Friday, May 9, 2008

New Routes in the Sunny South

It's been a great Spring so far here in North Carolina with some much needed rain- but not too much rain to get out and climb. Last week I finally sent a beautiful new line on the Sun Wall of Looking Glass just to the right of the classic 'Tits and Beer' route. The new route starts from the anchors on the 1st pitch of T&B then heads out right and over an exciting crux bulge followed by classic Sun Wall style water groove and bulge climbing. In keeping with the Zappa theme I decided to call the route 'Wet T-Shirt Night' 5.12? (11aR), 500ft.

A few days ago I was lucky enough to get access to an unfortunately secret location here in Western North Carolina to try for a few FA's. What we found was a plethora of potential new lines and untouched walls. Like kids in a candy store we walked the cliffline searching for a good line to try. We finally settled on a beautiful seam/face climb that we climbed for a nice, long and sustained single pitch. After finishing the FA which required some aid to drill two bolts and to clean, I roped up for the redpoint. Just as I was about to leave the ground a tiny stream of water came down right onto the crux holds (tiny crimpers). With not much time left before we had to leave, I tried the climb anyways and somehow pulled through to the top. Thus we (myself and Nathan Brown) decided to name the climb 'Chinese Water Torture' 5.11+ . Hopefully, with the help of the Carolina Climbers Coalition and climbers' support, this area will one day be open for everyone to enjoy.
On the FA.

Later that day on the redpoint.

Posted by Brian Williams