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This route is located on the far right side of the lower Buttress. It is a fast way to the upper tier, when there are lines on the Pillar. The pitches can be combined into one long lead with a 60M rope. The climb follows large crack systems that you stem and face climb around. The climbing is steep and a little runout, so it is probably not a great climb for a 5.5 leader. The top pitch is on runout dike climbing.
Gear to 3.5", extra large pieces...
BETA PHOTO: Part of the first pitch.
Getting the 5.6 start...
BETA PHOTO: looking up at the start
Sep 8, 2006
Cool dike! Fun free solo!
From: Oakland CA
Jan 9, 2007
aka 'Novitiate's Delight'
A couple guidebooks list the direct start to this as 5.6. I'd disagree and say the direct start has a 5.8 move on it, but is worth doing. the Novitiate's Nightmare finish is also recommended!
Mar 6, 2008
The hardest part of this climb was the rope drag. Because there are so many options, placing for rope management becomes key.
honestly, this was a little more pucker inducing than bears reach or corrugation corner, both 5.7.
Glad I did it, but i don't need to do it again.
From: Boulder, CO
May 25, 2009
rating: 5.5 4b 13 IV+ MS 4a
The direct start felt solid at 5.8--5.8+. The foot work is a bit tricky and the jams are poor while laying-back makes the footwork even more difficult.
On the other hand, the pro is excellent. The direct start adds ~20 feet of stellar climbing. Go for it!
|By daniel c|
From: San Francisco, CA
Jul 12, 2009
rating: 5.5 4b 13 IV+ MS 4a
great to see that other climbers found the direct start harder than 5.6. i thought i was going crazy. agreed on 5.8+ for the direct start. the rest of the climb is a really fun 5.5.
|By Floyd Hayes|
Jun 21, 2010
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ MVS 4b
At the start I traversed in from the right and followed the main hand crack straight up, which felt no harder than 5.5 until I reached the second "5.5" crack just before it veered left, where it felt like 5.7 (other climbers I spoke with said the same thing). It felt just as hard as Bear's Reach, Surrealistic Pillar and Corrugation Corner. Where is the 5.5 variation? I wondered if it might be easier had I gone right toward the big corner, but it looked harder (as verified below by other climbers), or left toward The Groove which looked unprotected. High up I belayed out on the right edge where there were a few narrow cracks. Weird climb, not much fun, definitely not recommended for new leaders.
|By Dana Bartlett|
Nov 12, 2010
The climbing was interesting. The way we went, it seemed to be 5.5/5.6.
|By Josh Cameron|
Aug 20, 2011
I once saw a climber lay down on one of the dikes. They are huge! After commenting on how hard the upper section felt, I was told the "true" 5.5 climb goes into the corner and traverses under the roof.
|By Tyson W.|
From: South Lake Tahoe, CA
May 6, 2013
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ MVS 4b R
"probably not a great climb for a 5.5 leader." if you don't understand this funny joke, climb this!
This climb is actually really cool, which goes up insane alien dike granite, and I enjoyed the hand crack direct start.
The direct is solid 5.7 for the area, and the route itself is pretty run-out, especially considering the deck potential on the enormous dikes. I'm no soloist, but this route might be much more enjoyable sans rope. You're going to the hospital as the crow fly's if you blow it up there rope or no rope, and the rope drag is gonna be bad no matter how you sling it.
Did it in one pitch, and have to agree with Evan, due to the run-out and the tricky route finding, this was much more of a lead than bears reach, or the groove right next to it, which is three grades harder. I don't know what a 5.5 leader looks like, but I probably wouldn't recommend this to anyone less than a 5.8 leader.