Solitude 5.10 A.2
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BETA PHOTO: "Solitude" as we climbed it.
This probably isn't the exact way the FA was done, but it definitely works and gets you into the sweet 250' crack leading to the final bulge. I think the "Free For All Variation" in Kerry's Book
was also an attempt to climb the original line.
1. About 130’ up is a short, right-leaning, right-facing corner with a blocky, horizontal, quartz band at the base. Climb cracks to base of corner. Step left a few feet and belay on small ledge at base of cracks. (The follower cleaned a loose block that was blocking access to the corner. It looks like a fun corner but I don’t know if you’d have enough rope to finish it in the first pitch and find a good belay.) (5.9 140’)
2. Climb cracks, then up wandery face to big sloping ledge. (5.9+ 110’)
3. From left end of ledge, step to corner and follow thin crack up ~15’ until possible to traverse left (5.10a) to the base of a long, beautiful crack. (I think the original line traversed left, even with the belay ledge.) There is a bolt below the start of the crack that may be from the “Free For All Variation” in Kerry’s book. Climb amazing crack on excellent rock as far as you can and belay. (5.10a 180’)
4. Continue up crack to steepening face. Original line seems to be blocked by agave. We stepped left and zig-zagged up steep, gritty face to big ledge at base of final corner. (5.10 150’)
5. Climb corner to bolt on bulge. Aid through short section with OK gear after bolt (felt more like A.1.) Clip pin, then easy to top. (My partner freed it on toprope and said it felt like 5.10d/11a) (5.7 A.1 100’)
We looked for the raps in Kerry’s book but decided on this alternative: From top of climb we continued past main summit to a small saddle, (the last one before the crumbly, knife-edge saddle,) where we could scramble down right (southeast) on the backside to a small tree. 180’ rap to 3 fixed stoppers. Lots of friction on this first pull! Then half-rope rap to ground. Hike down steep gullies along south face to base of climb. (If you stay close to the rock, like we did, you’ll have to make one more 40’ rap off tree.)
We took lots of stoppers, some tiny cams, doubles to #3 cam, and a #4(probably don't need that.)
By Paul Davidson
Oct 19, 2012
Does Kerry's book have this as A2 ?
My recollection it was pretty bomber aid and we drilled the bolt with the idea of it being freed later. At the time it didn't look like should be all that hard so Jeff's description above sounds right from the TR. That would have been my guess. But, we were climbing above that level at that time. However, it was dirty and grity at the aid part and the sun was looking quite low so we were racing for the summit.
Someone should go bag the FFA of that 10 or 15 ft.
The middle part of the climb reminded me of being at windy point.