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This route is about 6' left of Mists of Avalon.
Start the climb in one of two ways:
1. Scramble up 25' of junky rock a few feet left of a pedestal to gain cleaner rock starting at the big ledge.
2. Start on Mists of Avalon, clipping 2 bolts if desired. This is only 5.7, so it may be best not to create rope drag and just solo to that point and flick the rope over once on the ledge.
From the ledge, the fun begins. The rock is solid from there as well, including the two chockstones in the crux. Walk left over the ledge system to a split handcrack created where a few nice chockstones are trapped in a wide crack. The jams through the roof here were quite good.
Place a a large TCU or small Friend overhead, just below the roof. Get a jam in the crack at the back and crank up over the roof into a jam to the right of the chockstone, which is literally good enough to cut loose and dangle from, by one hand. Move up on this to a jug on the top of the first chockstone, pass another chockstone, and then climb up the widening crack (hands to fist) to the top of the main buttress, just below a second roof. Move up and right to reach the 2-bolt anchor on Mists of Avalon to lower off if you do not want to do the second pitch. You can also belay here for a second pitch, or just continue onward.
To continue onward choose the original finish (left) though a squeeze chimney facing left, placing a very large cam and working up and into the crack, then out on footholds and back right to another anchor up top... or just right of that through the 5.10 4" crack and face moves on The Anti-Sport, leading to those same anchors. Although this pitch is only perhaps 30 feet, it packs its own punch, and follows a line discontinuous enough from that of the first pitch to merit some very long slings or being separated....
This route might have gotten two stars if it was clean at the bottom, but it wasn't, so it gets one. Like Mists of Avalon, it is no destination, but maybe worthy if you are going to spend a day climbing other routes on Avalon.
A few large nuts and a single set of cams.
|By Jason Haas|
From: Broomfield, CO
Aug 18, 2010
rating: 5.9+ 5c 17 VI E1 5a
I think the first crux jamming past the flake off the ledge is no harder than 5.9 and that the roof above the anchors for the nearby routes is also no harder than 5.9, epecially by wide crack standards found at Vedauwoo, South Platte, etc. But this is Boulder Canyon, so I could see a 5.10a rating for the whole route, but nothing higher. I also would not recommend splitting this into two pitches as one of the guidebooks suggests. The only reason to stop at the lower bolted anchor for Sword in the Stone is if you don't want to do the roof (which is quite fun and pretty mellow in my opinion).
Also, if you're doing the whole route, bring a #6 Camalot.