Big-Wall Free Climbing in Newfoundland


In mid-September, Justen Sjong and Chris Weidner established the hardest free route yet on the 1,500-foot granite seacliffs of Devil Bay on the south coast of Newfoundland. Lucifer’s Lighthouse (V 5.12c) is a 12-pitch line with four pitches of 5.10, 5 pitches of 5.11, and two pitches of 5.12. Weidner said, “The climbing is characterized by face climbing that links intermittent crack systems on bullet, white granite jutting right out of the sea. Our route is mostly gear-protected, with nine bolts and a few fixed pins for lead protection, as well as an average of one bolt at each belay.”

Sjong and Weidner were in the area for two weeks before redpointing their route, including an emergency retreat from Hurricane Florence. “Fortunately, we were evacuated by boat to a deserted cabin in a bay nearby,” Weidner said.

Blow-Me-Down, the major cliff in the remote bay, has about 15 routes, mostly established by New Hampshire climber Joe Terravecchia and partners. This area and the Sjong-Weidner ascent will be featured in Climbing magazine early next year.

Source: Chris Weidner

Date of Ascent: September 23, 2006Comment on this story