Goto Chockstone Home

  Tech Tips

      Sponsored By

Chockstone Photography
Australian Landscape Photography by Michael Boniwell
Australian Landscape Prints

Chockstone Forum - Trip Reports

Tells Us About Your Latest Trip!

Topic Date User
TR: Alive in a Bitter Sea (Katoomba Cliifs) 9-Dec-2016 At 3:53:51 PM simey
On 9/12/2016 WarwickB wrote:
>Hi Simon,
Hi Warwick,

>Chill out! Seems like you have some strong views about how climbs ought
>to be done. Fine. However denigrating climbs done 30 years ago and the
>person who did the first ascent is not a particularly good look.

Well it is the same view I held in the 80s regarding Alive in a Bitter Sea. I am also happy to speak my mind about things that I feel passionate about, one of which is poorly equipped routes that involved rap-inspection/rehearsal beforehand. And whilst there are plenty of routes in this dubious category, it is only because your route tackles a particularly inspiring wall that I am bothering to write. (And also to discourage others who think this form of 'boldness' is something worth jerking off about).

>Its a bit of an overkill to suggest Alive in a Bitter Sea is a 'mess'
>of a route, and putting it up 'a crime' done for selfish and egotistical
>reasons (as I see it all climbing has an element of egoism and selfishness
>about it, including putting up well bolted routes on the Totem Pole).

Well some routes are more selfish than others. And I honestly believe that when you start rapping down cliffs and/or placing bolts, then you have already tossed aside the natural challenges of that particular cliff and you have bought things down to your level. To then do the even more selfish thing of bolting it in such a way that barely anyone wants to repeat the route in a normal ground-up fashion is particularly dubious.

If you wanted to scare yourself silly when you went climbing then there were plenty of existing routes and challenges that you could have chosen which would have been much more stylish than this flawed rap and bolt job.

>My view is that Alive in a Bitter Sea and the other routes on Echo Wall
>are excellent routes as they are, and that they were done in an acceptable
>style. They offer a high quality experience to those who value that type
>of experience. Clearly there are those that do, even if only a few.

Well routes have a first ascent history and a repeat ascent history, both of which are worth acknowledging. There are plenty of dodgy first ascents that over time have received enough repeat ascents to justify retaining their 'character'. But Alive in a Bitter Sea has received scant attention in three decades. Maybe Paul's ascent will kickstart a surge of interest and the climb will be hailed in its current fashion. I will be intrigued to see either way.

>Those that don't will go sport climbing or bouldering or soloing or alpine
>waterfall climbing, or high altitude mountaineering or any of the other
>forms of climbing that appeal to them. There is plenty of room in the climbing
>world for wide variety. It makes it more interesting as well.

Variety is good... provided that those climbs of the annoying, poorly-equipped, head-point variety don't tackle awesome, multi-pitch walls.

>Any alterations to the climbs on Echo Point wall on the spurious grounds
>they are purportedly a 'mess', receive infrequent ascents, or are on 'real
>estate' that was 'hijacked', is not something I generally agree with. If
>people who have led the routes believe strongly enough that alterations
>ought to be made, based on legitimate concerns, I'm more than happy to
>discuss it with them.

I am glad that you are open to that possibility.

>Alive in a Bitter Sea doesn't appeal to you. Not a problem. Find something
>else to climb that does, as I'm sure you will. There are plenty around.
Thanks, maybe I will attempt Julian's run-out routes on Spurt Wall below Taipan (the ones where the dogging bolts were clipped on the first ascent and then removed afterwards!).



There are 81 replies to this topic.


Home | Guide | Gallery | Tech Tips | Articles | Reviews | Dictionary | Forum | Links | About | Search
Chockstone Photography | Landscape Photography Australia | Australian Landscape Photography | Landscape Photos Australia

Please read the full disclaimer before using any information contained on these pages.

Australian Panoramic | Australian Coast | Australian Mountains | Australian Countryside | Australian Waterfalls | Australian Lakes | Australian Cities | Australian Macro | Australian Wildlife
Landscape Photo | Landscape Photography | Landscape Photography Australia | Fine Art Photography | Wilderness Photography | Nature Photo | Australian Landscape Photo | Stock Photography Australia | Landscape Photos | Panoramic Photos | Panoramic Photography Australia | Australian Landscape Photography | High Country Mountain Huts | Mothers Day Gifts | Gifts for Mothers Day | Mothers Day Gift Ideas | Ideas for Mothers Day | Wedding Gift Ideas | Christmas Gift Ideas | Fathers Day Gifts | Gifts for Fathers Day | Fathers Day Gift Ideas | Ideas for Fathers Day | Landscape Prints | Landscape Poster | Limited Edition Prints | Panoramic Photo | Buy Posters | Poster Prints