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epic_ed


Jan 13, 2005, 2:07 PM
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Zion climbing history  (North_America: United_States: Utah: St__George: Zion_National_Park)
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Discuss.

Dangle? BSmoot? Brian? Others? Spill the beans.

Ron, how did you get scooped on Moonlight Buttress? I can't believe you didn't see that line first.

Ed


dangle


Jan 13, 2005, 2:25 PM
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When Jeff and Mike did the FA I was a junior in Hackley a boarding school in Tarrytown, NY. I'd already done some climbing in the Cran-Sierre area of Switzerland, but didn't own a rope or rack til '72. Still I wasn't allowed back for my senior year after Pete Lehman put a black flag on top of the cupola on top of Goodhue Hall the night before the Vice President came to our school with assistance from......(It was a pretty hairy free solo the maintanence guys weren't about to repeat)

Didn't hit Zion 'til April,'76.

I WAS looking for splitters though (remember I had Shield ambitions) and my first hour in the main canyon (after first visiting the Kolob Fingers) I picked out a good prospect on the N buttress of Red Arch. However I opted for establishing most of what would be Space Shot because it got more sun. The rest of the story can be found in the '85 AAJ


rockprodigy


Jan 13, 2005, 2:58 PM
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I know a lot of the history behind the FFA of the N Face of Angel's Landing.

but seriously, I really think we (as a community) should try to get some of the history down on paper.

I've been trying to motivate more qualified people to put together a coffee table book in the same vein as the many that have been done on Yosemite. People seem interested, but so far nobody has picked up the gauntlet.


dangle


Jan 13, 2005, 3:46 PM
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Did any of those books show a decent profit? Let's face it, despite the potential for great photos, its a relatively esoteric pursuit.


grayhghost


Jan 13, 2005, 3:51 PM
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kind of like climbing


dangle


Jan 13, 2005, 3:54 PM
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Isn't that...? Never mind.


dangle


Jan 13, 2005, 5:36 PM
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Here's an interesting point:
How accurate is Middendorf's claim that Dave Jones and I were the leading climbers of the late 70s?

Totally false!

For one thing Jones didn't climb in Zion until 1980.
And I was there but the man of the late 70s in Zion was Scott Fischer.

So how did this arise?
Climbing Magazine, October, '84 Anyone have one? Besides the erroneous years listed for numerous FAs provided by Jones, he also wrote a telling piece of fiction called B. G. Goes to Zion.
B G stands for Blond God and while Jones claimed to have created the character from whole cloth it was a thinly veiled depiction of Fischer right down to his Dodge Dart (although there may have been a touch of Bachar thrown in). A quick read of the story reveals a marked resentment for the "god".
While his chronology predates his routes by a year or two, he postdated some of mine (Monkeyfinger for example) with one notable exception.
The route we both completed. Space Shot.
Check any history of this route and it lists the Jones claim of 1978.

One little problem.

My photos from the FA look down not only on a clearly visible Jones, but my 1981 Mazda as well......

Well I have to admit that I was a little jealous of Scott at first also.
Women threw themselves at him with regularity. With me it isn't exactly a daily occurance, but Jones? I'll leave that alone, but suffice to say that having "second pick" with Scott helped me forget any envy. Jones never hung with him.

After getting the off years into print it was easy to perpetuate. Especially when fellow Dartmouth alum Middendorf incorporated the false claim into an actual "History of Zion Climbing" in the Bjornstad guide, not known as reliable anyway.

Scott wasn't just a babe magnet. He was a skilled free climber before Friends were available. This meant desert crack climbing with just nuts! Can anyone say RUNOUT!!?
Well Scott DID it while everyone watched. He was easily the boldest climber of that time in Zion. More than once he paid the price too. We didn't call him the Flying Fischer for nothing.

As the years progressed Scott's business, Mountain Madness took off and so did Scott, but we still kept in touch. We had done the FA of the Minotaur, his first virgin summit, and he always had a smile for me. We always met at the AAC meeting, and got together to climb every so often as well.

At an AAC meeting in Snowbird in the mid 90s we went up to Kennan's room to smoke and it was there that he told me that he was going to guide Everest. My reaction was a bit dubious. He knew mountains, I didn't, but I said in a questioning tone,"Its a really big hill..."
He told me his yellow brick road theory.

He invited me to go ice climbing in Ouray again. We had had a blast but I'm not an ice climber. Much to my regret I declined.

In May Dave Mondeau called me on a friday. He had bad news about the guy that introduced us to each other. Within a day it seemed the whole world knew. Tuesday morning still in shock I went to the post office to send a letter of condolence to Jean.

In my PO box was a letter from Scott that had been run out from basecamp. It was like getting hit by a truck. He expressed concern. "Its a really big hill." He said.


tenesmus


Jan 13, 2005, 8:35 PM
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Keep going. I like it.


dangle


Jan 15, 2005, 12:08 AM
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Well its late and I just got back so tonight's installment will be small, but don't be disappointed. Tomorrow I'm going to give you all something juicy to chew on.

I've had several requests to address the Flying Fischer reference in greater depth (height??).
Scott was kind of touchy about that, but I think that was more out of consideration for those concerned about him, and in actuality he reveled a bit in the status accorded to someone who's logged so many air miles.
Maybe I'm projecting a trait I've seen in others that have walked away from a big one. In any case fatherhood in the 80s seems to have made him more cautious on steep rock.

Early on as a NOLS instructor he went over a hundred feet in a rappel mishap. He didn't go into great detail about the fall but rather griped about the way his employer's executive handled the medical expense from his fractures.

The Bridalveil fall early in'77 was on personal time though. I wasn't there but numerous witnesses (I think Jeff was one) were horrified to see him plummet 150' and rushed to render aid. He had been using a brand new type of ice hammer called a hummingbird that sported a tube pick. Scott's speed descent demonstrated a likely unanticipated hazard when he discovred that he had managed to produce a core sample from his lower leg.
The fun wasn't over. Because of the barbs the doctor had to saw off the pick and push it through.

Six weeks later he reattempted what would be named the Minotaur. This time I was his partner and the lead division was simple.
If it looked like free it was his, the aid was mine.
The first pitch was a familiar if poorly protected chimney but soon I was belaying him from the existing rap bolts and looking up at an offwidth running about 15' through a roof directly above me.

Its late so I'l make a long story short.
When he fell from the lip of the roof I did the one thing you're not supposed to do.

I deliberately let go of the rope.

Reaching forward with palms up I caught him like a baby, since pro wasn't an issue. Trouble was that this "baby" weighed half again my weight. My only redemption was my tie in to the sling belay (OK OK that's what REALLY caught him). We were both a bit shocked, and quickly disgusted when his leg hole opened up. Best not described.
The real problem was an injured back that would trouble him in subsequent weeks guiding Denali.

The rematch came two years later.
This time I went onto the offwidth first. I managed to aid the roof at one point stacking one of the original Lowe split cams (like I used in the video) with an upside down 11 hex!. This allowed me to drill an angle at the lip and lower off.
Scott led through to a bivy ledge from whence I led the next pitch starting with a short ladder to a pendulum. Scott's view was great and his encouragement even better. Back at the bivy we cracked open a pint of brandy.

The next morning I saw something I'll never forget. After leading some 60' above me he used a brief spot of aid.
Literally.

When the piece blew he took a short fall onto a hex. But it was connected to the rope with a new Forest rabbit runner which promtly parted.
As stated runouts were Scott's territory, and when I looked up I saw Scott completely outlined against the sky along with what seemed to be miles of serpentine rope.

It didn't come tight until Scott passed me screaming.
I recall having time to look at his rope running through the carabiner on the first piece and thinking,"There's no way I'm squeezing through THAT!"

I didn't.
Later that day after he lead yet another runout pitch I joined him on the summit.

Our "descent" was assisted by his friends Deacon and Pam Banks. After finding that he had to rap 100' first from the nearby canyon rim Deacon succeeded in his seventh (and declared final) attempt to throw us a line.
We tied a sling around the summit block and used it to lower out to the jug home.

Sometime around his death 17 years later the regretably inept Zion rescue crew "reversed" our descent going to the summit on an exercise.

Not long after I saw their residual effect.
The summit was studded with bolts.
When I asked one of them why they didn't use the natural anchor of the summit block I was told that the 17 year old sling was all ratty and frayed.

I said,"So why didn't you replace it."
He was at a loss to explain that it hadn't ocurred to him.

I walked with a giant only to discover that I had ended up with the turkeys.


dangle


Jan 15, 2005, 10:55 AM
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Somebody has pointed out that the R&I interview listed the FA of Space Shot crediting Pey rather than Jones.

Quite right.

This is entirely my fault. While I make earnest efforts to be accurate I made an exception to exploit a mistake made by Climbing 21 years ago and Jones' deliberate dishonesty with a speck of my own.
It was a private joke to further obscure the history and deny the original liar credit.

Figured it was time to fess up and set things straight..

I hope that the reader will understand and forgive me a minor prevarication.

Ron Olevsky


dangle


Jan 15, 2005, 12:55 PM
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Two hours and no comment. The weather can't be THAT good. Is this thread dead and I just don't know it?

I promised a juicy meal but unless this is a forum why bother?

C'mon, anybody except the two Brians.


atg200


Jan 15, 2005, 4:27 PM
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that minotaur story is classic! are there any good stories from those cool looking towers way the hell up the hillside? i've never heard more than fischer's name when i've nosed around for beta.

the skiing in LCC was too good to sit inside today ron :)


dangle


Jan 15, 2005, 5:27 PM
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Good to hear from you again.

Wasatch skiing huh? Yesterday's avalanche seems to have a dubioud distinction of record number of fatalities for Utah. I'd as soon not be reminded of the avalanche in the La Sals that took a friend.

A few weeks ago I risked camping in a dry wash and while I lay in my bag a wall of water killed hundreds of thousands. Then last week I saw that same wash flood and take out a train. Now this.

Momma's pissed about something!

Let's hear from some folks. This is a forum. Stop sitting on the sidelines.

(edit per user request)


dangle


Jan 15, 2005, 11:37 PM
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I assembled the post but am having trouble transfering it to the posting window. I intend to place it in the Video thread.


the_dude


Jan 17, 2005, 9:42 PM
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This is a great thread. The stories are great Ron. I'd love to read more!
Cheers


dangle


Jan 18, 2005, 12:41 AM
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Open vote 'til Friday.


Moon Patrol

The Thunderbird Wall

Sunlight Buttress

Iron Messiah

Other?


Partner cracklover


Jan 18, 2005, 11:00 AM
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I wonder if Ambler would like to join in the discussion...

GO


epic_ed


Jan 18, 2005, 11:37 AM
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Sunlight Buttress? Haven't heard of it yet. Where and how?

Ed


epic_ed


Jan 18, 2005, 11:42 AM
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Sunlight Buttress? Haven't heard of it yet. Where and how?

And, Gabe, the Amber crack really wasn't necessary, was it?

Ed


ambler


Jan 18, 2005, 12:52 PM
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In reply to:
I wonder if Ambler would like to join in the discussion...

GO
Sorry, no Zion stories. I was busy in Red Rock way back then. 8^)


Partner cracklover


Jan 18, 2005, 1:39 PM
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In reply to:
And, Gabe, the Amber crack really wasn't necessary, was it?

Ed

Hahaha - ouch! No - Ambler, not Amber.

Ambler, for some reason I thought you said you had a line in Zion, but clearly I was confused. I figured out what you meant now.

Sorry to sidetrack the conversation, please carry on!

GO


Partner euroford


Jan 18, 2005, 2:12 PM
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good thread!


flamer


Jan 18, 2005, 2:31 PM
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I vote for Moonpatrol....I've been eyeing that one for awhile.

josh


flamer


Jan 18, 2005, 2:31 PM
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I vote for Moon patrol...I've been eyeing that one for awhile....

josh


epic_ed


Jan 18, 2005, 9:01 PM
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In reply to:
In reply to:
And, Gabe, the Amber crack really wasn't necessary, was it?

Ed

Hahaha - ouch! No - Ambler, not Amber.

Ambler, for some reason I thought you said you had a line in Zion, but clearly I was confused. I figured out what you meant now.

Sorry to sidetrack the conversation, please carry on!

GO

Yeah, I noticed my odd form of dyslexia after I posted it -- and didn't delete it fast enough to not look like a dork. Sorry.

Ed


dmckj


Jan 18, 2005, 9:27 PM
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Wow...how fascinating. Time to get a little reality back into this thread, not to mention sanity.

I know Dave Jones, and hey, what a great guy!
Unlike certain folks, it would never occur to Jones to twist any history of an ascent. For starters, there really is no 'Jones history' or lies therein because Jones has made a point on not getting involved in self-promotion (he thinks it a bit tacky). But this doesn't stop him from being slandered, does it? For those who do their research, however, all dates on all topos of Jones' first ascents are fact.

As to the minor contribution to a routes list in the 84 Climbing article.. it doesn't claim 1978, as Mr. O erroneously states, but rather 1980 (maybe it's time for reading glasses?). And as a guy lucky enough to be able to buy new cars should know, the 81 model cars came out at the end of 1980....and, surprise!....the route was climbed over Thanksgiving. But, really, who gives a gosh darn golly? The only one who seems concerned enough to have fabricated a tale of fictitious climbing partners, by his own admission in this thread, is Mr. O himself. Why?

As to the article 'BG goes to Zion'... WRONG AGAIN! Mr. O. Could this be possible? I have it on a really good source that Jones had never even met Scott Fischer when he wrote the article, and that in fact it was based on a climbing episode Jones had with John Sherman. But Jones and Sherman are friends, and the story was solely meant as put down on pretentious climbers. If the shoe fits...I say go ahead and wear that shoe whoever wants it. Oh yeah, and it would never have occurred to anyone that Jones actually used to drive a Dodge Dart in his teenage years. But, hey, don't let facts get the way of slandering someone I've always said.

My....that was refreshing.

Back to seclusion.

Mr. Jones assures me that he wishes this thread to have a long life.

adios


bsmoot


Jan 18, 2005, 10:08 PM
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I'd like to talk about, in my opinion the two most significant pioneers in Zion climbing.

Jeff Lowe was the first person to raise the standards of sandstone climbing by ascending in apline style, the biggest walls in the park. The S.E buttress of Issac (2000') and The Toad (2,200') on the N face of The Sentinel in 1971. These massive faces were done with old gear, and were both done in only 3 days...VERY fast time for a first ascent!

When I did Moonlight, back in '78 it had a lot less bolts on it. The free climbing on the N. face of Angel's Landing was impressive back then. Jeff climbed at a very high standard.

Dave Jones was responsible for the next jump in standards. In the 80's He consistently climbed routes that had unprotected offwidths and put up the first two A5 routes in Zion...Wages of Sin & Empty Pages. Dave has more first ascents of Zion walls than anyone else...20 or so. When he would get off a wall, he would trun around & head up another one. I think he climbed 5 or 6 walls in a single 5 week trip...most of these were first ascents. Many of these climbs were 5.11 or harder with very few if any bolts placed. He bagged some real classics because he was the only one at the time who was willing to climb wide cracks.

On one of this routes, Rites of Passage ( just left of Shunes Buttress ) He and his partner were in a hurry, so they only put one bolt in at a belay. His partner climbed up a bit and fell...the bolt held...whoa! Last year, I climbed a new route on the Watchman with Dave. He hadn't climbed in 9 months. 300' up he promptly led a long smooth 5.10 offwidth...he's 48 years old.

Some of the classic Jones routes include: Shune's Buttress, The Vigil, Lovelace, Silmaril, Golden Years & Space Shot. When Dave isn't wearing out his partners he works full time as a Geologist...and he's an overall great guy!

It also should be mentioned that standards rose again when John Middendorf & Eric Rasmussen climbed some MAJOR grade VI stuff on Mt. of the Sun, Isaac, Abraham, Lady Mt. & Twin Brothers formations. A lot of amazing stuff has been done recently, but that's not quite history yet.


dmckj


Jan 19, 2005, 7:08 AM
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Well...all I can add is that I admire that Jones guy a heck of a lot.


dangle


Jan 25, 2005, 12:50 PM
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Well I don't know if its at my end but there have been some technical difficulties.

It looks like the mandate consists of one vote.

The Jonesephiles are interesting though. Scott told me he met Dave in October '83. Back then he still resented the way that friends eliminated a lot of the runouts that he had been forced to do making the first ascents. Read the story again. Its Scott alright. Nice cover though, teenage car and Vermin.

Checking the article it does indeed list the year 1980, but began the pattern by post dating Cerberus and Monkeyfinger and it was enhanced as time passed. The Bjornstad guidebook even lists a date along with the year 1978. It also contains a "history" that credits Dave with being one of the chief pioneers of the late seventies. Entirely false.
The irony is that if Dave had been honest with when and how he put routes up he would be greatly more admired.

