Pete Kamitses: First Ascent of 5.13d/14a Trad Route in the 'Dacks.

posted by dpm on 11/12/2012


Pete Kamitses has completed another hard traditional route on the Moss Cliff, Adirondacks, New York. Pete has been the leader of free climbing old aid routes in the Northeast recently including his route Oppositional Defiance Disorder (5.14a) at the Tsunami Wall and his other Moss Cliff routes, Illuminescence (5.13d) and Fire in the Sky (5.13c). Watch video of Pete on ODD here.

Pete working on the Highline. The line follows the leftward leaning crack above the climber. Photos courtesy of Pete.  

He's suggesting an estimated grade of 5.13+/5.14- R for his new route, The Highline. Pete describes the route as, "The last of the three main crack systems to be freed on the 300 foot "aid" wall. I'd been working on it off and on for three seasons on a 300 foot static top rope. The pitch starts off the "party ledge" 120 feet up and is 140 ft long and gently overhanging.

I finally linked it cleanly on TR this fall and after a couple days trying it on lead was able to squeak through the high redpoint crux...barely...chicken wings out, legs shaking, thinking I was gonna fall for multiple moves in a row kinda thing. In other words, just how you want a multi-year project to go down...fighting.


The route is a total enduro-fitness challenge. There is a scary crux right off the bat with ledge fall potential in a couple spots and then about 80 feet of exacting, technical climbing with pretty good gear. It's mostly small offset wires, capped by a fairly powerful boulder problem with a "safe" but kinda huge runout over it. I've gotten into marathon running recently and I feel like that definitely helped me with recovery and heart rate on the route. Overall it was one of the most rewarding sends ever."