If you're looking for a Park traverse but want something shorter with a bit more vertical climbing and a bit less bushwhacking than Walk in the Park, check out Spearhead to Long's.
From the Glacier Gorge trailhead take the established trail to Black Lake. From the lake follow the climbers' trail east above treeline. Head south across the meadows to the base of Spearhead.
Choose your own adventure up Spearhead. More popular options include:
N Ridge (5.6)
E Prow (5.9)
Syke's Sickle (5.9+)
The Barb (5.10-)
All Two Obvious (5.11d R)
Spear Me the Details (5.11d)
Stone Monkey (5.12a)
From the summit of Spearhead, continue along the ridge. The most direct line is to take the Central Rib (5.7) or a variation thereof. One could zigzag up the ramp systems if easier climbing is desired.
Now the real fun begins. Follow the obvious knife edge ridgeline along the W Ridge (5.7) of Pagoda.
From the summit of Pagoda, pick a line to Longs to suit your desired level of difficulty (class 3+).
From the Keyhole Route on Long's, cross-country down the talus slopes (e.g. the Trough) back into Glacier Gorge. Follow the trail out the way you came.
Depending on the season it may be difficult to find water on the route proper unless there is snow and/or runoff. Plan accordingly.
Answers to FAQ
- I started with the North Ridge of Spearhead and did not bring a rope. Most of the route is not sustained.
- I don't remember my car-to-car time. It took me ~9 hrs from the trailhead to the summit of Long's at a casual pace and having done only the last 500' previously.
No fixed gear or anchors.
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