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Karot Tots was an important route in the history of Smith climbing, as it was one of the first routes to tackle the steep faces of the dihedrals. Though essentially a crack climb, the route requires a few commiting face moves to traverse between the cracks.
Though classic & excellent, the route is a bit of a pain to climb, since it traverses so much. The route turns two aretes, which compounds rope drag and makes it impossible to clean the route while lowering. These factors have hampered the route's popularity, but if you have an adventurous mindset this route is a must do, and one of the best low-end 5.11s at Smith.
Begin up the classic Karate Crack. Around 10 feet before the crack hooks right, traverse straight left, using a surprisingly slopey pocket, to gain the tail end of the thin, arching seam that snakes its way to the left arete of the Karate Wall. Follow this seam past a bolt, placing bomber nuts or TCU's along the way. As the seam turns horizontal it opens up, providing large jugs for the hand traverse. Turn the corner, after which the difficulty eases substantially. Continue traversing left around the next arete to a 2 bolt anchor. Most folks rap off here, but its also possible to climb 5.6ish knobs up the low-angle, sparsely-bolted slab to the summit of the wall. If rapping, beware that the rap route goes right over the popular Watts Tots & Latest Rage.
On the Karate Wall, at the far right end of the Dihedrals.
Gear to 3", including TCUs or stoppers for the thin seam. There is one bolt on the face between the cracks.
|By Mike Rowley|
Mar 20, 2012
This thing does not see much traffic due to the traversing nature of the climb... The moves getting to the bolt arent too bad. Just find those good feet!!! The feet are tough to spot... Unlike the popular climbs at Smith, there is no black rubber, OR tickmarks! Excellent line.