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Wendell Spire
Routes Sorted
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Bag of Tricks aka Flake 
Beak, The 
Black Streak, The 
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Cobble Wobble 
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Noodlers' Nightmare 
Nose Job 
Phalloid Void 
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Prarie Dog 
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Slot, The 
Song of the Wood 
Sub, The 
Sun Cave Direct 
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Textured Landscape 
Unsorted Routes:

The Sub 

YDS: 5.12c French: 7b+ Ewbanks: 27 UIAA: IX- British: E6 6b

Type:  Sport, 1 pitch
Consensus:  YDS: 5.12c French: 7b+ Ewbanks: 27 UIAA: IX- British: E6 6b [details]
FA: Tod Anderson, Tom Hanson, 1996
Page Views: 2,337
Submitted By: Richard M. Wright on Oct 19, 2001
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You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (8)
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Long reach but you have good feet. I feel that thi...
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Tom Hanson placed The Sub at the left end of the Wendell Spire area, in 1997. Subsequent to publishing his guide, close to a dozen new routes were established to the left, so the limit to this site is a little vague. From the top of the boulder pile at the left side of the area, you can see a neat little formation that looks like the Beatles Yellow Submarine.

Climbing on The Sub begins on the sub's left tail fin, a crack. Swim up through some interesting and intricate climbing with a couple of long reaches. Traverse left on great moves to catch a rest just before stepping back right for the crux. The goal of the crux is a large cobble on the right which is followed by several, still difficult, moves for a net worth of 5.12c in the finish. Tod Anderson snatched the FFA of this powerful line. Even with his gear in place, I found myself stretching for the crux cobble with nothing but six inches of air to latch on to. This may be a reach problem, or maybe I just haven't sucked the lock-off deep enough. However, after returning from six weeks of climbing in Spain, I jumped on The Sub again thinking it finally would fall. I still couldn't reach the cobble statically. More of a hard turn or a short dyno might work, but in TA's ascent it went with a smooth static reach.

Anyway you cut it, The Sub is one of the best routes in the sector and well worth solving.


Eight draws and a rope.

Photos of The Sub Slideshow Add Photo
Pat Burwick launching The Sub.
Pat Burwick launching The Sub.
Pat into the traverse.
Pat into the traverse.
Hitting the jug. Used the plethora of bolts to clip up this section to try the moves out. I think the crux really comes after this. Getting up to the anchors and feeling comfortable about your stance is hard for me.
Hitting the jug. Used the plethora of bolts to cli...
Pat getting ready to rock.
Pat getting ready to rock.
Right hand on a good smaller jug hold. About to use the two finger pocket to come out to the huge pocket.
Right hand on a good smaller jug hold. About to us...
Pat cruxing away.
Pat cruxing away.
Interesting movement. I need to get the clips dialed. You have 4 bolts right in a row of each other, not spaced very far apart, yet I do not believe all are necessary. They are however useful if you need to hangdog through the section.
Interesting movement. I need to get the clips dial...
Getting in to the inital crack layback thingy.
Getting in to the inital crack layback thingy.
Shouldery cross over move to get here. Then using the grimper holds to get a ring lock in a crack just right of the anchors. Getting to a good stance to clip the anchors (if the draws aren't up yet) seems to be challenging to me.
Shouldery cross over move to get here. Then using ...
Comments on The Sub Add Comment
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By Anonymous Coward
Dec 11, 2001

Yep, one of the better routes at Castlewood but more like 12c.

By Luke Childers
Mar 26, 2011

Loads of fun!!! Worth the time, and it's steeper than it looks!!

By Richard M. Wright
From: Lakewood, CO
Mar 11, 2013

Grade: it is always tricky to regrade a route retrospectively. However, getting it right is a useful exercise. For The Sub, the following considerations would line up with the 12c rating (1) consensus seems to lean more to c than d; (2) is The Sub as hard as Anarchitect or Genesis? (hard sell); is it one letter grade easier than Chaos or The Rainbow Wall? (another hard sell); is it a letter grade harder than Movement of Fear or Sucking My Will to Live? (unlikely). The Sub is never harder than 11b right up to the crux cobble pulls and slips back to 11+ below the anchor, and the crux is fairly short. In defense of the FFA team, there was probably nothing of similar difficulty at CC by way of comparison, and it remains one of the better CC testpieces.