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Sonnie Trotter did Sugar Daddy - new 5.14 trad route

Sonnie Trotter, 31, one of the best know Canadian climbers, succeeded on his project at Squamish, Canada, a beautiful but desperately hard overhanging arete. In his blog he mentions: I climbed a project of mine which I was really happy about.  An overhanging arete.  It's the sort of feature you look up at and WISH it had holds on it.  This one did, but barely.  I tried the line last spring, and found the tiny crimps that linked it all together... I reckon the line is a 5.11 to a V10/V11 to a 5.12b.  It's the direct start to Big Daddy Overhang, so we called it Sugar Daddy, and I suggested a rating of 5.14 because of it's bouldery nature, an endurance climber might find it hard, a boulderer might find it easy.

Of course he invites to repeats: It’s a brilliant little challenge, incredible movement.  I hope it gets climbed on again soon and repeated, it’s so good.

Sonnie Trotter on Sugar Daddy (photo: coll. Sonnie Trotter)

Two weeks later, Trotter has made the first repeat of Stingray, a hard and steep 'thin fingers' crack in the stunning granite area in Joshua Tree, California. He described the route before the last trip: I tried the climb back in February, and it's truly an amazing line, tight fingers and steep and leaning.  I flashed the crux moves on TR, and thought it felt like a 5.13b-ish.  I was expecting to do the route in a day or two.  But then, UNFORTUNATELY, on my second attempt, I broke the most crucial foothold on the climb, and now, it's really hard, probably solid 5.13d.  But it's hard to say because it's so f 'n painful. I haven't stuck the crux yet, but I can link from there to the top, so it might happen any day now, unless I tear a huge flapper, or blow out my elbows, both of which are highly possible, at the same time even.

Then after ascent: It's probably the second hardest crack climb I've ever done.  I was very happy.  It's such a beautiful and powerful line.

Toproped on Stingray (photo: coll. Sonnie Trotter)

Sonnie Trotter's notable hardest ascents including:
  • Superman (5.14c, FA in 2002) - link up of Cheakamus Canyon's Pulse (5.14a), Captain America (5.14b) and Gom Jabbar (5.13b) continuing through the crux of Patience (5.14a),
  • Forever Expired (5.14d, FA in 2004) - Ontario's hardest route to date,
  • East Face of Monkey Face (5.13d R, FGA in 2004) - original established by Smith Rock's pioneer Alan Watts, Trotter redpointed the East Face on trad lead,
  • Cobra Crack (5.14, FA in June, 2006) - considered one of the world's hardest crack climbs,
  • Rhapsody (5.14b/c R, second ascent in June 2008) - world's first E11,
  • Necessary Evil (5.14c)
  • Just Do It (5.14c)
  • The Path (5.14a) - trad lead

[source:, ukclimbing,]

See also
Katy Whittaker on gritstone
Pete Robins on gritstone season
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Echo from the rocks – Söderlund, Sharma, Harnden, Fineron
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