/ NEWS: MacLeod and Muskett Climb Paciencia, 8a, on the Eiger

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UKC News - on 19 Aug 2013
Dave MacLeod on Paciencia in atmospheric conditions, 4 kbCalum Muskett and Dave MacLeod have just made a very quick repeat of Ueli Steck's testpiece Paciencia, 8a, on the Rote Fluh section of the North Face of the Eiger in Switzerland. The pair climbed every pitch free, alternating leads, onsighting up to 7a+, and redpointing all the harder pitches, with both redpointing the 'crux' 8a pitch...

Read more at http://www.ukclimbing.com/news/item.php?id=68288
johncoxmysteriously - on 19 Aug 2013
In reply to UKC News:

Golly. "Endurance nil", eh?

I thought people had stopped climbing on the NF of the E in summer owing to getting hit on the head by stones too often?

jcm
In reply to johncoxmysteriously:
> (In reply to UKC News)

>
> I thought people had stopped climbing on the NF of the E in summer owing to getting hit on the head by stones too often?


The Rote Fluh is a large buttress of very clean Limestone on the right side of the N Face.

It doesn't suffer from the rockfall of the classic route which weaves its way up much easier angled terrain in the centre of the face.

The Rote Fluh has several high quality alpine sport routes, such as the 7b+ that was BASE soloed by Dean Potter a few years ago - Deep Blue Sea.

Usual access to this area of the face is from the Stollen Loch, via the train tunnel, but it sounds like Dave and Calum scrambled up the easy first part of the 38 route to gain the ledge system.

I have heard that Paciencia is very difficult.

Well done Cal and Dave!

Jack
Rick Graham on 19 Aug 2013
In reply to johncoxmysteriously
>
> I thought people had stopped climbing on the NF of the E in summer owing to getting hit on the head by stones too often?

Rockfall needs something to start it.

Freeze thaw, rain or other climbers mainly.

The right hand side of the face is relatively safe and unexposed to rockfall in calm weather.

I knew that before I even visited the Alps from reading the guidebook and the White Spider book.

Nice one , lads
johncoxmysteriously - on 19 Aug 2013
In reply to Jack Geldard - UKC Chief Editor:

Aha - thank you.

Well, it looks very nice. Do they have any, y'know, punter routes there?

jcm
In reply to johncoxmysteriously:
> (In reply to Jack Geldard - UKC Chief Editor)
> Do they have any, y'know, punter routes there?

I know folk who have done Le Chant du Cygne (ED3: 7a, 6b+ oblig., 900m, Anker-Piola, 1992). Not exactly punter territory, but not sponsored hero territory either.
Alexandre Buisse - on 19 Aug 2013
In reply to Jack Geldard - UKC Chief Editor:

Yes, they ended up doing the approach to the Stollenloch three times up and once down, as the Swiss needed more time to allow them to stop at the Stollenloch. It's easy, but it was wet. I didn't fancy it one bit.

And there is way less rockfall than on the central part of the face, plus you are somewhat protected by the overhanging Rote Fluh, but there is still a lot of stuff coming down.

In reply to johncoxmysteriously: I'm not sure what grade would qualify as a punter route, but the most classic/travelled route that climbs the N Face in summer, again over on the right, and this time a bit to the right of Paciencia (I think), but still relatively safe from objective danger (bearing in mind this is the alps) is the Geneva Pillar.

It's ED2, or around E2, with one short section of aid. It has some loose rock.

I haven't climbed on the face in summer myself, so I am no expert, and the reason I know a little bit about these routes is because I have fancied Deep Blue Sea (the 7b+) and looked in to it a bit, and hope to go next summer. Didn't get time this year.

In terms of conditions, friends tell me that it is best to go in a heat wave (well done Dave and Cal!) as hard climbing up there is difficult due to cold quite often.

Cheers,
Jack

aldo56 - on 20 Aug 2013
In reply to UKC News: Quick, someone give him some axes and see what he can do out there! Good work all round.
Jim Brooke - on 20 Aug 2013
In reply to UKC News:

Impressive!

(I find the description of the ascent in this article is totally confusing, though. How were they "totally wasted" yet also "fresher than the previous day", on the second day. Eh? )
auld al on 20 Aug 2013
In reply to Jim Brooke: Yes, that puzzled me also - off to read the blogs!
Solaris - on 21 Aug 2013
In reply to UKC News:

Impressive stuff, and great images from Alexandre.

I can picture the Rote Fluh, but don't know where the route goes and the links don't help either. (Or at least, the link to CM's isn't working and the others don't help.) Any chance of a pic?

