The climb is an old aid line called the Gunslinger. Zach Smith, the “undercover bone-crusher from Colorado,” as described by Will Stanhope, handed over the route in 2007. It has been estimated by some that it will be a 5.14- when it goes clean.
“I couldn’t do the middle section and then last summer I did all the moves,” says Stanhope. He got a one-fall attempt on lead last summer, but after sustaining a ground fall this past winter, Stanhope has been forced to back off and focus on healing his broken ankle. His recovery has been smooth and he has been back to visit the project this summer, managing a clean top rope ascent this August.
“It’s pretty run-out and I’m a little gun shy after my accident”, says Stanhope.
When asked when the redpoint might happen, he whimsically answered, “When I drink enough beers to consider it a good idea.” Laughing that off, Stanhope says he is waiting until the weather cools down a bit and then he might recruit Tim Emmet for the belay.
Stanhope is taking his recovery very seriously, understanding that healing well is far more important than healing fast. The old Gunslinger will wait for him.