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Weekend Whipper: Jumping Off 5.13 R—“I Wasn’t Ready Yet!”

"It took me a few attempts of climbing higher and higher above the last two pieces to eventually feel confident to commit to the final runout."

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Readers, please send your Weekend Whipper videos, information, and any lessons learned to Anthony Walsh, awalsh@outsideinc.com.

In June 2020, following the first Covid lockdown and a dedicated bout of training, Jordan Cannon emerged from beneath his friend’s Moonboard and went on a granite-climbing tear.

Staying local to the Tahoe area, Cannon and Mark Hudon visited Donner Summit and Sugarloaf, where he made gear ascents of The Grand Illusion (5.13b/c), Pumplust (5.13b), Silly Willy Crack (5.12c), and Crack of the Eighties (5.13a). (That last one was featured as a Weekend Whipper not long ago.)

After ticking the classics Cannon added a variation of his own, The Last Crusade (5.13b R), which he called “a direct finish to Jim Thornburg’s The Panic Principle (5.13a) that adds maybe 20 feet of new climbing and tops out the wall.”

Cannon continued: “As I understand it, Jim originally added a bolt (or two, I can’t remember…) to do the first ascent of his route in the ’90s, but it was immediately chopped by the locals (in order to keep the front side of Snowshed “bolt-free”) and left into obscurity until Steven Roth eventually repeated the route entirely on gear, sans bolts, many years later. The direct finish, however, was top-roped by local guidebook author Josh Horniak, but never lead because of a committing 20 feet runout up a face of thin holds to the anchor.”

On his redpoint, Cannon placed six small-but-solid pieces; the crux receives a brass offset nut and a purple C3, while the final runout protects with an equalized blue Metolius and a 0.3 BD in a horizontal break. “It took me a few attempts of climbing higher and higher above the last two pieces of gear each time to eventually feel confident and comfortable enough to commit to the final runout and finish the route,” Cannon said. “That’s why you see me just jump off in the video… I wasn’t ready yet!”

Happy Friday, and be safe out there this weekend.

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