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Free solo Ships Prow Tower?

Colorado 13er peak questions, condition requests and other info. 13er Trip Reports, Condition Reports
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Free solo Ships Prow Tower?

Postby krishcane » Sat Aug 31, 2013 10:51 am

Hi there,

I want to climb Ships Prow Tower, by the easiest route. I plan to hike up the Loft couloir (which I've done a few times before), turn right, approach the tower, and find the easiest ascent.

I'm trying to figure out whether I feel confident doing the actual tower without rope. I'm reading from various reports (eg. http://www.14ers.com/php14ers/tripreport.php?trip=8553) that the last bit is anywhere from 20 feet to 30 feet of somewhere between 5.0 and 5.4 climbing. Something I read mentioned a chimney? It sounded relatively unexposed.

I feel pretty confident going up something of that level if it's accurate, but I'd love to hear more from anyone that has done it, and whether you felt a rappel was really needed. If you did rappel, I assume there's no rap station up there - was there anything for a sling, or did you need a cam?

Thanks!

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Re: Free solo Ships Prow Tower?

Postby Kiefer » Sat Aug 31, 2013 6:42 pm

Ships Prow Tower? Do you mean Zumie's Thumb?
Hardly 5.easy

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Re: Free solo Ships Prow Tower?

Postby TomPierce » Sat Aug 31, 2013 7:25 pm

Hey Krish,
I was one of the climbers mentioned in that report, it was a fun day. We humped the usual light adventure rack with us, not knowing what to expect, and ended up completing a very easy alpine scramble with limited exposure. I think we'd already broken out the rope for the ascent, but can't recall if we actually plugged gear in; once the rope was out a rap just seemed faster than a more tedious down climb. As I recall there were blocks/horns to rap from, it wasn't a sketchy rappel. With 20/20 hindsight I'd now feel comfortable going ropeless, but of course I have no idea about your comfort level and we had perfect weather conditions. FWIW, I do recall that there were some loose blocks up there, SPT gets relatively little traffic for that area.

Hope that helps, have fun and be safe.

-Tom

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Re: Free solo Ships Prow Tower?

Postby krishcane » Sun Sep 01, 2013 7:21 am

Tom, that's perfect. Thank you - sounds like a fun adventure. I'll bring climbing shoes but probably skip the rope as long as the weather is good.

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