Mountain Project Map - Harpers Ferry

Friday, June 29, 2012

Follow Up Imagery - Balcony Jr. Session

If you've been tuned in to the blog over the last couple years then you know a little about "Cold Steel Corner" 5.8/9 on Balcony Jr..  It is a really great route with an upper dihedral section. It's on the left side of Balcony Jr. and is one of the tallest climbs on the cliff.  As some will testify it is no slouch of a lead.  You may remember that
a while back I did a historical investigation type blog post on a RURP that existed in the crux section.  The wire has been removed from the RURP but the metal blade still resides on the climb.  It isn't a wonder that the piece was placed. That section of the route happens to have no gear and to be the crux; A double whammy combo that could lead to a fall on to the ledge below.  To remedy this fall potential a fixed anchor has taken the place of the RURP so give some thought to enjoying a lead ascent. This climb is also equipped with top anchors on which a leader can establish an anchor and rappel.

Cold Steel Corner (5.8/9*) - 65'. Climb up the ledge to a blocky ramp (alternatively, start 5' feet right and climb up the wall straight to the ramp). Follow the ramp up right until it ends below a roof. Step left and work your way up and back right, following the corner as closely as possible until you gain the top. The crux is right as you pass an old RURP with a wire attached. TRAD NOTE: THE RURP HAS BEEN DEWIRED FOR SAFETY AS THE GEAR WAS RUSTING AND OLD. A BOLT HAS BEEN INSTALLED TO REPLACE THE PROTECTION PROVIDED BY THE RURP.
During the recent Balcony Jr. session I snatched the opportunity to lead this climb.  My friend Ryan Smith snapped a few photos as he leaned precariously over the edge of the cliff. Thanks to him. Read below for a personal story about this route.

On a personal note, this was the first climb that my climbing partner Jeff Smith and I did back in about 1996/1997. We had just started climbing and it took us multiple trips to climb this route successfully.  Nearly the entire cliff overhangs to a small degree and the holds on this route are very open handed so we were Pumped with a capital P.  Throw in some fear due to the exposure and you have yourself a serious challenge.  So, nearly 16 years later and despite having more difficult leads under my belt, leading this 5.8/9 meant a great deal.  I hope you get a chance to experience some of the same pleasure on this route. Be safe and Enjoy

1 comment:

Hardcore 101 said...

just move here looking for a cool place to climb .this looks cool . going to look at it saturday 8/3/12