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Old Aid Bolt Ladder T 

Old Aid Bolt Ladder 

YDS: 5.5 French: 4b Ewbanks: 13 UIAA: IV+ ZA: 11 British: MS 4a C1 PG13

   
Type:  Trad, Aid, 1 pitch, 80'
Consensus:  YDS: 5.5 French: 4b Ewbanks: 13 UIAA: IV+ ZA: 11 British: MS 4a C1 [details]
FA: 
Page Views: 2,308
Submitted By: Jordan Ramey on Nov 12, 2007

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Cleaning the fresh aid line.

Description 

Update 3/2/08: I ran across this today on: bigwall.com/scag_lac.html#anch...

JESUS WALL (5.6, C1)
This manky bolt ladder ascends the large blank face right of a huge chimney system splitting the front wall and is clearly visible from Topanga Canyon Blvd. Easy free climbing leads to the first hangerless bolt.
Pro: Gear for 17 bolts, several rivet hangers.

--------------------

For those of you looking for some exciting aiding on old bolts at Stoney, give the bolt ladder here a whirl. The first bolt makes you think that it won't be too bad, but that's the nicest bolt on the route. The highlight is the bent nail hook thingy that twists. Overall it all felt pretty secure. All placements are good for body weight, but I wouldn't want to take a whipper on any of them.

It's easy to scramble to the top and setup a top rope and use that as backup in case a bolt pulls so you don't zipper the line. Most bolts at Stoney are suspect and these especially so. Almost every hanger is a spinner and some want rivet hangers behind the rusted hanger to keep the pull close to the rock.

Location 

Obviouse bolt ladder in the middle of the Jesus wall. Climb up the first 10' and clip the starting bolt from a good ledge.

Walk off / up is the same as Jesus Wall. Either do the 5.1 climb / scramble up on the right of the wall (see Chris's photo here) or walk all the way around and on top of the wall the long way.

Protection 

2 rivet hangers (more if fixed ones missing)
18 draws
Screamers (optional if leading)
aid gear

Currently (11/12/07) all bolts, rivets, crap are in pretty good condition so all you need are the rivet hangers (by pretty good I mean for an ancient bolt ladder). No hooks or anything fancy needed. You could easily get away with a few wired nuts and use those in place of the rivet hangers.

The top anchor is accessible by leaning over the edge (not bad). It has 3 bolts: 2 homemade hanger spinners that are suspect and partially pulled out and a newer looking nice bolt. I'd back the anchor up off the boulder directly behind it with a 20' sling.


Photos of Old Aid Bolt Ladder Slideshow Add Photo
Looking up from about the halfway point with the two lines for my solo top rope setup.
Looking up from about the halfway point with the t...
Me gri-gri TR soloing the Old Aid Bolt Ladder.
Me gri-gri TR soloing the Old Aid Bolt Ladder.
Bolt stud, May 2012. Seemed solid.
Bolt stud, May 2012. Seemed solid.
Looking down from halfway up.  The bolt there looks great, but you could see it had ground out about 1" in and the sleeve was clearly visible.
Looking down from halfway up. The bolt there look...
Old Aid Bolt Ladder.  If you zoom in you can see the bolts.  The midway anchor is halfway, the angle here just makes it look way up there.
BETA PHOTO: Old Aid Bolt Ladder. If you zoom in you can see t...
Fixed rivet hanger on old bolt.  Hole is too small for a biner, so hang it!
Fixed rivet hanger on old bolt. Hole is too small...
Pretty fun once you get past the spray paint.
Pretty fun once you get past the spray paint.
Another fixed rivet hanger on a curious bolt.
Another fixed rivet hanger on a curious bolt.
"Plant Hanger", May 2012. Seemed pretty solid.
"Plant Hanger", May 2012. Seemed pretty ...
from <a href='http://bigwalls.com' target='_blank' rel='nofollow' >bigwalls.com</a>
BETA PHOTO: from bigwalls.com
Cruising the Old Bolt Ladder on the Jesus Wall.
Cruising the Old Bolt Ladder on the Jesus Wall.

Comments on Old Aid Bolt Ladder Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Feb 2, 2014
By caughtinside
From: Oakland CA
Nov 12, 2007

hmm, more of a terminology question, but don't aid ratings by definition have danger ratings built in? Ie, C1 X is self-contradictory? Is that how to rate a rusty bolt ladder? Curious.
By Jordan Ramey
From: Calgary, Alberta
Nov 12, 2007

"It's all A1 until you fall". I was trying to convey that all the pieces seemed great, but whipping on bolts at Stoney could be your last time to do so. So really it's probably C2-3F, but I'm curious what people with more experience might say. I also had a TR backup, so hence it's C1 to do it that way, but leading it would make groundfall a possibility (or several aid grades harder). So I called it C1F-X as a compromise since I don't advocate leading on bolts at Stoney. So feel free to regrade it and the consensus will prevail.

edit: I reread it and realized what you meant. Anyway, I clarified.

