Author Topic: New Yosemite Bigwall guides  (Read 17748 times)

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Offline Erik Sloan

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #30 on: February 12, 2010, 04:19:23 pm »
Hi guys,

Thanks for the feedback.

Definitely into the color topos too. From what I've researched color printing is pretty hard on the environment, so might be into a color version for the web and printable, bw version.

Mike--sorry if the trees came out similar to your trees. I'm no graphic designer and certainly don't have any preference for what the trees look like on a bigwall topo. I've just hand drawn the maps and paid someone to digitalize them. Will look into digital tree types. (I swear one of the guys that I'm working with mentioned his tree design, which I nodded but thought 'they just look like trees to me').

Chris also asked about similarities to the Supertopo maps, so I'll address that.

One thing Chris mentioned specifically was line size. He felt I should make the lines on my topos either significantly thicker or thinner than his. I didn't choose my line size based on trying to copy someone else's style. I merely chose the size that I feel looks best on bigwall topos. If you look at the '85 Meyer's topos, the lines are significantly thinner than the newer topos in the Meyer's/Reid '92 guide. For example, the Zodiac topo in the '92 guide has the thinner lines, and is probably a re-print from the '85 Meyer's guide while the Surgeon General topo on the next page is a new topo that Don Reid received from Eric Kohl and made into a photoshop file with significantly thicker lines(interestingly, this is now called the "Reid topo" even though Donny never did the climb and it is exactly reproduced how Eric drew it). I have a full 8 1/2 X 11 page of Surgeon General and (a similar full-page) Chris' Zodiac Supertopo in front of me now. The line size is nearly identical. At minimum, it is far less distinct of a change than from the '85 Meyer's guide to the '92 Reid guide. The printing of the '92 guide makes the lines appear blurry or distorted, but the size is essentially the same. You could say that Chris McNamara copied Don Reid's topo format, to which a reasonable response would be, "No, Supertopo's are made in color, the "Hardware" section is called "Rack" section, the belay icons are solid circles instead of hollow circles; furthermore, each topo is an  original creation by Chris, who climbed each route." Cool.

So here are the stylistic ways my topos are different from Chris McNamara's. (Of course my topos contain original information too:)

1. Title, grade, and First Ascentionist info large and prominently displayed top of the page.
2. page tab with route/formation name
3. three different fonts: Title,rating/route info/nearby routes(don't ask, I looked at fonts till my eyes blurred and all I can say is most of them are illegible when shrunk to tiny in a topo, so my fonts are admittedly similar to the Supertopo fonts).
  
This project is something I'm doing in my spare time, because I love bigwall climbing in Yosemite. I've been friends with Chris Mac for a long time, and I love the Supertopo maps he made to Yosemite bigwalls. But he only made 40 or so original maps and there are over 400 bigwalls here. To me, each of these walls deserves the same prominent displayage of the most popular routes. So I"m climbing old routes and collecting new topos/getting corrections and more recent beta on popular climbs to make the most accurate bigwall topos possible. I've been posting my topos online for free and I intend to eventually have a topo of every single bigwall route in Yosemite available for free online. These climbs are on public land. Climbers that pioneer new routes on public mountains should feel obligated to publicly disclose their routes. This keeps others from changing an established route and gives everyone the opportunity to enjoy Yosemite's climbing resources. So my topo project is working toward this goal, of having a place where all of the info about bigwall routes in Yosemite can be collected and prominently displayed.

