|Lower East Face
For those interested in superlatives, this route offered several: loosest, wettest, widest, dirtiest... just about any negative adjective can be applied in spades. We pegged it as a more direct line than the North Chimney to our objective on the Diamond, Pervertical Sanctuary. This was true, although the disadvantages were many and serious. Mostly, Fields' Chimney serves as a catchbasin for the entire left half of the Diamond, placing us in the line of fire for objects launched from acres of vertical granite by other climbers or random acts of gravity. This we failed to realize at first, preoccupied as we were by wet rock, the fine coating of dirt left by snowmelt, the several horrors of rust-stained bail tat, and the creaking iron protruding from the loose, wet, and overhanging crux. By the time we realized our error, we were already committed to topping out via roller-bearing slabs devoid of cracks and covered in dirt, fervently hoping that out predawn approach choice had safely placed us ahead of anyone else traversing Broadway above. Strange that the worst route of my life was immediately followed by one of the best. Get off your computer now, and go climb Pervertical. Just get there some other way.
The good sense to not fall.
S. Dew climbing a waterfall of loose rock, moss, a...
|Comments on Fields' Chimney (summer)
Jul 21, 2006
Pre-dawn enthusiasm and a failure to ask ourselves, "are we really where we think we are?" combined a few years ago to bless my buddy Jeff and I with a trip up this "route". The description given above is an accurate one- stick with the North Chimney.
|By Brent Roaten|
From: Anchorage, AK
Oct 18, 2006
Yep. Been there. When making an early start on the Diamond make sure you have your bearings correct before you start up this lovely line instead of the North Chimney. One September morning Dave Pearson and I were heading for the Casual Route via the North Chimney, and by the time I realized our..er my mistake... we were witnessing the Field's Chimney ice route forming. While I'm certain it makes a fine mixed route later in the season, it was quite the challenge climbing wet rock and thin ice with tennis shoes and a single mountaineering axe. Be sure and bring a wet suit and ice tools this time of year!
Jul 1, 2010
Yep, me too. Exactly the same experience in mid '90s (the catch phrase pre-dawn enthusiasm rings particularly true), except that we retreated from partway up and then climbed the N. Chimney. Lost a lot of time, and the pre-dawn enthusiasm was well sapped by the time we reached Broadway....
|By J tot|
From: Tempe, AZ
Jul 28, 2013
Now it's 2013 and people are still making the same mistake. My partner and I to be specific.
|By Drew Thayer|
From: Durango, CO
Sep 9, 2013
Yep. Pre-dawn enthusiasm is still alive and well in 2013. Upon reaching a section I can only describe as an overhanging bulge of post-glacial debris, we opted to keep going, which involved horrifying A0 on old pins and strenuous 5.loose munge-mantling and choss-treading. But to be fair, most of it is 3rd class, and it sure is a direct approach to D7!