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OK, please hang with me here because I have some explaining to do regarding the route name and my three-star rating.
First off, I think it's a shame such a long, beautiful line would be slapped forever with a name as equally unpoetic, though it continues to leave me scratching my head in the middle of the night, wondering, "Wha tha fa ... Ram Implosion Wing? What? Why?" Whatever. Just make sure you're psyched to drag up a ton of metal and an extra rope up a tall adventure for what will surely be a sandy experience for some time to come. If this corner got more traffic it would clean up to be Quarter of a Man's big brother -- complete with two roofs in the top half ... and a short offwidth at the bottom.
Twenty feet of precarious choss is best skirted by a solid-looking crack on the right to gain a ledge where the real action begins. (Too psyched to reach the meat of the climb, I neglected to examine all my starting options and fired up the choss, which is hairier than it looks.)
From the ledge you have a few options for small- and medium-sized pro before busting a few OW moves. The wideness isn't bad except for the sandiness. It quickly pinches down to hands and then 1 and 1.5 inches forever to the final roof, where it goes back to hands.
Which brings me to an explanation of my rack suggestion of 15 green Camalots. If this crack cleaned up a climber could get away with maybe 10 or 12, running it out about 10 feet between placements, as tends to happen on liebacks with bomber cams once I'm high enough off the deck. I've taken many 30-foot lobs on green Camalots, but this thing was so sandy I was nervous once a cam was just below my feet. To feel comfortable going for the onsight, instead of back-cleaning as I did, I would have needed at least 15 1.5-inch cams, probably more; I brought 8 and still back-cleaned for 80 feet. Keep in mind the corner is indeed a full 200 feet and most of it is one size. And did I mention it was sandy?
Don't mind the sand, though. Both roofs are awesome and the big one at the top is clean. With luck the entire route will reveal itself to be solid, smooth and sexy toe to head. ... Do I still need to explain my three-star rating?
Break right where the trail meets the cliff, as for Optimator. "Call of the Raven" is the striking left-facing corner with a big roof at the top. The feature is one of the most prominent on the wall, butting the left end of the long, exposed ledge that Optimator starts from 100 yards up and to the right.
There is another, less direct -- though also striking -- left-facing corner with a giant roof between Raven and Optimator, which is currently a Brian Kimball project. (Kimball is recovering from a bad shoulder injury and is hoping to return ASAP, as I write this on Dec. 9, 2008.)
7 1-inch; 15 1.5; 3 2-in.; 2 3-in.(gold Camalots); maybe an old #4 or #5 Camalot for the OW, and perhaps one or two other pieces for the very start. You will also need several long slings (at least 4 to 6) and a 60-meter tagline. It might be ideal to lead on a 70-meter cord, as I did, since the climbing goes in then out; my 60-meter tag, which hung straight to the ground, only had four feet leftover.
Dec 10, 2008
so you're calling a gold camalot a 3 inch unit? Reminds me of the old saying about the housewife who has a poor estimation of 8 inches....
all that aside, sounds like a good route. from the length and sustained crack size, 15 .75 camalots doesn't sound unreasonable.
Dec 10, 2008
From experience, my reasoning on the inch-to-Camalot conversion is this: 2 inches corresponds almost exactly to red Camalot, though the reds are slightly bigger (the Bloom guide even notes reds as "2.25 inches"). A crack of 2.5 inches is frustrating with Camalots because it's a little big for perfect reds and tight for golds. I've found (and I think the Bloom guide also notes this) that cracks closer to 3 inches tend to make ideal placements for gold Camalots, with 3.5 inches closer to perfect blues.
It doesn't matter for this route, however, if you carry a gold or blue Camalot for the roof -- since there are pods and constrictions and you'll find what you need as long as you have something close. For the record, I placed a gold Camalot in a constriction that was good but slightly open.
From: Salt Lake City
Jul 30, 2009
This kinda reminds me of the time when an unfinished route with the tentative mysterious name of "Heart Of Darkness" was finished by another party and re-named "Wyoming Sheep Ranch". Yee haw.
Wait, it doesn't remind me of that because you are doing the lame thing by re-naming somebody else's route. You didn't do the FA, therefore you don't have the right to add an AKA just because you don't like or understand the original name.
Jul 31, 2009
i agree, kill the AKA.
|By Brad Brandewie|
Jul 31, 2009
Has anyone here tried the Ram Implosion Wing? Is that thing for real? Looks interesting. Thanks for the link Joe.
I agree with the others who said you shouldn't rename an established route because you don't like the name.
From: Salt Lake City, UT
Jul 31, 2009
All those in favor of getting rid of unwarranted AKA say I... "I"!
|By Ben Kiessel|
Aug 5, 2009
Funny you should ask Brad, I mounted a smaller version to my bike helmet yesterday. My standard after work road ride that I usually do in 2 hours only took me an hour and 15 minutes! It was crazy! I am building a larger version for my car right now! Give the man your money it works!
From: Morrison, CO
Aug 5, 2009
"Lisa, in this house we obey the laws of thermodynamics!"
- Homer Simpson
Oct 6, 2009
Yeah, in retrospect I feel silly for even suggesting a new name for the route. At the time I got down from (cough) excavating the climb, my buddies and I all agreed we were annoyed with the original name. I still think it sucks, but I learned a couple things (i.e. people actually read these posts and a ram implosion wing actually exists; cool). The name still doesn't matter. All I really wanted to do was to get some traffic on a killer crack so it would clean up. Hope some of you check it out. Bring those green Camalots, for sure...