In closing, even if the stylistic differences between my topos and anyone else's are deemed inadequate, this project will not be slowed. Stylistic changes to digital files are relatively simple, and should not underscore the important moment that we are all enjoying: The coming alive of the bigwall climbs of Yosemite! The re-emergence of many climbs and ideas that where felt only briefly and by a few, but who have been patiently waiting for every person who is interested to enjoy.

many cheers,
e
« Last Edit: February 13, 2010, 01:10:43 am by nanook »

Offline mungeclimber

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #31 on: February 12, 2010, 05:48:13 pm »
also you don't say 'bivi' at a ledge, when in reality a portaledge is needed. Instead you actually have been dropping in the word 'portaledge' to indicate whether or not a portaledge would be the best way to actually sleep on a particular belay rather than just attempt to lie down and strap yourself down and still get no sleep.

important distinction

Offline Slakkey

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #32 on: February 12, 2010, 07:52:21 pm »
Erik,

There will no doubt some similarity in that it is a product of using computer programs for drawing. Some programs only have a limited number of line weights (thickness) others have more but the fact is they are generic in nature so pretty difficult for someone to say that your topo is the same as theirs just because you used the same line thickness.

As for symbols, icons features etc. the same is true in that many of the features are generic. So various things such as trees, bushes etc. could be created and put into a file and pretty much given away. This is the case in the field for which I work in yacht design in that  various hardware companies create symbols such as blocks or winches etc and create a symbol file and one can download them for free. Other symbols such as sinks, stoves etc. are all generic by nature.

So, say one designer designs a boat 40 feet and another does the same, although one just may be slightly different they may very well look similar . The fact is that one designer cant claim the other copied his or hers boat just because they used the sane line thickness or same generic features.

The key is presentation and it is clear that yours is different so dont sweat it. Keep up the good work. I like the enthusiasm

Offline johnmac

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #33 on: February 13, 2010, 09:04:10 pm »
Erik,

I think your new topos look great and think that there are going to be comparisons made between your topos and others out there regardless of what you do. Choose a line thickness that works best for your topos.

I'd like to see the following:

- Color: I think this really helps to visualizing the route
- Photo overlay: As well as the topo have a photo that clearly shows the route as well to help pick up the features
- Grades: I would like to see the C grade proceed the A grade. For example if the route goes at C3 / A2. Then emphasize the C3 first, followed by the A2 grade afterwards
- Cost: I think it great that you are doing this as a community service but please put something somewhere on your site to let people donate towards the cause. There will be lots of costs involved and I'm sure that there will be plenty of people out there that who would like to support you.
- Book: I'm not sure if I misunderstood but are you still producing a book that will contain all the topos or just the topo downloads. I hope you produce a book as well, as there is nothing quite like pulling out my guidebooks while having lunch at work (in cube hell) and taking some time out and looking at a topo at random.

Thanks for your efforts and community service.

Cheers

john


Offline Erik Sloan

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #34 on: February 14, 2010, 08:14:44 am »
Thanks Gang(Happy Sunday),

To clarify, I am planning on producing two guidebooks to Yosemite bigwalls: a Select and a Comprehensive. Working on the Select now and then plan on using the momentum from this effort toward the Comprehensive.

The cornerstone of these books will be a fantastic website, where each topo is available(for the folks who only plan on doing a route or two).

Interesting idea about putting the clean grades first. Can we discuss this more? Of course it makes sense on routes like Lurking Fear and Prow--routes that rely on some fixed gear but that are mostly clean climbing anyway. But it seems more a stretch to put the clean rating first on routes that rely on a significant amount of fixed gear--say like a Zodiac. But maybe I'm just a softie for folks getting up the mountain, and run into to many bailers who don't seem aware of what they need to know up there.

Here's the Afroman topo:

http://cid-ac7b92e4a1d5c148.skydrive.live.com/self.aspx/.Public/Afroman.pdf

Keep it on!
e

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #35 on: February 14, 2010, 08:29:08 am »
Nice topo, Erik. Lots more detail than the old one, eh?
I'd say you got it pretty well.
Hey, is the Jungle pitch Really A3+, do you think? Hmmmm.
Cool.

Offline scottydo

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #36 on: February 14, 2010, 08:51:40 am »
while i'm still a big wall noob, I think that folks will be grateful for a comprehensive Yosemite big wall guidebook no matter how thick the lines are or what color the topos are. i know i'd buy it in a heart beat. :)

Offline johnmac

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #37 on: February 14, 2010, 11:46:31 am »
Regarding the emphasis on clean grades I suppose that is because I do most of my climbing on sandstone so I've seen a lot of destruction over the years. I'm no zealot regarding clean climbing, I just try to always climb clean if I can. I select routes with clean climbing in mind.

