A pretty good route if you could only consider the second pitch. The first is forgettable.
P1: Start near a bowed tree below the second dihedral. Look for a fixed pin about 15' up the pitch. Ascend the surprisingly difficult corner (5.10) up to a ledge. Move left to a set of cold shuts.
P2: You'll only need QDs and a #2.5 (ideal) or #3-#3.5 Friend for a horizontal break. The moves are increasingly difficult up to the crux (between the last two bolts). The climbing is pretty nice on the face and arete.
You can rap with a 60m from the cold shuts at the top, but may have to downclimb a few feet. We had a 70m and had spare rope on the ground.
You'll need some small cams and wires for the first pitch and about 6-7 draws for the second pitch plus a #2.5 or 3.5 Friend.
Ben higher up--the arete is a cool position
Ben on the Arete.
John Luna on the Lightning Bolt Arete.
|By Ben Mottinger|
Sep 8, 2005
Now that I look at the topo, the route doesn't really go over the bulge and then right. It goes right under the bulge then up the RHS of the arete. But you'll figure that out.
|By John Luna|
Oct 17, 2006
I think the photos of Ben are on the 5.9 arete to the right of Iron Cross. I have posted a photo of Lightning Bolt Arete.
|By Tony B|
From: Around Boulder, CO
Oct 29, 2006
rating: 5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
If you go directly up on the route, on the left of the arete and don't go right after the weird little roof, it is darn hard. I can't say just how hard, because I fell off with my feet on a lie-back off of a nub on the arete almost level with my right hand on the flake, while my left hand was vertical upward on a nasty crystal, At least 5.12... I don't know, but darn hard. If you don't try to force the issue and do go right, to the right of the arete, the route is *not* so darn hard. I saw that way and actually avoided that thinking the route should be a lot harder, so I figured the right side to be "off route." I'd be hard pressed to give it 5.11 at all, let alone 5.11b. But that's strange, but cause I am not a good micro-edge climber and I usually find Demallie's routes stiff at the grade. Good god, like "King Of Pain" on Shirt Tail Peak!
Anyway, if you do the route as a single pitch, which is far and away the best way, take a red Camalot for a meter below the pin, clip that, the pin, then go up to the ledge, and skip the anchor. Clip the first bolt with a 1' draw and continue. A bomber #3 Camalot fits right about where you'd want it in a line for the rope, all bolts considered, but in reality it is only about 3 feet above the last bolt and getting to the next bolt is not hard climbing. I placed it to dump it more so than to use it. You don't need it at all.
You will want a 2' sling for that weird bolt placed way out left that could have just as easily not been way over there, then finish on the arete...
A good route if done in a single pitch. Your second has to follow because the anchors are NOT placed for a lower-off. You can't clean on rap if you want to pull your rope in the end.