|7,838 page views|
Hollywood working his way up this great line.
Upper Refuse is an awesome, moderate route with great climbing, great protection, and great exposure for the grade--a true Cathedral classic. One of very few, real moderates on the cliff, this is a perfect first trad climb.
It can be accessed by hiking around from the top along the big ledge. If you are a beginner, you might want to rope up for the last part of the scramble due to the danger of a BIG fall if you slip. Most people climb Upper Refuse after coming up Fun House (5.7) or another moderate route, though as the name implies there is a Lower Refuse which is not nearly as popular.
Pitch 1: (5.3) Start up the ramp on really easy climbing, and keep an eye out for a few good slots for cam placements. Belay at a good stance at a few pins (back em up with gear) at the top of the ramp section.
Pitch 2: (5.5) Choose your own adventure. Go right up a groveling "V" chimney (not hard but not too fun, in my opinion), or from the belay go up and left following cracks to a layback and a few slabby moves (much more fun). These two choices meet up in a gully formation which you follow to another choice. Breaking right up a crack directly to a pine tree ledge is preferred by most; however, you can avoid a little difficulty by continuing up the gully, then stepping right on to the ledge. Belay from a pine tree on a very comfortable ledge.
Pitch 3: (5.5) Two choices again: follow cracks and face climbing straight up above the ledge (this is the usual finish and the one I like better), or if exposure isn't your thing, stick to the corner on the left following a wide, layback crack. Both of these lead to the same ledge at the top where you can go up a short slab to belay from trees. The pins were removed from the top of the climb last season and I think it stayed that way.
The climb can be done in one long rope stretch with a 60m rope. Rope drag can be rough so plan for that in advance. This is one of the most crowded climbs on the cliff, so on a busy day, plan on making a day of it and meeting lots of new friends.
Upper Refuse is found on the far right end of the big ledge splitting the left side of the cliff just right of the nice open book of The Book of Solemnity (5.10a). Look for the obvious weakness in the cliff: an easy looking ramp to the summit with a few obstacles. Take care on the approach as the last part of the scramble is a little technical and a fall would be fatal. When in doubt, rope up.
The tree ledge of Upper Refuse.
Crista starting the last pitch of Upper Refuse.
Alex on the exposed upper pitch of Upper Refuse...
Wait for Uncle G to get to the top of this amazing...
My buddy AJ climbing UR
PW and I on our first trip to Cathedral Ledge in N...
2 climbers (left) on what seems to be the ledge wh...
Andy Ross on the finish to Refuse. about 1977
|By Ladd Raine|
From: Plymouth, NH
Jun 16, 2007
It is a little bit of a rope-strecher but you can run all three pitches together with very little rope drag, Belay up your second with maybe 4 feet of rope left at the top of the crack, then have them short rope you the rest of the way up to the path.
|By lee hansche|
From: goffstown, nh
Jun 17, 2007
it is fun to run this in to one pitch (or better yet, black lung 5.8 to upper ref).... but care must be taken to avoid rope drag....
i would only recomend it to folks who are very comfortable on the route so you can run out sections that many would protect....
|By Ladd Raine|
From: Plymouth, NH
Jun 18, 2007
You can avoid rope drag if you extend the heck out of the lowest placements, take the right variation to the tree ledge and finish up with the left wide layback crack variation at the top, true I probably didn't protect as frequently as a would have if I wasn't comfortable at the grade.
Jul 18, 2007
ditto on the other 3 comments.. there's really no need to do this in 3 pitches.
I prefer to link 1 & 2 and belay at a nice shady tree (instead of belaying in the hot sun at the double pins)
black lung to upper refuse is a good linkup, if you're fairly solid at 5.8
|By David Aguasca!|
From: New York
Apr 18, 2009
pshh. The chimney grovel is tons of fun.
|By Victor Grau Serrat|
From: Cambridge, MA
May 31, 2010
The pins at the top of Pitch 3 are still there. They were there when I climbed this route last year, and they are still in the same spot when I climbed the route yesterday. If anything, they may not be obvious to see: they are on a horizontal crack on a flat stretch of the rock as you finish the climb. They are on the ground, and if you don't see them, you literally step over them.
From: Newmarket, NH
Jun 16, 2010
If you want to do it in one pitch and comfy at the grade, clip the pin (at anchor) and clip the tree, no more gear necessary . Easily done in one pitch.
|By Meghan Spiro|
Aug 22, 2012
I linked the first two pitches together and couldn't prevent the rope drag. It's better to link the second and third pitch (money pitch) instead. There are variations on the second and third pitches - stay straight up the crack all the way (rather than left) - higher quality climbing and great exposure.
|By Ian Dibbs|
Aug 28, 2012
Linking 1st and second pitch (to the tree belay) works however, expect annoying rope drag. I suspect doing the route in one long pitch would have extreme rope drag. The final pitch from tree up is only 50 feet. Enjoyable moderate route much easier than Fun House below it. After finishing Fun House you have to walk right 75 feet(climbers right) on the small trail and then over some sloped exposed rock to get to the base of Upper Refuse which should require a rope, since a slip or fall would be fatal.