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Busy Weekend in RMNP

The east face of Longs Peak (14,255′), RMNP, Colorado. The steep rhomboid on the upper part of the face is the Diamond. [Photo] Topher Donahue

Last weekend was an active one for Colorado’s Longs Peak. On Friday Blake Herrington completed the “Quadruple Lindy.” The next day Josh Wharton made the first free ascent of the Diamond’s Dunn-Westbay formerly graded at 5.10, A3, 1000 feet.

Conceived by Jonny Copp and Kelly Cordes in 2003, the “Triple Lindy” climbs the three biggest rock faces in RMNP, the Diamond (Longs Peak East Face), Chief’s Head North West Face, Mount Alice East Face in a day car-to-car. In 2003 Cordes and Copp completed the link-up in twenty-two hours and forty-two minutes, climbing Crack of Delight (II, 5.7, 600 feet)-Causal Route (IV, 5.10a)-Forrest Finish (IV, 5.10b, 1000 feet) on Longs, Path of Elders (5.10a) and Birds of Fire (IV, 5.10c/d) on Chief’s Head, and Central Ramp (III, 5.8, 1200 feet) on Alice. Herrington and Scott Bennett exchanged the Casual Route on Longs Peak for Pervertical Sanctuary (IV, 5.10c, 700 feet) and did Flight of the Kiwi (III, 5.10d, 1200 feet) on Chief’s Head instead of the Path of Elders to Birds of Fire. They also added in The Barb (III, 5.10 b/c, 900 feet) on Spearhead Peak to the three faces, though their end time was just under an hour slower than Copp and Cordes. Herrington notes that Spearhead Peak is not the fourth largest face in the park so the true Quadruple Lindy is still untouched.

The next day on the Diamond Josh Wharton made the first free ascent of the Dunn-Westbay (V, 1000 feet). The Dunn- Westbay runs parallel to King of Swords up the right side of the face. It was first climbed in 1972 by Jimmy Dunn and Billy Westbay. Wharton notes that the crux pitch leaves from the top of the Green Pillar and that it felt to be about 5.13b. The tricky moves didn’t ease after the crux; he reported there were four more 5.12 pitches above the the crux and the finishing pitches were wet. Wharton has promised more information about the climb in the coming weeks.

Sources: Alpinist 19,, Mountain