (and completing) quite a few new pitches in Colorado and elsewhere. I have a the utmost respect for the history of routes and feel that as a rule, the style of the FA should be respected and the route not altered from the state achieved on the FA without explicit permission from the FA team. That said, this route never had a FA in the current definition of the term.

Pink-pointing a route on p... more >>


Location: WA : Northwest Region : North Cascades : Washington Pass : Liberty Bell : Thin Red Line (Free Version... (5.12)
By: blakeherrington When: Aug 2, 2013

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Comments: I like a generic "5.12" grade - both of the 5.12 pitches are body size dependent, but in different ways, and both are going to feel much easier or harder depending on one's strengths so overall it makes for a good climb that requires some tech, some power, some crack skills, and some face climbing. I've climbed this route now with 4 other people and everyone has had their own personal crux somewhere different. You can also easily rappel from atop P5 (the second 5.12pitch) with a single 70m.


Location: WA : Central-East Cascades, Wena... : Colchuck Balanced Rock : West Face (5.12-)
By: blakeherrington When: Jul 17, 2013

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Comments: Route gets sun only very late in the day. Hot days in mid summer are best. Long corner and roof traverse tend to seep in early season.


Location: WA : Central-East Cascades, Wena... : Icicle Creek : Prusik Peak : Der Sportsman (5.11+)
By: blakeherrington When: Jul 11, 2013

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Comments: If you have two ropes and wanted to rappel the South Side as suggested above, there are in-situ anchors to the left of 'Der', in or just right-of the big corner. It goes in three double-rope raps (the second one being about 65m). Gear and slings left on 'Der' will probably just get bootied by future parties.

The west ridge/north-side standard descent option is easy, even in rock shoes.


Location: WA : Central-East Cascades, Wena... : Icicle Creek : Prusik Peak : Solid Gold (5.11a)
By: blakeherrington When: Jul 11, 2013

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Comments: P2 and P3 as described above can link with a 70m.

If you want to keep your pack light for the long hike in, this route protects great with gear from tips to a #1 camalot.


Location: OR : Central Oregon : Trout Creek : The Main Wall : Fall Line (5.13-) : Photo
By: blakeherrington When: Mar 3, 2013

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Comments: I took this with the gimmicky little pretend tilt shift mode on a canon s100.


Location: WA : Central-West Cascades & Sea... : Skykomish Valley : Index : Lower Town Wall : ... : Stern Farmer (5.12b)
By: blakeherrington When: Feb 9, 2013

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Comments: Yet another variation on p1 is to move left after the anchor and reach the 2nd crux of Japanese gardens from directly below, climbing out the flake. I've heard this variation called "Sushi Farmer" and you'll want whatever gear you like on Stern, plus a hand and finger cam and a few long slings. If both of these climbs were already 4-stars, this variation is off the end of the quality scale.

P2 Stern Farmer 5.12d - A mellow finger lock and a compression move or two lead to a powerful pull establ... more >>


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