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The Pale King

A month ago, I saw a project that I am still day dreaming about. My friend Vitaly lead Josh Newman, Brad Perry and me to it. He had found it off of route 50 near the little town of Rainbow (South Lake Tahoe area) while rampaging through the Manzanita on a scouting mission the day before. It starts on an amazing juggy crimp rail and then follows up the arête perfectly. Unfortunately, just after we finished figuring out the beta, which we thought would make the problem a v12 or 13, I broke a critical crimp.

I was fully locked off on it, and I felt like I was about to do one of the two crux moves and it just exploded!! I have no clue why, but I am apparently excellent at breaking holds (mandala…hmmpph). I mean what the hell? I’m pretty fat and all, but really, come on! After I also broke another crimp over on the Bonsai project, Vitaly now freaks out whenever I yard on a key hold.

Anyway, the crimp broke but the problem still goes. Different beta is needed and the broken hold will probably just be skipped now. We think that the problem will be a solid v14 but it was hot that day and it is always hard to tell on new projects!

I did end up doing the stand. You have to stack a pad to reach a jug. From there you pull up to some more jugs then things get a bit more complicated. Not knowing how to do it at first, I took a pretty great fall. My heel hook popped loose and I flung wildly, flipping forwards, down into the pads below. But in the end, the beta is straight forward: switch your left hand to a sidepull, then heel-hand match, then a big left hand move up to a crimp, then bounce left hand again to the top. The top is flat, a bit sloping, and at 20 or so feet, making the mantle easy but a touch spicy.

I called it The Pale King (v6ish) after David Foster Wallace’s unfinished masterpiece.

Check out Brad Perry's photos and come back up with us in the fall to try the sit!

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