Rose Quartz Tower--"Sieging the Beaver"
||Trad, Aid, 5 pitches, 450', Grade III
|Consensus: || YDS: 5.9+ French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: E1 5a C3- [details]|
|FA: ||Trevor Bowman, Bryan Schmitz, Spencer Winchester (p1 and p2) Aug. 26-28, 2009|
|New Route: ||Yes|
|Page Views: ||494|
|Submitted By: ||Trevor Bowman on Sep 18, 2009|
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Trevor leading and Bryan belaying the start of P3.
This is the most attractive of the four major tower/buttresses that line the left side of the canyon below the falls. It is the third one down from the falls and presents a sheer golden wall when viewed from across the creek to the west of it. The summit of the tower is separated by a 50' notch from the lower angled buttress behind. The summit is a very cool spot--it is flat and small, offers a stellar vantage, is studded with an array of beautiful deep purple quartz crystals.
S.T.B was the first route up the wall and the first known route to be completed in the canyon. It was a great adventure in a remarkable setting, but much of the rock is too sketchy to recommend it. The name commemorates our slow and somewhat junkshow means of getting this one done...
Start near the center of the face, in a major left-facing flake/corner system.
P1- Scale the major left-facing corner up handcracks in loose pink rock moving around some questionable blocks to a good flat ledge on the right and a 2 bolt anchor. This pitch would go free easily, but the rock quality encouraged some aiding. 5.8 C1 90'
P2- Step left of the belay back into the left-facing corner and free climb over a very large pointed flake. Clean aid up to the end of the crack and make an unprotected free traverse right 15' onto a large ledge, continue up another 10' to a small shelf with a belay bolt and good cracks for #2-#4 camalots. (you could link these two pitches) 5.8 C1 60'
P3-Move left 10' on the sloping ledge to a steep thin crack in good rock. A couple thin moves lead to better placements for a bit, until you enter the pink layer and the rock turns to crap. Sketchy placements lead up to the right side of the huge roof above. Traverse right on marginal cams and two drilled bathook holes to better thin cracks. Small cams, a #4 KB (only pin pounded on route), and another bathook move end at a tiny stance and hanging belay off a two bolt anchor. This pitch gets the C3 rating largely because of dubious rock quality and the potential to zipper placements and hit the sloping ledge. 5.6 C3- 90'
P4-Make three bathook moves up and left across a slabby shield into a finger crack of mostly good rock and easy aid. The pitch ends up a shallow slot with two opposing dihedrals to a ledge with a belay bolt and good gear. 5.7 C2 90'
P5-Climb the right-facing corner above and left of the belay to a small ledge. Cut right on a good pink quartz band around some large perched blocks to a good 25' finger crack in great rock (with a nasty pricker bush to pass unfortunately). The crack leads to an alcove beneath an OW roof, yam on the #5 cam past the roof and up moderate corners to a gear belay on the summit ridge just below and left of the summit proper. 5.9+ C1 140'
Scramble to the summit via ledges and some easy exposed bouldering. Cool summit with register bottle.
Rap off of a slung flake into the notch (40'). Scramble down a chimney to the south and make weave down huge ledges and short walls, making three more single-rope raps off of big trees to the ground about 300' right of the start of the route.
Up the center of the third tower/wall down from N. Beaver Creek Falls. Start in a large left-facing corner system with overlapping flakes and pink rock.
Double set of cams BD #.2-#4, #5 camalot, Double set of stoppers, offset cams, #3 KB and hammer, 3/8" bathooks (2), rap webbing
Schmitz self-portrait on belay duty.
Summit shadows cast on the wall behind the tower p...
Rose Quartz Tower as seen from across the creek to...
The good crack down low on P3.
Bathook traverse under the roof on P3.
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