Author Topic: Anyone Climb Grand Teton Via Owen Spalding?  (Read 2698 times)

Offline mechanicalchris

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Anyone Climb Grand Teton Via Owen Spalding?
« on: April 09, 2012, 12:01:17 PM »
Owen Spalding is a classic route up Grand Teton with a 5.3 and 5.5 rock finish at the summit. I'm posting this at the off chance a local climber has done this route and could recommend a local pitch with similar style/difficulty of climbing so we can test our selves. 

(Obviously we cannot duplicate level of commitment of being at 13,700 feet in a strange land with high exposure but we can do our best to prepare, gather all the beta we can, and make sure our hiking/climbing are dialed in).

Perhaps 5.7 Pinnacle on Mount Washington is a good test? Maybe some of the 5.6/5.7's at Echo Crag? 

DLottmann

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Re: Anyone Climb Grand Teton Via Owen Spalding?
« Reply #1 on: April 09, 2012, 01:12:39 PM »
While I havenít climbed on the Grand Teton if you can climb Pinnacle or Whitney Gilman in good style Iíd imagine your proficient enough for Owen Spaulding from what I have read about it. Though you can lose a lot of time on a big route like that if you and your partner do not know how to move quickly while still protected on 3rd and 4th class terrain, or run into any route finding problems.

Offline meclimber

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Re: Anyone Climb Grand Teton Via Owen Spalding?
« Reply #2 on: April 09, 2012, 02:12:59 PM »
I climbed the grand, ganet and downs in HS.  Little vague on the memories but I'd say mileage and maybe things like henderson and pinacle on washington would be the ticket.  Have fun, good times.
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Re: Anyone Climb Grand Teton Via Owen Spalding?
« Reply #3 on: April 09, 2012, 05:33:55 PM »
Have not done the grad but did Teewenoit. Be in shape!  Big hikeing involved in those adventures.   Hiking up to do pinnacle ridge a bunch of times should help.

Offline slink

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Re: Anyone Climb Grand Teton Via Owen Spalding?
« Reply #4 on: April 09, 2012, 05:45:06 PM »
Chris if you can do pinnacle you will have no problems.I did it in 98 and it was a fun route.You do have a belly roll and a crawl that is The climbing was pretty mello but watch out for verglas on the rock.Are you camping or planning it as a day trip.If camping send me a PM and I have some beta for you that you may need.I would suggest getting in aerobic shape and spend some time acclimatizing to altitude.Tried Teewinot first day and didnt summit because of altitude.It was a great route with cool easy moves in a beautiful location.
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Re: Anyone Climb Grand Teton Via Owen Spalding?
« Reply #5 on: April 09, 2012, 08:00:05 PM »
You should do the Exum ridge. 5.5. from the lower saddle.
If you can be comfortable on the Whitney G or Pinnacle you'd be fine. Gotta move well though, simul climb a bit.


« Last Edit: April 09, 2012, 08:22:02 PM by DGoguen »

Offline lucky luke

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Re: Anyone Climb Grand Teton Via Owen Spalding?
« Reply #6 on: April 10, 2012, 09:41:47 AM »
Owen Spalding is a classic route up Grand Teton with a 5.3 and 5.5 rock finish at the summit. I'm posting this at the off chance a local climber has done this route and could recommend a local pitch with similar style/difficulty of climbing so we can test our selves. 

Lake view is easy at the begining with  poor pro and had a finish in suppose only 5.5. Nice route. I rather prefer consolation prize wish is  a little bit more tricky and hard to protect. The second pitch is 5.8 (traverse to the right in second pitch, crumbly at the fifth pitch, a hard crack on a slab and broken rock easy to avoid at the next pitch) Harder is falling aspiration. It go to the left of  bad rock with a second pitch scary as the rock is poor and route finding is very important go left and right if i remember, not the right option. The crack is tricky. Avoid that route if you are a sport climber because you are going to complaint about your safety. It is a safe trad route for those knowing to avoid the danger better than climbing hard. 

Offline OldEric

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Re: Anyone Climb Grand Teton Via Owen Spalding?
« Reply #7 on: April 10, 2012, 09:46:48 AM »
I've done the Grand 10 times - a couple of times up the OS and down it every time.  The advice so far has been spot on.  The challenge won't be with the technical climbing but in route finding, being efficient and moving quickly.  A little luck with the weather helps but in truth you will make your own luck in that department for the most part.  On the easier trade routes - OS and Exum you not only should be able to get and early start and move quickly enough to be ahead of the weather plus you can see it coming at you (not like the situation on cannon for example).

