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On the back side of Sphinx rock, a big flake leans against the summit block. This flake has an OW crack running up each of it's two sides. The one on the right is Ptooeey Factor (5.10a with an inverted climb your own leg move at it's start), and the one on the left is "The Slug AKA Summit Route 1960". Hubble's book lists this as 5.8, although his topo has it as 5.9. I'd call it solid 5.9 OW!
Work the steep 10-12 inch crack (left-side in) for about 30 feet. Not many features to help, but, the occasional small imperfection inside the crack, and OW technique allow progression. I slid the #6 with me a couple times, and placed a "bomber" #2 big bro half way up. The crack is steep, and sustained for the grade. Just before the OW ends, a #1 camalot can be placed in a horizontal seem to protect the last move out of the wide crack.
At the top of the flake, surmount a short 5.7 R face section protected by an ancient bolt (didn't look too bad as far as ancient bolts go). Unfortunately, the bolt comes after the hardest move on the slab (a mantel onto a crappy flake), then the rest is a cruise to the top with a little loose rock.
This route, and the Ptooeey Factor appear to be the only climbs that reach the true summit (summit block) of Sphinx Rock. To escape from the summit, we found no scramble-off opportunity as shown on the topo. Very steep on all sides. One rope rap into the gully (climbers left) from two ancient bolts, slings, and rap rings. May want to bring a new sling, and/or replace the rap bolts.
I used a #6 friend, a #2 (green) big bro, and a #1 camalot. I tried bringing a #4.5 camalot to protect the beginning, but it was (way) too small. Also bring a quickdraw for the face section above the crack.
|By Anonymous Coward|
Apr 20, 2005
After the offwidth, above ledge, please note. The flake/ledge below old bolt has broken. The climbing is now 5.10- with no gear. This section could use a new bolt to protect the initial moves.