On "another network" Brian Smoot floated the rumor that Dave led most of the first ascent. I had already soloed as far as the second ladder. Dave pushed that pitch a bit farther same as the last 2 or 3 bolts at the end, but the only full pitch he pioneered was to Earth Orbit. I won't dispute that Dave has onsighted 5.10, but that pitch has been done as a 5.10 and Dave aided it entirely. My point about the photos debunking the 1978 claim will also extend to support my assertions about the leading.

I suppose that since Scott achieved a certain hero status (for the wrong reasons I might add) a denial was called for.

Still it would be a far better show of good sportsmanship for Dave to properly credit Scott for the role he "mistakenly" usurped.

Any more votes out there?


iamthewallress


Jan 25, 2005, 1:21 PM
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A bit of John Middendorf's personal history on the Zion walls can be found in this beautiful slide show:

http://www.bigwalls.net/.../SlideWeb/index.html


iamthewallress


Jan 25, 2005, 1:22 PM
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A bit of John Middendorf's personal history on the Zion walls can be found in this beautiful slide show:

http://www.bigwalls.net/.../SlideWeb/index.html


rockprodigy


Jan 25, 2005, 1:29 PM
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Ahh, I'm starting to realize why nobody has compiled a comprehensive history of zion climbing. Too bad we, as climbers, have let it go so long now that we will never be able to get all sides of the stories.

I'd be interested in the Iron Messiah tale, just because I've always wondered how you rope soloed all those chimneys...must have been sketchy.


iamthewallress


Jan 25, 2005, 1:37 PM
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I just read the rest of the thread. I vote Moon Patrol.


epic_ed


Jan 25, 2005, 1:43 PM
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Ron -- give it a few more days. No one has been online in nearly two weeks due to the server issues. I'll change my vote to Moon Patrol, too.

Ed


sarcat


Jan 25, 2005, 1:51 PM
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I vote for Moon Patrol also.

Great reads BTW.


epic_ed


Jan 25, 2005, 1:53 PM
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Ron -- give it a few more days. No one has been online in nearly two weeks due to the server issues. I'll change my vote to Moon Patrol, too.

Ed


dangle


Jan 25, 2005, 2:54 PM
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Looks like rockprodigy is outvoted, but I'll give him a short response before I start work on "The Tale of Change, MPfa".

On IM after a previous attempt to within 150m of the top I third classed one of the chimney pitches and some of the easier stuff below (using a different start) and had two ropes fixed which I used as a toprope so that I was on the large sloping ledge below the final big dihedral in less than two hours on 4/9/88. The true summit was reached shortly after 14:00, but the descent which still required drilling was complicated by my dropping my figure eight on the first rap. With only modified Ds it took til dark.
Lesson: Carry a few ovals.


arsenalcrater


Jan 25, 2005, 5:29 PM
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Wow! This is a great thread! The John Middendorf slide show was classic. Hey John, are you out there? Are you still guiding the Canyon? As for the history of Zion, great stuff!!! Keep it flowin'!!!


dangle


Jan 25, 2005, 9:44 PM
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Well, its late and after a superlative repast I'm already finishing my fourth glass of cabernet so I beg the reader's latitude. The letters are swimming as I should be, or at least having a jacuzzi. But you see THAT"S the problem. The extremes of environments that among other desert climbs were embodied by Moon Patrol have wimped me out. They've sold me on the folly of hanging tough.
Ofcourse I'll TELL people that seige climbing allows me to take my time and do a good job, but we all know what its like to face 14 or more hours of cold darkness at a lumpy bivy when there are creature comforts to be had by just scampering down a rope. A minor degree of financial security and the attendant trappings closed the deal.

I have become somewhat self-domesticated.

But before turning 30 in '84 I bought my first place located closer to Zion. I guess that the big Navaho walls had a certain mystic regency among the many sandstone areas where I have been fortunate to have explored. In time the value of practical considerations would outweigh vague notions of heroics (hey its the wine talking) but still in my prime I felt the first solo of the Leaning Wall wasn't enough by one of the two routes I'd already put up. No no! It had to be a new line and one push.

OK OK I fixed 90m of rope first. So much for heroics.

I also had a pretty good notion of start and finish thanks to my previous spring's sojourn with the Busman of the Desert, Mike Strassman.
This was before he became famous for the POV videotape of his demise and subsequent resurrection in a snowslide suspiciously self-started.
Watch it Mike. I have the photos from Organasm and can blackmail you too.

Anyway such was my vision that I had not realized that what I was doing was "capsule" style. Silly me. I thought it was just cheating.

So off I go on my adventure in early October with generous provisions for 3 or 4 days. It would be among my twenty or thirty most rewarding solos along with another completed before the month ended.

Now for those that were looking for beta, well you're SOL. That guy was at least right about one thing. Reading glasses.
Yeah I'm on The Big Glisade. But Alzheimers isn't so bad really. You get to meet new people every day. (and forget others...)
But even if I could remember every placement of every aid climb like I could until about '78 such a litany wouldn't be worthy of the effort.

For me such adventures are sought out for their experiential content. In living on the wall I would become attuned to its rhythms. Still in the lingering effects of summer the southwestern orientation of the face had chilly mornings but after baking in the afternoon ambient temperatures could easily top triple digits. The first day I found refuge from the heat in the shade of the bivy ledge hidden by a pillar. The last few hours of light were shaded by the west rim and proved comfortable to resume climbing.

This tactic proved so agreeable that, having enough rope to fix (3) I repeated it the following day and with provisions appearing bountiful yet again.
Well if you get your foot in the door far enough you might as well go in. Day four saw me packin' it up and draggin' it up. That's when momma plaid me for a sucker, and damned if I wasn't too.

It was so easy to suck me in. All it took was a little milder weather. That night on a ledge high on the wall the front came through and by 2:00AM I moved my water inside my flimsy bag to keep it from freezing and bursting. Were it not for the stove I brought the next morning's light would have seen me retreating but the top was close and much of the remaining ground familiar.

Sucker, sucker, sucker!

Topping out I realized that it was too late to complete the descent but I split the gear into two loads and headed towards the first rappel with load one. I refer to it as such because I wasn't thinking ahead and considering all the possibilities. As I descended the clouds moved in but I crossed the exposed slab at the bottom of the scramble.
As I began to return for the second load my potential error dawned on me. The second load contained the ropes I should have fixed across the slab already.

The skies darkened more and I began to race. If I didn't get my second load across the slab to where I left my food, water and bivy gear before it rained....

After twenty desperate minutes I made it by seconds. Big droplets began to slap into the slab as I was halfway across gasping with pulse pounding. They were the start of what would leave the slab a deathtrap for days.
The bivy that night after the first rap was wet and uncomfortable.

But it could have been much much worse.


dangle


Jan 26, 2005, 5:54 AM
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Jeez! Plaid???

I must've put on a kilt for that fifth glass.

Now I remember why that guy called Pey fictitious. Apparently Jones also claimed a FA of the route Mark and I put up, Catharsis, in the same guidebook. Its not surprising that our contribution to the Fang Wall (AKA Lovelace) was ignored as well. I didn't do much but I put up the pitch that turned back Jones on his solo attempt when Mark and I recovered his gear and ropes for him. When he "completed" the route he went less than a ropelength higher.

Well besides the Alzheimer's I mentioned there's also Waldheimer's (inability to remember your Nazi past) and Jonesheimer's (inability to recall FA details).

The cure is apparently still in the research phase.


dmckj


Jan 27, 2005, 8:21 AM
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Although I'm not inclined to lower myself, Mr. Olevsky's willingness to slander others in open forums deserves some sort of rebuttal because the poison of his comments should not pose as 'history'.

First, other than the 1984 article in Climbing I have never provided anything other than copies of my original topos for anyone's guide, period. I never promoted my routes. I have always simply provided topos to people who asked. All the topos I submitted were original with correct first ascent dates and personnel. No guidebook author ever ran copy by me for final proof. Any errors in their guides are the fault of the authors. Mr. Olevsky's assertion that I falsified history is nothing more than pathetic tripe. The only thing that matters is the truth, something Mr. O appears to have a hard time with by his own admission. He is the one who has demeaned Zion climbing history by consistently making up stories about who he did the first ascent of Spaceshot with. That's his cross to bear (anyone catch the irony in that one?), not mine.

Second, Mr. O is only as credible as his arguments. Let's review a few, shall we? As this thread earlier pointed out, Ron got it WRONG about the first ascent date claimed in the 84 Climbing article, and he got it WRONG about the article 'BG Goes to Zion'. I should know, as I wrote the article. As this thread earlier noted, this was based on a real event with John Sherman and I. Apparently, Mr. O can't grasp the fact that it was a put down of pretentious climbers in general. Now, gentle thread reader, why might that be?

Moving on, let's take his most recent comments, on 'Lovelace' or 'The Fang Wall' as it is also known. I put most of that route up with Mark Pey. Mark, in his finest moments, was an average climber, but he was a friend of mine, so I dragged him up a bunch of routes, most of which were over his head. We worked our way up Lovelace, and then Mark, in fairly classic form, crapped out on me. He wanted a day off. I didn't, and went up and soloed and fixed one more full pitch, the one that takes you to the base of the chimney. Mark had sworn to me he would be ready to climb the next day. By chance, a major snowstorm blew in the next day. Being one of those types of people who actually works for a living, that day was the last I could climb because I had to go back to work. So I went to Mark and said, 'O.K., I have to leave tomorrow so we have two options: 1) pull all the gear right now in the bad weather, or 2) leave the gear up, allowing you to finish the route'. I thought I was being gracious to offer to Mark to finish the route without me. Instead, Mark whined about his options as if he were put upon. I said 'Fine, let's go get the gear right now'. Being a veteran of climbing under the worst of winter conditions in alpine settings for many years the thought of simply cleaning gear didn't particularly bother me. But it bothered Mark. So Mark grudgingly said he would work the route in my absence. Now...imagine this. Mark invites Mr. O to finish the route. They have ropes fixed ALL THE WAY TO WITHIN ONE AND A HALF PITCHES FROM THE TOP. So Mark and Mr. O ascend all the fixed ropes and manage to climb only ONE short pitch in their 'effort', leaving the last pitch unclimbed. Mr. O did an admirable job in putting up the chimney pitch and putting in drilled angles on lead. Contrary to what he says, I gave him FULL credit on my original topo for putting up that pitch (look it up). Ultimately, I had to reclimb the entire route and bagged the first ascent with Gary Gray. Although Mr. O deserves credit for putting up that pitch, it is a sad commentary to their abilities that he and Mark didn't finish it. And that is a fact. Mr. O didn't 'retrieve' my gear for me. He failed at completing a route I graciously allowed him to go up on and finish.

And speaking of Zion history, I would suggest asking Mr. O some questions about the following......

What was the nature of the reported rappel previewing and anchor fixing on Prodigal Son?
Do the readers know that Prodigal Son is really a variation on the 'rearranged' line of Archangel? Why doesn't Ron talk about that earlier route?
Could Ron describe for thread readers the visionary nature and boldness of the first ascent of 'Crimes Against Nature'? It would be a fascinating story to hear in his own words, perhaps described move by move.
Could Ron explain why he told me a route had already been completed by the Smoots in the Shuntavi Butte area when, in fact, it hadn't? Or was that just another 'prevarication'? John Middendorff and I subsequently did that climb (Mouse Turds in the Oven).
Finally, when I did the first ascent of Spaceshot with Ron he told me that someone had previously asked him whether it had already been climbed. He told me that he 'prevaricated', and had said yes it had been. It hadn't been.

Does anyone see a pattern here?

Finally, the matter of the slander against the owner of the climbing shop in Springdale. For the record, the owner is a GREAT guy, and I hope any and all of you will support his store in Springdale. He deserves the support.

Sincerely
David Jones


tenesmus


Jan 27, 2005, 8:47 AM
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Dang.


Take that.


This is really fun - you guys need to keep it going. I think what makes History cool is the personalities. Ya'll got personality.

Its like reading that just about everyone who ever worked with John Wesley Powell said he was a total jerk and an embellisher(sp?). Yet, we all remember him.

What did you say about rope soloing the chimneys on Iron Messaih? I need to hear more about that.


dangle


Jan 27, 2005, 10:13 AM
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Wow!

Dave I knew it was you but figured I'd play along.

So, you got yourself a shotgun! Well congratulations. Looks like one of those single shot break open ten gauges if I'm not mistaken. Must have a pretty short barrel to wing so many birds at once.

Well I still work a little too and have business to take care of at OR, but I'll give this the two seconds it deserves.

I first logged on using the third person to flush out someone who was posing as a third party to float a cover story for a hate crime. Using a contraction of Drilled Angle I wasn't trying hard to hide and even took the opportunity to mock myself by exagerating the mythology.

I never said anything about what a heck of a guy I was. Really Dave! That is so pitiful!

I don't think that condemnation of lies by guidebook authors constitutes slander especially when the person it appears to benefit doesn't display the sense of honor to give credit where credit is due. What have you done to set the record straight on being credited as a pioneer of the late seventies? I met you on 12/6/79 and you wanted to know about Zion walls.

You must have had a huge three weeks there sport.

What about Catharsis. Did you set the record straight on that or were you happy to let that one slide your way too. I'm happy to say that Ammon agrees with me and Bird and Erikson and so many others that true free climbers don't use sling belays. No doubt you disagree but even so you didn't free it or put it up.
As for my continual lies about Space Shot, well there was only one. I copped to it first. And it came from the very list from Climbing that you cite as evidence! What were your vanity plates again?

A sad commentary on my abilities?
Hey YOU don't need to say it. I say it myself repeatedly. For me one of life's great jokes is that so many climbers treat me like some superclimber when my skills are so pedestrian. I'm weak. I'm lazy. But I have an eye for a good line and in the unlikely event I succeed on it then it will probably go at a reasonable grade and WHAMMO instant trade route.
Why so many truly great climbers have tied onto a rope with me and continue to do so is beyond my explanation but not my appreciation.
I'm talking about the kind of superclimbers only one of us is pretending to be.

As for the day you speak so knowingly of (where were you again) after more than a week of storms the approach was complicated by all the snow yet clutzy me and Mark managed to recover your gear for you and push the line a bit. Each of the first three drilled angles in the back-and-foot chimney took an agonizingly long effort, but of course now one just goes


clip.


Then there was the epic of recrossing the creek swollen with the flood of snowmelt and all your gear. No doubt a person with your skills would have merely floated across using a balloon filled with all the hot air he could spout.
There's your sad freakin commentary.

And Prodigal Sun (not Son):
I have tried to get people to understand how this route evolved but nobody seems very interested. They just want to tick it off their list. Well I hope this makes you feel all warm and fuzzy.

The following is the TRUE STORY of Prodigal Sun.
I built an enormous scaffolding and used multiple compressors and drills along with many chisels to entirely craft the route from blank rock. My work force was serviced by prostitutes from a Nevada brothel in a trailer that was held nearby using a crane. I managed to distract the park service from this effort the entire time by deliberately backing up a toilet in the visitor center.

As for Shuntavi. I don't know what you're smoking but I only smoke the good stuff man. The only routes I know of are Mark's and Bill's. WTF are you talking about?

And the worst for last. If this owner is such a great guy then maybe HE would care to explain why he stated for the record that having a sign with swastikas on his property facing the home of a jew was his "first constitutional right".

I say boycott Zion Rock and Mountain Guides.


dangle


Jan 27, 2005, 1:38 PM
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Hey Tennis Mouse, you haven't been in Dave's oven have you?
There's a local climber I'm friends with, Justin Powell.
He's a good sort and, yes, he's related.


ammon


Jan 27, 2005, 2:25 PM
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Alright!!!!

Everyone, lower your weapons!!!


Shake hands……






and just walk away.


tenesmus


Jan 27, 2005, 2:25 PM
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In reply to:
Hey Tennis Mouse, you haven't been in Dave's oven have you?
There's a local climber I'm friends with, Justin Powell.
He's a good sort and, yes, he's related.

huh? dave's oven? Know lots of Justin's, but not necessarily this one. Loads of climbers in this town. I'm just another anonymous slc climber.




I just checked out that Middledorf slideshow and its super fun. This slide was particularly interesting: http://www.bigwalls.net/climb/SlideWeb/slides/130.html

I used to guide in the grand canyon (hence the name Tenesmus)and know of several killer walls there that are extremely interesting to me. Does anyone know about the safety of gear in Vishnu Schist? I'd heard its scary, but didn't know of anyone else doing stuff there.


dangle


Jan 27, 2005, 6:28 PM
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Tenesmus, don't understand the reference.

Ammon, thanks for the PM but they've been killing off the compliant, the timid or the merely poor fighters among my people for more than five thousand years. Just what do you think that's going to leave?


epic_ed


Jan 27, 2005, 7:36 PM
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Tenesmus = "the constant feeling of the need to empty the bowel, accompanied by pain, cramping, and involuntary straining efforts."

You'd enjoy wall climbing, too, if you haven't ventured that far into this game.

Ed


dangle


Jan 27, 2005, 7:56 PM
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Uhg! Don't drink the water.


dangle


Jan 27, 2005, 10:38 PM
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Uh oh. Two hours, a hundred views and no posts. Looks like we scared 'em off.

