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Vern at Leavenworth. Photo: Stephen Drake


Member Since: Jan 21, 2001
Last Visit: Nov 2, 2006
Contact Vernon Stiefel


Point Rank: # 248
Total Points: 2,033
Last Year: 0
Last 30 Days: 0
38 Compliments
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Areas are worth 15
Routes are worth 10
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All (510) | Routes (104) | Areas (26) | Photos (105) | Comments (78) | Posts (2) | Stars (154) | Ratings (41)
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Contributed Comments

 

Location: OR : Smith Rock : Lower Gorge : West Side : Star Wall : Left Wing (5.10c)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: Jul 11, 2006

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Comments: Another great and very unique climb in the Lower established by Mark D et al. Unfortunately, it is relatively short.


Location: OR : Smith Rock : Lower Gorge : West Side : Catwalk Cliff : Catalyst (5.12b)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: Jun 11, 2006

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Comments: This bolted basalt column is one of the best in the Lower and Upper Gorge. The technical aspect of the route is similar to "Try To Be Hip" but the difficult moves are slightly more powerful and more numerous.

Even though the route is adjacent to "Cruel Sister" it remains an independent line to the anchors.


Location: OR : Smith Rock : Lower Gorge : West Side : Star Wall : Levitate (5.11d)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: May 16, 2006

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Comments: I really enjoyed this climb; bolt protected bouldery moves down low and stemming - hand jams (#1 or #2 camalot for pro) near the top.


Location: OR : Smith Rock : Lower Gorge : West Side : Catwalk Cliff : The Pearl (5.11b/c)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: May 16, 2006

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Comments: This is the best 5.11 trad climb I have done in the Lower Gorge (On The Road is a close second). The crux move for me was a powerful lieback just below the roof. The best gear placements were HB offsets and small stoppers interspersed with small to medium cams to 1".


Location: OR : Smith Rock : Cocaine Gully : Bound in Bogata (5.11b/c)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: Apr 17, 2006

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Comments: I don't understand why this received a bomb for quality. Even though only one distinct crux exists, I thought the climbing and rock quality was good.


Location: OR : Smith Rock : Lower Gorge : West Side : Wildfire Wall : Try To Be Hip (5.12a)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: Apr 5, 2006

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Comments: The technical and sustained nature of this climb (challenging moves at every bolt) makes this route feel hard for the grade but I didn't encounter what seemed like 12b moves.


Location: OR : Smith Rock : Lower Gorge : West Side : Wildfire Wall : White Trash (5.12a)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: Apr 5, 2006

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Comments: This is one of many stupendous routes in the Lower Gorge pioneered by John Rich. He recently extended the route on overhanging jugs (10c - bolt protected) for a full value 100' pitch!


Location: CA : Joshua Tree National Park : Real Hidden Valley : The Sentinel : The Sentinel - West Face : Some Like It Hot (5.12c)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: Apr 4, 2006

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Comments: I appreciate the manner in which the first pitch (solid at 12b) of this route was bolted. You have to make difficult crux moves a considerable distance from the bolts; no faking it! Tread lightly on the loose flake between the 2nd and 3rd bolts.


Location: CA : Joshua Tree National Park : Desert Queen Mine : Silverado Area : High Plains Drifter (5.10b)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: Apr 1, 2006

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Comments: I placed two stoppers to supplement the three old bolts on this route. My partner and I thought the direct finish above the final bolt (versus moving right) was 10d. The anchor is the same as for "Silverado." It is easy to supplement the dubious anchor with small cams.


Location: CA : Joshua Tree National Park : Wonderland North : The Dunce Cap : Spirited Away (5.11b PG13)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: Mar 29, 2006

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Comments: Aside from the exquisite position encountered on the second pitch, another appealing aspect is its sustained nature. "There aren't any annoyingly easy sections" was Randy's assessment after the FA.


Location: NV : Red Rock : Mt. Wilson : Horseshoe Wall : Dogma (5.11c)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: Mar 28, 2006

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Comments: "Dogma" offers some fantastic climbing on the east face of Mt. Wilson. While I wouldn't describe the route as being a true sport climb, I only placed a total of five pieces on the first eleven pitches so you won't need an extensive rack. I thought the best pitches were #3 and the crux pitch which begins off of the Sherwood Forest ledge. We didn't climb the final four pitches because there was a deep snowbank on the ledge at the base of pitch #12. We climbed the route with a 70 meter ... more >>


Location: OR : Smith Rock : The Dihedrals : Heinous Cling (5.12c)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: Jan 27, 2006

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Comments: The crux on the upper portion of Heinous Cling is 5.12 involving sequential and bouldery moves. Hence, the 12c rating. I was able to exact a long rest by jamming the deep pocket after the crux and alternately hanging off each arm before charging to the top. The runout section past the final bolt is probably 10+ / 11-.


