A Mile and a Bit of Fun
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Paul and Layne on the slab before the final pitch.
"A Mile and a Bit of Fun" III 5.8R Length 1.4 Miles. AKA The Great White Wall Girdle Traverse.
This is the second girdle traverse in the SW desert, with the first being the "Bjornstad Traverse" around Castleton Tower. Starts from Three Fingers Canyon and traverses 1.4 miles south to the next canyon. The wall itself is about 1200' high. The first ascent party of three took with a lunch break 5 hours 40 mins to complete the traverse.
Starts up the first two pitches of "Come-Up-Pance". The first is 5.6 and the second 5.8. The route consists of connecting ledge systems via short slab sections of moderate difficulty, a mountaineering adventure. Only the very last pitch packs a bit of a punch. At the top of pitch two go up the ledge to the left for 200', then descend 40' and gain the big long ledge system. Continue on this ledge passing the rap anchors of Dreamy Clouds and Hot Tin Slab past big potholes, and after many hundreds of feet the ledge narrows to double bolt anchors. From here, go straight up the slab for 60' to rejoin the ledge system and continue south on easy ground. Follow the ramp down into a hole then up to join the slab above the obvious flake of Senile Dementia(pitch 3) and follow up to the massive ledge below some impressive unclimbed slabs. Follow the ledge to the next change, a deep crack/groove that is below a large cave. Traverse the smooth looking slab straight out left and down to regain the ledges. Continue following the ledge with occasional slab traversing until it ends overlooking the canyon. From here, drop into the large groove and a couple of steep moves to gain the easy slab angling left to the edge and large blocks with double anchors above for the belay of the final pitch 180' 5.5. From the belay, go up the crack then steeper climbing on sandy rock to an arete which leads to the summit 150' 5.8R. Register in cairn below the fine summit.
Descent: Just before and to the right of the higher dome summit, find a rap bolt and rap 40' to the big ledge/ramp and follow it south to its end and double rap anchors. Rap 200' to to the ledge at the start of the last two pitches, and then to another set of double anchors above the slab overlooking the edge of the canyon. Rap, then 4th class first left then back right to easy slab.
FA. Andy and Paul Ross, Layne Potter. March 21.2005.
Friends: Small selection from #0.5 to #3.5 Friends , some Stoppers, Slings. Two 60 meter ropes.
Paul and Andy on the Summit.
Andy on connecting slab mid way on the traverse.
BETA PHOTO: A) Three Fingers Canyon. The Route .."A Mile ...
Paul on connecting traverse section below the cave...
Layne having fun on the traverse..
"A Mile and a Bit of Fun". The Traverse ...