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The Salathe Highway 

YDS: 5.6 French: 4c Ewbanks: 14 UIAA: V ZA: 12 British: S 4b R

Type:  Trad, 1 pitch, 75'
Original:  YDS: 5.6 French: 4c Ewbanks: 14 UIAA: V ZA: 12 British: S 4b R [details]
FA: Bill Coe, ground up, roped solo 9/26/09
New Route: Yes
Page Views: 1,467
Submitted By: adam winslow on Aug 23, 2010

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Distance shot of Ben Priestly and Scott Peterson o...


5.6d This was the original route to the top of the pinnacle and was believed to be 5.5d on the first ascent but was later upgraded after the second ascent. The ambiguity of the rating is to indicate that although it may be low on the Yosemite scale of rating climbs, on the testicular shrinkage scale it's off the chart or as the scale chart shows us: above your throat pressing on your eyeballs.

No bolts at all were used on this route although a single 1/2" diameter redirect bolt was later added near the belay bolts to facilitate belaying a second following on the 2nd pitch of Trench Warfare and to make the belay less of a clusterF#ig for a party of 3. An off route bolt can be seen on Bewitched as you gain the upper part of the route near Witches neck but is not clipped.

From the anchor, climb up the space made by the semi-detached sub-pinnacle trying not to push it off until you can squeeze through to the other side of the pinnacle. Then head straight up and slightly right on her neck following the path of least resistance to the top of her head. The original single rope rap off the slings in her hair bun (while holding your breath that the hair buns stays attached) was replaced later with a 2 bolt rap off the back into the notch.


The start of the route is at a notch with a large tree 270' off the ground towards the left side of the cliff. This location can be reached by climbing Trench Warfare or P1 of Lava Flow, then The Gingerbread Shortcut up to this notch where you will find a nice 2-bolt Fixe sport anchor and a redirect bolt. From the summit rappel another pair of Fixe anchors back to the notch and from there, 3 single rope rappels down the Trench Warfare anchors.


Slings, balls, small and medium nut, balls, small and medium cam, balls, #2 Camalot, balls, slings, balls.

Photos of The Salathe Highway Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Can you see her face?
Can you see her face?
Rock Climbing Photo: Bill Standing on top of The Witch after the FA of ...
Bill Standing on top of The Witch after the FA of ...
Rock Climbing Photo: Adam Winslow starting the business on the 2nd asce...
Adam Winslow starting the business on the 2nd asce...
Rock Climbing Photo: Distance shot of Ben Priestly and Scott Peterson o...
Distance shot of Ben Priestly and Scott Peterson o...

Comments on The Salathe Highway Add Comment
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By alpine glower
From: Soon to be Sweet Home, OR
Aug 23, 2010

Okay but so where the hell is this route? This might have possible been the route we climbed on the wall in the late 70's it was about 5.6/7 no harder. We however did'nt place bolts and were scarred shitless.
By Billcoe
Aug 24, 2012

Haha, ^^^funny stuff Tyler. You weren't even born then. LOL.

This route is most likely in the 5.5 -5.6 range. On the 3rd or 4th ascent, Ben Priestly noted that he cleaned out a shallow dirt filled crack that you can slot three bomber #2 Camalots in. It was recently pointed out that Tim Olsen listed this route as 5.7 X in the guidebook. That's very responsible and considerate as it would be the wrong place for an error by a beginner who might get sucked in by an otherwise easy sounding 5.5 rating. Furthermore, every other route out here has prolific protection bolts, this has none. Yet having climbed a few X rated routes, I can say with solid assurance that this isn't one. It just feels like it due to the exposure. This is a crazy fun lead, easy yet gripping and exhilarating climbing with solid knobs and good pro: and I'd like to encourage people to get on it. Take some long slings to tie off the many knobs, a few medium wired nuts, couple of smaller cams and the now obligatory #2 Camalot:-)

Have fun!

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