Posts Tagged ‘Rewritten’

Tara had asked to climb Rewritten (5.7) in Eldorado Canyon and since it’s both a great route and has a few pitches I hadn’t yet led I was more than willing. A reasonable start had us the first on the this popular classic on a Friday morning. For the third time, I found myself leading the Great Zot’s first pitch (5.8) to start off the ground at the Redgarden Wall. Tara pretty quickly followed, taking a different line through the small crux roof before reaching the belay stance.

The second pitch is easier and leads to a nice belay ledge, abet one already occupied by a Colorado Mountain School guide who was bringing a client up the Green Spur to this point. Given that we were on an easier route, Tara reached the belay first of the two followers and the guide graciously let me start up the third pitch ahead of them.

The third pitch is pretty easy, but also a chossy gully of loose rock. Careful climbing is required, especially when there are climbers below which is pretty much always. Tara tried to turn the dihedral climbing into some face moves, but soon found the route and joined me atop the pitch. By now a third party was climbing up from below and catching all of us.

After re-racking I quickly started the classic 4th pitch with its famous hand traverse followed by the steep finger crack. I wished I’d had my camera accessible for the shot looking back down at the crowds on pitch 3. By the time I’d reached the dead tree belay, the CMS guide decided to let the last group (climbing in aggressive “Euro-style”) pass and Tara was anxious about having them hot on her heels. So she let their leader start up, then followed some distance behind.

With two ropes on the pitch and two sets of gear she was going to have a more complex time following this pitch. Thankfully, the speedster’s leader kept out some penalty slack to keep his aggro partner from breathing down her neck. At least this belay ledge was pretty comfy and made a nice waiting spot while we let the hurried pair climb to the top.

To speed our own ascent a bit, I linked the last two pitches, continuing up from the exposed and fun Rebuffat’s Arete to the summit. Tara (who says she doesn’t like aretes [or dihedrals, slabs or cracks]) actually found this pitch enjoyable.

Below, I was surprised to see the CMS guide had taken the original finish to Rewritten, but Tara and I did our best to keep him entertained with our witty banter as she neared the summit.

On top we coiled the rope and started the scramble and walk north, getting lost (er, getting some extra hiking in) only briefly before finding the correct route down and back to the base.


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The route Rewritten is a classic in Eldorado Canyon that was on my to-do list for the year. Plans worked out where Jonathan was able to get out for a 3/4 day and this route fit perfectly into his available time. We arrived at the parking lot and only saw a few other cars at 7am and hiked up the Redgarden Wall trail. We were the first ones at the base of Rewritten (5.7).

The actual first pitch of Rewritten is a bit run-out, so I choose the slightly harder first pitch of The Great Zot (5.8), a pitch I’d climbed before, but had numb fingers at the crux and hung around rewarming them until completing the pitch. This time I did the line cleanly.

Jonathan followed and cleaned the pitch and the next group arrived at the base. Jonathan was up for leading and so we started to alternate pitches. Pitch 2 was Jonathan’s and he took the slightly harder, but cleaner 5.6 left variation.

After cleaning the route and reaching Jonathan’s belay at some rappel bolts, I took the rack and climbed the next 5.6 pitch. Jonathan soon arrived and was game to lead the famous traverse at the start of the 4th pitch.

While climbing the route, I decided the traverse wasn’t all that hard and some of the moves higher up were the crux of the route. I arrived at the large ledge with the dead tree and re-racked for the 5.7 Rebuffat’s Arete finish. Traversing right from the ledge I reached the arete and started climbing and finding more protection opportunities than I’d expected. The left side of the arete dropped down only 20 feet or less into the standard gully finish to Rewritten, but the right side fell away steeply and was very exposed. Fun climbing led to a small notch that I decided to belay at so I could get better photos of Jonathan climbing the arete.

The 6th pitch (short and 5.5) was Jonathan’s to led and he did so quickly up the blocky terrain.

From the crest of the ridge we were able to walk off to the north following a well-cairned path.

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