Lumpy Ridge Again

We hit Lumpy Ridge the next day, after sleeping in. Two parties were ahead of us on Batman and Robin. We waited and Victor set off. The climb is real nice, and has a bit of everything. The first two pitches go at 5.4, although the layback moves in the middle of the pitch 2 corner seemed a bit harder than 5.4 to me. I led the hand crack on pitch 3 (although at that point we weren't exactly sure which variation we were on). Another pitch and three raps later, we were back on the ground. This is a very enjoyable climb, with one 5.6 section that takes a lot of gear. Highly recommended.

I hadn't done anything at my lead limit on this trip, although the tick list assembled beforehand was partly aimed at that. 5.7 is my lead limit, and 5.7 is a great grade at Lumpy Ridge. We figured on doing two climbs in a really long day. We ended up doing one climb in a really long day, but it was entirely worth it.

So we woke up early, packed up the tent, ate at McDonalds, and were hiking by 8. Apparently that is not early enough for Lumpy Ridge, because there was a party at the base of Osiris, and another party whom we passed on the hike up also wanted to do the climb. This is Friday, mind me.

The first pitch is a long chimney, rated 5.6. Tim, the guy leading ahead of me seemed to think it was pretty hard, and his second was telling me to get ready for battle. Midway through the first narrow section of the chimney I was feeling fortunate to have done a chimney in Yosemite two weeks before. Stay calm, keep breathing, and move slowly. It worked, and I was feeling in control. Things got a bit exciting when I stepped out of the chimney to face climb 15 feet above my last piece, but then I got pro in the chimney again, and I was safe. When it narrowed again, I took a long time to try and climb through it, before stepping out on the face one more time.

The second pitch has more flares and offwidths, but there are holds as well, so it would have gone easy at 5.5 except the rope got stuck, and I had to belay beneath the actual platform (hanging belay from a tree), then use my daisy chain to downclimb enough to where I could unclip my last piece and wiggle the rope free. In the meantime a big queue was forming behind us.

The third pitch is the crux of the climb, and is beautiful. Although Rossiter gives the length of the first pitch in the guidebook, he omits it on this pitch. It is greater than 165 feet ... Beautiful well protected climbing in a corner leads to a move up and right to the base of a thin crack, where things get to 5.7. I did a good sewing job on the crack and worked my way up to the parallel cracks at the top of the pitch. Great jamming, and more great gear gets you through this section (its steeper, so more pumpy than the rest). The belay ledge much higher up than expected, and we had to simulclimb, then move over the belay to the Fang where the next pitch starts.

I was pretty drained, and rested for a while. We had no water, and my mouth and throat were completely dry. I was hoping to find a traverse to the easier variation of the 4th pitch, but no such luck. After sewing up another flare / offwidth section, I was right underneath the 5.7 slot, and without a good way to get around it. Actually the slot was not so bad, as the jams are really positive. This section takes really good gear also. Another easy pitch, not mentioned in the guidebook, and we got to the top.

We headed back to Laramie that night, and I got back home the next day.