I was wondering if any Glass locals might be able to clue me in on whether or not soloing is a viable option down there. Is there an easy walk-off from the top of the Nose and South Side areas that would accommodate climbing one, two, or many routes in a day? Also, anyone down for climbing hard next week.....with a rope?
By saxfiend Administrator From Decatur, GA Dec 4, 2010
I've never done a walk-off at Looking Glass so I may be totally off base, but I don't think you're going to get in as much climbing as you'd like to by doing this. To the best of my knowledge, the only way to get down without rapping would be to use the hikers' trail, which would probably take hours to get down and then get back to the climbing area.
I'm assuming you're talking about free soloing since you're looking for a walk-off. Is roped soloing an option for you? Then you'd be able to rap.
I would advise against trying to hike off...its a long way back to your car and you could probably only do it once in a day. I've seen a soloist rap off from the top of the nose with one 60 but I've never tried. He told me how to do it, but that was a couple years ago so don't quote me on the details.
I think he rapped and downclimbed (climber's L/skier's R) to the parking lot and then made a rap off of the old eyebolts to the last rap station near peregrine. From there, you can do a rap to the ledge system that runs to the top of P1 of sundial and from there to the ground.
You can get back to the base of the South End from the top, but it is a thrash. I did it once for the hell of it and won't ever do it again.
PS: You'll have to walk(traverse) about 50-60 feet to get to the anchors for sundial. Its exposed, but the ledge is good the whole way and shouldn't be an issue if you just soloed the whole thing.
I wouldn't recommend this is plan A. More than a bit risky.
This is a completely except-able way to get down. When I take a single client up the route I only use one rope and go down this way all the time. Of course you have to make your own risk management decisions. Many people feel completely comfortable walking face out on every move of the class 4 descent. In NC the rating for this pitch should be Class 2! I call it class 4 as to not sandbag anyone.
if you are thinking of free soloing the nose and you are competent to do that then just down climb it. i don't wish to give you ideas you don't already have. it's quite straight forward and only the move onto the second belay is troublesome. i would start with southside routes if you're at all uncertain about things. down climbing the face above bloody crack is very simple so that makes any southside route fair game. in the summer, beware stinging insects. i don't know anyone who ever spent much time free soloing who didn't enjoy it but certainly it is not for everybody. don't ever get smug. don't ever climb with doubt. things will go wrong. nobody can help you. don't complain and don't explain.