|Lost Arrow Spire
Standard Free Rack w/ one 4" piece for the OW section. Otherwise small - medium cams will do you fine. A standard hook is not required but will help at the crux.
|By Peter Franzen|
From: Phoenix, AZ
Jan 24, 2007
I hope someone can come in and add a better description of this. Beta on rigging the rappel, how to manage the ropes, a pitch-by-pitch, and some info on how to set up the tyrolean would be very helpful for this fantastic route.
|By Darshan Ahluwalia|
From: Petaluma, CA
Feb 3, 2007
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b C1
The first pitch goes free at 10d. The second at 12a, I think.
Feb 3, 2007
The rap requires 2 60M ropes. (A third rope is to be used for the climb itself.) There are a few healthy pines nearly directly across from the spire that can be slung. The guidebook indicates an anchor right in line with the rap where passing the knot is to be accomplished; we didn't find it. Perhaps we were a little too far right. We used some 1"-2" gear to rig an anchor nonetheless.
Once at the notch, the follower should tag line the ropes used for the rap, checking occasionally for snaggage. The route twists up the spire approximately 180 degrees, so be careful to check the line by pulling the slack up (& then releasing it- too taut and you won't be able to make the turn around the spire.)
Once the top is gained, pull the line tight and secure it on the myriad (of newly replaced) anchors on top. This will only use one of the ropes; bag the extra. The first to traverse gets a belay and then once on the rim secures his end much like for the rappel. On the spire, the second ties the traverse line to the belay line and feeds it thru the anchors. Pick one to traverse (and make a mental note of which has the knot so it pulls freely through when both are safely back on terra firma.) A variation to that is to use the third rope as a belay line for the last guy off the spire.
I'm sure there are several other ways to pull this off, I'm just sharing how we did it.
Amazing exposure at an amazing setting. Good Luck!
|By Will S|
From: Joshua Tree
Mar 31, 2007
P1: .10d pin scars and fingers right off the notch (easy for the rating, some fixed gear, short crux) to easier climbing to more fixed gear and a stance below an awkward slightly bulging, grainy, and flaring .10a fist/OW for a few moves to a belay on a huge ledge.
P2: Move left off the ledge using a couple of small pieces to a large flat edge than can be hooked or bust a psuedo-free 5.8ish move to get the next placement. A few placements interspersed with bolts/rivets (both with and without hangers..take some small wires or rivet hangers) leads to a full-on bolt ladder than ends as the angle kicks back about 15' below the top. Step out of the aiders and fight the rope drag on the dead easy slab that will feel harder with the drag.
Or, free it at 5.12b, stopping to belay halfway up this pitch after it stops traversing left to cut down the rope drag.
Terrific position and novelty make this a must do. The climbing itself is largely fogettable.
|By George Bell|
From: Boulder, CO
Aug 27, 2007
TrevorB: You don't need two 60m ropes for the starting rappel, I've done it with two 50m's. Perhaps you missed the intermediate anchor because you had a 60m rope? Another trick is to lead the first pitch using the end of the rap line, this way you only need two ropes. I've not done this but surely it can be done with two 60m ropes? The first pitch is not very long.
Once exciting moment comes when starting the tyrolean traverse. Here you suddenly realize that the first half is all downhill, and amazingly steeply downhill! Some may enjoy "letting go", or hand braking on the rope, but we used an extra rope end anchored to the summit to rappel, for a nice, slow, controlled start.
The best spot for photographs from the rim of someone on the tyrolean traverse is rather dangerous (as in right on or even slightly over the edge of a slab). I recommend anchoring yourself with a rope so you don't have to worry about falling off.
From: Sacramento, CA
Aug 23, 2008
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b C1
We had an older Supertopo for the route that indicated a hook move on the first pitch and listed the route as 5.7 C2. I'm not sure if this has changed in more recent editions. There is definitely nothing harder than C1 on the entire route and certainly nothing requiring hooking. It is all very straightforward. My partner and I found the crux to be the long approach hike from the Valley floor. Here is my recommended minimalist gear list:
- 3 ropes (we used 2 dynamic and 1 7mil tag line)
- a few (5-6) wired nuts (offsets are nice but not necessary, wired nuts can double as rivet hangers)
- 6 cams, including one 3 or 3.5" and one 4" for the first pitch wide section (can leapfrog)
- a dozen or so draws for the bolt ladder, maybe a few free 'biners as well
- aiders (1 pair/person)
|By Richard Shore|
Oct 15, 2010
Insane exposure, awesome traverse. Can easily be done with 2 ropes (60m) and some creativity. There are two bomber ASCA bolts about 30 feet from the juniper tree,use these.