OK make it a vote for next week's account.

Sunlight

T-bird

Iron Messiah

another tirade

other


lambone


Jan 27, 2005, 11:04 PM
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uhhh...I just wan't to say for the record...that I have nothing to do with this recent shoot out.

dangle, I think your stories are great...wether they are true or not.

cheers


mr_dirt


Jan 27, 2005, 11:12 PM
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Hi, I got to say this is a great thread! I haven’t heard some of these names since I lived in Kanab tending sheep and driving a bus between Zion from Vegas. I cant believe all this was going on while I was in the area, neat. Hope I don’t kill this thing.


epic_ed


Jan 28, 2005, 8:14 AM
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My vote is for another tirade. Mix in a nut-kicking contest, too.

Actually, Iron Messiah would be the next logical progression since we had a couple of requests for that last week.

Ed


bandycoot


Jan 28, 2005, 8:44 AM
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What a great thread... :lol: The stories are very entertaining as is the flamefest. It's got the best of both worlds!


dmckj


Jan 28, 2005, 9:03 AM
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As many of you are reading this thread for some interesting tales, I'll throw in one....

This falls into the category of 'stupid climber tricks'.

We've all heard of incredibly stupid tourists falling off the waterfalls in Zion....right?....read on....

Several years ago I invited my good friends from Washington state, Phil (father) and Jon (son) Gleason to come visit Zion. I had a few good routes picked out...

My first goal was to knock off a another new line on the Watchman. About half way up the cliff, right of center, is an unmatched splitter that had been beckoning me for years. So up we went. In my typical I-prefer-to-fix-high-give-the-route-a-chance-get-the-adrenalin-rush-of-going-for-it-and-be-back-drinking-beers-at-night-rather-than-bivy style, we fixed several pitches with the intent of simply pushing off and going for the top. As we descended, several peregrines darted in and out of the cliffs above us....

We took a rest day the next day and wandered into the visitor's center where....to my shock and feelings of ultimate stupidity....I saw the BIG information board with the statement that the Watchman was CLOSED to climbing for peregrine nesting. Geez.... What to do now? Go for it, or bail. Sheepishly, we went up and pulled out ropes. (aside: In part this was because a few years before Conrad Anker and I had set off fireworks from the midway ledge bivy on the first complete ascent of 'The Vigil'. As it turns out, the tourists in the campgrounds thought we were signaling for a rescue, as did the numbnuts in the Park, until finally Brad Quinn told them it was 'O.K.'. Upon our descent we found out about the commotion and did the honorable thing: turned ourselves in to the Park. Instead of rewarding our honesty they threw the ticket book at us and we each paid about $100 plus worth of fines -- hence the name I gave to VIOLATION LEDGE on The Vigil).

Anway, because of the Peregrine incident I had the perfect name for the route-to-be on the Watchman.....'Hue and Cry'. I later completed that route with Glen Rink (aka one of the banditos) from Flagstaff.

Back to the storyline....... So now the Gleasons and I were without a route. Per chance we found a good line on the right side of Red Arch Mountain. All free but about 5 feet on the first ascent we named it 'Bits and Pieces'. Brad Quinn freed those remaining 5 feet on the 2nd ascent. Good route, and virtually unknown.

Resting up from our little adventure, I went off alone to my favorite swimming hole, maybe hoping to run into a few nubile cuties along the way (it happens!). Found the swimming hole, but, alas, no cuties. After soaking for a while in the refreshingly cool waters I decided I had had enough, being too A-type to really hang loose for too long. Now this particular swimming hole is acesssed by a steep move up or down some shaley beds just above the pool. Going up, I noticed the beds were really deteriorating from repeated access. I put my sandal up on the lip of these beds and recall thinking 'you know, this lip might just break at some point'. But that was O.K. because it would send me splashing back into the pool. So I mantled up and, sure enough, the lip under my foot failed and sent me falling back into the pool. As I fell I was half-chuckling at myself, but wasn't concerned because at worst I would just go for a second bath. I wish!! Instead, by virtue of the small arc of my fall I landed on the OUTER lip of the swimming hole which was a slimey slippery algae coated slope. The problem was that this slope points AWAY from the swimming hole down at.......A WATERFALL. Upon landing, I still didn't 'get it', but noticed I started to imperceptibly slide the WRONG WAY. Once I realized what was going on I lurched out for something to hold onto but the slope was smooth as a baby's ass. It then hit me that I was GOING TO GO OVER THE WATERFALL! This bothered me just a tad. Thankfully, as I went over the lip I had the presence of mind to swing my feet around to see where the hell I was going to land. Luckily for me, there was a pool at the base of the waterfall (about 25 vertical feet), and as I went into the vertical drop I pushed off ever so gently so as to land squarely in it. As I flew through space I thought 'I did it!'. Well, almost. in the last split second of my descent my head hit HARD on a rock behind me. Ouch!

Incredibly, I landed feet up in the pool, hitting the sand bottom and remaining standing. But I didn't have a clue as to where I was. I knew I had fallen and hit my head, but that was it. I put my hand to my head, felt an open wound, and the profuse amount of blood coming out of it. But I didn't know where to go. I had enough of a concussion that I had lost sense (not that I had that much to begin with). All I needed to do was walk downstream about 3 minutes, but in my dazed state I literally started climbing the steep side walls to get out of the canyon. Confused! I finally staggered onto the road and about 3 cars slammed on there brakes when they saw me, like I was some creature from the black lagoon. A guy got out of his car and asked 'are you O.K.?', to which I responded 'well...yeah, I think so..why?'. I then looked down at my T-shirt to see that it was soaked with blood. Hmmm, I thought, this isn't good.

Anyway, they took me to the local clinic, and then by ambulance to the hospital in St. George. I recall explaining what had happened and pleadingly hoping the cute nurse wouldn't concluded I was another-stupid-tourist-who-fell-off-a-waterfall. Didn't work, she clearly put me into the loser-who-deserves-it category. Bummer.

So, after my CAT scan in St. George, my buddies came down and picked me up. Phil Gleason (the one of Yosemite photo fame climbing the offwidth '96D' or whatever it is) is a nurse, and this was lucky for me because the doctors said I had to be woken up several times a night to be sure I wasn't going to go into a bleeding induced coma or further trauma. I didn't.

But, hey, I was in Zion to climb, not fall off waterfalls. On my only recovery day the Gleasons went off to climb Shunes Buttress. Meanwhile, the next day I bumped into yet another guy from Washington and recruited him to put up the first ascent of 'Fourplay', a 5-star crack along the north wall of the Grotto. I led the first pitch and felt NAUSEATED. Started leading the second pitch and felt even more nausea. Funny thing about them head wounds! Geoff Scherer finished the second pitch.

Still feeling 'weird' I nevertheless didn't want to waste any more time. Geoff and I started up 'Rites of Passage' a new line just left of Shune's. It is an imposing and difficult line, but I was climbing really well at the time. Feeling spaced out most of the way, we nevertheless persevered. Most of the time I felt like I was drugged, and at times thought to myself 'what the f%&k are you doing up here with a concussion you idiot!!!'. After working through some cruxy sections I found myself face-to-face on the lead with a long run-out face on friable edges. With some hooks I managed to drill about 3-4 bolts in row on lead and then lower down and free-climb through each section. Exhausted (mentally and physically as we were going for the top and were running out of time), I finally got to a small dish ledge with NO good pro for a belay. I slapped a big friend in at my feet (essentially worthless), stood up, and drilled one last bolt for the belay. We were in a hurry, and I had no energy or time for another bolt. Geoff came to the ledge. His turn to lead. I admonished him 'Geoff, whatever you do, don't fall, because I've only got one bolt in and this piece at my feet is bogus'. As luck would have it, the start off of the next pitch was a 25 foot diagonal up to the right with NO PRO and very steep. It was obviously only about 5.8 at most, but airy and scary and, well....in Zion.

Geoff lead off from the belay, slowly, steadily, and got most of the way across the face to the 'thank God' cracks. Then, it happened. A hold broke and he wasn't stable enough to hang on and took a screaming WHIPPER pendulum across the entire face and ending up below me about 20 feet from the belay. I was FREAKED!! He fell directly onto the belay. One bolt between us and two dead climbers.

Geoff was badly shaken and I was the walking wounded. Shit! With the reality of 'now or never' I took over the lead. It is amazing how when one has to do something it provides lots of energy and focus. The pitch was fairly long and sustained, but I recall it flowed as if I had done it before. This was only because i HAD TO do it. Several unusual and spectacular pitches later we topped out and rappeled Shunes.

Before that, I had never really thought of myself as a crazy, or maybe crazed, climber. Looking back, maybe the only reason we got up that route was because of my head injury and not in spite of it.

End of Tale.


flamer


Jan 28, 2005, 10:04 AM
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In reply to:
Several years ago I invited my good friends from Washington state, Phil (father) and Jon (son) Gleason to come visit Zion.

Phil and Jon are both very good friends of mine. They have talked about this trip....but being the humble guys they are didn't include all the you details...it's cool to hear your tale. I'll have to give them a call...and tell them to check this out. I remember Jon telling me about some burly wide cracks you guys climbed??

Oh and the picture of Phil you're talking about is the route 10:96 and it was taken by Galen Rowell. I always get a big kick out of it...it seems to turn up every few years in a mag. and the best part is....Phil is falling!!! He catch's all kinds of hell for it..."Hey Phil, saw that full page pic. of you in climbing, too bad you were falling!!".
A side note on that climb, Phil was actually trying for the first ascent when that photo was taken....he then made the mistake of telling a prolific Yose. climber about it...who then "stole" the route from him...anybody know who that guy was????

josh


epic_ed


Jan 28, 2005, 11:11 AM
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Nice bit of info, Dave. It would be great if I had some orientation about where these routes are actually located in Zion. I'll have to spend some time with the topo book next time I'm up there.

Flamer -- I guessing the Fish?

Ed


dmckj


Jan 28, 2005, 11:37 AM
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Route locations???

Easy...

Bits and Pieces: Start at right base of Red Arch Mountain. Rap anchors are all fixed and the descent is much easier than Shunes. Find topo in Park book...if not there...get in touch with me.

The Vigil: Left third of the Watchman, starting up beautiful white faces. See the recent photo spread on this in Climbing from a little over a year ago. Outstanding free route. One of the best. Rappel route.

Hue and Cry: Right-center of Watchman, maybe 100 yards to right from Silmaril start. Look for outrageous splitter (visible from the Mean Bean) about mid-cliff. This is a 155 foot 5.11a thin hands crack. Descend back side.

Rites of Passage: Start about 200 feet left of Shune's at vertical right-facing shallow corners with wide cracks right off deck (Biggish pine tree just below base). Don't let the wide cracks freak you, as the climbing is outstanding. Descend Shunes.


iamthewallress


Jan 28, 2005, 11:46 AM
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Bridwell...Do I win a beer? :wink:


flamer


Jan 28, 2005, 12:07 PM
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Bridwell...Do I win a beer? :wink:

That's the guy! Did you look it up???

I'll be in the valley this spring for a quick week...you can collect your beer then.

josh


dmckj


Jan 28, 2005, 12:18 PM
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Great to hear of the history of Phil Gleason. He is a great guy. I remember that photo of him in the offwidth, and when I actually met 'the guy in the photo' I felt I was in the presence of greatness (hee hee, then I got to know him). In my book, that may be the best single Yosemite climbing photo ever. I mean you can taste the suffering...

Off-theme, if you talk to Phil get him to recount the tale of when we climbed the North Ridge of Slesse in a full-on white-out snowstorm for the last 5 pitches. Had a memorable bivy at the base of the descent (and, no I don't mean memorable in that sense...after all I'm still a virgin and Phil is a married man...and come to think of it, so am I!).

ZION AID CLIMBING (o.k. with that I've kept this thread pertinent)


flamer


Jan 28, 2005, 12:25 PM
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In reply to:
Off-theme, if you talk to Phil get him to recount the tale of when we climbed the North Ridge of Slesse in a full-on white-out snowstorm for the last 5 pitches. Had a memorable bivy at the base of the descent (and, no I don't mean memorable in that sense...after all I'm still a virgin and Phil is a married man...and come to think of it, so am I!).


Will do!! One more quick side note.....Phil and Jon are the brother and nephew of The late great Paul Gleason. Paul was the subject of John Long's recent article in climbing titled "The Real Deal"....The Gleason's are an amazing family climbing and otherwise. If you got plucked off something in the valley last year(or do this year) chance's are very good that Jon was/will be the guy getting lowered in to save your sorry ass!

Ok back on topic......ZION!!!!!!!

josh


dmckj


Jan 28, 2005, 12:29 PM
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Hey...how did you know my ass was 'sorry'. Oh, yeah, Phil must have told you..

truth hurts!


iamthewallress


Jan 28, 2005, 12:38 PM
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In reply to:
In reply to:
Bridwell...Do I win a beer? :wink:

That's the guy! Did you look it up???

Sadly...no. Sometimes at night on trips when the only diversion around is the guidebook we play, "Who was the FA?" or "Which formation is this route on?" Good times. I'm getting ready for the Yosemite edition of Win Ben Stein's Money.

I'll look for you in the spring!

And to the brawling duo...I'm enjoying your stories. If I'm not commenting, it's that I'm just enjoying the reads.


rockprodigy


Jan 28, 2005, 12:49 PM
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Could someone tell me the story behind the "Escher Memorial Crack" on Golden Years.


rockprodigy


Jan 28, 2005, 12:49 PM
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Could someone tell me the story behind the "Escher Memorial Crack" on Golden Years.


rockprodigy


Jan 28, 2005, 12:50 PM
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Could someone tell me the story behind the "Escher Memorial Crack" on Golden Years.


rockprodigy


Jan 28, 2005, 12:51 PM
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Could someone tell me the story behind the "Escher Memorial Crack" on Golden Years.


rockprodigy


Jan 28, 2005, 12:54 PM
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Could someone tell me the story behind the "Escher Memorial Crack" on Golden Years.


dmckj


Jan 28, 2005, 1:37 PM
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Escher memorial crack on Golden Years.....

From the belay below it, looking up at that curving crack pitch gave me a bizarre sense of a twisted 3-D. It just didn't look 'right' somehow, like something out of an M.C. Escher pen sketch. Hence the name.....


rockprodigy


Jan 28, 2005, 2:31 PM
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Aha...that's a much better story than I hypothesized. I figured it was a memorial to a fallen comrade...the true story is much happier.


dangle


Jan 28, 2005, 2:37 PM
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Ah yes, Zion aid.

Since there is little dispute at this point that even "clean" climbing causes degradation what can we agree on about the preservation of such routes for future generations? This is a history thread, but history is our only guide.


the_dude


Jan 28, 2005, 11:15 PM
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I'd like to hear a little about Archangel. I've seen the vague picture of it in the bjornstad guide. How many ascents has that route even seen? To me it sounds like a cool line up the wall.
cheers


dmckj


Jan 29, 2005, 9:57 AM
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Dangle posits a conflicted question: How does one preserve the popular routes?

Answer: One doesn't.

I do a lot of caving, and caves are, for the most part, a lot more fragile than climbs. How do you preserve caves??? You don't tell anyone about them. That keeps people out. The cave is preserved. Simple stuff, this.

If one 'constructs' or 'dumbs down' (Prodial Son being case-in-point) a route to make it accessible to the masses....well, what the heck do you expect? The masses will come. One reaches the ridiculous point where, as in Vietnam, 'we had to destroy the route to save it'. Sure, bolt ladders protect cracks, but then what's the point of climbing?

Hard routes, ones that aren't dumbed down, protect themselves. For example, Empty Pages on Angels Landing or Wages of Sin on the Forbidden Wall are not prone to being destroyed because most folks are rightfully afraid of going up on them. That's great!

No one is 'owed' the right to do a climb, nor to have the climb dumbed-down to their level. This promotes stupid climbing and gives many folks the delusion that they are big-wall capable when, in fact, they really aren't. At least not in Zion.

This point of view isn't, as is commonly implied, elitist. To quote Bob Dylan...'things are what they are, and ain't what they ain't'. Let's leave what is the way it is and minimize the efforts to destroy a route to 'save it'.

Some dumbed-down routes are fine. (God knows we have enough sport climbs of this nature.) But some is more than enough. The challenge of the remaining routes serves as their own best protection.

D


rocknroll


Jan 29, 2005, 7:13 PM
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Ron Olevesky and Dave Jones on the same forum? Wow! It's been 21 years since I, known as Devo in the 1982 Climbing Magazine Zion article by Gary Gray, last saw Ron Olevesky and Dave Jones in the same campsite. I had come up from Tucson with Dave and quickly found Ron and hung out with him for a few days. At that time, Ron lived in a cinder-block bunker in Washington whose only windows were slits big enough to stick a rifle out, And Ron had plenty of rifles, handguns, dynamite and other tools of the trade of a self-proclaimed survivalist. After tiring of Ron's incessant babbling (he can speak intelligently on just about any subject) I asked him to drive me to Zion to meet Dave. That was like pulling teeth as he bantered me and called me names for not offering to pay for gas. We got almost to Springdale and Ron pulled up onto the Rockville bench, pulled his portable TV out and declared we weren't going any further that night. I think we might have done Organasm the following day. We went looking for Jonesy in the Park and saw him climbing The Fang. Ron produced a .45 from the glovebox and aimed it directly at Dave leading a pitch. His fingers quivered as he tightened them around the trigger. "Ron!" I yelled, "No!" Ron dropped the gun with a sigh of frustration. "I had my eyes on that line!" Ron whined and slumped into the car, He stuffed himself a bowl of weed and he wouldn't even share; he wanted me to pay for that, too. Later that night we went to the campground to look for Jonesy.

