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GB moving right, to the bottom of Army's obvious r...
Start as for Armed Forces
. Clip AF's
first bolt, and climb up overhanging rock, using excellent huecos and jughandles (10b). Move right, clipping AF's
second bolt. Continue right and make a long reach to the bottom of the right-angling handcrack (crux). Jam and crank up the short, intermittent crack, and reach a platform that is high on the southwest corner of the ridge.
Take a breather (or belay from gear); since clipping the first bolt, the climb has been consistently overhanging. For me, the finishing moves to the platform were among the most difficult on the pitch, partly because of the endurance challenge.
Move a few feet east on the platform, and find the easiest way through the bulge to the top of the ridge. Belay from gear. To get down, traverse north, climb down (exposed fifth-class) to the double bolt-anchor atop AF
, and rappel 85 feet. Or traverse the ridge crest north (belayed fourth-class) to the first big tree (where Ariel
ends), and sling it for an 85-foot rappel.
Army is currently the rightmost (southernmost) route on the west side of Ridge One. The easiest climbing to the start is leftward up an easy slab, to a ledge system. Traverse the ledge system a long way to the right, passing a small juniper (where Ariel
begins), to just below the first bolt of Armed Forces
. Instead, you could climb awkward, unprotected 5.6 for about 25 feet to directly reach AF's
first bolt. Anyway, your belayer should be on the ground, directly below AF's
Two bolts, two handjam-size cams, and some slings and smaller cams for the optional platform belay and for climbing above that to the ridge crest. Even with modern gadgetry, there isn't much pro. In 1975, perhaps a couple rattling hexes....
DISCLAIMER: Using the anchor atop Armed Forces
, I toproped Army as far as the platform. Because the toprope would have pulled me backward, I was unable to climb the finish above the platform. So I don't really know what the finish would be like or how it would protect. It didn't look as hard as getting to the platform was.
GB at the first bolt of Armed Forces, at the best ...