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 Post subject: Hooper's route, The Bell
PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2011 3:51 pm 
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Real Name: Lukas Malan
Can anyone tell me if the RD for Hooper's route on the Bell in the Drakensberg is sufficient? I've heard rumours that route finding can be tricky. What is the rock quality like?

Thanks in advance
Lukas

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2011 4:16 pm 
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Hey,

Don't have the RD in front of me - thats the left-hand of the three as viewed from hotel - Wong's is the central?

(a few traverses and 3 pitches proper?)

Yes the description is perfect. At the very start of the scrambling we started too high, but easily corrected.
There is not a hell of a lot of gear - 50% of it uses stakes or pitons. There's only one real kak-don't-fall-off move.

Gavin R is the man for the best best, but welcome to give me a shout for any I can remember.
Bell cave is a swell spot, sometimes limited water. Just arriving there is an experience.

Ant


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2011 4:59 pm 
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Yip, that's the one, all the way around on the south face. 2 pitches proper according to the RD. Although the RD says it's better protected than Wong's :shock: Are the pitons in situ?

kak-don't-fall-off - HAHA!!!

Did the Bell Traverse last year during Easter for the first time - what a hike! Planning on spending 9 days in the berg and doing 5 climbs. However the weather shall decide :mrgreen: . All I see on the Cathedral Peak webcam is rain rain rain...

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 20, 2011 3:13 am 
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Lukas, what weather webcam is this?


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 20, 2011 8:48 am 
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http://www.justfuckinggoogleit.com/ :pig:

http://www.cathedralpeak.co.za/weathercam.php - looking bright this morning


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 20, 2011 8:52 am 
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Real Name: Justin Lawson
Classic link :thumleft:

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 20, 2011 9:16 am 
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thanks, but you're still gonna burn for bolting holds onto a cliff :twisted:


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 20, 2011 9:23 am 
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lol go shorti!! But let's not mutate ethics into fascism - that post by forket was by far the nastiest post I've seen on this forum, and given that this is climbZA, that's one hell of an achievement!!!

Even better (just the latest image): http://www.cathedralpeak.co.za/current.jpg

@ant: Weren't you perhaps on Wong's route? That is 3 pitches proper, and has one stance protected only by 2 old pitons according to the RD. Sounds familiar?

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 21, 2011 8:33 pm 
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Various RD's has been documented and illustrated since 1944.

Notable differences in the approach path and number of piches has been identified.

MCSA Journal 1944, pg 23 & scetch pg 24 describes 6 piches and illustrating an Z like scramble approach visually from the eastern side to the foot of the final face

Rock & Ice Climbs of the Drakensberg 3d Edition pg 86 & scetch pg 203 describes 3 piches and illustrating a direct upwards scramble approach visually from the eastern side to the foot of the final face.

Serpent Spires pg 105 describes 4 piches illustrating a direct upwards scramble approach visually from the eastern side to the foot of the final face.

Yet another book (where i unfortunatly lost the name) pg 192 & 193 illustrating a direct upwards scramble approach visually from the eastern side to the foot of the final face as pitch one.

Encounters with the Dragon, pg 100 illustrating a direct upwards scramble south eastern side approach to the foot of the final face, after a traversing along the entire eastern side.

Therefore three approach scrambles to the foot of the final face can be considired. Two of which is found in more than one reference.

The increase of standard rope lenth over the years may be a reason for stiching some pitches together, or a general feeling that scrambling is not considered as a pitch.

Scrambling by definition or perception may differ or has yet to be determined. Some plausable alternatives to “scramble” may at times mean “slab climbing “or even “grass ledge climbing/walking” (this would be the grass ledge formed at the base of the slab) .Keeping protectability and exposure in mind, the climber self needs to decide if rope is required (or at times usefull) for either direction of this scramble to the foot of the final face.

For the Z like scramble look for a rocks depicted in the following picture, taken facing a northern direction

Attachment:
File comment: z like scramble start
cIMG_8199.gif
cIMG_8199.gif [ 163.08 KiB | Viewed 1651 times ]


For both the possible aproaches look for trees that has seen some interesting 'wear and tear' as in the picture below. taken facing a eastern direction

Attachment:
File comment: wear and tear on shrub/tree
cIMG_8194.gif
cIMG_8194.gif [ 99.5 KiB | Viewed 1651 times ]


For the a direct upwards scramble approach look for a rocks depicted in the following picture. taken facing a northern direction

Attachment:
File comment: Rock close to the direct upwards scramble
bIMG_8190.gif
bIMG_8190.gif [ 90.6 KiB | Viewed 1651 times ]



Contributoins to this BETA in regards to gear used will be much appriciated.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 22, 2011 1:09 pm 
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starting from the bell-cathedral neck traverse to the northern side of the bell and up a break in the rockband


Attachment:
File comment: at the break in the rockband
e1.jpg
e1.jpg [ 236.83 KiB | Viewed 1561 times ]


In the picture below, busy scrambling upwards and right just passed a break in the rockband below, with bells northern face in the foreground. showing the traverse along the north side of the bell

Attachment:
e2.jpg
e2.jpg [ 221.6 KiB | Viewed 1561 times ]



In the picture below, busy scrambling upwards and right just passed a break in the rockband below, with bells northern face in the foreground. showing the last bit of traverse back to the hotel side of the bell around the north east corner

Attachment:
e3.jpg
e3.jpg [ 110.3 KiB | Viewed 1561 times ]

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 22, 2011 5:38 pm 
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after turning the north east coner, some RD's suggest that the scramble to the first pitch start about here, as shown in the picture below

Attachment:
File comment: probable start of scramble
e4.gif
e4.gif [ 71.49 KiB | Viewed 1561 times ]



I would like to invite anyone who has climbed this route and can remember how they scrambled to the start of pitch one to contribute to the following picture. The missing line indicate the area where route finding is difficult. Photo taken from the east.

Attachment:
File comment: birds-eye view of the area where route finding is difficult
e5.jpg
e5.jpg [ 111.81 KiB | Viewed 1561 times ]

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