To JCM: my wife will tell you she got up the Voie Normale with her dog before breakfast so I imagine that even punters like you could manage it - could take a bit longer than her, mind.
Doug on 21 Aug 2013
In reply to Solaris: its ligne 33 on http://fr.academic.ru/pictures/frwiki/69/Eiger_Nordwand_Routen_9000.jpg

(see http://fr.academic.ru/dic.nsf/frwiki/1929472 for all routes on the Eiger N face)

I assume they didn't go to the summit ?
Solaris - on 21 Aug 2013
In reply to Doug:

Thank you.
Hannes on 23 Aug 2013
In reply to UKC News: Not a bad first alpine route I must say
jghedge - on 26 Aug 2013
"...and after jugging back up the ropes they had fixed the previous day, they were in a strong position to top out, with Calum even "making an unlikely flash of the final 7c pitch through determination to not be on the face any longer".

I've read through this a few times and perhaps I'm just not getting it...but are they really claiming a red-point of a multi-pitch free climb after jumaring to their previous highpoint? Or did they go back after this and send the route in one push?
Alexandre Buisse - on 26 Aug 2013
In reply to jghedge:

There are very few bivy ledges, so on some days, they had to abseil back down to the bivy spot and jug back up in the morning.
On steep enough walls, it's common and accepted practice when you have to go multiple days, even when portaledges are used (see capsule style, e.g. by the Favresse brothers).
jghedge - on 26 Aug 2013
In reply to Alexandre Buisse:

But nowhere in the article does it mention that they bivied on the route, just that they "transported all their kit up to the base of the route." And I can perhaps see the tactics used by the Favresse brothers to establish a route like this, but to repeat one, that's already had multiple ascents? I'm just perplexed by this...since when do you get to claim a red point of a multi-pitch by jumaring to your highpoint?
Jonas Wiklund - on 26 Aug 2013
In reply to jghedge: Rapping down to bivy and even bivying on porta-ledges (arguably even further from the free climbing ethos) are completely normal for big-wall free climbing. All kinds of grey zones are present in big wall free climbing: team free, second on jumar, extensive pre practice, partly pre-placed gear, food & water stashing, etc.
Epsilon - on 26 Aug 2013
In reply to jghedge:
> (In reply to Alexandre Buisse)
>
> But nowhere in the article does it mention that they bivied on the route, just that they "transported all their kit up to the base of the route." And I can perhaps see the tactics used by the Favresse brothers to establish a route like this, but to repeat one, that's already had multiple ascents? I'm just perplexed by this...since when do you get to claim a red point of a multi-pitch by jumaring to your highpoint?

Where exactly are they claiming a continuous redpoint of the route? All it says in the article is that they redpointed every individual pitch.
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jon on 26 Aug 2013
In reply to jghedge:

Did you register as a UKC user today specifically to say that? Have a look at either of their blogs and you'll see photos of them bivvying.
jghedge - on 26 Aug 2013
In reply to Epsilon:

Sorry, wasn't aware that people were claiming repeats of multi-pitch free routes by jumaring up to their high points. That sounds more like a "working the route" tactic than something someone would claim as part of an actual repeat.
puppythedog on 26 Aug 2013
In reply to jghedge: well that's how lots of people do them. There was a brilliant free ascent in Yosemite by Hazel Findlay, James McHaffie and another chap who's name escapes me that was reported on here with similar tactics. The point is that each pitch is done free. Why do you have your knickers in a twist about it?
Enty - on 26 Aug 2013
In reply to jghedge:

Has it ever been done in a day?

E
puppythedog on 26 Aug 2013
In reply to Enty: I was under the impression from the article, though I may be imagining it, that it hadn't been freed that many times.
xplorer on 26 Aug 2013
In reply to jghedge:

You jghedge are an absolute coward. Obviously a long term UKCer who has decided to hide behind a fake profile.

I don't believe your trolling either, which leads me to believe that you're embarrassed by your remarks.

I've got my suspicions to who you are!
Alexandre Buisse - on 26 Aug 2013
In reply to puppythedog: Theirs was the third ascent, after Ueli Steck got the first one in 2008, and David Lama the second in 2010 (I think).
jghedge - on 27 Aug 2013
In reply to UKC News:

I mean, is that how Sasha did Bellavista recently? She worked it over a few days, then fired it from bottom to top - no jumaring involved. I know Pacienca is about twice as bib, but I just don't think you get to claim a valid ascent by jumaring to your highpoint. You "worked" the route, but didn't send it.
jghedge - on 27 Aug 2013
In reply to xplorer:

"You jghedge are an absolute coward. Obviously a long term UKCer who has decided to hide behind a fake profile. "

I've got a few thousand too many posts on supertopo.com, and that's my real name - what fake profile are you referring to?