As Ron entered the campsite, Jonesy made it clear to Ron that he was not welcomed. I never really knew what their beef was, but I guessed it had to do more with Ron's attention getting behaivior than a single event. Dave made it clear to me that if I was going to hang out with Ron, I would not be welcomed in the campsite either. I quickly grapped my gear from Ron's Bronco and huddled next to the fire. "Well, Ron..." asked Jonsey, "are you leaving.'

"This is federal property and I have every right to be here." countered Ron

"It may be federal property Ron, but I rented it from the government for the night so I am telling you to leave!"

"I'm not going."Ron said, "I have a fiscal matter to discuss with you."

"Do I have to call the ranger, Offenseky?" asked Dave.

"Remeber last winter when you called me collect to see what the skiing conditions were like at Brianhead?"

'Yeah. What about it--No, you aren't asking me to pay you back for that call, are you? How much could it be a couple of bucks?" Dave asked.

Ron reaches into his breast pocket and whips out his phone bill. "It was exactly five dollars and twenty-eight cents. See?"

"No. No, Ron. I'm not paying your phone bill, I'm not even talking to you." Dave became heated, a rarety for this calm and cool climber. "Get out of this campsite! George, go get the Ranger." Dave began to walk towards Ron.

"Now, Dave...you better stop right there. Are you telling me you will not pay this bill?'

Dave started yelling so loudly the echo bounced off the Watchmen AND the West Temple. " I'M NOT PAYING FOR THE CALL!!!!! NOW GET THE F___ OUT OF HERE BEFORE I HAVE YOU ARRESTED."

And Ron, the bane of the Park Service Law Enforcement in Zion, hopped in his Bronco and drove away.

The next day, Dave and I went to climb Headache crack up by the tunnels. As we climbed a Washington County Sheriff cruiser parked in the pullout and watched us. When we arrived back at the cars it was very evident he wanted to talk to Dave.

"Dave Jones? You are bering served a civil suit on behalf of Mr. Ronald Olevsky and are expected to appear in coutrt at 9am on Wednesday."

"What?' Dave grabbed the summons and thumbed through the pages. "It's for the phone call!"

Will Ron win the suit? Will he take Justice into his own hands? Or will Dave counter sue for emotional turmoil? Stay Tuned to this thread as Devo and Ron go to climb Timbertop Mesa during the court date.


(You can publish those pictures of Organasm now Ron)


dmckj


Jan 29, 2005, 7:49 PM
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Devo.....how the hell are you??? Long time no see. Last time we climbed was Running Sacred??? Glad to see you're still kicking!

Your story line is pretty good, pretty close to the truth, but there are a few twists....

I wasn't pissed off at Ron at all (or not yet anyway). It was my buddy George Allen who was pissed off at you because he said you owed him money. So George whines to me about you and I say 'I don't care, you guys settle it yourselves', so he then directly whines at you. Ron arrives and finds out, apparently confused, that you have been hassled for money. Ron, in his infinite wisdom, presumes it is me doing the hassling (gee, wrong again!), and asks me to pay him for a $3.25 collect phone call. Yeah, I made the collect call (he told me to), and the next day he and I drove in my truck to Brian Head to go skiiing, the expenses for which he didn't pay a penny, nor did I ask. So much for being a nice guy. Won't happen again.

Anway, Ron is upset that you are being hassled for money (by George) and comes storming up to me asking for his $3.25 (this really is for real gentle thread readers, I couldn't make something this stupid up). How I got in the middle of it is still an enigma. Sick and tired of Ron's perpetual bullshit I offered to pay him IF HE SHOWED ME THE FRIGGIN RECEIPT. Then I told him to get his ass out of our campsite. Next thing you know Ron is dragging me into court saying he was deceived into accepting my collect phone call because he thought I was Warren Harding, which you, Devo, and my good friend George Allen, Marcus, etc, etc, all saw go down in person.

The judge told me I could file a lawsuit against Olvesky for frivolous prosecution, but I declined. Next time I won't decline.

Would the thread readers like to hear Dangle's explanation of how that all went down??

Now THAT is interesting history. No doubt Dangle will be hush on this one, eh Dangle?

Even after all this time I would forgive the guy if he offered a sincere apology and sent back the check. (Yes, gentle thread reader, he convinced the judge that I conned him....hard to imagine isn't it -- of course it didn't hurt that he lived in Washington County). That would be all it would take and I would at least consider that the guy has a shred of dignity left.

Poll: How many thread readers think that Ron should fess up and pay up and make kissy kissy and bury the hatchet??

Can't wait to see the response to this one!


bsmoot


Jan 29, 2005, 10:31 PM
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I don't know about the kissy kissy, but I DO think he should pay the $3.25 plus court costs.


dmckj


Jan 29, 2005, 11:34 PM
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Call me selfish....but I think there should be a little gratuitous sex out of this....


rocknroll


Jan 30, 2005, 7:09 AM
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Well Dave, I guess you told the rest of the story, which has spared me from telling about dropping the rack on timbertop mesa. But I got a lot of other good ones. Like the time Ron almost killed me and a bus load of tourists in one day - intentionally.

That money theme must have run throughout my days in Zion. What can I say, I was a poor college student that didn't have wealthy parents. dividends and relatives in Manhattan. I didn't have an inheritance that would allow me to live out my days near Zion getting chased by the cops, being a general pain in everone's side and acting as if I was the only authority in the world on aid climbing. No I was the Busman of the Desert and relied on guys like that to pick me up at the bus station and take me climbing.

"Put the aseptics in the Fass Nord and haul them on the B rope"

Now if Ron yelled that to you after you finished leading a pitch, would you know what to do? Any guesses on what he meant by that statement?

(Still waiting for those pictures Ron.)


ambler


Jan 30, 2005, 7:55 AM
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Damn, best thread I've read in a while,


dmckj


Jan 30, 2005, 8:30 AM
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Rocknroller (aka Devo)

Please....don't stop. I'm all atwitter for the continuing saga of the soap opera 'As The Summons is Served', or maybe 'As the Bullet Spirals', or perhaps 'As the Rack Falls from TimberTop'. Remember, you have a public of gentle thread readers who crave, no DEMAND more.....

You know, I do recall now leading a certain pitch on Lovelace and having this weird feeling that a bullet was going to puncture a vital organ. I wrote it off to constipation from not enough coffee.

Dangle will be up for nights now, or maybe he'll just change threads...

I'm still waiting for the poll results...


skinner


Jan 30, 2005, 2:58 PM
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I agree, best (most entertaining) thread I have read. I was up until 3:00 AM reading it.
I remember reading about the area, the climbers, and their FA's growing up as a young climber. But I never read any of this in the magazines of the time!

    I think we should rename the thread;

      "Mystery, Intrigue, and The Dark Secrets of Zion Revealed"

        Sounds like a headline right off of the Enquirer :lol:


        dmckj


        Jan 30, 2005, 3:23 PM
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        If this becomes a movie, pilot TV series, or docudrama I am gong to insist on only two things:

        My part is to be played by Brad Pitt...

        Dangle's part by Danny Devito...


        skinner


        Jan 30, 2005, 4:46 PM
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        I think that you have all the makings of a Big Screen Blockbuster here;

          -controversy-
          -mystery-
          -intrigue-
          -drama-

        but I think the Hollywood writers will probably change the "$3.25" phone bill, to $300,00.00 in gold bouillon.

          *side note*
          Brad Pit isn't all that popular these days (especially with the ladies)
          I would suggest Clint Eastwood, but you may want to go for someone a little younger and more dashing.. Val Kilmer?, Tom Cruise?


          rocknroll


          Jan 30, 2005, 9:20 PM
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          Danny Devito as Ron!! lol You got me rolling on that one.

          Well here it is. Ron and I started up a first ascent in the Temple of Sinawava, down stream from Monkey finger. It's May, and it's hot. We get a late start so we are in the shade. We hit this beautiful ledge filled with ferns and mosses, a veritable garden where you might expect the wee people to dance in the moonlight. It's perfect. Don't even need an ensolite pad. What does Ron do? He starts hacking away at the vegitation (probably had been growing there for hundreds of years) to get to the sand underneath. Well, not exactly environmentally sound, but I figured he's the Zion Master, this must be standard practice -just like those crazy drilled angles.

          We are baked out of our sleeping bags by the sun and are overjoyed to see a chimney a couple of pitches up - The Herbert Hoover Chimney. It got its name for the "hoovering" we were doing in there while waiting out the sun. Ron produced a small bindle of cocaine. He claimed he got it from the pop star Robbie Dupree, who had a minor hit at the time. Well, we used a sawed off knife blade to put out some lines (and he didn't even charge me for it!) and start hoovering the stuff up our noses. And then we waited. And waited. And nothing happened. Not even a tingle.

          It was so hot we were baking inside that chimney. Must have been at least a hundred. Well, we're sweaty and bored and suddenly Ron perks up.

          "Watch this."

          He grabs a basketball sized boulder and climbs out to the end of the chimney. Then I see it. One of those open air 'green dragon' tours. You know, with the tour guide sitting backwards talking into a microphone. I can here his oration

          "And in recent years, climbers have taken to these cliffs, soimetimes spending the nights in hammocks, lashed to the side of the rock..."

          "Goddamn Tourists." Ron mumbles and heaves the boulder out towards the road. I thought that he was going to just scare them, but I'll be damned if that tour and that boulder are heading for sudden impact, just about at the location of where the tour guide sits.

          "Someone's gonna get killed" I say and then yell. ' ROCK!"

          All heads on the tour turn upwards as the bomb speeds towards it mark. The driver slams on the brakes and the rock explodes in an orange starburst on the road a few feet from the front of the vehicle.

          We duck back in the chimney. "You could have killed them, Ron"

          Ron shrugs his shoulders, "What's one less tour guide?"

          Well, we've had enough. I'm hot, wondering about his judgement, we're sweaty, dirty, unmotivated and got bunk cocaine. We rappel down and I hit the ground first. Mark Pey is there to meet us. Ron raps down just as Dennis Knuckles, the climbing ranger, steps out of the bushes.
          "I figured it was you Ron" says the ranger.

          "Well, you saw my truck. Who else would it be?"

          "We heard that a rock came off this climb and almost hit a tour. Some people said it looked as if it had been thrown."

          Ron started pulling the rappels. "Well, you climb here. You know the rock is loose."

          "uh-huh'

          "Of Sh--, " Ron says, "The rope is stuck." He looks at me. "Well, Mumbles?" (He used to call me "Mumbles the Guzzler because he claimed I didn't speak clearly enough and drank all the water.)

          "Alright, I'll go."

          Ron achors one end and I start jugging the rope. "Try and keep your movements to a minimum, Mike" Mark cautions, "You don't know what it is stuck on."

          "it's fine."says Ron confidently. "I built the anchor.'

          And that was correct. I rapped off the anchor we built to lower the haul bag and he was going to pull the pieces and wrap a sling around a tree. When I arrived at the anchor, there was no sling. He had used old 11mm nylon rope. And everyone knows that you never put nylon against nylon. It had burned 3/4's of the way through from my jugging. A few minutes more and I would have been dead.

          And that's how Ron almost killed a bus load of tourists and me in the same day.


          dmckj


          Jan 30, 2005, 11:19 PM
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          Great stuff rocknroller!!!

          You think maybe when he asked you to jug the rope he was trying to eliminate you as a witness?????


          O.K. now we gotta hear about Timbertop.....wait....first I gotta make some popcorn.....


          ammon


          Jan 31, 2005, 12:15 AM
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          In reply to:
          I'm happy to say that Ammon agrees with me and Bird and Erikson and so many others that true free climbers don't use sling belays.

          I don't think I said this.... exactly. I might have said that it's better style to reach a natural stance (if you can) while putting up a free climb.

          Just for the record: Dean is a friend and I also support his shop in Springdale.

          Great thread!!!


          skinner


          Jan 31, 2005, 1:30 AM
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          Name that Route (please)

            While all the Zion buffs, experts, and trollers are here, can someone tell me what route this is that these dudes are climbing, and what is the route to their left? Thanx :)

              http://www.netspy.net/climbing/zion/zion.html

                large image, java script.. may take awhile to load



                  PS:
                  In reply to:
                  It got its name for the "hoovering" we were doing in there
                  I was releived to learn that "hoovering" was drug related. I had always thought it was some weird sexual practice, and really didn't want to know that much about what was going on in that chimney!!


                  ambler


                  Jan 31, 2005, 9:01 AM
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                  In reply to:
                  And that's how Ron almost killed a bus load of tourists and me in the same day.
                  Great stuff -- I hope there is more to come. Red Rock can't touch this, at least not in the 70s.


                  dmckj


                  Jan 31, 2005, 9:19 AM
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                  Skinner...

                  Easy answer.

                  The photo is of two guys on Prodigal Son, in the area of what is referred to as the Exit Flaps (a bolt ladder for the most part).

                  Immediately to the left across a very blank face is a right-facing corner system leading to a broken ledge. Those corners are the last full pitch of Empty Pages (the only easy pitch on the route). To the left of Empty Pages you can infer a right-leaning crack system that rises to join Empty Pages at the obvious broken ledges. That crack coming in is Angel Hair (Dunn Route). Before Prodigal Son was manufactured, it was Archangel, and that route actually crossed the blank face all the way over to the same ledges.

                  So, in chronological order, Angel Hair, Archangel, and Empty Pages all share that ledge. On the second (and only?) complete ascent of Archangel (myself, Olvesky, and Steve Chardon) we bivied on those ledges. On the first ascent of Empty Pages we bivied on those ledges as well (out of water and food I might add).

                  It's a good photo. Too bad it is on a bolt ladder.


                  dmckj


                  Jan 31, 2005, 9:24 AM
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                  I might add....that long beautiful shallow grey-black corner rising up and LEFT directly above those broken ledges is probably the single best pitch on what was Archangel. A spectacular pitch really. The normal exit off of those ledges is the right leanging overhanging corner system (Angel Hair).

                  The actual natural lines should have been Empty Pages finishing on the upper Archangel pitches, and then the full Prodigal Son line independent of that.


                  dmckj


                  Jan 31, 2005, 9:33 AM
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                  O.K....I've had a little time to work on Casting....

                  Myself....Mel Gibson or maybe Billy Bob Thorton (it's a toss up)
                  Dangle.....Joe Pesi
                  Devo......Bono


                  rockprodigy


                  Jan 31, 2005, 9:50 AM
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                  Hmmm...I think this tale is better suited to a Soap Opera, then a feature film. And all this time, I thought Zion was a low-key place.

                  Has anyone here climbed the GWT by the steep side?


                  crotch


                  Jan 31, 2005, 10:26 AM
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                  At the Temple of Sinewava parking area, near the bathrooms, there's a 5-foot high slab of rock that must have about 100 bolt-holes. The thing looks like a peg-board. Anyone know the story behind that? I assume it was for practice, but that's a hell of a lot of practice.


                  crotch


                  Jan 31, 2005, 10:28 AM
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                  At the Temple of Sinewava parking area, near the bathrooms, there's a 5-foot high slab of rock that must have about 100 bolt-holes. The thing looks like a peg-board. Anyone know the story behind that? I assume it was for practice, but that's a hell of a lot of practice.


                  skinner


                  Jan 31, 2005, 11:07 AM
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                  dmckj- Thank you very much, awesome information. The photo takes on a whole new meaning when you're listening to someone who actually slept on those little ledges. There is a little flaky looking line running between the lower climber and those ledges. It looks like the only possible way between the two routes without a sh*tload of bolting and/or riveting. But hooking across that wall would certain cause some major sphincter clinching! :shock: Just wondering if that does, or ever did connect the two lines? And is it really that that bad.. a bolt ladder?


                  epic_ed


                  Jan 31, 2005, 11:37 AM
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                  Great info, guys. It amazes me that an effort hasn't already gone into compiling some of this history and making a good book out if it. As an observer, it's absolutely fascinating to read the different recollections of what happened and when. Seems there's more than just two sides to a story sometimes.

                  And what's the story with Archangel, anyway? Ron -- that was one of your FA's correct? How does it differ from Prodigal and why?

                  I realize that not everyone agrees with the style that Prodigal Sun was put up -- clearly, Dave, you've made several references to it being chipped and drilled. But is there any merit, in your eyes, to how and why it was put up? It sees one hell of a lot of traffic every year mainly because it's a good, moderate climb and one that many n00b aid climbers venture up as their first wall. Do you think it's popular becasue it's relatively "easy" or because it's a good route? Or a combination of both?