If the first clean ascent could be included that would be awesome.

I think a lot of times people think aid climbing has a hammer and a nail mindset and people just don't know about the options climbing clean. If the topo stated that the first climb ascent was such a date, and topos showed pitches with both the clean and the aid rating that would really help convince people what the options were.

Cheers

john

Offline Erik Sloan

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #38 on: February 21, 2010, 06:58:06 pm »
Thanks Gang,

Hey, I had the idea to try and keep this dialogue fresh by offering a new topo each Sunday. Of course, these are just draft topos so there will undoubtedly be many corrections, which I would appreciate you emailing me(erik_sloan@hotmiail.com).

Here's the South Face/Southern Man/Skull Queen topo: With this topo I'm balancing the desire to see the other routes with creating an easy to read map by making this one page version, and then also breaking the climbs unto two pages--page one will be from the ground to top of 5, page two ill be from Dinner to the Summit.

http://cid-ac7b92e4a1d5c148.skydrive.live.com/self.aspx/.Public/South%20Face%201%20pg%20ver^2pdf

many cheers
e

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #39 on: February 21, 2010, 07:58:09 pm »
"That item seems to be missing".

Hmm.

Offline mungeclimber

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Offline Caz

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #41 on: February 21, 2010, 10:05:24 pm »
A few things about the south face topo...

-On P1 it seems like you traverse higher.

-P6 anchor, the ledge seems a bit bigger and the tree covers the bolts. Is there a way to convey that a bit more? The hauling through that tree really sucks!

Just a general note...

It makes it easier to read if you overlap a bit of the topo when there is a page break like on P5 of Skull Queen. That may be just me...


Zac


By the way, Thanks so much for doing this nook
I do this for fun...

Offline Erik Sloan

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #42 on: February 24, 2010, 09:57:41 am »
Thanks Zac,

What about the folks who climbed the South Face and Skull Queen a couple weekends back. Keep the corrections comin.

cheers
e

Offline AstroArlo

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #43 on: February 26, 2010, 09:47:44 am »
e

Some general comments on your project.

Style.  Remember, the objective is to clearly and concisely provide information about the routes.  There are well established "standards" for topos which evolved over the years and which people understand.   The style differences between different authors are not important unless they make the topo less useful for the purpose it was intended.  And style is style, no one style is universal - some will like your style, some will not.  If it conveys the information clearly and concisely, you've hit the bulls-eye.  Use the style YOU like - if you try to force a style that you really don't like, your topos will not be as good and making them will become a job, not a labor of love.

You need to decide what the objective of your project is - convey free information, be commercially successful, make a little beer money on the side...etc.  If you want it to be commercially successful, then a "select" guide is the way to go. The majority of potential customers are only interested in the trade routes, not terra incognito.  Chris has already made a "select" guide, with his current supertopos, and he tries to keep them current with his web page.  What the big wall community needs are up to date topos on routes which aren't in Chris's book, imho, so I would not start with a select, I'd start with routes that don't have current topos.

Authors of topos have an important responsibility, too.  I believe publishing a good topo of a route increases the traffic, and if you say "this is the best route in the world,"  it will bring a swarm of climbers.  Why are 95% of climbers on about 10 walls (Nose, SFWC, Zodiac, Shield, NWFHD, Salathe, Lurking Fear, Mescalito, 3D, Prow)?  Part of this popularity is what is said and published in the guidebooks.  It would be nice to spread the climbers out a bit - for example, South Face Washington Column is not the only wall which is a "good first wall".  Perhaps by cleaning up a few other routes (belay bolts, tatter, etc.) we could get climbers to spread out a bit.

But maybe your only objective is to get more topos out there of more routes.  Good luck with your project.

