Hazel Findlay continues to push herself on steep and difficult crack lines around the world. This time she flashed the classic finger crack in Yosemite called The Phoenix 5.13.
Findlay noted in her Instagram post below: “What a memorable day. I’ve been saving The Phoenix for an onsight for years.
“It’s the classic hard single pitch of the valley, some say the first 5.13 in the valley. Climbing legends Beth Rodden and Jerry Moffat onsighted it at the peak of their careers.
“I lost my onsight when I belayed James McHaffie on it a few years ago. But I was still keen for the flash.”
What a memorable day. I've been saving the Phoenix for an onsight for years. It's the classic hard single pitch of the valley, some say the first 5.13 in the valley. Climbing legends @bethrodden and Moffat onsighted it at the peak of their careers. I lost my onsight when I belayed @caffinspain on it a few years ago. But I was still keen for the flash. Yesterday @nikdingleberry asked if I wanted to try it. I got a good feeling when he asked, not because I thought I was fit enough for the route to feel easy but because I thought I was unfit enough for the route to be a challenge. I think I've grown out of 'saving things'. I managed to flash it and I was psyched, not because it felt easy but because it felt hard. To get the most out of climbing it's important to find challenges that match your ability level. It's in those moments of being perfectly challenged that we find flow and pure focus. And those moments don't depend on success/sending, they are valuable without that. But the strongest memory from yesterday will be of getting together with a tribe of friends to celebrate the life of another friend. Albeit in sad circumstances, it was a rare gift to spend an evening with us all together. You know who you are. Thanks @jbaker.photography for another rad shot.
The Phoenix is a spliiter 40-metre line near Cascade Falls Upper that was first climbed on May 27, 1977, by Ray Jardine. The second ascent was in 1978 by Mark Hudon.
When asked about Alex Honnold’s solo of The Phoenix in 2011, Jardine said: “I seconded the Phoenix once, and I was surprised how much easier it was.
“When on the lead I always sewed it up, so it was much harder placing the pro on the lead.”
This past summer, Findlay climbed a new 5.13dR in squamish called Tainted Love aka Northern Soul. See more here.
Cascade Falls Upper has another classic hard crack line called Meltdown 5.14c, first climbed in 2008 by Rodden. It’s never been repeated. Watch Rodden climbing The Phoenix below.