Vikki Weldon, Canadian crusher, claimed the fourth known free ascent of a “super wicked granite crack” in Squamish last weekend. After five days of effort, she sent the Adder Crack (5.13), placing gear on lead.
“When I first tried the route, it felt heinous,” Weldon told Rock and Ice. “I barely linked two moves.”
Weldon waited for the Squamish heat wave to pass before trying again. Afterwards, she dialed in the moves and gear placements on top-rope.
“My friend convinced me to give it a try on lead. I ended up being too gassed to send that day, but I got over that initial anxiety about givin’ er on lead,” says Weldon. “I came back a few days later and sent it my first try!”
Hazel Findlay established Adder Crack in 2012, suggesting a grade of 5.13c R. After a few ascents, the grade consensus has settled at 5.13a.
The climb is at the Long House area—known for its overhanging offwidths, but also home to some finger cracks as well—between the Slahanay and The Chief.
“[It] starts out as a splitter, moves into some really cool compression moves until three parallel cracks that require some sequential finger locks,” says Weldon. “It’s a diverse climb that’s constantly engaging with no rests until the end.”
The Adder Crack was one of Weldon’s big goals for the summer.
“I’m so stoked! This has been a great year for me, and I’ve achieved some big grade goals for myself with my 5.14 [Los Humildes pa Casa] in Spain and now a 5.13 trad route here at home.
“I’m really enjoying gear climbing right now, and want to get better at it.”