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West Ridge - part C - Pony Express to Long John
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Rhombohedral 

YDS: 5.8+ French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- British: HVS 4c PG13

   
Type:  Trad, 3 pitches, 300'
Consensus:  YDS: 5.8+ French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- British: HVS 4c [details]
FA: Pat Ament and Russ Oberg, 1965
Page Views: 452
Submitted By: Dave Holliday on Sep 22, 2010
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BETA PHOTO: The first pitch.
Climbing reopened after flood MORE INFO >>>

Description 

If you like chimneys and choss then this is the route for you. There is plentiful loose rock on the first pitch after the wide section but with careful selection, one can find some relatively solid rock and even some good gear. The second and third pitches have only a little loose rock but not enough to bother the seasoned Eldo climber. Anyway, the pitches:

P1. Scramble up to a ledge and enter the chimney with a flake in it. I thought the crux was getting established in this chimney. Continue up to a large tree straight above. Our path of least choss took us a bit left at times. Make a belay on the large ledge. (Note that this puts you at the base of Muscle and Hate.) 5.8+, 120 feet.

P2. Move the belay about forty feet to the left. Be careful not to dislodge the small, hanging scree field as you walk over to the new belay spot. You'll see a low-angle slab; I made a belay on its left side but build an anchor wherever you can find gear. Now climb the slab towards a corner with a large tree at the top with rappel slings. Continue past the tree and go up and right to the base of a wide chimney. 5.4, 100 feet.

P3. The money pitch. Climb the chimney to the top and exit under a natural arch composed of teetering blocks. 5.8, 70 feet.

For those not well-versed in the art and science of wide-crack and chimney climbing (like me), you may want to take some big gear to feel more comfortable. I used a #5 and #6 Camalot on the first and third pitches.


Location 

This route starts just to the left of Practice Climb 101. It can be identified by a steep chimney that widens after thirty feet to a chossy looking gully. Although there are a variety of trees in the area with slings to facilitate the descent, we opted to scramble to the climber's left up to the Handcracker Direct walk-off and used that to get back to the trail. It's a very quick way to get to the ground from that area.


Protection 

Standard Eldo rack plus some wide gear.



Photos of Rhombohedral Slideshow Add Photo
The crux of the first pitch.  Facing outward seems to work really well.
The crux of the first pitch. Facing outward seems...
Starting the 3rd pitch....
Starting the 3rd pitch....
Placing gear on the easy 2nd pitch.
Placing gear on the easy 2nd pitch.
Topping out.
Topping out.
The awesome 3rd pitch.
The awesome 3rd pitch.
3rd pitch classic chimney.
3rd pitch classic chimney.
Comments on Rhombohedral Add Comment
Show which comments
By Tony B
From: Around Boulder, CO
Oct 30, 2010
rating: 5.8+ 5b 16 VI- HVS 4c PG13

The 3rd pitch is very unique for Eldo, high quality and rare in its type. The first two are detractors from that, which would otherwise be 3 or 4 stars. Still, that 3rd pitch should draw traffic, and can be reached from other routes. It should get done more.

By Jay Eggleston
From: Littleton
Dec 30, 2010
rating: 5.8+ 5b 16 VI- HVS 4c PG13

The 3rd pitch and the first 20' of the first pitch are great. The rest is not so good. A #5 and a #6 Camalot were good to have along.