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Broken Cross 

YDS: 5.10+ French: 6b+ Ewbanks: 21 UIAA: VII+ ZA: 20 British: E3 5b R

   
Type:  Trad, 1 pitch, 140'
Consensus:  YDS: 5.10+ French: 6b+ Ewbanks: 21 UIAA: VII+ ZA: 20 British: E3 5b [details]
FA: James Garrett and Michael Franklin 1991
Page Views: 1,252
Submitted By: Ben Folsom on Oct 8, 2007

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"Shit."

Description 

The route climbs the righthand crack system as viewed from the Cabin. Face climb passing quite a few bolts then mostly crack climbing leads to a large nice ledge below the summit. Climb a scary slab to a scary and loose mantle to the summit. I think I counted eight bolts on this pitch. Some old empty holes had newer bolts next to them.


Location 

Broken Cross is the obvious tower behind Swasey's Cabin. It looks like a broken cross.


Protection 

Two sets of cams, quickdraws and long slings.



Photos of Broken Cross Slideshow Add Photo
Ben climbing above history...
Ben climbing above history...
"Cool, it held."
"Cool, it held."
Ben on Broken Cross.
Ben on Broken Cross.
The Broken Cross, The route climbs the obvious crack/flake system.
The Broken Cross, The route climbs the obvious cra...
"That hold looks good."
"That hold looks good."
Ben topping out.
Ben topping out.
Comments on Broken Cross Add Comment
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By Ben Folsom
Oct 8, 2007

I climbed this route with Maura Hahnenberger and John Glime on Oct. 8th 2007. It had been retrobolted since I looked at the tower a few years ago. In Bjornstad's book this climb is listed as 5.10+ S (for serious). I tried to free it, but was unable to do the move where there are two bolts next to each other moving right into another flake, and had a very hard time with a move up a little higher. Also, just below the nice ledge the rock is super rotten and I pulled off a large chunk (bigger than basketball sized) onto myself and took a nice fall. Kind of Scary. Also, the climbing from the ledge to the summit is pretty serious with no gear on the slab, then manky gear just below the summit in bad, sugary rock. All in all it was a pretty exciting climb with a great summit. Anyway, James if you read this I was wondering if this was a free climb or if Aid was used on the first ascent because a couple moves I just couldn't really see.

By James Garrett
Oct 9, 2007

Hi Ben,
Yes I led this climb and aided it for sure. I thought it had a 5.10+ A0 rating (probably like most of my stuff, but I remember Franklin free climbing it on second and saying he thought it was hard....I am not a bad ass like you!). I thought it deserved the S rating because of the definite desert feel to it (some looseness)...but cool summit nonetheless?
I had heard that someone chopped the bolts and the fixed gear on this route, but maybe it did get retrobolted....not sure by whom?
We also left a summit register on top, but have heard that is certainly gone with the wind as well?
I did go back with the widow of Michael Franklin some years later and it seemed much different as I had remembered.

By Ben Folsom
Oct 9, 2007

I'm definately no badass! Thats your department.
I thought the climb was great, pretty scary in places. I agree with the S rating! I thought the climbing from the big ledge to the summit was especially spicy. Though by that point my nerves had been a bit frazzled from the first 120 feet.
The summit register was there (an old water bottle), but it was broken and mice or birds had torn the paper inside into little bits.
I thought the summit was beautiful and the view was incredible.

By James Garrett
Oct 9, 2007

Interesting to hear your account, Ben. What do you think the story is with the bolts next to holes and bolts next to bolts, etc. that you described? It must be getting some traffic. Too bad about the "summit register".
Yea, that last section from the ledge, I think I got in some poor TCU placement in rotten rock for psyche pro and then went for it. That was exciting.

Sounds like you have found a bunch of other gems in that area (Swaseyland)....have you done anything near the Peanut Butter Jar?....I climbed after the guidebook and that is more right off the I-70 in the Southern Swell....lots of routes to do in there, after a 10 minute hike. Maura's Tower looks very worthy!