I would suggest allocating enough time to do a few warm up routes in the area first.

Offline hobbsj

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Re: Anyone Climb Grand Teton Via Owen Spalding?
« Reply #8 on: April 10, 2012, 04:31:21 PM »

I would suggest allocating enough time to do a few warm up routes in the area first.

Definitely agree.  While not an 8000 meter peak, going from these low lands out here to there, you can risk altitude issues.  Its not uncommon in CO to see people with HAPE flying in and going straight to ski resorts.  But, its been shown that just one night at an intermediate elevation prevents most of those problems.  The key is to balance you time there if you're going in for a super-star effort.  You actually detrain at altitude.  It takes weeks for any performance benefit to show, but you are also not able to go hard enough to stress you body in the same way you do at sea level.  Just sayin that if you are going to formally train up to the climb, keep these notes in mind. 

Offline eyebolter

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Re: Anyone Climb Grand Teton Via Owen Spalding?
« Reply #9 on: April 10, 2012, 05:16:42 PM »
I did Petzel Ridge when I was 20 (1980), great knobby rock, a snow gully with ice axes, and no other parties.  If you can climb the 5.7 Pinnacle route on Mount Washington then you will have no problems as long as the altitude doesn't get you.  Do it soon so you will get the snow approach and exit for training.  Great mountain.


Offline mechanicalchris

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Re: Anyone Climb Grand Teton Via Owen Spalding?
« Reply #10 on: April 11, 2012, 06:55:35 AM »
Yeah, altitude was a contributing factor of why we didn't summit Elburt this winter. After doing some rock outside Denver, then driving to Ouray for a week of ice climbing (at 7,700 feet we did fine maybe even better...lol), we drove up to Leadville (highest incorporated town in Colorado 10,152 feet) to bag Elburt on one of our last days. While not a technical climb by any standard, apparently winter isn't necessarily mountaineering season in CO as many locals thought it unusual that we wanted to hike Elburt (and weren't skiers to boot). Anyways, we pulled into town at 7PM beat and while eating dinner I felt so out of it... almost high as everyone sounded like they were talking through a paper towel roll.

"Add Meatballs Sir?"
"What'd she say?"
"She said 'meatballs' and she' still standing next to you"

We stayed at a shady Super 8 and woke at 4AM to get an alpine start. The snow was just billowing down and apparently whoever is in charge of the trails isn't as kind to winter hikers as the AMC because we had to descend down to 9,000 feet for winter access, making the prospective gain a snowy unbroken whopping 5,440 feet for the day. We were supposed to start on an access road but we ended up on the Continental Divide trail because we followed the massive signs that said "Elburt Trail This Way" (silly us). After a while it started to become unclear which way to go, sparser vegetation, poorly marked trails, and it looked like the trail didn't get much use anyways. As the sun rose we both kept seeing blue spots and blotches around us we figured due to the altitude. I also had a horrifically upset stomach which we later learned was Mountaineers H.A.G. (didn't read that one in Freedom of The Hills)  exhausted and with the weather worsening we turned around at 11,000 feet. In summer or under better conditions we couldve made short work of it. And yes, I had a map, actually I had two because part of the tricky access road/trail combo was on another map so we had to buy two huge maps (95% and 5% of the trail on the other) and hold them together. You'd think a road would be a significant marking on a map but it was a little faded line. Turns out the access road started 30 feet up from where we parked!

Now the training regime has been getting better. We did 14 miles almost 4,000 feet from Sawyer road up Carrigan and back in 6 hours (beat sunset). The Saturday before we got the Carters/Height almost 5,000 feet of gain in 7+ hours.
« Last Edit: April 11, 2012, 07:02:09 AM by mechanicalchris »