Location: CA : Joshua Tree National Park : Hidden Valley Campground : The Old Woman : The Old Woman - West Face : The Cavity (5.11d)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: Jan 10, 2006

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Comments: This climb begins at the same location as the Fang and stays on the left side of the "fang" to the first of four bolts before meandering right. The rock quality improves after the first two bolts and the crux, which is solid at 11d, is on good rock. One or maybe two out of five stars.

Murf, perhaps you are thinking of the route Bridwell - Sustad which is further right and 11a?


Location: CA : Joshua Tree National Park : Queen Mountain : Olympic Dome : The Bloodline (5.12a)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: Dec 20, 2005

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Comments: Following during the initial traverse is spicy for the second. Exercise caution on some of the loose flakes.

Bobby P. (pictured on "Eureka" in photo submitted by DEE) onsighted this route!!


Location: CA : Joshua Tree National Park : Queen Mountain : Olympic Dome : Black Diamond (5.12a)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: Dec 19, 2005

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Comments: While an R rating is probably unnecesary you wouldn't want to fall near the third bolt because you may end up on the boulder next to your belayer.

It seemed like the most difficult move was 11d but there are 5.11 moves at every bolt. The route is easily one of the best face climbs for the grade at J-Tree.


Location: CA : Joshua Tree National Park : Jumbo Rock Area : Zebra Cliffs : Zebra Cliffs East Face : Such A Line (5.10d)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: Sep 22, 2005

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Comments: I placed a bomber stopper high in the left crack with a long runner before veering into the right crack. If the rock quality was better I would give this route 4 out of 5 stars. Regardless, the climbing was fantastic.


Location: CO : Boulder : Boulder Canyon : Elephant Buttresses : Third Buttress : FM (5.11c)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: May 30, 2005

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Comments: FM is one of the BEST one pitch trad routes I have climbed. The rock quality and movement are exceptional!! In addition to the pitons, there are two fixed stoppers in the extended "old school" 5.11 crux section.


Location: CO : Boulder : Eldorado Canyon SP : Redgarden Wall : Redgarden - Tower One : Doub-Griffith (5.11c)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: May 30, 2005

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Comments: If, after the short first pitch, your intent is to climb Dubious Graffiti, it is best to forego the belay on the small ledge above the roof and continue to the good ledge system at the base of the final pitch. The extended pitch is about 150' of fabulous climbing with many 11 crux sections.


Location: CA : Joshua Tree National Park : Quail Springs Area : Hound Rock : Crescent Wrench (5.10d)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: Apr 21, 2005

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Comments: Crescent Wrench is definitely 10d on lead. This is a perfect example of why route ratings based on a TR ascent are irrelevant when compared to the difficulty of an onsight attempt on lead.


Location: CA : Joshua Tree National Park : Queen Mountain : Olympic Dome : Jamaican Bobsled (5.11a)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: Jan 20, 2005

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Comments: I remember this climb being sustained to the top with the technical crux midway on the face. The finish on the overhanging block felt like 10+. Begin left of "Don't Bosch Me Around" for a more direct start.


Location: CA : Joshua Tree National Park : Indian Cove : Rattlesnake Canyon : Indian Country : The Flamboyant Arrow (5.9)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: Jan 8, 2005

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Comments: I didn't realize that "The Flaming Arrow" was an existing route on The Rockwork Rocks formation near Barker Dam when I used the same name for a FA at Indian Country last year. Randy, please change the name to "The Flamboyant Arrow" for your next guidebook edition. Mike, please do the same on the website.

I am hopeful that the local J-Tree climbing community will overlook my egregious error and that Judge Locker will no longer have to spend precious seconds pondering the ethics of using a name... more >>


Location: CA : Joshua Tree National Park : Indian Cove : Rattlesnake Canyon : The Polka Dot Wall : Student Body (5.10a)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: Dec 7, 2004

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Comments: Deceptively difficult route with several crux sections. Two - three out of five stars.


Location: CA : Joshua Tree National Park : Indian Cove : Rattlesnake Canyon : Detached Wall : Cuatro Manos (5.10b)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: Dec 7, 2004

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Comments: This is another fun route on the Detached Wall. Rack could also include a 3.5 camalot. Two out of five stars.


Location: CA : Joshua Tree National Park : Indian Cove : Rattlesnake Canyon : Detached Wall : Detachable Penis (5.10d)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: Dec 7, 2004

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Comments: Sustained and varied climbing on good rock makes this a challenging and engaging lead - three out of five stars. Don't yard too hard on the "flaccid" phallus!


Location: CA : Joshua Tree National Park : Desert Queen Mine : Fraggle Rock : I Have The Touch (5.12b)
By: Vernon Stiefel When: Aug 23, 2004

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Comments: Great climb but too many loose edges for this route to be considered a classic (3 out of 5 stars). One of my partners (Gold Hunk) suggested renaming the route to "I Had The Touch" after a key hold was pulled off. The last moves on Sensory Deprivation felt comparable in difficulty to the crux moves on IHTT.


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