                  Ed


                  dmckj


                  Jan 31, 2005, 12:17 PM
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                  Skinner,

                  Man....you asked a leading question. I was trying to be a 'nice guy' and leave the question as to how one got across that blank face unaswered....but...

                  Dangle put up Archangel on solo, a very impressive and bold undertaking for which he deserves all the credit in the world (stroke, stroke).

                  However, he followed what is now the Prodigal Son line up to a point and, it appears, decided that the dihedrals to the left looked more appealing than taking the Prodigal line above. So....he put in a 30-something bolt ladder across the middle of that beautiful face. I know, because I led that pitch on the 2nd ascent. Subsequently, I believe Ron realized it for what it was....a travesty...and chose to 'fix' the route but exiting along Prodigal Son. A better choice, but there are still too many bolts for my tastes.

                  As to the other person's question about the drilled out rock near the Park bathrooms at the Temple of Sinawava.....ask dangle. That also begs the question as to the now-erased route 'Crimes Against Nature'.

                  cheers
                  D


                  dmckj


                  Jan 31, 2005, 1:13 PM
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                  Ed,

                  I hate to get sucked into this ethical vortex, but you asked, so I'll tell you what I think (Dangle should lean over for his bottle of Scotch at this point....).....

                  (deep breath followed by sigh of great resignation...)

                  Let's start with the how and why I ended up in Zion. For about 5 straight years I was a Yosemite rat, but after climbing most of what I cared to I felt I had run my course there. I first climbed in Zion in 1978, thrashing my way up Boring Crack a 'so-called' 5.9. Kicked my butt and, for having no, or maybe one Friend that would fit the crack, scared the bejeezus out of me. Hmmm...I like this Zion climbing. Contrary to what Dangle says, I climbed Touchstone Wall in 78 or 79. Also did Moonlight with Dangle around that same time. It wasn't until my next trip with Steve Chardon in ?? (sorry folks, I have to look up the dates) that I started putting up routes.

                  When I did Moonlight with Dangle, it was originally as a threesome with my friend Josh Lieberman. Josh felt so abused by Dangle that he declined to continue after fixing a few pitches. I offered to bail out of the effort rather than abandon my friend, but Josh encouraged me to finish it. We did. At the top of Moonlight I inadvertently unclipped my jugs without knowing it and Ron, 20 feet below with a doobie in his fingers, caught them out of mid-air. Good job dangle. Josh didn't want anything more to do with Dangle.

                  Next, Steve Chardon and I and Dangle did the 2nd ascent of Archangel. By about 3 pitches up Steve felt so abused by Dangle that he declined to lead any more pitches and jugged the rest of the route. I led most of the route. My way of dealing with Dangle has always been to be one step ahead of him and to return his verbal banter with equally strong doses of my own.

                  Next, Dangle committed a terminal error. Steve and I were looking for new lines and Dangle pointed out the line of what is now Shune's Buttress. He had been part way up.

                  'Why don't you got do that??' he said with a challenging smirk on his face.
                  'O.K.' I replied.

                  Several days later we had bagged Shune's which (for history's sake) was named after the last chief of the indians who inhabited the canyon...Chief Shune...for whom old village site of Shunesburg was named at the foot of Red Arch Mtn.

                  After bagging Shunes we ran into Ron.
                  'Well...how'd it go??' smirked Ron.
                  'We did it. Great route. Thanks for the tip!' I said.
                  'What?????' Ron replied, apoplectic. 'You DID IT?' he said, now looking mad as hell.
                  'Well, yeah, you told us to go try it, so we did it'.
                  'Well, I didn't think you would GET UP IT!!!' he said, overcome with his own loss.

                  Anyway, with those initial adventures under my belt I no longer had any interest in going back to The Valley and, in fact, have not been back since. I mean, why deal with that scene when you can come and put up climb after climb in one of the most surreally beautiful places in the world?

                  So, getting back to the point...

                  I had had a dose of the adventure and challenge of Zion climbing. And, really, above all Zion has ALWAYS been about out-of-the-ordinary adventure. Everything is steeper, more difficult, more scary, more time-consuming, etc, on average than any other place I have climbed. I kind of like that. The ratings have always been sticky on the low side, like the old days of, lets say, The Gunks, or Granite Mountain. I have tried to maintain the old-style of grading in Zion, much to the consternation of people who accuse me of sandbagging.

                  Adventure, stress, fear, agony, a little blood, bad pro. What fun!

                  Meanwhile, a few 'easy' trade routes go up. Dangle and I bagged Spaceshot, which he prophetically predicted would become a trade route. He was right. I am O.K. with a trade route such as Spaceshot (I was not involved with the bolt ladder as Dangle did that entirely on his own).

                  However, Prodigal Son is another matter. That route 'should have been' a classic Zion A4 route, and, in fact, it still could be. The upper part of the route is a contrived link of bolt ladders and 'a move or two' on natural features. It could have been outstanding A3/4.

                  Do I begrudge people doing it? No, not at all (I've climbed it 3 times myself). Do I begrudge ONE route of its nature being put up? I suppose not. Do I think it deserves respect as a wall route with real integrity? No, I don't. (I had to laugh out loud when it made the list of 50 Classic Climbs). Am I worried that people look to that as 'an example' of how to put up a wall in Zion? Scares the shit out of me. That route was lowered to the level of 'the masses'. Now I don't mind if 'the masses' all climb on that route, but they should keep their bolt ladders OFF OF ZION WALLS.

                  To wit, for years all of us viewed the line that is now Desert Shield. Why didn't it get done? Simply because we felt too ashamed to drill a monster bolt ladder to get to the base of the crack. Well....someone finally decided that this was O.K. Was this good or bad? To me, it is a gray area.

                  But the big danger is destroying something you love. And what I always loved about Zion was that it was, and is, one of the more 'out there' places you can climb. Dumbing down routes so more people can climb them is, to me, a horrible precendent. As I have said, I greatly admire Dangle's eye for lines, but I don't admire making lines accessible to everyone by opening them up to anyone. If there is ONLY one Dangle who adds spice and controversy to life, that's fine. What frightens me is a younger generation of wall climbers deciding it is 'O.K.' to make everything as user-friendly as possible. That would destroy Zion as a place to climb.

                  So, yeah, I can live with ONE Prodigal Son, but there should be limits and standards. People should learn to climb in Zion on its own terms, not the terms of creating an easy route where none existed.

                  blah, blah, blah
                  D


                  skinner


                  Jan 31, 2005, 3:38 PM
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                  Wow.. interesting piece of history. I don't know what everyone else thinks, but it seems like bolting has almost come full circle. People were up in arms when Harding was drilling his way up the wall, but soon enough all sorts of people were pounding on granite as a way to open new lines that were otherwise deemed inaccessible. As technology advanced new and old lines were being completed without bolting, where a decade earlier it would have been the only option.

                    But.. along came the "Sport" climbers, and the drills were humming like never before, only this time they were power drills. I am pretty sure that if they had to pound these holes in by hand, bolted anchor sales would only be a fraction of what they are. Don't get me wrong, I have put in my share of bolts, but it just seems like it is a little out of hand when my 11 year old leads past 6 bolts, before placing his own protection.

                      I have never been to Zion, but it is certainly a definite 2-do now! I did however grow up climbing on sandstone, not the nice red stuff with beautiful cracks, but rather the whitish stuff that is more like hard packed mud in places. The friction is unbelievable, and you are able to pull off some gravity defying moves because of it. Protection is another story altogether, so I do understand how bolts would come into play.

                        Ok, now you have to help me out again here, having never been to Zion I am still trying to orient myself through photos.
                        In this photo:

                        http://www.netspy.net/...ing/zion/zion02.html

                        Is Prodigal Son in this photo? on the left? If not tell me where this is, what other routes are in this photo?

                          Thanks!!

                            Oh ya.. I found this photo of Prodigal Son with the route marked. I am not sure of it's accuracy, but I am certain we will find out :wink:
                            http://www.netspy.net/...odigal-son-route.jpg


                            takeme


                            Jan 31, 2005, 5:44 PM
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                            In reply to:
                            O.K....I've had a little time to work on Casting....

                            Myself....Mel Gibson or maybe Billy Bob Thorton (it's a toss up)
                            Dangle.....Joe Pesi
                            Devo......Bono

                            I have no idea how accurate all these entertaining stories involving "Dangle" are, but as he's being portrayed here, he bears an uncanny resemblance to Walter from the Big Lebowski. As such, naturally, he should be played by John Goodman.


                            flamer


                            Jan 31, 2005, 6:20 PM
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                            In reply to:
                            he should be played by John Goodman.

                            Too tall...and handsome.

                            josh


                            dmckj


                            Jan 31, 2005, 8:37 PM
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                            O.K....I got my popcorn.......I'm ready for the 'Tall Tales from Timbertop' installment from Devo.

                            Where are you Devo?


                            dmckj


                            Jan 31, 2005, 8:42 PM
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                            Skinner,

                            Your skinny photo accurately shows the location of Prodigal Son.

                            At the VERY left edge of that same photo is the nearly invisible line of Empty Pages (A4/5) and I think (correct me if I'm wrong) the crack at the right edge of the photo is Ball and Chain, which was dramatically freed not too long ago, possibly by someone in this thread.


                            bsmoot


                            Jan 31, 2005, 9:12 PM
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                            Yeah, as popular as Prodigal Sun is, it's one of 17 lines on the NE face of Angel's Landing (NE Buttress to the Minotuar.) Jeff Lowe's classic route was the first done on the wall in 1970. The second line was the Dunn route. Any of you remember the ABC Wide World of Sports special with George Willig...the guy who got infamous by climbing the World Trade Center? George was gonna climb Angel's Landing for ABC.

                            The Dunn route is the line George chose...not an easy line, although it's the most obvious. The word is that during George's ascent, he wasn't making fast enough time, so during the night, he and his partner jugged several hundred feet of the cameraman's fixed ropes to get back on schedule! Later, near the top, he took a head-first screamer for the camera! Remember that easy chimney at the top of Prodigal Sun? That's why it's sometimes referred to as "the flying George chimney".

                            Here are some first ascents I'd like to hear about:

                            - Thunderbird Wall - this wall is massive, come on Devo!

                            - Full Steam Ahead - Ammon's HUGE climb on West Temple.

                            - Levels of Doom - Amanda Tarr's adventure up the 2,000' Twin Brother

                            - The Radiator - Middendorf's big climb AND descent of Abraham.

                            - Either of Dave Jones' A5's

                            Thanks!


                            crotch


                            Jan 31, 2005, 9:29 PM
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                            In reply to:
                            Levels of Doom - Amanda Tarr's adventure up the 2,000' Twin Brother

                            Amanda wrote a TR back in '97. http://groups-beta.google.com/...f46bd71?dmode=source

                            BTW, we bailed off of the Egg back in December. Too cold for us Californians. The line looked great though. We'll be back in February, weather permitting.


                            dmckj


                            Jan 31, 2005, 9:56 PM
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                            Ballad of Timbertop Mesa

                            Dangle once had a rack on Timbertop
                            New as it could be
                            Knifeblades, baby angles to part the sandstone rock
                            The route t'would not be free...

                            Timbertop will always be..
                            Home sweet home to me..
                            Good ol' Timbertop..
                            And Dangle's rack fallin' free..
                            And Dangle's rack fallin' free..

                            take it Devo...


                            skinner


                            Jan 31, 2005, 10:48 PM
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                            October 29 1977
                            The ascent of mountain climber George Willig to the top of Eldorado Canyon in Eldorado Springs, Colo. marks the first time live coverage of a climb was presented on American television.

                              The PA legal department pressed criminal trespass against Willig, then iced the cake with a $750,000 civil suit.
                              It took a second publicity stunt, this one dreamed up by PA's top PR man, Sidney Frigand, to put a positive spin on the Authority's edifice complex. In a courtroom sentencing turned media opportunity, Willig copped a tongue-in-cheek plea, agreeing to pay the city a fine of one dollar and ten cents - a penny for every floor he'd climbed.


                              skinner


                              Jan 31, 2005, 10:54 PM
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                              This is sort of funny, a photo of George Willig's signature where he spray painted it on the World Trade Center after reaching the top.
                              http://www.1134.org/gallery/random/aah


                              lambone


                              Jan 31, 2005, 11:01 PM
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                              the only thing this thread needs is more pictures


                              rocknroll


                              Feb 1, 2005, 3:54 AM
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                              Hey, I am saving the best for last. One more tale and this involves a song...a song about that wallman, Dave Jomes written by none other but Piton Ron.

                              Dave, my memory is foggy on this so you'll have to help me out.

                              Geez, I can't even remember the name of the climb. It is the 5.10 dihedral near the Touchstone Wall. We went out to climb it one day, and some "damn hippie environmentalists" as local pig farmer Dan Gifford calls them, had put up a banner on the second pitch. It read something like "Stop the Dams" in reference to Glen Canyon, or were they thinking of damming the Virgin? Anyhoo, Dave, George Allen and I decide to go climb this route. We were fresh from Tucson, where the cracks will only accept R.P's and we knew we would all be struggling on this nasty off-width layback. Well, George Allen leads the thing solidly. By the time Dave was ready to follow the pitch, quite a crowd had gathered in the parking lot . After all, there's the banner and there's the climbers. Besides the regular touron lookyloos there was just about every climber in the area - all eight of them. Mark and Stacey Austin, Gary Gray, Mark Pey, Conrad Anker, Ron Olevesky, was Flying Fisher there? (R.I.P.)...I think even George Hartilmeyer was there, an old climber from the alps who loved retelling the story of his friends dying on the Eiger, "oh Tony! Poor Tony (Egger)'. Relieved of belay duty, I ran down to join the party below. The doobs were passing around (of course George refused) and we had the stereo cranked in Mark Pey's bright yellow volkswagon Rabbit. As Dave is shoeing up, Ron is shooting off his mouth that Dave isn't gonna make it because he's seen him in off-widths and he knows Dave hates off widths. He starts taking bets. No one is stepping up, but everyone is egging Ron on wondering what outrageous plan he has to be assured that Dave doesn't make it. He tells me to go ask Dave if he wants to bet. I run up to the base and think better of it. After all, my allegiance to Ron had already sparked some animosity and divisiveness amongst the Tucson contingent, But I inform him that Ron is spouting negativity again. "F=== him!" Dave says and starts climbing. As I remember, you don't see the climber from the ground for the first 20 or 30 feet, and then he is well into the business. As Dave emerges from chimney, shouts and whoops fill the canyon. Ron's got his cheerleading going and Dave seems to be on the opposite team, "Hey, climber, climber, climber, SWING!" yells Ron. And to the tune of "We want a pitcher, not a belly itcher" "We want a wallman not a belly crawl man". Everyone was good and baked and had guzzeled thier mandatory ten 3.2 beers for a slight buzz and were laughing at Ron (now that's AT him not WITH him). From my vantage point at the base, I could see that Dave is getting flustered by all the attention. Dave's feet slide on the slick rock; I can hear Ron from below, "See, See, I told you...Fall, Fall, FALL!". Dave considers trying to squeeze into the off-width instead of laybacking it.

                              Ron: "I told you he hates off widths, well, then why is he trying to get inside it?"

                              And Dave gets into the classic climber predicament: you don't want to leave the security of that body wedge and start laybacking again.

                              The stereo goes from cranking Devo to the B-52's to David Byrne and Brian Eno's My Life in the Bush of Ghosts. An excellent album if you've never heard it. On the album they take found sound bites and make a kinda funky jungle beat around them like on the Talking Head's Remain in Light album. Well, the song playing is a baptist preacher saying, "Help me somebody!"

                              Ron: Crank that! Louder, Louder!

                              "Help me somebody!!"

                              Dave is now upset, he trys to get back into the layback and his feet slips off the wall, he sucks back into the off width.

                              The crowd: "ooooohhhh!"


                              "Help me somebody!!"

                              Ron is jumping around like that famous picture of Hitler after he learns the invasion of Poland was a success.

                              "Help me somebody!" repeats the Preacher, " Ask yourself if you've become the person that God wants you to be. It's no big thing, its no small thing, what...people...think, Whoooo! Help me somebody!"

                              The crowd: Whoooo! Help me somebody!"

                              Dave has had enough. He hasn't fallen yet so he hasn't lost his dignity. So he whispers up to George, " ...tension...".

                              George (Loudly): what?

                              Dave (louder whisper) tension!

                              George (Loudly) TENSION?

                              Ron is now besides himself.

                              The crowd (including the tourists): Whoooo! Help me somebody!"

                              I run down to the parking lot to join the fun. Ron asks me if he was calling for tension.

                              "No, he wasn't calling for tension, he was whispering for tension. "

                              The song on the stereo ends, all is quiet, and Ron breaks into song, inventing the words on the spot:

                              "He's a 5.10 wall man,
                              his nuts are made of brass.
                              His hands are bound in tape,
                              he's got a Long Dong* up his ass."