Offline SidleK

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Re: Anyone Climb Grand Teton Via Owen Spalding?
« Reply #11 on: April 11, 2012, 08:47:37 AM »
Depending on how many days you plan to do the OS in, you need to hike, hike, hike some more (with a 25+ lb pack)....and THEN go climbing. Pinnacle buttress would be a good prep...but first climb to the summit of Washington, then go down Lions Head and head to the ravine and then finally climb Pinnacle. The route finding on the OS from the Upper Saddle is pretty straightforward. But you first need to climb 6,400 feet before you even begin the technical climbing. Having climbed a bunch of routes in the Tetons (OS, Upper and Lower Exum, Black Ice, NW Ridge of the Enclosure, CMC) in a day, I can tell you, your endurance and cardio need to be turned up to 11. If you plan on spending a few days up in Garnet Canyon, then you will certainly get a few thousand feet of elevation out of the way before base camping but bear in mind (depending on the time of year) you can/will run into snow getting to the upper saddle and ice and verglace on the OS as it is on the west face of the Grand and doesn't get sun till the afternoon. Another great training option is to go hike the Franconia Ridge then go climb the Whitney Gilman. Good luck training, hope this helps and we'll see you out there this summer!

Offline strandman

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Re: Anyone Climb Grand Teton Via Owen Spalding?
« Reply #12 on: April 11, 2012, 09:08:36 AM »
Yeah, altitude was a contributing factor of why we didn't summit Elburt this winter. After doing some rock outside Denver, then driving to Ouray for a week of ice climbing (at 7,700 feet we did fine maybe even better...lol), we drove up to Leadville (highest incorporated town in Colorado 10,152 feet) to bag Elburt on one of our last days. While not a technical climb by any standard, apparently winter isn't necessarily mountaineering season in CO as many locals thought it unusual that we wanted to hike Elburt (and weren't skiers to boot). Anyways, we pulled into town at 7PM beat and while eating dinner I felt so out of it... almost high as everyone sounded like they were talking through a paper towel roll.

"Add Meatballs Sir?"
"What'd she say?"
"She said 'meatballs' and she' still standing next to you"

We stayed at a shady Super 8 and woke at 4AM to get an alpine start. The snow was just billowing down and apparently whoever is in charge of the trails isn't as kind to winter hikers as the AMC because we had to descend down to 9,000 feet for winter access, making the prospective gain a snowy unbroken whopping 5,440 feet for the day. We were supposed to start on an access road but we ended up on the Continental Divide trail because we followed the massive signs that said "Elburt Trail This Way" (silly us). After a while it started to become unclear which way to go, sparser vegetation, poorly marked trails, and it looked like the trail didn't get much use anyways. As the sun rose we both kept seeing blue spots and blotches around us we figured due to the altitude. I also had a horrifically upset stomach which we later learned was Mountaineers H.A.G. (didn't read that one in Freedom of The Hills)  exhausted and with the weather worsening we turned around at 11,000 feet. In summer or under better conditions we couldve made short work of it. And yes, I had a map, actually I had two because part of the tricky access road/trail combo was on another map so we had to buy two huge maps (95% and 5% of the trail on the other) and hold them together. You'd think a road would be a significant marking on a map but it was a little faded line. Turns out the access road started 30 feet up from where we parked!

Now the training regime has been getting better. We did 14 miles almost 4,000 feet from Sawyer road up Carrigan and back in 6 hours (beat sunset). The Saturday before we got the Carters/Height almost 5,000 feet of gain in 7+ hours.
Chris- It more likely was leadville itself... poor water quality from all the mining and dare i say.. highest cancer rates in the state

Offline mechanicalchris

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Re: Anyone Climb Grand Teton Via Owen Spalding?
« Reply #13 on: April 11, 2012, 09:35:00 AM »
Thanks guys,

We were thinking of you Strandman when we passed through Salida that day we stopped at Amicas for a pie and brew. Ha ha, yes Leadville leaves a lot to be desired. I was pronouncing it "Leedville" the whole trip and for some reason I got it in my head that it was going to be like North Conway, Ouray, or some other beautiful mountain town.  As we entered town I felt like I was visiting my friends in West Virginia or Scranton Pennsylvania.

Offline old_school

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Re: Anyone Climb Grand Teton Via Owen Spalding?
« Reply #14 on: April 11, 2012, 10:16:21 AM »
All good advice there Chris. Definitely found the hike in to be a little bit of a butt kicker. The trail is wide and easy, but It is long and the air does start to get thin. I have gone up the Lupine Meadow trail to do Open Book and Irene's Arete...back about 6 years ago. Beautiful country...mind the weather!!!
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