Offline mungeclimber

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #44 on: February 26, 2010, 10:33:04 am »
glad that the astroarlo registration is a real person. :)


Offline Erik Sloan

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #45 on: February 26, 2010, 01:31:13 pm »
Me too Munge. And he arrived on an incredibly auspicious Aquarian(the father of the Astro's) day.

What's your name brutha?

Yeah, Afroman is the best route on the Column that I've done, for aid climbing.

The goal of this project, Yosemitebigwall.com, will be the ultimate bigwall resource for Yosemite bigwall climbers. The website will be free. There will be a Select and Comprehensive print book to purchase if you really like this stuff.

cheers
e

Offline Erik Sloan

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #46 on: February 28, 2010, 11:02:00 am »
Endangered Species looks like the line for those looking for thin aiding.

http://cid-ac7b92e4a1d5c148.skydrive.live.com/self.aspx/.Public/Endangered%20Species.pdf

Offline mungeclimber

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #47 on: February 28, 2010, 02:05:33 pm »
whoa whoa whoa!


too many topos, not enough time!!!

:)

Offline Slakkey

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #48 on: February 28, 2010, 03:05:27 pm »
I always look forward to Sunday now, Topo Day

Thanks E

Offline AstroArlo

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #49 on: March 03, 2010, 10:11:28 pm »
Hello again.

Well, my name IS Arlo, and I live here at the base of the Tetons.

Getting ready for a Big Wall adventure in the valley in May after a 10 year absence.  Funny how that big wall bug always comes back...

Thanks for all the great topos and information.  I love the online topos, but would cough up money for a published one, too....partly to support the ton of work which goes into making the topos, but also because it's just nice to grab a cup of coffee and a nice book of topos when it's really cold here in Wyoming.

Best Regards,
Arlo

Offline mungeclimber

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #50 on: March 04, 2010, 12:08:26 am »
Sunday is topo day.

haha

I like that.

No pressure nanook.



How about Watkins topos? Lots of rock up there. had to be some recent action.

Offline Erik Sloan

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #51 on: March 07, 2010, 08:43:45 am »
Cheers Gang!

Here's my updated Mideast Crisis/Horni-Johnson/Quantum Mechanic topo:

http://cid-ac7b92e4a1d5c148.skydrive.live.com/self.aspx/.Public/Mideast%20Crisis%5EJHorni-Johnson.pdf

keep the feedback and updates coming.

best
e

Offline YetAnotherDave

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #52 on: March 07, 2010, 11:16:52 am »
thanks nanook!

Offline mungeclimber

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #53 on: March 07, 2010, 05:12:06 pm »
Oh Happy Sunday!!!


was just thinking about Mike.'s TR and the Reid topo yesterday.  cool to be able to come back online and find this.

I'd offer to buy ya a beer, but somehow I don't think it carries much weight.  Consequently, I'd say we all owe ya some carried loads of beer to the base of climbs.


Offline Erik Sloan

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #54 on: March 14, 2010, 12:05:38 pm »

Offline hoipolloi

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #55 on: March 14, 2010, 12:41:36 pm »
Hmmm. A4+  That is a pretty serious grade with a 1998 FA and by those 2...


The topo has the lines, but doesn't have any grades for those pitches... haha, leaves a lot of mystery in the route...

Offline mungeclimber

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #56 on: March 15, 2010, 02:02:17 pm »
tab in the top right corner says "W. Column"


Offline Erik Sloan

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #57 on: March 15, 2010, 09:30:38 pm »
Thanks Munge.

Yeah, a little stout for most of us, but there's always someone...

best
e

Offline Erik Sloan

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #58 on: March 21, 2010, 10:48:14 am »
Happy Spring!

Even Ivo calls this one the 'greatest aid climb on El Cap'.

Zodiac:

http://cid-ac7b92e4a1d5c148.skydrive.live.com/self.aspx/.Public/Zodiac.pdf
« Last Edit: March 21, 2010, 11:48:31 am by nanook »

Offline mhudon

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Re: New Yosemite Bigwall guides
« Reply #59 on: March 21, 2010, 11:22:43 am »
These are damn nice topos, btw, Erik.