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Clip the first bolt out of the blocky overhanging alcove and begin climbing out the left-diagonalling roof with generally positive grips and tiny delicate smeary feet. Protect with a couple cams until you reach the first and only rest on the route at about 20 feet up under the little overlap. Not that you even need the rest at this point. Continue climbing left as the difficulty increases with the underclinging becoming more powerful and the smeary feet demanding precision. At the point where the route ceases to be an undercling traverse and becomes more of a vertical left facing flake, bolts mysteriously appear. This is where the route originally ended when Steve Hong and Robert Rotert first climbed it. It is probably 11+ to this point, but the anchors are long gone. At this point the route still hasn't offered any real rests and the climbing continues to be pumpy and sequential as the feet worsen. A little above here, where the headwall kicks back to a gentle overhang, the crux lurks. Memorable, bouldery moves guard the chains. The crux proper is probably only v5, but this is really the only route I can think of in LCC that warrants a significant grade increase due the lack of rests and sustained nature of the climbing.
This route is located on the side of the thumb, up and right from the starts of the standard thumb routes. (S-crack, etc.) You can scramble up the 5th class gully to the right of the standard thumb starts for about 150 vertical feet or so. After the gully scramble, on the wall to your left you'll see a short attractive splitter to a right-leaning flare (this route is Spring and Fall) and up and right about 100 feet is the alcove with the left leaning roof coming out the top-this is Monkey lip. A hard to spot bolt can be used to protect the starting moves. Lower from the anchor at the top. Note: In the Ruckman's guidebook the bolt count is wrong, the difficulty of the first half is erroneously marked as 12c, and the topo sketch is wrong (its drawn in as right facing feature and its most certainly left facing).
You have your options for cam size to protect much of this crack. If you chose to skip the bolts bring a standard rack of cams- no nuts needed, and double-up to hand size with a key #4 BD instead of the starting bolt. Otherwise just use a single set of cams to hand size and draws. Anchors at top just over the lip(the monkey lip?).
By jonathan knight
Jun 28, 2009
Not clipping the bolts with the exception of the one down low is the new wave now. No mullets and tights just better gear and stronger climbers.