Nov 16, 2015

Rostrum North Face - a Classy Classic Climb

Rostrum North Face - Classic Yosemite Granite Crack Climb.

Four weeks of climbing and a little more then 200rope lengths, so far.

Pretty good specially since the sunny Californian weather has included more rain and snow then I have experienced during all my weeks and months I have had in Les Etat-Unis in total!

The rapports of flooding and lack of sun have been number one news on Fox each and every day...

Our last couple of days in Big Wall County of Yosemite we had a good number of great climbs with the nine pitch route at Rostrum North Face being the highlight.

The North Face of Rostrum is a very obvious and almost scenic pillar watching over the entrance to the valley. Maybe even a little bit obscure, if you got that look in your eyes!

If the upper approach is used it is very straight forward to get to the base of the climb. Just park the car at the end of the long stone wall west of the Wawona tunnel on highway 41. Hike down the slabs following a well marked trail. Only the last bit is a bit awkward, to some good bolted rappel anchors. 3-4 rappels, depending on how long ropes of have, brings you to the bottom of the north face. Steep a couple of meters left and your at the start of pitch one. A nice crack system with moderate climbing...until the chimney is reached that is! But a well placed hole in the rock makes it possible to do a thread before exiting the chimney up to the belay. The rest is just pure fun and great climbing. Always on good pro. The last offwidh pitch is easily passed with a couple of layback moves, just make sure that you move, leep-frogging, the "big piece cam" upwards and finally just take it out and mantle up to the top of pitch nine. If it feels doubtsome, it's possible to make a placement out right with some mid size Alien. But whatever you do don't leave the cam in the big crack. That will send it to the rest of all the lost pro at the cam graveyard deep in the crack.

Anna working on the Chimney pitch 1


"We had a windy night just outside the park entrance at hwy 140. Camp 4 was all overcrowded and after a couple of nights at the terrible campsites at "the Pines", which was full as well. We decided that we had it regarding smoke, camper vans and diesel aggregates. We fled the valley and camped outside the spectacle.

Waking up below a blue sky, but with a shooting hard wind and a freezing temp. Could this be our day for a north face climb up a hard pillar?!

Well, starting up the day with some good coffee always makes things better. Improving the outcome sort of. But this very morning it was hard just to get the stove working and keeping the windshield at place, because of the hard breezing winds. Finally we retreaded back inside to the car and had our morning sandwich nicely behind the steering wheel, with some calming country music playing. Did we had any second planes like plan B or even C?

Well, fact is, we both had our brains focused and would really like to put our worked out fingers into the famous cracks of Rostrum.


So after an hour or two we anyhow stood at the stonewall, car parked and packs packed with equipment for a great day of climbing.

Three rappels later, passing a Japanese team on the way, we stood at the base and I took off up the easy and nice warm up first pitch, a moderate 5.7. But everything suddenly changed when I realized I had to overcome a chimney to reach the belay station...thinking that this ain't possible, but instead ignoring the wind and cold temperatures I just focus, actually start thinking climbing. And thereafter it just flows. The wind calms down and so do I.

When Warren Harding went up the same route in 1962 with Glen Denny it was one of many great first descents that Harding was involved in. The Nose on El Captain the most famous one.

But the "Wall of the Early Morning Light", El Caps biggest highest rock face, and 27 days on the wall, ignoring the rangers willingness to rescue them, Harding and Dean Caldwell, from the face after a four day Californian storm, made them the hard men of the state!

I don't feel like any of the classic hard men, just fighting myself upwards on spectacular cracks, fingers, hands and offwidh, on modern pro. Long away from old wood pitons.

The finger 5.11c pitch

Happily to threw in an Alien or a BD cam here or now I jam myself upwards, in total respect of these guys like Peter Crofts and Alex Honnold who has soloed this thing unroped!

I guess we all have our crux on a climb like this. But to me the eight pitch was the hardest one, a wild steep finger to hand to layback piece of rope length had me working as hard as possible. Finally at the belay we just had to have a go on the roof, the spectacular "Alien pitch"

Famous last words, get out and do it and it will be awesome!"

Rostrum North Face - Yosemite Valley

First ascent Warren Harding/ Glen Denny 1962


60m rope or 2x50m

Cams 2set 0.5- 2" (Green Alien-#3BD) 1 #4" BD

1 set of nuts

6 QD's


//I ljuset av verkligheten får medvetandet sin utveckling


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