« Last post by dave095790 on July 14, 2016, 09:58:31 AM »
Tom was sifting through the partner forum on this site and came across my add looking for a partner. He shot me a message and we bounced some ideas back and forth. We settled on a linkup of Moby Grape - NE Ridge of the Pinnacle - Recom-Beast - Cormier-Magness.
We agreed to start between 0330 and 0400, and started jogging down the trail at 0345. We reached the start at 0415 with a little route-finding snafu in the dark forest. At 0425 I was heading up Reppy's in the dark. The route ended up being the wettest Tom had ever seen it (in 10+ times on the route). We did three fast pitches to above the Finger of Fate where we knew the normal route would be too wet, so we ventured right into the unknown. After one pitch, we had a costly route finding fail when I tried to go up a chossy corner instead trending back left. After down climbing and heading left we were back on pace. We topped out around 0810 for 3:45 on route (probably lost at least 20 minutes with the route finding fail). We were back at the cars at 0850 and speeding towards Mount Washington.
We were parked and jogging towards the Huntington Ravine Trail at 1035, we reached the start of the route at 1105. At 1115 Tom kicked it off with a simul pitch to the headwall. I took us through the headwall, and Tom finished us up through the Fairy Tale Traverse. We topped out at 1250 and were back to the car at 1310. We passed one party of two locals just before the headwall - thanks for the easy pass!
We had been debating the order of the next two routes, the route finding on the upper pitches of Recompense would be easy in the dark while searching for a bolt or tree in the dark on Whitehorse might be problematic; additionally if a party was on Cormier-Magness we had other good options for a full length route up Whitehorse but if someone was on Recompense there was not another good option for a full length route up Cathedral ... we had made up a little bit of time on the NE Ridge and the drive to North Conway so we figured we had enough time to finish both routes in the daylight, and we took a risk and banked that no one would be on Recompense - it was off to Cathedral.
We staged a car on the top and Tom went ahead to get us in line and make any negotiations if needed while I racked up at the car. When I got to the start I was SOOOO hot and sweaty it was terrible, but we had the route to ourselves. I started up at 1500, and everything was smooth, but a little slow to the top of the Beast Flake - the long day was starting to slow us down. The move across, the thrutch move, and the third pitch were all pretty sloppy based on fatigue, the temps, and the SWEAT - damn it was gross. We topped out around 1810, not the best time, but we had more than enough time to zip back down and over to Whitehorse.
We had debated doing one of the other route up Whitehorse, but the only route I had recently done was Cormier-Magness so we chose to stick with that plan instead of changing it up (time was also a factor). Tom started up Cormier-Magness at 1900 and we topped out at 2025, still more than enough light to see. We reached the cars at 2105.
- Pre-made baggies with snacks for each route so I could just grab and go.
- Pre-mixed my electrolyte drink in a gallon jug and kept it in a cooler so I could just pour into my bladder and stuff the bladder back into the bag.
- Pre-made sandwiches to eat while relocating. Also had a pizza the night before so I had some extra slices from that ready to go.
- Alternated rock shoes on each route so that they did not get totally sweat saturated.
- Wore trail runners vice approach shoes to allow more comfortable jogging when able.
- We used a single rope vice doubles/twins to allow easier rope management and lower overall weight.
Tom had done a similar link up a few years prior so he had some good beta and strategy that definitely helped; but this was my first attempt at something encompassing so many different locations. Hopefully people can use this report for some beta on times and strategy for your own link up!
I would also be curious what other ideas would be for linkups, or what other people have actually done, any and all grades would be fun to see.
I was so tired from two days of climbing with a crappy night's sleep between them that it took me over 10 hours to drive back to Ballston Spa, NY (normally a 5 hour drive). I stopped three or four times to take power naps.
Tom was able to take a picture at basically every transition to capture the time stamp; those times are tabulated below:
Left Cannon parking lot: 3:45a
Base of Moby Grape: 4:15a
Start Moby Grape: 4:25a
Top out: 8:10a
Back to car: 8:50a
Left auto road: 10:35a
Base of Pinnacle: 11:05a
Start Pinnacle: 11:15a
Top out: 12:50p
Back to car: 1:10p
Start Recompense: 3:00p
Top out: 6:15p
Start Cormier-Magness: 7:00p
Top out: 8:25p
Back to car: 9:05p
Moby Grape: 3:45
NE Ridge: 1:35
Prep at start of each routes averages about 10 minutes