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The Gillett guidebook describes this exit as a useful escape for climbers on J Crack
, or Endless Crack
, especially when the Cave exits are crowded. I first discovered it on a whim while trying to get off Pear Buttress
before darkness set in (we got a late start).
From the spacious belay at the top of Pear Buttress's
classic handcrack pitch, set your sights on that obvious chimney diagonally up and to the right. Cross a wide swath of low angle but runout terrain to vertical crack (groove?) that meets a small roof or flake (it's been a while) to the left of and at the same level with the start of the chimney. This is your first good piece of pro (a #1 Camalot, I think). Traverse straight right (10-15 feet) to the base of the chimney and head up it to the top. The runout slab is probably no harder than 5.6 friction and the chimney didn't feel harder than 5.6 (lots of good holds) as well, but the guidebook calls it 5.7.
Taking this exit from Pear Buttress
allows you to climb the best parts of that route in 3 pitches if you're short on time.
Simply start on top of the leaning flake and go all the way to the belay ledge at the base of the classic crack. Climb the crack, and belay at the usual belay ledge. Then, with a 60m rope, do the diagonal traverse, and exit out the chimney all the way to the top.