/ Routes that attract stuck people
Further to the thread on stuck placements I was wondering which routes you know of that tend to attract stuck people.
The first one myself that sprang to mind having thrutched my way up it was
I did eventually find my way out. I reckon the helmet was the sticking point.
You beat me to it!
Third Corner, Lower Cove, the Mournes. Many helmets (and their owners) have been stuck in the chimney on the second pitch.
There's a route called Coccyx, on Pigeon Rock, also in the Mournes. In the dim and distant days of my youth, I can remember a total pisshead heading up this. (Don't think I'd ever seen him actually leave the ground before.) Sure enough, things didn't go so well. Rubbish, late '60s gear and a horrible scrabbling as he came off. Like watching a car crash in slow motion. Amazingly he didn't go anywhere. He couldn't believe it. Neither could we. Somehow he'd managed to jam his coccyx (was this why the route was so named?) He took one hand off and waved it, then the other, reverting to his normal pisshead mode. We screamed at him not to move and got him a top-rope in record time. I never saw him climb again. He was a jammy bugger. That fall could have been bad - maybe even fatal. Sometimes miracles happen! (But best not to depend on 'em.)
There's an offwidth route over the pond somewhere that's called, 'Boogey till you Puke'. A rather amusing video is lurking around of an unfortunate hungover gentleman getting stuck in it and having quite a unpleasant time. I think the route has since been renamed 'Boogey till you Poop'.
Haven't done it myself but did enjoy watching someone else get swallowed up to the hips leaving his legs peddling frantically in mid-air. By the laughter of his mates I imagined that it was suggested to him as a good first trad lead.
I got stuck when, short of time (in full knowledge that it was a stupid idea) I decided to climb Via Delorosa at the Roaches in one pitch. The rope drag was hideous and the easy 2nd pitch was an unpleasant grovel against the drag. Facing the third pitch in fading light (ok it was actually dark and I couldn't see the holds) I opted for escape up Raven Rock Gully. Ooops, how hard can a vdiff be? titanic rope drag, no light, no headtorch, a badly prepared & useless rack snagging every thing it could and the route sopping wet and muddy from recent heavy rain resulted in one of the worst chimney grovelling experiences I've ever had, I emerged into total darkness after a laughably long time 1/2 in and 1/2 out drenched with sweat having under-gone a similar experience to Poo Bear after a visit to the Rabbit.
The only consolation was seeing my larger climbing partner trying to squeeze his shoulders through the hole the wrong way (moon had come out by now).
There are usually in situ parties at the top of any of the Idwal Slabs routes most Saturday evenings. Quite pretty - all those torches.
Yep, I remember my brother getting stuck on the 3rd pitch of this (I think we ran the last two pitches together). Just before "reach a flake on the right wall of the gully with difficulty" - the flake was good but committing and not obviously visible. I think he was there for a good half hour.
If you broaden it to anything with a nice safe rest before the nasty exposed crux and so hard to leave both mentally and physically, then there are a few!
The niche on left wall always seems to have someone gathering dust whilst they psyche up!
I remember watching a friend who was stuck in the frustrating chimney part of this with both legs in the air and kicking around to no effect ...
Always loved it, but really hard to generate any upward motion when you are in the chimney as it flares out and has no holds, the feet are awkward and hard to find, and the friction of your body and legs below stops movement (up or down) .
Flyhole at Wintours Leap (Fly Wall).
Went THROUGH the hole in the dark (when distinctly thinner), and had to reorganise the ropes outside of said hole because my second stood no chance of following through it.
A head torch might have been useful that evening !
(Had to send said second running to the pub to get the beers in while I sorted the gear, otherwise we'd have missed last orders)
From my logbook:
Wow. What a shocker of a route. Our last route of two days climbing together - begun somewhere around our 30th pitch. We scrambled awkwardly up pitch 1 to the ledge, where Francis solemnly announced that he'd take the lead on pitch 2. I checked the guide and saw why... But, let him get on with it.
He's normally a very fast climber, but really seemed to struggle - not only to make upward progess, but to move at all. "I'm getting quite a pump on", he said after 10 minutes of what appeared to be complete immobility. Eventually he got through to the belay ledge.
