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Simon on the 10b start to Crack Slabbeth. This st...
A name that's clever and descriptive. This climb requires honed Squamish friction technique, as well as, to a lesser degree, some crack proficiency. Fortunately, there's an alternate start to the first pitch that brings the entire route down to a slightly sandbagged 10b. This climb makes an good alternate approach to St. Vitus Dance or Vector.
The first 40 feet of the first pitch are the business here -- hard friction, and fairly well bolted. The 10b alternate start joins once the crux start is done, it the climbing is still tenuous. There are bolts, but it's not a sport climb. The last 20 feet of the first pitch consists of a slippery crack to an obvious bolted belay below and overlap.
The second pitch (5.10b) traverses left under the overlap and then up into a corner that uses a combination of friction and small holds on the right wall, finger-tips in the crack and the occasional stem on he right wall. A relatively short pitch, but fun.
The third pitch (5.9) takes you to the little patch of forest that marks the start of St. Vitus Dance, Calculus Crack and Vector.
This climb has what must be the shortest approach to any Apron climb from the main Apron parking lot. Head up the forest service road and take the very first trail that heads up and right. It's only a few steps up the road from the lot. At a T-juntion go right. The trail will dead end in a clearing in front of a slab with two scrubbed lines. The left line is Crack Slabbeth, the right is Evergreen State. The 10b alternate start is back left and up some wild tree routes to a comfy belay on a log.
The first pitch is mostly bolted, but as with most slabs, the distance between bolts keeps it very exciting. The 10b start has bigger distances between the bolts than the 11c.
The second pitch goes on few finger sized nuts and cams, but a larger cam (#3 or #3.5 camalot) under the overlap will protect the moves off the belay.
Simon on the traverse into the main line of Crack ...
BETA PHOTO: Looking down from the second belay. The second pi...
Simon on the third pitch of Crack Slabbeth. The f...