Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Lost Hunters Cliff: Saturday June 9, 2012

This past Saturday, Rodney and I rendevoused at the tailhead for Lost Hunter's Cliff.  It had rained hard the night before and was on and off all morning.  We both decided that we'd head into the cliff regardless so we could lower over some of the older routes to see what they were all about and maybe re-clean one or two of them.

An hour later, we were at the base of the impressive, slightly overhanging 90' tall cliff band.  To our surprise, one of the most difficult and stunning routes on the cliff was completely dry...from top to bottom.  We made our way to the top of the cliff to set up a top rope and then preceded to work out all of the moves and sequences on one of Fred Abbuhl's unrepeated 5.13's.

I was able to do every move on the route and by the end of our session had put together some pretty decent links.  Basically, I have the route broken down into three distinct pieces.  The first piece is about 30' tall and involves some lower end 5.12 climbing with 3 bolts and maybe one or two pieces of gear.  I felt very solid on this section and had done it clean three times throughout the day. 

The middle section was where all of the excitement was.  You begin this section after a nice rest in a prominant crack 30' off the deck.  Immediately you are forced to crimp hard, high step and thrutch your way through another 30' of V7-V8ish bouldery sequences.  I could do every move in isolation, however, in one continuous push it felt VERY difficult.  There is one move in particular that I already know will be the redpoint crux and it is the last two moves right before another good rest.

The final section is another 30' of climbing to the anchors.  You begin on a nice jug/rest hold and the climbing to the chains felt like mid 5.11 climbing on pretty positive holds.  Despite the holds being positive, the lock off moves are huge and from a continous push from the ground, one could easily come up short on one of these full extension moves.

MAJOR props to Fred Abbuhl for putting this line up in the mid 1990's.  I received an email from Fred and plan on frequenting the cliff with him in the next few months to work on this route as well as equip some of his other test pieces from "back in the day".

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