I tried to follow, and managed only by means of extreme and varied use of profanity. At a certain point, all useful holds ceased, and I was forced to resort to full body jamming; though this latter was not so much a tactical choice as an inevitability, given the straitjacket character of that vile cleft. Having eventually reached the safe haven of the large chockstone below the ledge, I realised that I had somehow ended up sitting down, looking out of the crack; correcting this, I then found I'd also forgotten to clean a nut, and had to spend some time trying to remove it from behind a jammed block somewhere below my ankles. I reached the belay ledge with relief at being able to breath deeply again.
I geared up, everything on my right-hand side, and set off, feeling slightly more cheerful, for pitch three. However, at the top of the pinnacle I began to have second thoughts. Francis cajoled me and I began feeding myself into the chimney, before quickly realising that I was just too big.
I consider myself fairly slender, but my chest wouldn't squeeze into the crack, jammed between my nipples and my shoulder blades. Even plentiful profanity couldn't lubricate my progress this time. "Try and crawl in", Francis helpfully suggested. I gave it a half-hearted go, and then began to abort.
Perched back on the spike, I couldn't believe what had occurred, tried to measure the chimney crack with my eyes, and eventually went back up for another investigation. But, again - too wide. I was just too damn wide for the damn crack.
As I tried to abseil off the garlands of tat out of the left-hand chimney, with my hands jammed against my sides and an undercut chockstone threatening to nut me as I descended past it, I may well have exclaimed: "Those Abraham brothers must have been a skinny pair of underfed bastards."
I've certainly failed on climbs before because I wasn't nimble enough, quick enough, clever enough or strong enough - but never before because I was just too damn wide.
Monolith Crack (HS)
I had the same problem. Eventually after grazing my knees up and regretting Christmas indulgence, my second shouted "Ditch the chalk bag!" which was my required beta.
> Helfenstein's Struggle (HVD 4a) although not done it, have spied it and thought "no chance"!!
First route I ever did at Stanage, that. I think I had to take my harness off and pass it through, then wriggle after it.
My Stanage experience improved after that. It had nowhere else to go.
Starvation Chimney on Wimberry. Name says it all.
The claim in the '63 guide that "men of sixteen stone have been up this" is one which I have always found incredible.
I don't think it gets done a lot (can't think why), but I believe Paping About Like a Man With No Arms (VS) has the potential.
I achieved my first and only "no hands, no feet" rest while trying to do it, before (like almost everyone else) giving up and doing the right-hand exit instead.
I led this recently for my friend on his stag do. I eventually managed to wriggle through complete with harness and ropes. His attempt on the second ended with a man pulling on each of his arms to try and get him through, while others unhelpfully suggested that we'd have to hold the wedding there. I think he was there for 20 minutes or so. His face when he finally started to move upwards was priceless.
Helfenstein's Struggle (HVD 4a)
I obviously missed the fun on this one. I did it once and it was a perfectly ordinary scramble with no through route/constriction at all. I must have gone wrong somehow.
In rely to the OP, Sea Horse at Chair Ladder. Although once people look at it they generally run away, so it probably doesn’t have as many skeletons tucked away in the depths as you’d imagine it might.
"Window Slit" (S) at The Dewerstone is a bit tricky for Mr Tubbs, or anyone else for that matter!
I got stuck in the top bit of this crack while soloing for over an hour, legs dangling above the void. I've still not completed it. Just wide enough for me to get in to but I'm unable to move upwards due to the varying depth of my chest breathing or lifting my arms. My friend who I also soloed with that day spent the hour encouraging me.
Surely Martin Boysen's Trango Tower route has to figure here? A fear-inducing read, on a par with stuff like McHaffie's account of his Great Wall episode.
I'm surprised no one has mentioned Crypt Route (VD) yet, always a lottery which way will get you back into daylight.
I was very relieved to get to the other side of Thin Man's Ridge (HS 4b) I really did think at one stage I was completely wedged and my skeleton would be found in a few decades time.
> Under Milk Wood (VS). I have a cherised memory of seeing a fellow climber, who is fond of loud trousers, get stuck in this. All you could see was a pair of bright red legs waggling away. Perfect!
As the owner of said legs I would like to point out that it was far from perfect. I was still able to get down.
To be fair, if you have the definitive guide you can't say the description didn't warn you:
"A climb that could easily undress you."
I thought it would be clever to lead this in my rigid boots as training for the Alps, and got a boot stuck in the crack half way up. It finally came painfully free with a great wrench after about half an hour. After two further days of Cairngorm summits the area round my Achilles tendon was the size and shape of a large pear, so I had to forget the planned two weeks on Skye and hitch home.
