Davis Sends Moab Testpiece
On April 6, Steph Davis made the first female ascent and third ascent of Concepcion (ungraded, 220′) in Day Canyon, near Moab, Utah. Established in 2003 by Davis’s husband, Dean Potter, Concepcion was the first free ascent and link-up of the two-pitch aid route Acromaniac (5.10 A0). Concepcion received its second ascent earlier this year by Alex Honnold.
Davis described Concepcion as “definitely one of the most striking splitter cracks I’ve seen.” She added that it was her most technically demanding project ever—the crack is off-size for her in both the finger and offwidth sections.
A hard boulder-problem start involves long reaches to small finger locks for the first two moves; above, it slowly widens from a thin seam to offwidth. “In the final crux section of the rattly splitter I was actually falling out of the crack as I jabbed between ring locks,” Davis said. “So I just started yelling, and somehow flew back into the rock, doing move after move at maximum exhaustion, almost in a warrior trance state.”
Davis said she placed only two cams in the last 70-80 feet, which is the second pitch of the original route Acromaniac (5.10 A0).
“Since [the upper section] was that cupped hands/almost fist size in loose, steep, sandy rock (rather than sinker hand jams, which would have been safe with no gear), I decided it was worth the weight to bring two cams and run it out a little less, rather than risk a 150 footer onto the old pin anchor if something broke,” she said.
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