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Heading into the business on Excelsior, Owens Rive...
Ultra Classic. This long, vertical, extremely technical route may not be "in style" anymore, but it is one of the best hard routes in the gorge. It is very sustained, thin climbing on perfect rock. Part of the Tom Herbert "E" series. Big holds at the start quickly shrink into small edges and crimps with the odd pocket. The crux hits you about halfway up and features a series of long thin moves with tiny footholds. The top lets up a little but is no gimme. A must do.
10 quickdraws to coldshut anchor
|By Tim Steele|
From: Bishop, CA.
Jan 5, 2007
Stellar rock climb. Get your crimp on.
|By Vic Lawson|
From: Bishop, CA
Apr 4, 2008
Whoa thinness...very cool climb. A bit grainy to the second bolt, but you forget all that when you start warping your mind and tweaking your tendons heading in (and out) of the crux. Not for everyone...
|By Brad G|
From: Yosemite and else where
Mar 16, 2010
The crux will involve a dyno to a small crimp for anyone who's a little short. A move that feels like V9 or 10, no joke! The rest of the climbing is super fun.
May 14, 2011
I'm 5'0" - was on the route yesterday. Couldn't quite reach that hole off of those small feet and terrible down sloping, two finger right hand. I figured out a high left foot up to the high left two finger and right hand to the hole. Savage crux! Happy to redpoint this.
Jan 20, 2012
Got some beta to reach out left to a small crimp after the first hard bolt. It's desperately thin. I'll need to spit polish my shoes for this one.
|By andy patterson|
From: Santa Barbara, CA
Apr 1, 2012
I TR'd this line at the end of a session, after putting some work in on Yellowstreak (5.13a). Thought I'd cool down on a "less hard" classic. Ho....ly...crap. Absolutely savage through the crux. I completely agree with Brad: the crux feels like V9.
Insanely elegant and beautiful. And did I say savage?
Not sure I could redpoint this. Ever.
|By Neil Rankin|
Apr 1, 2013
For my money this is the best route in the Gorge. An incredible line, with great positioning and a beautiful crux. I think the crux is about v6 alone, and when you add in all of the other non-trivial climbing, I think a rating of 12d is a sandbag.