I simply wasn't aware that people were claiming repeats of multi-pitch free routes by jumaring to their previous high points. I don't think it's a valid repeat. Joe Hedge, Burbank CA
Enty - on 27 Aug 2013
In reply to jghedge:

This is Mark Hudon's quote from the taco." Are you saying, for example, that a team free climbs to the Roof on the Salathe and then fixes ropes down to Block to spend the night, jugs back up to their high point the next day and carries on free climbing, that there is something wrong with that? "

The point he is making is right. If Dave and Callum had dragged a portaledge up with them and bivvied at the base of each pitch would that be ok? But not ok to rap down to a decent bivvy ledge and jug back up next morning?

And with regards to a valid ascent - what style was the 1st and 2nd ascent done in?

E
Alexandre Buisse - on 27 Aug 2013
In reply to Enty: Especially since a big factor on the face is rockfall, and the few bivy ledges are below overhangs and sheltered. Even if you could be bothered with a portaledge, it would be really dangerous.
Robert Durran - on 27 Aug 2013
In reply to jghedge:
> I simply wasn't aware that people were claiming repeats of multi-pitch free routes by jumaring to their previous high points. I don't think it's a valid repeat.

If they were abseiling off ther route, going home, having a rest,doing some training, resting some more and then jumaring back to the high point you might have a point. But abseiling to a sensible bivy site then jumaring back up next morning is simply common sense. There really is no problem.
jghedge - on 27 Aug 2013
In reply to Enty:

"If Dave and Callum had dragged a portaledge up with them and bivvied at the base of each pitch would that be ok? But not ok to rap down to a decent bivvy ledge and jug back up next morning?"

So this route in particular has never been done w/o jumaring? There's obviously a huge difference between jumaring back up and not jumaring, to the extent that not jumaring makes the route as a whole a much more difficult undertaking, I would think.
jon on 27 Aug 2013
In reply to jghedge:

Personally I really can't see the 'huge difference' - or understand your beef.
Enty - on 27 Aug 2013
In reply to jon:

Me neither.

E
tony on 27 Aug 2013
In reply to jghedge:
>
> So this route in particular has never been done w/o jumaring?

How much do you actually know about this route?
jon on 27 Aug 2013
Enty - on 27 Aug 2013
In reply to Alexandre Buisse:

That was a cool job you got there Alex - awesome photos. What was the rap in from the top like - looked scary!

E
Alexandre Buisse - on 27 Aug 2013
In reply to Enty: Thanks. I didn't rap from the top but climbed to the stollenloch, then jugged up lines left by either Jasper & co busy opening a new line right next to it, or fixed by Dave and Calum. I only shot them until the 8a pitch, then came down through the stollenloch.
Epsilon - on 27 Aug 2013
In reply to jon:
> (In reply to Enty)
>
> He's obviously not happy about it: http://www.supertopo.com/climbers-forum/2211989/Jumaring-On-El-Cap-Free-Routes

He seems to be operating under the ridiculous assumption that the only way to properly free-climb a big wall is via continuous team redpoint. By that standard Tommy Caldwell and Beth Rodden didn't free climb the West Face of El Cap. I'm not sure Lynn Hill's free ascent of The Nose was done in such a style either.
Brendan - on 27 Aug 2013
In reply to jghedge:
>
> So this route in particular has never been done w/o jumaring? There's obviously a huge difference between jumaring back up and not jumaring, to the extent that not jumaring makes the route as a whole a much more difficult undertaking, I would think.

Is there a bit of a misunderstanding here? Do you think they are jumaring up to a high point on the individual pitches, ie. jumaring up to the 5th bolt of pitch X and then continuing to climb it from there?
jghedge - on 27 Aug 2013
In reply to Epsilon:

"I'm not sure Lynn Hill's free ascent of The Nose was done in such a style either."

