|The Sentinel - West Face
This climb is a punishing example of 'real' 5.11. Begins with a reach move and a mantle to a bolt, followed by a slab with a bit of grain on it. A nice crack then leads up and right. The climbing past the next two bolts provides a fairly difficult thin crux and a committing and somewhat scary traverse into The Chameleon. Run it out a bit more, then finally place some funky but decent cams in a flaring seam and continue up The Chameleon. Better gear soon becomes more abundant. The flared, grainy crack that guards the end of The Chameleon provides another burly and somewhat heady crux, especially towards the end, but the fall is pretty clean and there is good protection. Finish up via the crux of Illusion Dweller.
To the right of Illusion Dweller, locate the first bolt about 15-20 feet up, followed by a crack that diagonals its way up to two more bolts. Rappel with a 60m rope only after the gear has been cleaned. A 70m is much more convenient and allows an easy toprope setup via Illusion Dweller.
Three bolts (formerly scary old 1/4"; now they look brand new!) and gear to 3 inches. A double set of cams is a good idea, perhaps even with triples in the .4-.75 camalot range. Finishes at the Illusion Dweller anchor. First bolt is 15-20 feet off the deck and the rock quality at the start probably warrants a stick clip or a good dash of boldness.
|By Nelson Day|
From: Joshua Tree, CA
Mar 11, 2013
I TR'd this and I didn't see any pro past the third bolt for at least 25 feet of sustained tips/sloper campus-traversing/desperate smearing on the upper portion of Chameleon (once you traverse in - called .10+ flaring crack by the OP). Definitely rated R. As such I would never lead this... Easily top roped from Illusion Dweller anchor. I didn't see the "good protection" past the third bolt and am not sure what the OP is referring to, unless they are referring to the bolt. No pro that I could see for at least 25-30 feet of sustained burliness... There is good pro after that 25-30 feet, if you can make it.
Jan 26, 2014
I put a comment in the Chameleon post too. As others have noted the gear is fairly abundant once you join Chameleon. There is a bit of a runout before you get there, but I fell off it and it's pretty clean. The final crack protects far better than I originally thought and I changed my description to reflect that. The thing that would help is to take a good rack selection and lower down the climb with it. You'll find enough gear placements to make it reasonably safe to lead, but still exciting. Also, .10+ is a major sandbag for that last section. I don't know where I got that from originally.