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Looking up the climb
The Prize ascends the far left side of the main face, about 20 feet left of Standard Route. Following a thin crack system most of the way, the climbing is a little less fun and varied than that on Standard Route. However, this climb is still worthwhile, especially given it's ideal position above scenic Pinkham Notch.
Begin climbing at the base of the buttress, right where the hiking trail hits the rock. Navigate easy terrain around a bush. Continue with more difficulty up the discontinuous crack system, but using mainly face holds. Either establish an awkward belay at half height or keep going. The crux is a slight bulge in the slab as the climber nears the top. Move up this steeper section with scant protection making easy but balancy moves. Alternatively, break right into Standard Route at around 80 feet. Gear and tree anchor at top.
Far left side of the main face. First climb you will see on the approach.
Takes excellent passive pro for most of it's length. The bulge near the top is unprotected and probably means a 20 foot runout on easy terrain. This crux section is easily avoided to the right at 5.3 or 5.4.
By Russ Keane
May 28, 2014
I found this line to be much easier than 5.5. I couldn't really find a trad line on the main face that was 5.6 or even 5.5. Kind of soft ratings if you ask me.
That being said, good rock, good pro, and reasonably fun, especially with that most commanding view behind you!