                              "Now 5.10's got bad habits,
                              some we will not mention,
                              but when he's on that 5.11 move
                              he's whispering for tension."

                              "Everybody now!
                              He's a 5.10 wall man,
                              his nuts are made of brass.
                              His hands are bound in tape,
                              he's got a Long Dong* up his ass."


                              * A Long Dong is a piton, not what you think it is. But the pun works.

                              Well, Ron couldn't get the crowd to sing it (it must have been that Long Dong line) and folks soon dispersed and let Dave climb the route in peace.

                              But since then, the song has been sung around climber's campfires for years, thanks to some hefty promotion by myself and Ron.




                              Now, does anyone know what Ron means when he yells "Put the aseptics in the Fass Nord and haul them on the B rope"


                              dmckj


                              Feb 1, 2005, 9:39 AM
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                              Bono....er, uh, Devo...

                              Good tale lad! I do recall that day. Now that the statute of limitations is over I can tell you that banner was put up by Mark A#####. The route was/is Coconut Corner.

                              As far as Dangle's gutteral utterances.....It is common for people with psychological 'differences' to speak in tongues, so maybe this was spoken in Sanskrit. It might mean 'Watch my ass cause I'm doing the famous dangle two-step top step to get to the next drilled placement', or, alternatively, 'I bored with being nice to the rock. Let's go empty a few clips into the Rockville bench.'


                              dmckj


                              Feb 1, 2005, 9:50 AM
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                              Devo,

                              Actually, thinking back, George led the first pitch and I was leading, not following, the second. If I recall I ended up sliming my way up inside the crack instead of laybacking it, a horrible mistake from being timid that day.

                              FYI, George Allen is, unfortunately, now in the advanced stages of colon cancer and was just operated on last week.

                              Let's all wish him the best for a good recovery.

                              d


                              rocknroll


                              Feb 1, 2005, 11:57 AM
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                              As I said, my memory was not so good so I took advantage of the lapses to embellish. Not really sure if all those people were there or even if Ron was leading the cheer. But I do remember the crowd, the new wave songs on the stereo, especially the "Help me somebody", the crowd yelling, me running back and forth and I do remember telling Ron about you whispering for tension. But let's let it go down in the history books as I wrote it. A far better tale.


                              Timber top is coming soon...Maybe a day or two, but soon.


                              epic_ed


                              Feb 1, 2005, 12:34 PM
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                              Ok, ok. I'll bite. WTF does he mean by "put the asceptics in the Fass Nord"? These stories are a riot. Ron -- you're not gonna take this lying down, are ya? It's always good to hear both sides of the story, and you fellas have got some great stories and history together, despite the animosity that seems to persist even today. I hope all of you knuckle-draggers can look back with at least a little bit of nostalgia and reflect on how significant an impact all of you had back in the day.

                              Ed


                              rocknroll


                              Feb 1, 2005, 2:51 PM
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                              No animosity. I love Ron. What a character! Sure he can be rough around the edges, but then can't we all? I love his boldness, willingness to stand up for what he thinks is right, and his outrageous behavior. And I am sure that over the years he has had some hard lessons, I know I have (I offer to pay for gas now). That's what life is about, learning, growing and having as much fun as possible (and hopefully at no one elses expense).

                              What was it that Maude said in "Harold and Maude" Something like "You can't let life grab you and toss you aound, you got to reach out and grab it." Ron's done that, I've done that, Jonesey done that. I think that's how we climbers distinguish ourselves from the masses that want to just be comfortable and god forbid, take a risk...try something new...learn something...experience a little pain for the reward of pleasure.

                              Ron epitomizes a life being lived to the fullest . And I know for a fact, these days he is a lot more pleasurable to be around. Aren't we all, as we get older and realize it's not worth it to sweat the little things. Damn, I wouldn't trade those times with Ron for the world.

                              How sweet to remember that cotton mouth gravelly voice yelling at me as if his life was about to end from a hundred feet above,

                              "GODDAM IT BUSMAN, PUT THE ASEPTICS IN THE FASS NORD AND HAUL THEM ON THE B-ROPE!!"

                              Huh?


                              dingus


                              Feb 1, 2005, 2:55 PM
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                              In reply to:
                              No animosity. I love Ron. What a character! Sure he can be rough around the edges, but then can't we all? I love his boldness, willingness to stand up for what he thinks is right, and his outrageous behavior. And I am sure that over the years he has had some hard lessons, I know I have (I offer to pay for gas now). That's what life is about, learning, growing and having as much fun as possible (and hopefully at no one elses expense).

                              Nicely done!

                              DMT


                              dmckj


                              Feb 1, 2005, 3:03 PM
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                              Gentle Thread Reader (to Ed in particular)

                              It has come to our attention that some readers think there is a bit of hyperbole in our tales on Zion climbing history.

                              As hard as it is for you to believe, we AREN'T exaggerating, and there ain't no other 'side' to this stuff. In FACT, this is toned down from the way things really went down.... Why? A bunch of folks are afraid to comment because of a certain person's propensity to file lawsuits or make threats. But, frankly, that cuts both ways, and soon may if someone is silly enough to attempt to silence the critics. (By the way....stay tuned for more participants as more folks come out of the woodwork).

                              As to the animosity, I publicly stated here that Dangle could salvage his soul with an apology and a check. Anyway, it is all self-induced, a form of instant karma. Which leads me to believe that thread readers should hear 'THE REST OF THE STORY' as to the court appearance.

                              Hell, why not air it all.

                              What about the parties in Zion who were threatened at having their ropes shot (this is called aggravated assault, which in Arizona carries a 2 year minimum sentence)?

                              What about 'Crimes Against Nature', the route that got erased?

                              What about walking into a cowboy bar along the north rim of the Black Canyon of the Gunnison with a pistol stuck down the front of someone's pants? (Yuh cudda herd a pin drop!)

                              Inquiring minds will want to know more!!!

                              (stay tuned)


                              epic_ed


                              Feb 1, 2005, 3:28 PM
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                              I don't think you're exaggerating, at all. I believe you're giving a genuine account of the events as you remember them, which is why this is so compelling to read. But there are different sides to every story. Yours, his, and the rest of 'em. Hell, I couldn't give you the same trip report as my partner on Prodigal from a climb I did two years ago. We'd have wildly different stories, for certain. I can imagine how some of the details have become blurred by the passing of 20+ years while others, I'm sure, are vividly clear.

                              Ed


                              dangle


                              Feb 1, 2005, 6:14 PM
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                              Well I was in Salt Lake longer than planned. Outdoor Retailer only took two days but I hung around trying to get a few kids for the freezer. Looks like the boys have been busy.

                              I've only skimmed through this but think I can see what's happened. Sometimes when one dines out on stories repeatedly they are "refined". The lines that get laughs become "enhanced". Sometimes even roles are swapped for "convenience". Occasionally stories are manufactured out of whole cloth just to keep within a theme.

                              This is not one of those times.


                              Devo and Davo have with no interference from the bloodthirsty looky lewes recounted their epic tales with such startling accuracy, such painstaking detail, that I would suspect that they have been keeping clandestine journals or secretly recording all the conversations. Clearly their true calling should have been at the Smithsonian.
                              What's more the positive effects of their own roles are portrayed with such modesty that I feel compelled to elaborate.

                              You see the mighty busman only sought to climb with me out of concern for public safety. He wisely knew that someone had to at least bear witness to the perfidy inevitable in my actions. I can understand him being a little miffed at my indication that he was a "special" partner who didn't need to belay me but merely serve as an upward pull anchor while I rope soloed. But his claim to have halted the tour bus with merely his powerful command was only to mask the true nature of his heroics.
                              You see I had secreted a bottle of nitro-glycerine in the first aid kit. He almost caught on when I insisted that he lower the bag out only 20 feet.
                              I started a huge rock avalanche that certainly would have taken out the bus which likely had a few small children whose livers I could then eat, but the mighty busman swooped down in front of it green cape fluttering in the wind. With one hand he lifted the entire bus out of harm's way and with the other he stopped the largest boulder dead in its tracks. Regretably he was forced to ignore the destruction of a unique elfen forest that existed nowhere else in the world because of his committment to human life.

                              The one who truly is deserving of sainthood though is Dave. Where it not for his selfless purity that actually has a mild levitational effect he might not have succeeded on some of his climbs. These are not so much routes as screening tools for the chosen ones. The mandatory free climbing and the aiding of seams that immediately degrade are the pathways for only those possessed of the unadulterated vision of adventure to seek adrenal atonement. God forbid that the masses corrupt these vaunted lines.

                              Dave climbs for unexpressed rewards. Just ask him.



                              I've been incredibly fortunate. Without intent I've managed to stumble upon classic routes sometimes dozens of times in a row. I've become friends with people I had held as heroes. In adition to numerous articles I have had my 15 minute interview in Choss and Snow. I've even tricked my way into a video!
                              As if my inadvertant climbing notoriety weren't enough even my tech stocks made money. Clearly past partners of lesser moral character might be inclined to resent or even envy such good fortune. The profoundly weak or under-confidant might even make attempts to build themselves up by tearing that person down.

                              Obviously thats not the case here. These guys are big hearted men of the people. Their selfless testamony was performed purely from an obligation to public service. This is their part in the war on terror aside from their numerous death leads which they can't tell you about.

                              And Dave's apology?
                              As soon as I figure out what I should say you'l have it. Until then you can just hold your breath and guess which finger I'm typing this with.


                              rockprodigy


                              Feb 1, 2005, 7:18 PM
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                              Ssssssssnap!


                              dmckj


                              Feb 1, 2005, 9:05 PM
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                              In reply to:
                              I started a huge rock avalanche that certainly would have taken out the bus which likely had a few small children whose livers I could then eat, but the mighty busman swooped down in front of it green cape fluttering in the wind. With one hand he lifted the entire bus out of harm's way and with the other he stopped the largest boulder dead in its tracks

                              Wow! I knew Devo was stout, but not THAT stout. Don't be so modest next time Devo.

                              In reply to:
                              The one who truly is deserving of sainthood though is Dave

                              O.K., NOW we're getting somewhere...only I'm not Catholic.


                              In reply to:
                              These guys are big hearted men of the people

                              In my life I have NEVER heard Dangle speak with such clarity of mind.

                              In reply to:
                              guess which finger I'm typing this with

                              Hope you washed it first.

                              I getting kind of disappointed in this thread. I through Joe Pesci (or Pesi?) was pretty damned brilliant. Also, no responses to the poll.

                              (hushed overvoice narration to message, seeming to be detached from its author, and therefore carrying the moral weight of impartial truth....)

                              Gentle readers will note that there is not a rebuttal to be found.....so far....

                              More history forthcoming.


                              dangle


                              Feb 1, 2005, 9:23 PM
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                              Gee sorry about that McKjones.

                              A little insensitive to your religious background was I.

                              Certainly not something you would do. (your friends yes, but you no)

                              How about a statue instead? Some soldiers I know can get you a big one.


                              rocknroll


                              Feb 2, 2005, 1:40 AM
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                              Ron, how honorable of you to tell it like it is. Of course Dave and I had no desire to be ignominious towards you. We have to accept the truth as it happened. And since we have kept the Timbertop story from our dear readers, perhaps we can tell that epic tale together. Or at least, tell each side of our stories. I am sure we will have wildly different versions. After all, you did not witness exactly what happened when the rack took its fateful flight .I just remember your words when you arrived at the anchor, "I am not even going to acknowledge you by yelling at you. Let's go down."

                              But a fine tale it is...court battles won, mules pissing on our shoes, dreams of sponsors and films to be made, the ill-fated mutiny and exodus as Mark and I left the Kolob. Gee I can't wait to write it. But you first Ron.


                              skinner


                              Feb 2, 2005, 7:15 AM
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                              In reply to:
                              when the rack took its fateful flight
                              I HAVE to hear this one!


                              dmckj


                              Feb 2, 2005, 9:12 AM
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                              In reply to:
                              Of course Dave and I had no desire to be ignominious towards you.

                              Whoah! This is a guy who said in court that he only accepted a phone call from me because he thought it was Warren Harding, in order to screw me over for something I didn't do. Sorry, Dangle doesn't get off that easy...

                              In reply to:
                              "I am not even going to acknowledge you by yelling at you. Let's go down."

                              This gets the quote of the day award in my book. The question I have is this: If Devo was able to swoop down and save the busload of tourists with his green cape fluttering, why didn't he just retrieve the rack? I must be missing the obvious here.

                              Never fear, gentle reader, a thread-pertinent historical interlude will be coming up shortly......


                              ron_jeremy


                              Feb 2, 2005, 12:41 PM
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                              Great thread, learned more than I ever cared to about Zion history. But I also must set a couple facts straight for the record.

                              1-Dave Jones is a sandbagging MF'er. Omak Crack=12a? Might have well called it I'm On Crack. Nice one there.

                              &

                              2-Flamer, Jon wanted me to tell you that you cried like a little baby lamb while leading Lurking Fear last summer.

                              Also, I just thought I should mention that Alpine is the biggest disgrace to the world of Hotshots, no wait, I take that back...it's your Park Service sisters at Arrowhead.


                              That's all.

                              Carry on.


                              dmckj


                              Feb 2, 2005, 1:11 PM
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                              In reply to:
                              Dave Jones is a sandbagging MF'er. Omak Crack=12a? Might have well called it I'm On Crack. Nice one there

                              Way off thread, but I'll pitch in. Omak Crack (or Omakulate Conception)....great route in the Omak area of Okanogan Valley in Washington State. Took me three (or 4?) concerted afternoon efforts to get up it on lead...all trad. Frankly, I don't think I'm capable of putting up anything harder than a 5.12a on lead in that manner, but if you want to jack up the rating so be it. Maybe you've spent a little too much time in the 'soft' Valley World of ratings. No move on Omak is harder than solid 5.11, just a lot of hard moves in a row which made me give it the 'token' 5.12a. If you thought that was sandbag, you probably thought all the other ones at Omak are sandbag.

                              And if you thought those were sandbag....I'd avoid going to Zion.....


                              flamer


                              Feb 2, 2005, 1:19 PM
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                              In reply to:
                              2-Flamer, Jon wanted me to tell you that you cried like a little baby lamb while leading Lurking Fear last summer.

                              Also, I just thought I should mention that Alpine is the biggest disgrace to the world of Hotshots, no wait, I take that back...it's your Park Service sisters at Arrowhead.

                              If I had to wager a guess....I'd say What's up Morgan???

                              Dude everybody know's that Arrowhead is soft.....after all i hear they recruit from those sissy's over at Yosemite Helitack!!

                              josh

                              ps LF was 2 years ago....


                              dangle


                              Feb 2, 2005, 4:55 PM
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                              Just back from the rock and the sun with cell talk and big pertinent doings but more after I create some dinner. Still, before washing my fingers I wanted to add publicly that Alpinestylist offered me a very polite and sincere apology via PM that I won't embarass him by printing here.
                              Brent is OK in my book as long as he comes through with that beer I suggested when the time comes.

                              I really did only skim through this so I'm not sure I understand a Harding reference (I'm not sure I want to) but I miss that crotchety old coot. I want suggestions from some aid climbers where to donate some of his stuff. I have one of his hammers, some of his rack, and the prize of the collection is the spare bat tent carried but not needed on the WOTEML. I want to use it once on a virgin wall before either giving it to the Yosemite Foundation or the AAC Museum in Golden.

                              Although I skimmed, Devo's claim of "nothing ignominious" smells like horse manure. His Hitler reference was an attempt to obscure the treachery of Dave's friend (Devo's too perhaps??) and alone refutes it.
                              Why he should prove so two faced is beyond me. I made a good natured crack about his video. (If he didn't contract for residuals from TLC he is as we speak beating his head into the wall and saying"Why? Why?) And threatened to "blackmail" him with the one picture he knows I wouldn't broadcast because its always the biggest laugh in any slide show I do. Its the after in a before/after sequence right after he believes that the rope just broke or something.

                              I have been approached by eye doctors afterwards who wish to use the photo or just study it further. They say stuff like,"I'd have sworn that could only happen in cartoons!"

                              Shame on you. This is supposed to be about history. I criticized McJones for usurping Scott Fischer's rightful place in Zion history. Either by active or passive means matters little to me. He continues to equivocate on this offering only a weak claim to have repeated a couple of ankle biter routes. (Boring Crack was continued to the summit by Jeff Lowe in my video now available at your local climbing shop. except for zion rock and etc.)

                              Before dinner I just wanted to add that Dave's puerile attempt to ignore my sarcasm and take words at face value doesn't become a Dartmouth grad.

                              Omigod! I just thought of something. What if he really DOESN'T understand?


                              dmckj


                              Feb 2, 2005, 6:01 PM
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                              Oh my...Dangle must have been delving deep into his Dale Carnegie books to come up with this last one....

                              Let's see what debating tricks did he use:

                              1) When losing an argument, change the subject...
                              2) When losing an argument, try to pretend you're above it all....
                              3) When losing an argument, play on the emotions of the crowd (evoking Fisher and Harding in a single post).

