Langille Peak, Three Quarters of a Man and Clarification

California, Kings Canyon National Park
Author: Andy Anderson. Climb Year: 2018. Publication Year: 2019.

In September 2018, Vitaliy Musiyenko and Brian Prince climbed a new route on the southeast face of Langille Peak in LeConte Canyon they called Three Quarters of a Man (IV 5.11c). The two followed slabby crack systems to the base of the main wall, which they began about 100-200 to the right of the large corner system that forms the wall’s left shoulder. From there, every pitch was long and at least 5.10, with several pitches of 5.11. Prince led the crux up an overhanging crack that shut closed for a body length. Unfortunately the cracks they were aiming for up high were filled with vegetation and they climbed left into the East Buttress (5.7, Beckey-Jones, 1970, see AAJ 1972) and like Ervin and Nicodemi, they climbed to the southeast summit and did not continue to the main summit. It is possible that this route shares some terrain with an unreported 5.8 route on the lower portion of the face.]

Prince and Musiyenko also made an attempt to repeat the East Buttress Direct (IV 5.10b, Rowell-Wilson, see AAJ 1989) using an overlay provided by David Wilson (similar to the line shown in Secor’s The High Sierra), but they were shut down by blank rock five pitches up.

In September, Damien Nicodemi and Jamie Ervin began climbing to the left of where Musiyenko and Prince began their attempt, believing they were on new terrain. At the top of Nicodemi and Ervin’s first and second pitches in this neighboring chimney system, they found some tattered webbing around chockstones. Six or so pitches past those anchors they found a fixed hex. They continued the line to the southeastern summit, believing their route shared the upper pitches with the Rowell-Wilson route.

After their attempt, Musiyenko spoke with David Wilson, who acknowledged he and Rowell never encountered any blank sections and that they probably followed the more natural line to the left. Thus it’s likely that the prominent chimney system Nicodemi and Ervin climbed is the original Rowell-Wilson line.

– Andy Anderson, with information from Vitaliy Musiyenko, Damien Nicodemi and SuperTopo

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