Actually she led every pitch in under 24 hours. And no, she didn't jumar back up after freeing the crux, fixing a line and taking a nap at Camp 6
johncoxmysteriously - on 27 Aug 2013
In reply to jghedge:

>Actually she led every pitch in under 24 hours

She went back and did that later, certainly. But her FFA was celebrated before that. Epsilon's question is what style that earlier ascent was made in. I've no idea what the answer is.

jcm
Epsilon - on 27 Aug 2013
In reply to jghedge:
> (In reply to Epsilon)
>
> "I'm not sure Lynn Hill's free ascent of The Nose was done in such a style either."
>
> Actually she led every pitch in under 24 hours. And no, she didn't jumar back up after freeing the crux, fixing a line and taking a nap at Camp 6

Using your logic, if her belayer did not follow every pitch free, then the route was not "redpointed" (which is what you seem to be hung up on) but was climbed using "Team Free" tactics.
Enty - on 27 Aug 2013
In reply to Alexandre Buisse:
> (In reply to Enty) Thanks. I didn't rap from the top but climbed to the stollenloch, then jugged up lines left by either Jasper & co busy opening a new line right next to it, or fixed by Dave and Calum. I only shot them until the 8a pitch, then came down through the stollenloch.

Even better!!

E
Enty - on 27 Aug 2013
In reply to jghedge:
> (In reply to Epsilon)
>

>
> Actually she led every pitch in under 24 hours.

Her first free ascent in a day was a year after her first free ascent.

E



IainRUK - on 27 Aug 2013
In reply to Enty: Does it actually matter anyway? As long as they document their style. Its not like they in anyway misled. They were quite clear on their style.
Enty - on 27 Aug 2013
In reply to IainRUK:

Not to me of course. Seems to bother Mr hedge though.

E
TheAndyBarker - on 08 Sep 2013
In reply to UKC News: FFS.. Splendid effort by two great climbers. Can't believe there's so much controversy.. go do it in the style you see fit then open up a new can o worms for idiots to whinge about from their keyboards.. put up or stfu...! That is all..!
Franco Cookson on 08 Sep 2013
In reply to TheAndyBarker: What does the phrase 'put up or shut up' actually mean? Surely if you put up with something, you would also not be commenting on it - i.e. shutting up...
puppythedog on 08 Sep 2013
In reply to Franco Cookson: I think it's about putting up a stake, in a gabling game, i.e. you can put up your stake and participate or you can shut up.
John2 - on 08 Sep 2013
In reply to puppythedog: No, it means put your fists up of shut up.
puppythedog on 08 Sep 2013
In reply to John2: A quick google suggests I may be right but then so might you. There seemed to be more links for my theory.
John2 - on 08 Sep 2013
In reply to puppythedog: In the Coventry of my youth there was no doubt as to the meaning of the phrase. I am happy to accept that it may since have been yuppified.
TheAndyBarker - on 09 Sep 2013
In reply to puppythedog: Stake.. fists.. both the same meaning.. It is supposed to say to the moaners that if they're not happy with how it's been done, then go do it themselves in the manner that they deem most fit or don't comment.
Franco Cookson on 09 Sep 2013
In reply to TheAndyBarker: o thanks, wondered about that one for a while. Should have just googled it I suppose..
John2 - on 18 Sep 2013
In reply to UKC News: Prompt as ever, the Times today printed a very nice photo of Dave on the route. The caption, in full, read 'It was very cold and on the third day they had to drink melted ice full of grit, but Dave Macleod, 19, above, and Calum Musket, 35, have become the first UK climbers to scale the Paciencia route on the Eiger in the Alps. It has been done only twice before, first in 2008, and has claimed 60 lives. Mr Macleod said it had been "fantastic".

Why is it obligatory for the mainstream press to make so many mistakes in stories about climbing?
johncoxmysteriously - on 18 Sep 2013
In reply to John2:

Because they make just as many mistakes in stories about anything. This occurs because they can't be arsed, which to be fair no doubt occurs because they need 900 words on something or other by 4 pm and 700 words on something else by 5 pm.

jcm
Simon Caldwell - on 18 Sep 2013
In reply to John2:
Possibly a poorly worded press release, as the Torygraph piece makes at least one of the same mistakes
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/switzerland/10315575/Climbers-become-first-Britons-...
Kevin Woods - on 18 Sep 2013
In reply to Toreador:
> (In reply to John2)
> Possibly a poorly worded press release, as the Torygraph piece makes at least one of the same mistakes
> http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/switzerland/10315575/Climbers-become-first-Britons-...

"Over 60 alpinists have died attempting to scale the Paciencia face." Crossed wires!
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johncoxmysteriously - on 18 Sep 2013
In reply to Kevin Woods:

Crumbs. Is there a *single* correct fact in that article?

To be fair, they have spelled both climbers' names correctly, and I expect it is true that the handholds are quite small.

jcm
John2 - on 18 Sep 2013
In reply to johncoxmysteriously: I have to say, if I were interviewing a trainee journalist I might very possibly call in two people from the office and ask him to carry out a very basic interview. If he got their ages the wrong way round I would suggest that he sought a less mentally demanding career.

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