Originally rated C1F-X, changed in body.
By M.Morley
Administrator
From: Sacramento, CA
Nov 12, 2007

Agreed, "C1 X" is self-contradictory. C1 by definition means that the placements (or in this case a bolt ladder) are straightforward and solid, and there is virtually no risk of any piece pulling. Also, "taking a whipper" is not really applicable when it comes to aiding a bolt ladder.
By Jordan Ramey
From: Calgary, Alberta
Nov 12, 2007

I redid the grade to C2 to more accurately reflect the lead of the line. According to the New Wave ratings it should be C3+ because of the groundfall potential, but that seems to high a number. I'll be curious to see what someone else says when they climb it (especially if they lead it / have led it). I could change it to C1 and call it a toprope too since lead bolt climbs are usually not recommended at Stoney. It seems a little tough to accurately describe the ease of placements (bolts = easy) with the danger factor associated with suspect bolts. Thoughts?
By M.Morley
Administrator
From: Sacramento, CA
Nov 12, 2007

Jordan, I think you'd be hard pressed to find any bolt ladder listed on the entire site as harder than A1/C1, whether it be in Fisher Towers mud or Yosemite granite. Although I have not climbed this particular route, I would find it difficult to imagine a C2 or higher bolt ladder. Maybe Chris O has an opinion on it?
By M.Morley
Administrator
From: Sacramento, CA
Nov 12, 2007

BTW, I'm not trying to be a jerk. I hope it didn't come across that way.
By Jordan Ramey
From: Calgary, Alberta
Nov 13, 2007

I'm regrading it back to C1 and just adding the PG-13 since the bolts may or may not hold a fall. Chris Mac. overcame this conundrum in the Big Walls Supertopos by adding an R to aid that has a dangerous fall potential. For example, the Black Tower pitch on Zodiac gets a C2R rating since it's C2 moves, but above a ledge. That's what I was trying to convey in the original C1F-X rating. C1 for ease of placements, F for the fixed rivet hangers, and X for the groundfall potential. The R just seems weird to me to think of runout on aid. I just didn't want to grossly misgrade something so the comments are appreciated.
By Chris Owen
Administrator
From: La Crescenta and Big Bear Lake
Feb 19, 2008

I don't do a lot of aid, unless I'm stuck! BUT: Old rusty 1/4" star bolts and rivets in sandstone? I wouldn't touch this ancient bolt ladder if you paid me. Technically straight-forward ut decidedly risky.

Man I'm bummed that this route has more comments than any on the Stoney Point part of MP!
By Tristan B
From: La Crescenta, CA
Mar 18, 2010
rating: 5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a C1

Someone rebolted this thing super nice. Its all bomber 3/8 black fixe hangers with a belay station 1/2 way up and 3 rap rings at the very top. They pulled out everything execpt for the thick metal stud after the first bolt you have to tie off and the bent nail hook that moves just past the mini roof. The bolts are pretty close and you can skip a few of them. Its sick that it's safe and cool and good for pratice, but kinda lame since the scary sketchyness factor is gone.
By ryan mattock
Apr 3, 2010

as of 2/10 the old-aid line has been replaced by myself Ryan mattock.
read through this thread on the super taco. then you'll get the wierd story about those bolts within the last couple of years. the bolts may be too close but talk to Glen dawson about that i left the nail to let fellow spot climbers know that it's all about aid!. also i kept it consistent with respects to the original F.A. ascent.
and tristan : i'm also bummed that it's solid A1 rating is gone. maybe we could find the original hagers... read the thread man!

cheers!
RM
supertopo.com/climbing/thread....
By BrooksBonstin
From: Los Angeles, CA
Feb 6, 2012

Thanks for rebooting this, Ryan, and for leaving the bent nail. That thing definitely got the old blood pumping for the few moments I had it tied-off. It's a great nod to LA history that this bolt ladder remains, plus it allows us novice aid climbers a chance to learn the ropes.
By ryan mattock
Feb 26, 2012

thank's. that old aid line is a fun thing to hang on. get ur game on with the aid stuff. the el capitan is next! enjoy.
By Jonesey
May 3, 2012

After the major modernisation in 2010, the mankiness appears to have vanished. There are no spinning or loose hangers. Yes, there are a couple of historical artifacts that you have to hang on, but they seem pretty solid. I've posted a few more details + photos at supertopo.com:
supertopo.com/climbing/thread....
By david doucette
May 28, 2013

I climbed the bolt ladder today 5.28.13 for the first time trying aid. it was super fun!

@ryan, thanks for the rebolting, fantastic job!

@jordan, you should update the description on this page is it's certainly not manky anymore since ryan's rebolting. i'd say it's pretty bomber, although i wouldn't want to take a whipper. I prefer to top rope solo it.

if you're top rope soloing, there are three rap rings/bolts up top. I didn't use them though as, well, it's bolts in sandstone ;) instead i slung a boulder a couple feet back of the cliff and also put in a BD #3 and #2 to create a bomber solo top rope setup. You could use the bolts and back it up by slinging the boulder though.

glad the two old pieces of nostalgia remain. i used a small wire nut to hook them.
By TacoDelRio
From: All up in yo bidniss.
Nov 3, 2013
rating: Easy 5th 1+ 3 I 5 M 1c C0

How tall was the first ascentionist? Them bolts are mighty close.
By TacoDelRio
From: All up in yo bidniss.
Feb 2, 2014
rating: Easy 5th 1+ 3 I 5 M 1c C0

Leftmost bolt at top anchor is a weetad loose.