Tons of fixed gear on this route. On P2, I used only a red alien between fixed gear, about 4 times. SMall wire for rivets was nice also. P1, lots of fixed gear, used a few 3-4" cams for the wide section. Leader should pass the rope around the horn at the top of the OW, so the follower doesnt have to jug inside the OW, shredding hands.
|By Bryan Carroll|
From: Los Osos, CA
Nov 24, 2011
Did this July 2011. There were many jugs of water in the notch, and the rappel took 2 60m ropes, as stated above.
P1 - Pin scars and fixed gear until a nice bolt, then a 5.7 free move that felt like .9 in approach shoes and with full aid rack. Free move leads to another bomber bolt. If you have time, set up a belay on the ledge before the OW crack to reduce rope drag and increase ease of communication.
OW - Shitty and gritty. We only had a couple 3" cams and a "4, which I had to leapfrog for 30 feet. I would suggest bringing 2 or 3 4" cams for peace of mind. step out of aiders and pull over an easy ledge to a belay station. From this station, you can watch people float lazily down the Merced River.
P2 - Left traverse then up on Fixed gear and small cams. Watch rope drag, as it will make the top easy slab moves feel labor intensive. Make sure to brush up on Aid skills and hooking before this climb or you will be sweating bullets.
Like stated, the climbing was certainly forgettable but the feeling on the summit of the pinnacle is not. Beautiful view.
| || Belay Ledge before the OW section. |
Apr 22, 2014
Completed Lost Arrow Spire Tip over the weekend. Hiked in sat and bivied up top. Better to bivy down near the falls/river in the trees as it would have been warmer, closer access to water, and less wind.
Sun am we dropped into the notch. Used the obvious larger tree a bit back from the edge (about 2 ft diameter). Rigged the tree by wrapping twice and securing it with a figure eight on a bight with two opposite and opposed biners. Used a 200 ft static line and a 60m lead rope. Had to pass the knot on the way down.
PITCH ONE starts off with a spicy flared placement to gain your first bolt. Definitely gets your mind straightened out quick. Offwidth section was super easy. I used 2 BD C4 #3's, 1 BD C4 #4, and 1 BD Camalot #3.5. Definitely wanted the two 4's. The top of the offwidth gets big. A small green big bro would work too. Green big bro would be too big.
PITCH TWO was a little trickier. I brought a BD cliffhanger for the hook move and did not use it. Did not feel comfortable placing it so I was able to sling a knob and aid on the sling to gain the next rivet hanger placement. Used two river hangers until the optional belay. There was one bashie in place and it held my weight of 215 lbs plus gear without issue. All the pins and bolts I used held my weight as well.
Since we only had two 60m ropes (static and dynamic) we used the optional belay. It was not an enjoyable stance and was a pain for our group of three. The third was following each pitch on a separate 30m dynamic line I would fix to each belay.
PITCH THREE was a super easy bolt ladder with two rivet hanger placements. If you combine the last two pitches as one make sure to bring 4 rivet hangers or nuts. My gf lead the bolt ladder. She is 5'11'' and had some trouble reaching some placements. If you are not tall and so not top step well then an extend draw (duck taped stiff cheater draw) would be recommended.
18 draws including three double length 120cm slings.
Full set of BD C3's (did not use these)
Full set of BD X4's (used the purple larger one, aka red alien size)
Full set of BD C4's up to #4
Full set of metolius offset master cams (did not use the smallest two sizes)
Extra BD C4 #3, #4 and BD Camalot 3.5.
6 rivet hangers (only needed 4)
1 BD Cliffhanger hook (unused)
I was very close to running out of slings on both pitches. If I had to do it again I'd go with a few more regular slings or quickdraws.
When rigging the tyrolean traverse make sure not to tighten it too much. We pulled it fairly taught (not super tight) and it made the traverse difficult towards the other side. My climbing mentor said to rig it to look like a check mark. If we would have followed those instructions the ascending up the other side would have been easier.
For the last person on the spire: Make sure you have a game plan as to how to lower out. I thought it would be a good idea to lower myself out with my rappel device. This caused a major issue as I then had to remove the device when I hit the bottom of the traverse. I wasted tons of energy and about 10 mins dealing with it while hanging. Definitely a noob move that could have been avoided.
All in all a successful and fun weekend. The exposure on the second pitch is wonderful and worth the effort.
|By trying hard|
From: Sierra East Side
May 22, 2014
purple blue offset works very nicely to get around the corner of the second pitch.