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More Puzzlers from The Atlantic Monthly.

The Atlantic Monthly | October 2001
The Puzzler
Rock Climbing

by Emily Cox and Henry Rathvon
The October Puzzler

The diagram represents a challenge to rock climbers. Answers to Trail clues start in the lower left and ascend row by row, alternately rightward and leftward, until they finish in the highest row but one. To confirm some of these Trail letters, answers to Guides clues should be entered in the numbered squares. Additionally, answers to Routes clues begin in the circles and ascend in zigzag fashion (angling up one square to the left or the right with each new letter). Routes include two or three words each and are clued in left-to-right order; they, too, finish in the highest row but one. If you append a final letter to each topmost Routes word so that a new word is formed, those five final letters will spell, left to right at the summit, the reward for all your hard work. Five clue answers are capitalized, as is one of the newly formed words reaching the summit.

The instructions above are for this month's puzzle only. See a complete introduction to clue-solving.

See the solution to last month's Puzzler.


a. Spot around Western rock formation was touching? (7)
b. Climbing accident involving wild bats in straight pitch (8)
c. Almost try move with grip from sticky rubber soles (8)
d. Wrong hint about rope resistance (10)
e. Conqueror of easier route (9)
f. Reportedly looked hard, like some ascents (7)
g. Deep crack in cliff's face holds cam, finally (5)
h. Raven led "Cryptic" in purple (8)
i. Rocky scattering in a carom (8)
j. Cross section from east to west for little-known access (8)
k. Slippery place is about right for tool with adjustable legs (8)
l. Expose back to ground, gripped by fear, in test of a sort (5,3,5)
m. Signs of nervousness following at high levels (6)
n. Large round dome crookedly towered up (6)
o. Stuff hauled out behind jumbled crag (5)
p. Flight resulting from high gear I misplaced (6)
q. Pull next to scary reptile? (6)
r. Mixtures of tricky angles to the right of me (8)
s. Rocky top includes glimpse of yeti? It's a mistake (4)

t. Be careful around rock ridge having spires (30,10,22,26,21,12,40,4,43)
u. Triangular wall includes grate that can be held (2,27,41,25,36,23,45,7,33)
v. Fool around slope with climbing aid (39,5,11,37,14,17,20)
w. Star of Cliffhanger completely trapped in rock (13,42,16,46,32,9,38,35)
x. Awful spider, to a person in a high place (1,6,18,44,28,3,31,19)
y. Stupid, like a ledge? (34,8,15,24,29)

A. Pronounced rock steeper (6)
Disorganized moron carrying a cheese (6)
B. First couple of tricams are of use, with hard work (7)
Rogue's unreliable scheme at top of peak (5)
C. Instead of rock, hard plastic (7)
Worries and fears, after the start (5)
D. Prickly feature hems in unskilled pretender (7)
Stuff that's sheer hard work at end of route (5)
E. Start off rock at the end of the day (4)
Five books telling of Rockies' and Himalayas' beginnings (5)
Joke with piece of gold and silver (3)

Copyright © 2001 by The Atlantic Monthly Group. All rights reserved.
The Atlantic Monthly; October 2001; The Puzzler; Volume 288, No. 3; 135.