I believe you'll find Bluejohn Canyon Utah, has quite a reputation, in this respect.
This thread is basically becoming my tick list
> This thread is basically becoming my tick list
I know what you mean .
It's a strangely attractive ticklist
I hope you are keeping well .
I went and climbed this last bank holiday with two friends, neither of whom want to climb with me again I think.
One got shutdown on the second pitch (those boulderers with their lack of strength and technique) so I lowered him down. The other couldn't actually manage the third pitch entry (he claimed his belay loop got in the way, I made the point that maybe it was the bulk on the opposite side of his harness), so used some creative rope aid to get up the outside of the chimney and fall in where it widened somewhat.
One of the best days climbing I've had personally.
Telescope Tunnel at Birchens is a mod nightmare. I couldn't get through it. My very slim climbing partner could, but she managed to fray her brand new rope squeezing through the hole and spent the rest of the day furious with me...
> Telescope Tunnel at Birchens is a mod nightmare. I couldn't get through it. My very slim climbing partner could, but she managed to fray her brand new rope squeezing through the hole and spent the rest of the day furious with me...
Done that one before. It's a good laugh and nice hidden route to the top of the crag.
Devil's Chimney at Stanage Popular. Steady away climbing but I was just too big to get beyond halfway (and I'm not that wide).
Some years ago in Yosemite we met a guy who told us this tale:
Recognising a gap in his skill set around off-widths this chap took himself off to the off-width Mecca of Vedauwoo to learn that dark art. Whilst there he hooked up with a local of legendary ability. One of those weedy looking characters who nevertheless seem possessed of an eldritch ability to gain height in the most hideously smooth and apparently holdless of off-widths. He resolved to apprentice himself to this mage and learn what he could, assuming such a recondite craft could be taught.
After some preliminary routes the guru lead a local test piece and the acolyte watched in the hope of being able to mimic the master. When his turn came the apprentice at first made good progress but this did not last. With great effort he achieved a position wedged within the fissure some distance below the stance. Gradually it dawned upon him that he could move neither up nor down. He tried several tactics, breathing in and breathing out, pulling, pushing, arm barring, chicken winging and finally, frantically, bouncing those parts of his anatomy not firmly wedged in the hope of at least dislodging himself, all to no avail. Veins bulged on arm and forehead and sweat poured from every pore. Eventually he gave up the struggle and contrary to the usual result of this, remained exactly where he was.
All thought of impressing the guru gone he shouted up in a pained and plaintive tone; “I’m f***ed! I can’t move up or down!”
After a brief pause this wisdom floated down from on high: “Then take this as an opportunity to rest.”
This was back in the days of Eric Bynes orange Froggatt guide, the first I ever bought (£1.50). It was given Severe in the text although I seem to have added ??!!! .
Ah, bit before my time that. I had the red Stanage and the blue Froggatt guides first..
I've only done Every Man's Misery the once, one of those routes you swim up more than you climb. My partner had a torrid time on it because he made the mistake of trying to do it by front crawl, he gave up and learning from his mistake I found it much easier by backstroke. There was considerable huffing and puffing and come to think of it I think he almost lost his jeans seconding it.
I recall my mate's little brother doing a "Boysen" on North Climb at Froggat. Screamed blue murder for nearly half an hour, much longer and we might have stopped laughing. And then with a squeal and a squeak he ceased to be part of the crag.
Aha so it was you - I couldn't remember if it was you or your partner, just that you both like loud trousers!
I got completely stuck on the final move of Cave Climb at Chatsworth Edge. Took my rack off, then harness off. Still couldn't get through so i had to reverse the bloody thing.
My second was broader than me but managed to get through with some ninja/yoga flexi moves.
Technique always wins....
There is a hard severe which I think is at Brimham, my memory is a bit fuzzy possibly due to PTSD. I got properly stuck trying to top out and in the end resorted to taking my harness off, topping out and then squirming headfirst back down the route to retrieve my harness, rack and ropes from a few feet below the top so I could belay and share the experience with my second. I haven't been back.
Nothing named as a route beats this that I know: I will never forget a certain UKC employee only just failing to exit and he never fails to try very hard. I know most of the routes already named. Some are fairly straightforward, for the type and,grade, some I can't do Monolith (inside ... about HVS 4c up the outside),and Paping About but this is the real thing:
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