                              The bit about 'not understanding' the Harding reference was priceless. In a bit I'll provide the source of the Harding reference. It was Ron who evoked Harding while telling his 'story' in court. He's now earned the right to have a full public airing. Thread readers will notice he has stayed away from this topic entirely.

                              Same thing with respect to Fischer.

                              Really nice, Dangle. Playing on the memories of two dead guys to put yourself above it all and tear down other folks.

                              Where'd you learn that one?


                              iamthewallress


                              Feb 2, 2005, 6:12 PM
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                              Regarding Harding's items...Ken Yager would probably be happy to receive them for the new climbing museum that's supposed to go in on the dirt where the gas station used to be.

                              http://rockclimbing.org/YCA_flyer.pdf

                              A personal story about what happened in court might add spice to the artifacts?


                              dangle


                              Feb 2, 2005, 7:23 PM
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                              Back on the cell. Can't I even have a glass?
                              What does the book say? When I AM above mudslinging and arguing with a loser? Hey! Come here. There's something in my turd. Dig it out and explain it to me. Ooh if you don't you're a loser automatically because I say so.

                              History is history. Petty bickering doesn't qualify. I think Mike might be picking up on that, but as to changing the argument, what was that response to debunking your claim to seventies history? Fischer as well? What does that mean?

                              (I'll take your word on the Dale Carnegie claim.)


                              rocknroll


                              Feb 2, 2005, 8:34 PM
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                              Gee, Ron, I take back my statement that you might be a more calmer and resonable person these days. Your first reply to our stories was an excellent piece of prose; intellegent, a great command of syntax, and certainly accepting of the fun we have had at your expense thus far. This last post with its fecal references, poor analogies and circular logic; its only conclusion being the same name-calling and bickering that you complain about; are you drinking and posting? I have the utmost respect for your intelligence, but I must say, you are proving by example that negative side of you that sends so many of your partners away. No wonder you have soloed so many walls.. .

                              The Timbertop story ends like this.

                              "I can't believe that Ron made us walk" I said to Mark as I stuck out my thumb and grinned at the on-coming traffic. "But the Busman has hitched hiked all over this land and I got a formula for these scared Mormons - 1)dress like a preppie not a climber; 2) smile, don't look like a threat and 3)always have a sign that says "Home to Mom."

                              Mark replied, "Well with that grin, that rope on your back and Ron's court papers as a sign, you'll never get a ride. You look like you were just let out of the mental institution."

                              "I feel like it to. That Ron Olevesky makes you crazy."

                              Mark: "I know. After this experience I will never speak to him again. I am erasing his name out of my address book and clearing his memory from my mind."

                              And Mark has kept that promise to this day.

                              Come on Ron, let's hear your side of the court case/ timbertop story!


                              dmckj


                              Feb 2, 2005, 8:42 PM
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                              Dang it.....how come I never have hot popcorn ready when things start getting interesting........(I'll be back)


                              dmckj


                              Feb 2, 2005, 8:49 PM
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                              Rocknroller,

                              Obviously your years as a top video maker are paying off big time. Nice set-up to the Timbertop Tale, plus injecting the court documents was a good twist. I hope you treated those documents with some respect, as they cost me a bit of money...

                              I'm warming up to the tale.

                              So...how long did it take you guys to walk back to Springdale?


                              rocknroll


                              Feb 2, 2005, 9:00 PM
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                              We didn't walk. We got a ride. Thank God for Jack Mormons.

                              Timber top is coming, But I am waiting for Ron to put the aseptics in the fass nord and haul them on the B rope and tell his side of the story.

                              In the mean time, do you want to hear the story of trying to win a date with Ceder City Sally at the Bit and Spur Saloon in Springdale?


                              dmckj


                              Feb 2, 2005, 9:08 PM
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                              Yeah, Cedar City Sally....didn't she sing a song, let's see, how'd it go?.....

                              I'll be your Cedar City Sally...
                              If you'll be my Zion wall dude...
                              And we can sneak into Pah Tempe hot springs
                              And go soak in the nude....

                              doo, doo, doo, doo, doo, doo


                              rocknroll


                              Feb 2, 2005, 11:04 PM
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                              There's a band playing at the Bite and Spank (Bit and Spur) Saloon and them Mormon folk are going to be letting thier hair down. The bar is filled with river runners, cowboys, sheepherders, tourists and a few girls that look like they could be out of high school. The climbers are a new addition to the demographics as is one punk rocker (me) and a gay guy (the owner). I never really was very good at picking up chicks and felt a little uncomfortable. Mark Pey, as my coach, says nothing ventured, nothing gained. Well. I spy this thin waif of a girl and get bold and start talking. "What's your name?
                              Sally?
                              Where you from?
                              Ceder City?
                              Ceder City Sally?
                              Yep.
                              Suddenly I ran out of things to say.

                              An uncomfortable silence when I hear this bellowing voice from across the bar yelling to Sally.
                              "Come on over here little girl and I'll give you a kiss you'll never forget, by God!"

                              It's Dan Gifford, the pig farmer. (Ever notice how people in agricultural areas actually look like cows, pigs, and sheep?) A big smile comes over her face and Sally skips across the bar, plops down on Dan's over stuffed knee, grabs his humongus belly and plants one right on his fat lips.

                              I say to Mark " I could never do that."

                              Mark: "well, you better start. He just stole her away from you."

                              But Ceder City Sally comes back and she's now really interested in me. The band starts, I start pogo dancing and Sally gives me a look like I just walked off a space ship.
                              "I'm losing her." I say to Mark as we separate and go off the dance floor.

                              Mark hands me the keys to the VW rabbit. "there's some pot and a pipe in the glove box. See if she want's to get high" Mark turns around and continues his conversation with a female river guide. I watch the Master at work.

                              She: What are you doing in Zion?
                              Mark: I am an ornithologist (Mark Pey's Guide to Picking up Women Rule No. 1 -Whatever you do, don't let on that you are a scum bag climber).
                              Mark: I was wondering if you were interested in finding a rare bird with me? The purple headed throbber.
                              She: purple headed throbber?

                              I almost bust out laughing as Sally returns and snuggles up close to me. "You wanna go get high? " I ask and we go out to the parking lot.

                              "So Sally," I ask as we each take tokes on the pipe "what's it like living in Ceder City.'

                              "Well. life was pretty normal until them Californians came to town. Then I started getting in trouble. Sex,drugs, rock and roll. And I am suppose to be a Mormon. But I don't go no more, I guess I'm what we call a jack mormon".

                              There is a long silence as I try and think of something to say. But she speaks first.
                              "I have a present for you. " she says in the sweetest, softest voice.

                              "You do?"

                              Yup." and from inside her coat she produces a glass with the Bit and Spur logo on it..
                              I state the obvious."That's a glass from the bar."

                              "Yup" she says as she leans in close. "I stoled it. Its for you.

                              "Sally." I say, " I don't think the owner Marcus would appreciate you stealing his glass."

                              "What!" Sally becomes indignant "Well you can keep your stupid pot...and the glass" and she slams the door and runs into the arms of Dan Giiford.

                              And that was that.

                              oK it isnt as good a story as the others, but I wonder what ol' Ceder City Sally is doing today.

                              Your turn Ron


                              dangle


                              Feb 2, 2005, 11:19 PM
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                              Reminded why I only skim.
                              OK I lived in Cedar City from 9/79 - 12/81.
                              I dated one Sally in '76.
                              I went to Pah Tempe on numerous occasions with female companions until it was screwed up by the water project.
                              Speaking of screwed up, is this another case of time warp?
                              Don't remember any hitchiking. Do remember shuttling a borrowed trailer to Summit (a town) twice to get my mule from Toquerville to Lee Pass.

                              To the intelligent reader saying WTF,
                              Lee Pass like Lee's Ferry, AZ is named for John D. Lee who claimed to be a scapegoat when executed for the Mountain Meadow Massacre some twenty years earlier. I can certainly identify with scapegoats but reading Sally Denton's new book, American Massacre, which researched the incident in remarkable depth then unfortunately calls it the worst case of terrorism in this country before 9/11 (what about the Lawrence Kansas raid not many years later? OK it might have been an overzealous editor.) John D. Lee comes off as a monster who as a Danite perpetrated an act of deceit so treacherous that it was compared by Dale Walker in Legends and Lies to the fase promise by Dhondu Pant (Nana Sahib) at Cawnpore only months earlier. This horrific event is described in detail by Christopher Hibbert in The Great Mutiny, India 1857.

                              Any of the three make a better read than this thread. I'm getting back to the finish of the Denton work.


                              dangle


                              Feb 2, 2005, 11:24 PM
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                              Sorry folks. By the time I finished posting with one finger...


                              dmckj


                              Feb 2, 2005, 11:26 PM
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                              so much for Dangle rising to the occasion


                              rocknroll


                              Feb 2, 2005, 11:31 PM
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                              Ron
                              Don't be so self conscious...that post wasn't about you. Just killing time waiting for your version of the court case/ timbertop story.


                              dangle


                              Feb 2, 2005, 11:51 PM
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                              Same advice.
                              Hold your breath and guess which finger. Keep holding.


                              Back to the book.


                              dangle


                              Feb 3, 2005, 2:00 AM
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                              The book was great. I again give it thumbs up.
                              And speaking of fingers apologize for missing the l in false.
                              Most of my missed letters are from the current bout of ulnar tunnel syndrome of the LEFT arm that saw me wearing a device at OR. It has nearly subsided since and the error alluded to was an l which is right handed.


                              That is if I was NOT typing with one finger.



                              To the reader;
                              The common erroneous belief that thumbs up from the Roman Emperor was a signal for mercy is misplaced transference.

                              Thumbs down meant sheath your sword.
                              Thumbs up meant off with the head.



                              Well come on. This IS supposed to be a history thread.


                              dangle


                              Feb 3, 2005, 2:25 AM
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                              Don't read me wrong. Ridley Scott is great.
                              And his premier film The Duellists is one of the finest offerings in cinema history.

                              Curiously it is the story of a feud that lasts for decades and has a partial basis in fact. More curiously the crew of the film discovered in making the Joseph Conrad book into a film that it had indeed been based on a real life feud and occurred near that very location as well. And not to beat a curious horse, my father just like Joseph Conrad learned english as a third language in his twenties. Before his death he had a far greater command of it than most for whom it was sole tongue. And of course Conrad, a polish merchant seaman, is acknowleged as one of the greats of english literature.

                              Just weird I guess.
                              Good night.


                              ron_jeremy


                              Feb 3, 2005, 8:43 AM
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                              In reply to:
                              In reply to:
                              Dave Jones is a sandbagging MF'er. Omak Crack=12a? Might have well called it I'm On Crack. Nice one there

                              Way off thread, but I'll pitch in. Omak Crack (or Omakulate Conception)....great route in the Omak area of Okanogan Valley in Washington State. Took me three (or 4?) concerted afternoon efforts to get up it on lead...all trad. Frankly, I don't think I'm capable of putting up anything harder than a 5.12a on lead in that manner, but if you want to jack up the rating so be it. Maybe you've spent a little too much time in the 'soft' Valley World of ratings. No move on Omak is harder than solid 5.11, just a lot of hard moves in a row which made me give it the 'token' 5.12a. If you thought that was sandbag, you probably thought all the other ones at Omak are sandbag.

                              And if you thought those were sandbag....I'd avoid going to Zion.....

                              Dave, it's your route. And a seriously proud one. Far be it from me to change anything about it. I've just watched it bout some climbers that were way solid at that grade and know a couple other strong climbers that travelled there for what seemed like years before redpointing it.

                              It's also kicked my ass all three times I've been on it, and a couple of those times I was climbing significantly above the given rating (at least according to the El Softo Valley Rating System).

                              Oh yeah, with the exception of Gravitons (saving that one for the OS), I didn't think any of the other climbs there were hard for the grade. (Possible stars were aligned and you were in sendomatic mode during the Conception?)

                              Enjoying the thread, although it's starting to get a bit one sided now. Perhaps time to end the suffering and just out all the facts since the rebuttals have grown weak?


                              ron_jeremy


                              Feb 3, 2005, 8:54 AM
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                              In reply to:
                              If I had to wager a guess....I'd say What's up Morgan???

                              Dude everybody know's that Arrowhead is soft.....after all i hear they recruit from those sissy's over at Yosemite Helitack!!

                              josh

                              ps LF was 2 years ago....

                              Morgan? As in the infamous Morgan Pierre? Alas, I am not him and he is not me but I know him well.

                              "Why's your eye all red Nan?

                              And the timeless:

                              "If you aren't getting laid, it's time to lower your standards".

                              Unfortunately, nothing so brilliant ever passes my lips.

                              Ah yes, the sissies over at YH, quite the life they live. Almost as sorry ass as a Region Two Hotshot Crew, eh? Any crew that would hire two of the Gleason brothers, well hell, need I go on? One I could excuse for lack of judgement, but two?

                              But at least they're not Arrowhead. I could digress for hours on their specific lameness but I'll save us all the pain.

                              Sorry about the mistaken date on LF, Jon did say you were the best non homoerotic spooning ledge partner to ever hold him close, but in an entirely not gay way.

                              I say what happens on the wall, stays on the wall.

                              Carry on.


                              dmckj


                              Feb 3, 2005, 9:33 AM
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                              Dangle says...

                              In reply to:
                              Just weird I guess.

                              Boy, you got that dead to rights.

                              Now, gentle thread reader, we are witnessing Dangle's classic avoidance behavior when it comes to discussing things (i.e. his own history as it involves others) he doesn't wish to.

                              All of a sudden we're off into Joseph Conrad. Maybe Dangle has a Heart of Darkness complex.

                              O.K.....let's do a recap as to why this thread took off. I promise it is the last time I will discuss this, but I am not going to let Dangle get away with his current effort to appear above it all and a victim.

                              Dangle and I used to be friends. Routes we did together, in chronological order: Moonlight Buttress (early ascent), Archangel (2nd ascent?), and Spaceshot (1st ascent). I used to have the dates hardwired in my memory, but Dangle's constant revisionism has so muddled things that I just can't recall the exact years (79-80 is my guess, but I'll check with my slide covers). After Spaceshot, Dangle and I remained friends, but I decided that I needed to climb with partners who were more interested in putting up the kind of routes I wanted to: pushing aid and free standards to a higher level. Ironically, I was probably one of the ONLY partners Dangle EVER had who he could 'get along with' on a route. He was, and obviously is, particular as to doing things properly and efficiently and, luckily, I was, if nothing else, on top of getting up walls in such a manner. As a result we had minimal hassles, but he would ceaselessly berate my partners who weren't quite up to his standards.

                              So I drifted apart from climbing with Dangle, although he and I, along with friends I brought to Zion, would hang together at times and keep in touch. At times I even helped him in his little projects, like hauling half his gear up Angels Landing so he could rappel preview the upper part of Prodigal Son. I was happy to do it. At the same time, however, I was critical of other things Dangle would do. These included overdrilling, leaving lots of gear stashed on routes in progress or no longer in progress and throwing garbage off of routes with the rationale that 'I'll pick it up at the base'. But I overlooked most of this because it wasn't worth breaking a friendship over.

                              Then some things 'changed', instigated in part by myself. Steve Chardon and I did the second ascent of Catharsis in the Kolob only a few weeks after it had been put up by Dangle and Pey. We freed all but about 50 feet or so. I was keenly upset over one relatively easy 5.9 CRACK that had something like 3 drilled holes to get over a cruxy section. Never mind you could have aided the crack. Free, it was hardly even a crux move, just standard crack climbing, and well-protected. Upon returning to the Visitor's Center and the filed topo books I annotated the topo with a red pen indicating what we had freed on the 2nd ascent and commenting on the lack of need for the drilled holes. I didn't obliterate anything, but wrote over in red pen and put our names and dates as to the 2nd ascent. Keep in mind that there is a second set of copies the park maintains (or maintained) and, of course, Dangle had his own original.

                              Sometime later the head ranger, a friend of mine, is talking to me and starts giving me grief over destroying Dangle's topo. Huh??? This ranger was not a climber and didn't understand that climbing notebooks are meant to contain UPDATES and ADDITIONAL information on routes. I calmly explained that it is traditional to update routes to the degree to which they have been subsequently freed. And, again, nothing was destroyed, only annotated. But what was most revealing, was that it bothered Dangle so much. This started a lot of tension between us, although we still remained 'friends'.

                              But another important 'break' occurred. Let's start with giving Dangle credit, as I always have and always will. Dangle chose the line Spaceshot, and I helped him put it up, in fact leading at least 70% plus of the first ascent, albeit with the bolt ladders already in place (that will be the subject of another story on this thread). Dangle also turned Steve Chardon and I onto the line of Shune's Buttress, but of course he never thought we would get up it, but we did (thanks Dangle). However, I subsequently came to note that ANY line I might see was already claimed by Dangle to be HIS by virtue of having SEEN it. So I came up with a really, really simple solution to this problem: stop talking to Dangle about routes in Zion. So I did. Never talked to him since about any first ascent in Zion.

