The Free Route
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The original Free Route to the summit offers thrilling climbing and generally good protection on solid stone.
P1, 80 feet, 5.12b. Begin on the belay rock, and ascend the left arete for several feet past two carrot bolts. The crux follows with a difficult, crimpy traverse to the right arete, passing two more carrots and an old aid bolt. Once on the right arete, things ease a bit. Continue the right-ward traverse past another carrot, then head up to a shallow finger crack which propigates from the belay ledge. Clip a couple of fixed pins in this crack, and perhaps place a TCU. Easier moves gain the belay ledge.
P2, 130 feet, 5.12b. Ascend the stellar arete to the summit ledge passing numerous fixed-hanger bolts and a few TCU placements.
"DESCENT": Rig a tyrolean back to the mainland with the rope you trailed up. Due to the corkscrew nature of this tower you will want to plan your hauling method in advance. One technique is to have the leader haul a thin tag line that can be used to haul the fixed tyrolean rope after each pitch. This is cetainly adviseable on P2. Once on the summit ledge, traverse around the summit block to "un-wind" the fixed rope from the tower.
At the end of Cape Hauy. The route climbs every face and arete of the Tote at one time or another.
Many carrot hangers. You'll probably drop a few! Nuts, TCU's up to big finger-size, and an optional #2 camalot for the belay ledge atop P1. Ascenders to bail or for the tyrolean.
Beginning P2 on the Free Route. The Candlestick i...
Completing the Tyrolean Traverse back to Cape Hauy...
Past the crux on P1.
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