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3. Big Wall
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Hierophant Tower 

YDS: 5.11+ French: 7a Ewbanks: 24 UIAA: VIII ZA: 24 British: E4 6a R

   
Type:  Trad, 3 pitches, 500', Grade III
Consensus:  YDS: 5.11+ French: 7a Ewbanks: 24 UIAA: VIII ZA: 24 British: E4 6a [details]
FA: Bradley White, Jim Shimberg, 1986, FFA Ted Hamond, complete ascent 1987 with Charlie belaying.
New Route: Yes
Page Views: 1,463
Submitted By: bradley white on Jun 23, 2009

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Second ascent. Jim and I took turns leading this ...

Description 

First rope soloed by climbing straight up into the dike instead of where the Ghost climb goes to right from there. I followed this dike and clipped myself into a decades old 1/4" bolt, moved out left away from the dike onto a series of solid narrow flakes. After I had gotten in my last piece of pro I was incompetent too fall onto my gear. So I rappelled down from that last placement and called it Hierophant Tower after the mysterious bolter.
Jim Shimberg and I finish this pitch on a cloudy wet day. Reached a corner left above my rappel gear (higher in corner old lost arrow pin). This was the way the mystery climber went. I did a tension traverse to the corner I wanted too climb directly above the rappel gear.
Nailed Three pins and we took turns drilling out the hole for a bolt at the corner's end. Up there lastly, burned out, misjudged the depth of the hole we had made, and put in a shallow okay bolt. After the bolt C0 too free moves up left and up, block in the best way right too a long easy too nowhere dead end. Back down again and into the how on earth does this exist extremely broken up wall of stacked flakes, like granite broken egg shell pieces. Granite flakes stronger than they look and easy climbing not gear protective. Thirty feet up and right from the bolt is the bolted belay ledge and the mysterious climber's (2 1/4" bolts)and gear. We added a third bolt to the rappel station ledge below the large crescent moon arches of the last pitch. We stopped and rappelled.
Removed the block from the best way up from the dike. Ted Hammond freed this pitch (11c) doing the face move, right traverse past the bolt. Tom Bowker and I couldn't do the move (maybe move is greater difficulty than I've rated it) easy tension traverse though, to the dike (5-5) but run out.
Jim and I returned in October to place bolt above rappel belay station to access the highest arches above the belay. These are expanding arches flexed radically while bolting from the friends pressuring onto it. I got very angry at Jim for not telling me about the see sawing on granite friends and he said nothing knowing I was going too bolt it anyway and I vented at it being very cold. Too cold, we rappelled.
Charlie and I returned in summer of 1987. Did C0 bolt move to climb giant (expanding too body weight) arches above (5.6+?) difficult too rate long run outs) it terminates at the base of the left side of 'The Ghost' for half a rope length up from that single bolt (exhilarating) for distance. Windy, Charlie was under dressed for the cliff and was getting hypothermia. I lowered off of a lost arrow I put in at the base of the Ghost arch ceiling (there was a large loose block under the ceiling of 'The Ghost' arch). We rappelled and did base climbs out of the wind.
JeffP and Ryan Brooks freed the face to the arches 5.11+? in 9/14. They made no mention of the run out through the 5.6 arches. Amazing the bolt is okay and I removed the X rating.

Location 

left of the Ghost Route and top of S.S.S. buttress. Choose which way to get there. 4 options.

Protection 

old fixed pins and 2 bolts, probably fixed gear is decomposed. trad. rack


Photos of Hierophant Tower Slideshow Add Photo
Scanned photo of myself getting past the crux on aid. The route goes up the expanding arches above the dike near to me.
Scanned photo of myself getting past the crux on a...

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