                              Subsequent to that, 100% of the wall first ascents I've done in the park have been lines I've personally selected. ALL of them, despite what Dangle might say. I've also 'lost' a few that I had intended on doing, like the Smoots BEAUTIFUL 'Crack in the Cosmic Egg', and the recently climbed 'The Big Easy' on Moroni. Oh yeah, and I had rope-solo started what is now the 'Swiss-American' route on Angels Landing many years before Middendorff did it.

                              Anyway, I simply went about my business and started putting up routes, ignoring Dangle in the process. Apparently, this didn't sit too well. Incredibly, I heard stories about his whining about my 'just coming in and doing all these routes' and also 'he should put up routes other people can do'. Funny, I thought the point was to do routes and not worry about what othes were doing.

                              But we still hung together on occasion, and I had no personal animosity towards Dangle, despite that fact that he had alienated several of my partners in the past. I was almost PROUD of the fact that I could maintain our friendship through all of his histri-RON-ics.

                              Then, with Devo present, Dangle pulled the behavior that triggered his dragging me into court, which, as you might expect, terminated our friendship. (I'll tell that story in full a little later).

                              After our 'breakup', I ignored Dangle entirely. However, around the time of the court case Dangle had recently completed (with Devo) a veritable siege ascent of Equinox (or whatever the heck it is called) to the left of Spaceshot. Within a week or so of its first ascent, as a route with LOTS of aid in it, George Allen and I went up and did the complete second ascent all free with no hangs or falls, no pins, no fixed ropes, no topo. This was just after Dangle had screwed me with his lawsuit, so I decided to rub his face in it. I wrote up a new topo and renamed his Equinox 'Babes in the Sandbox'. You will note that, typical of Dangle's penchant to obscure any history involving me, he deceiptfully reports this route as all free mentioning only he and Devo as the first ascencionists. The particular reason for my ire about this route is that Dangle had left garbage, cans, and fixed ropes all over this route. Really bad form. Not to mention a lot of unnecessary drilling.

                              This upset Dangle. But that's his problem: he is the first to rag on other people but doesn't accept responsibility for what he does and what he propogates. Not to mention the fact that he had just royally screwed me in court.

                              So, even after the court case, I decide that ignoring Dangle completely is the best way to go. I never indulged myself in seeking ANY attention to my routes in Zion. I had several different people approach me for topos (Harlin and Middendorff among others) and my topos were always available from the Park guidebooks. So, silly me, I just went off doing routes, keeping to myself, neither writing articles nor making videos, nor attending AAC meetings, etc, etc. Never wrote or participated in the writing of ANY history. Never once saw any copy of any guide that went to press. No one asked my opinion. No problem. Low profile....I was just there to climb and have fun. I even, holding my breath, refused to respond to Dangle's increasing and incessant attacks against me.

                              What attacks, you ask? A truly bizarre pattern started to emerge. On at least half a dozen occasions I would get calls from friends and/or magazine editors asking about the vitriolic rantings of Dangle against me in PUBLIC, badmouthing me in front of anyone and everyone who would listen. After writing the article 'BG Goes to Zion' Michael Kennedy calls me up and says someone had gotten the idea I had written it about Scott Fischer and had written a scathing rebuttal. Huh?? I explained to Michael that it was a fictitious story (he already knew that he said) and had nothing to do with Scott, a guy I didn't even know and had NEVER EVEN HAD A CONVERSATION WITH OTHER THAN TO SAY HELLO. I recall how odd it was, I thought, that a silly article could trigger such wrath, the reader apparently, and ironically, missing entirely the put-down on pretntious climbers of ANY KIND and ANY PLACE. But I suppose none are so blind as those who cannot see.

                              Another time my good friend Bob Yoho calls me up from and AAC meeting and says, 'Hey Dave, there is this asshole walking around badmouthing you to anyone and everyone who will listen. I am about ready to punch the S.O.B. out.' Bob and I did the F.A. of 'Hello Marylou' together on the Angelino Wall in Zion.

                              Another time I get the 2nd hand information that the editors of one climbing magazine nervously had to edit out considerable portions of a Dangle article about Zion because of what they considered to be 'libelous slander' against yours truly.

                              This had gone on for almost 20 years folks, and I have never ONCE taken the bait and responded.

                              Now...getting to the crux....let's examine why Dangle behaves this way. I don't write, don't talk about Dangle, don't go to any climbing functions or trade shows or movie events. I don't participate in Zion histories (although I informally participated in a totally impromptu recent video interview by someone whom I won't name so that Dangle won't cause him any 'problems') I just climb and put up routes and ignore him. Apparently this upsets him, but why?

                              Could it be that?:

                              1) I've put up more new wall routes in Zion than he has (20 plus)
                              2) My routes are all of a higher standard of both aid and free climbing than his routes.
                              2) I climb with an array of great folks I am happy to call my friends and climbing partners many of whom, happen to be, famous as well.
                              3) I've remained as low-profile as I can be (and somehow this is twisted into a conspiracy on my part to re-write Zion history!!????)
                              4) I ignore Dangle as irrelevant to my climbing and my life (until now).
                              5) I'm one of the only people who has told Dangle to bug-off to his face.

                              So, why respond now?

                              Simple. Someone told me that Dangle was participating in a thread shitting all over me. Sure enough I checked it out, and there he is blathering on in a fantasy world where I am 'lying' about routes and trying to write Scott Fishcer out of Zion climbing history. Truly, truly, bizarre and disturbing behavior on Dangle's part. It is all made up, all in his head.

                              Well, Dangle blew it this time, because I am not only going to throw it back at his face for the patent B.S. that it is, but further he has opened himself up to an exposure of his sordid and sad history of behaviors and actions which will now find a public forum. No one deserves more of an upcommance than he.

                              And, most interestingly, you will note that Dangle started this mudslinging, has been doing so for YEARS, and now when confronted by his own bad behavior (remember, in this thread he admitted to repeatedly lying about who he did the FA of Spaceshot with) he tries to repeatedly change the subject. Thread readers will note that he hasn't responded to even a SINGLE criticism lodged against him.

                              Stay tuned for installments on 'the court case' and 'Timbertop'.


                              dmckj


                              Feb 3, 2005, 9:43 AM
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                              To Ron_Jeremy,

                              Please...stop... you're making me blush.....

                              Omak Crack (Phil Gleasons original name for it incidently) is, I think, one of the 5-star rotes in Washington.

                              I was putting up all of those Omak routes in a complete void, because the local guys weren't yet putting up routes at that level, and it is always disconcerting to rate stuff without confirmation. So, sorry if Omak appears to be a sandbag.

                              Good luck on Gravitons....another fine, fine one pitcher. If you're going for an onsight, be SURE to rest and shake out at the locker one handed hand jam just before the cruxy finish. If you don't you are SUNK.

                              I am pleased as punch that someone is climbing those routes. They are really nice!


                              dmckj


                              Feb 3, 2005, 9:43 AM
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                              To Ron_Jeremy,

                              Please...stop... you're making me blush.....

                              Omak Crack (Phil Gleasons original name for it incidently) is, I think, one of the 5-star rotes in Washington.

                              I was putting up all of those Omak routes in a complete void, because the local guys weren't yet putting up routes at that level, and it is always disconcerting to rate stuff without confirmation. So, sorry if Omak appears to be a sandbag.

                              Good luck on Gravitons....another fine, fine one pitcher. If you're going for an onsight, be SURE to rest and shake out at the locker one handed hand jam just before the cruxy finish. If you don't you are SUNK.

                              I am pleased as punch that someone is climbing those routes. They are really nice!


                              dmckj


                              Feb 3, 2005, 9:46 AM
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                              To Ron_Jeremy,

                              Please...stop... you're making me blush.....

                              Omak Crack (Phil Gleasons original name for it incidently) is, I think, one of the 5-star rotes in Washington.

                              I was putting up all of those Omak routes in a complete void, because the local guys weren't yet putting up routes at that level, and it is always disconcerting to rate stuff without confirmation. So, sorry if Omak appears to be a sandbag.

                              Good luck on Gravitons....another fine, fine one pitcher. If you're going for an onsight, be SURE to rest and shake out at the locker one handed hand jam just before the cruxy finish. If you don't you are SUNK.

                              I am pleased as punch that someone is climbing those routes. They are really nice!


                              dmckj


                              Feb 3, 2005, 9:58 AM
                              Post #153 of 667 (64119 views)
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                              correction.....make that 'comuppance'

                              sorry for the mutliple posts...the web site freezes up on postings


                              dmckj


                              Feb 3, 2005, 4:05 PM
                              Post #154 of 667 (64119 views)
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                              "The Courtship of Rhan" - A sordid tale of Legal Intrigue

                              When: Long ago and far away, but, wait, that couldn't be accurate because my only purpose in life is to write people out of Zion climbing history and lie about my first ascents. That being said....let's set this in the early-mid 80's.

                              Where: From the hallowed canyon's of Zion to the cold hard impersonal concrete steps of the Washington County Courthouse.

                              Why: I'm still trying to figure that one out.

                              It began, as do most sordid tales, innocently enough. The early winter shadows were settling in across Zion's steepest and deepest faces, and I was about to abandon my Quixotic quest of finding a partner for one last wall. Springdale, far from the being the new hotspot of the politically-correct-on-a-sandstone-vacation, was shutting down for a long winter's slow-spell.

                              Rhan and I found ourselves parked at the Bit and Spur, nursing our 3.2 beer, and talking about not much in particular. I was ready to push off back to Tucson.....but Rhan had an idea

                              "The snow should be great at Brian Head after this storm blows through. Why don't we go skiiing?" said Rhan, pouring himself another.
                              "Good idea Rhan. Would be great to hit some fresh powder."
                              "O.K., let's talk tomorrow, give me a call." said Ron.
                              "Don't have a credit card or a place to dial direct Ron." (these being the pre-phone card days) said I.
                              "No problem, call me collect for just a minute and we'll pick the place and time to meet." said Rhan magnaminously..............

                              The storm had already started pushing through the Kolob and was descending into the main canyon. The boys had a plan and Dave would make that fateful phone call..........

                              (cheezy organ music building to a closing crescendo....)

                              stay tuned for the next installment...


                              bsmoot


                              Feb 3, 2005, 6:32 PM
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                              Zion in the late 70’s…The Wild Wild West

                              Terry and I were psyched. It was spring break and we couldn’t stop thinking about this climb. It had a single splitter that ran almost the entire distance of this wall in Zion. It was 1979. The year earlier had been a successful one for me in the Valley and in Zion…we were ready.

                              No sooner had we arrived in Zion, at the base of the splitter, than this climber mysteriously appeared and announced that we couldn’t do the climb we were drooling over. “I'LL SHOOT YOUR ROPES IF YOU START FIXING!”. Suddenly, our spirits sank. “Stay off MY route”, he said. Geez, we had come to a National Park, paid our fee, the weather was perfect, and now we couldn’t do our climb. Being two scared teenagers, we obliged. I think if we had shown up at 3:00 in the morning, this climber would have found us…it was kind of spooky.

                              Walking around depressed, a guy named Rhan came by and suggested we try a quality new route he’d just put up near the Temple of Sinawava. With nothing better to do, we took a look. “Wow! That does look good.” There was even a perfect splitter that bypassed an off-width crack. Rhan said we had to climb this route with him because we didn’t have enough large pins…this was the pre-friend era. Although we seriously questioned this guy, somehow, insanity took over and we decided to all climb it together.

                              The night before the climb, it was quiet at the near-empty Watchman Campground. In the 70’s, the town of Springdale was dead. There were no lights and no places to go. Unlike Yosemite, there was no climbing scene in Zion. You were lucky to even see another climber.

                              Then the silence was broken...“WHO SPILLED WATER ON MY SLEEPING BAG?" Terry’s older brother quickly fessed up. Rhan exploded with a deluge of profanity “you dumb #%*#,” getting right up into his face. "I'm sorry, I know I'm a dumb #%*#". As the tantrum got louder and louder, so did the apologies. Rhan wouldn't let it go...it went on and on. Something bad was gonna happen. Terry’s brother was bigger & stronger than little Rhan. He could have drop-kicked him out of the campground. Suddenly, one of us said “you can borrow my sleeping bag tonight." Things quickly calmed down after this was said…whew!

                              The next day, without helmets, we climbed up a beautiful, dark corner. The rock was hard--in fact so hard that I broke the heads off of several pitons while cleaning. They were welded. I yelled up to Rhan “why did you overdrive these pins!” “Come on! This is the Desert”, he shouted. Higher up, from our sling belay, Terry free climbed a long section of the vertical crack, running it out because of the difficulty of placing a pin…great lead. Next, as I was leading a perfect 1" crack, I suddenly got some sand under my contact lens. Yelling for tention, I slithered down to fix the problem. Rhan yelled up "Solo climbers don't ask for tention". As we climbed, Rhan critiqued us. We returned the favor as he climbed.


                              We reached a cool bivy ledge that night. Rhan, being the shortest, picked the best part of the ledge. Later that night, after smoking some of “the good stuff,” he grabbed my brand new 35mm camera and threatened to throw it off into space. I pleaded with him not too, and finally he handed it over. I slept well that night, but who doesn’t sleep soundly when you’re young! In the morning, after cleaning the sand out of my eyes, I started up the last pitch. The regular route to the right looked contrived, with some aid, so I free climbed left up a more natural crack line. Grunting up a typical Zion off-width/squeeze, I wearily pulled over the top.

                              Before we left the summit, we heaved all of our pins off the rim. The thought of rapping the route was almost unheard of in those days, so we continued up thru brush, deep snow, cactus and unprotected, loose, soft rock for another 1,300 feet to the top of the East Rim. The view was magnificent. Rhan wanted to take the short hike out to Observation Point. When we declined to accompany him, he went ballistic... We bolted to escape the wrath of Rhan. He continued out to the point alone to smoke more of the “the good stuff.” On the descent,
                              Terry and I reflected on our adventure…the good and bad rock, the splitters, the off-widths, runnouts, the sand, the solitude… guns, arguments, heavy pin racks, our own insanity and most importantly, the incredible beauty…Ah yes, the wild west.

                              (This post was edited by bsmoot on May 2, 2009, 7:19 AM)


                              dmckj


                              Feb 3, 2005, 8:46 PM
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                              Serious interlude...

                              This message is primarily to Devo or to anyone else who knows George Allen (including Dangle).

                              George is in the advanced stages of terminal colon cancer and there is no good prognosis.

                              To those who care to give a call of support and friendship his number is:

                              303-730-8900 Room 709


                              dmckj


                              Feb 3, 2005, 9:13 PM
                              Post #157 of 667 (64119 views)
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                              ........cheezy subdued, but inviting, organ music.......


                              We last left our duo on the verge of an impending snowstorm.....well, it hit hard, and this was the time to get some fresh tracks...

                              Ring, ring....
                              'Yes maam, I'd like to make a collect phone call. To whom?.....mmm... tell him it's Warren Harding".

                              (historical fact: during what in the future may be referred to as Dangle and Dave's 'friendship years', these two would typically identify themselves as either Don Whillans or Warren Harding. This was code for the fact that it was one of us)

                              'Sir, I have a collect call from a Warren Harding....do you accept the charges' said the operator, not having ANY realization whatsoever what she was in the thick of (LOUD organ music to set the tension of the moment)
                              'Yes, I do.' said Rhan.
                              'So Rhan, looks great for skiing tomorrow. Where and when shall we meet?' said I
                              'O.K., I'll meet you at the interstate junction at 8 a.m., park my truck, and we'll take yours'.
                              'Done. See ya tomorrow.' said I ..................................


                              rocknroll


                              Feb 3, 2005, 11:52 PM
                              Post #158 of 667 (64119 views)
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                              Excellent posts Dave and bsmoot. You have all behaved honorably in the face of Rhan's Us and Them attitude.

                              Call me a masochist, but some how, I still like the guy.

                              What a character! So entertaining...


                              ammon


                              Feb 4, 2005, 2:51 AM
                              Post #159 of 667 (64119 views)
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                              WoW!! Great material....

                              Wish you guys had some pics... especially when Devo swooped down with his cape-a-flowin...

                              Funny shit!!!


                              bsmoot


                              Feb 4, 2005, 7:45 AM
                              Post #160 of 667 (64119 views)
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                              A few more Zion stories possibly upcoming:

                              "It was a Dark & Stormy Night...A close Encounter"

                              or

                              "5.11 granite slab climbers storm Zion"


                              bsmoot


                              Feb 4, 2005, 8:40 AM
                              Post #161 of 667 (64119 views)
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                              A few more thoughts possibly upcoming:

                              "It was a Dark & Stormy Night...A close Encounter"

                              or

                              "5.11 granite slab climbers storm Zion"


                              iamthewallress


                              Feb 4, 2005, 8:59 AM
                              Post #162 of 667 (64119 views)
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                              Someone wanted to hear about Amanda Tarr's FA Leaving Llamaland.

                              Here's her trip report from rec.climbing