I climbed Thin Air this past Sunday, and one of the hangers is missing from the 2-bolt anchor after pitch 2 (the traverse). Based on this thread, it seems to me this hanger was not removed in the 2003 debolting. The bolt is still there and looks great, just the hanger and nut are missing. The other bolt is fine.
My question is: was the hanger damaged, or was it removed for aesthetic/ethics reasons like the bolts in 2003?
This belay is not exactly festooned with bomber cracks to place gear, such as at the top of pitch 3 (on top of the tree/chimney). There is a spot to place a cam under the bolts, but thats about it. You can also climb up a move or so, and there is another cam placement that you can also use to backup the bolt. Aside from that, I think thats all. Of course, you can sling a nut over the bolt w. the missing hanger, but this is obviously less bomber than a bolt hanger. And belaying from a bolt and a nut-slung bolt hardly seems any more natural or traditional than 2 bomber bolts.
The missing hanger seemed to cause a good amount of cluster-f_ck on Sunday. I saw at least 2 parties (which both seemed a bit inexperienced) climb down to the Turners Flake anchor and belay from there. Mind you, these moves are much harder than 5.6. And one girl actually fell/slid down to the Turners' Flake anchor while downclimbing, after clipping the bolt on the "regular" anchor. Using the Turner's Flake anchor is less than ideal, b/c it interferes with the traffic on that route.
I would be curious to hear why the hanger was removed.
Any comments or thoughts?