Road Trip America – Climbing ‘Beached Whale’ V5 at Ahwahnee Boulders in Yosemite National Park

Behold, my future conquest. This mediocre-quality photo is my mental commitment to sending what will soon be my first V5 ascent. The route is Beached Whale, a beautiful overhung problem sitting across from the Ahwahnee Lodge in Yosemite National Park.

I’m posting this photo in an effort to create some sort of hype that will push me not to give up on the climb.

For those of you who speak beta, here’s the route breakdown: you start hands crossed on two slopers (one has a slight finger-tearing crimp), and a high right heel with your left flagged under. You then bump out left to a decent ledge, match and throw up a higher heel, then bump out left again to a better ledge where you match again. After a little funky footwork that leaves you with a heel up on the lower ledge, you bump out over that middle prow to a solid ledge on the other side, and trust your heel while you match your hands. Now for the tricky part: bump up right to the prow, and cut your feet to throw a heel up on the left side of the ledge. Then it’s a hardcore mantle upwards to complete the top out.

After two days spent working the problem, I’m a mere top out short of sending Beached Whale. The granite rock has been destroying my palms and fingertips, so today is a much needed rest day. Tomorrow this V5 will be mine. Send strong vibes and words of encouragement – I’m seriously going to need it to complete that scary top out. The problem starts on a little rocky area, then the landing drops down under the roof, leaving me terrified about falling.

I can do this, right? How glorious would it be to send my first V5 out in Yosemite? I can’t pass up an opportunity like this. I will top out – and there will be video.


Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Categories: Road Trip 2011, Rock Climbing

Author:Katie Boué

Katie Boué is the voice of - a travel lifestyle blog focusing on climbing, Airbnb life, and the outdoors.

6 Comments on “Road Trip America – Climbing ‘Beached Whale’ V5 at Ahwahnee Boulders in Yosemite National Park”

  1. Matt
    May 23, 2011 at 3:19 pm #

    Don’t you wish you climbed boat rock more?! BAM! And you can do it. If not, I’ve got some fives that are built just for you. But you’ll get those after this one. Get your glory mama! Also, little beta, you should beach whale the top. Just what I’m feeling.

    • May 27, 2011 at 1:57 am #

      Ooh, a beached whale move you say? Sounds pretty unusual, but I guess I could try it.

  2. AK
    May 23, 2011 at 4:18 pm #

    Girl, you got this, piece of cake! I just beat a V28 like it was nothing.


  3. The Mom
    May 23, 2011 at 5:42 pm #

    YOU CAN DO IT!!!!!!!!


  1. A bloody bouldering battle against Prince Charles (V8) at Three Sisters Park in Evergreen, CO | THE MORNING FRESH - December 6, 2011

    […] finds themselves absolutely, unwaveringly infatuated with a rock. For me, the love affair was with Beached Whale (V5) in Yosemite National Park – but for Niko, true love was to be had the moment he set his eyes […]

  2. Five reasons to visit a National Park this weekend | THE MORNING FRESH - January 13, 2012

    […] favorite sights and scenes from Yosemite National Park, and check out my favorite all-time climb, Beached Whale (V5) near the Ahwahnee Lodge. – Discover the vibrant desert hues I photographed during my hike through […]

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