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Third Flatiron
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West Face [3rd Flatrion] 
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Unsorted Routes:

West Face [3rd Flatrion] 

YDS: 5.10b French: 6a+ Ewbanks: 19 UIAA: VII- British: E2 5b PG13

   
Type:  Trad, 1 pitch, 150'
Consensus:  YDS: 5.10b French: 6a+ Ewbanks: 19 UIAA: VII- British: E2 5b [details]
FA: R. Briggs, J. Bragg 1973
Page Views: 1,138
Submitted By: Tony B on Aug 3, 2002
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BETA PHOTO
  • Some crags in this area are closed 1 February to 31 July: MORE INFO >>>
  • Climbing areas reopened after flood MORE INFO >>>

  • Description 

    To approach this climb, ascend as necessary to the West Face (backside) of the Third Flatiron. The route starts on the north side, below an obvious, wide crack, ascending up to and through said wide crack (one 5.9 move near a #3.5 or #4 Camalot), then up and right under a roof with scant protection (5.9) which ends in a big move to a hidden side-pull.

    The crux comes some 100' off of the deck. Place a a few poor stoppers at the lip of a small roof, then pull up into the dihedral above on juggy holds to place a good 0.5" or 0.75" cam. The crux is pulling over the lip and into the left-leaning, finger crack. A second cam (0.75-1") can be placed mid crux if desired. Make a nice technical move to establish yourself into good finger locks and complete the crack to a ledge of sorts. make way to the South (right) and belay off of a drilled pin and a slung boulder/horn.

    Finish on one of several rounout, but easy finishes on the right, possibly Friday's Folly Direct.


    Protection 

    A standard rack one set of stoppers, small tricams and one set of cams to a #4 camalot. Include a good number of 2' slings, as the route and protection wander.

    Protection at the crux is solid .5"-1" cams, but there is some rising traverse leading to this point which is 5.8 or 5.9 and runout.

    The belay is a cord around a big boulder and an old pin to the side (so-so) to put the belay point above you, a pink tricam or #8-9 stopper can be placed in some so-so rock. It is your call.



    Photos of West Face [3rd Flatrion] Slideshow Add Photo
    This photo exaggerates the exposure. Luke is placing a nut to (primarily) protect me and (secondarily) to protect him on the very easy hike right to the crack through the roof. Following the traverse was pretty scary. The two previous times I've done this route I'd led it. Following the traverse is worse for sure.
    This photo exaggerates the exposure. Luke is placi...
    West side of the Third Flatiron.
    BETA PHOTO: West side of the Third Flatiron.
    Getting good gear in at the start of the traverse.
    Getting good gear in at the start of the traverse.
    Peter Spindoe fighting the crux roof on the second pitch of the West Face of the 3rd Flatiron. Photo by Tony Bubb.
    Peter Spindoe fighting the crux roof on the second...
    Above the 2nd wide move. You'll want a #3, or better a 3.5 Camalot, for the first wide move. There's a chockstone that protects this move, or you can use a #4 Camalot (or both, of course).
    Above the 2nd wide move. You'll want a #3, o...
    Good handholds and a foothold let you place some fair gear here. That's the last gear until you get to the left edge of the green streak, at which point there are good small nut placements to protect the leader and second.
    Good handholds and a foothold let you place some f...
    Moving up a left-facing corner to the roof. There's a hangerless bolt here. Strange place for a bolt, even if it was placed for aid, since there's a crack running the whole way to the roof.
    Moving up a left-facing corner to the roof. There'...
    Starting the moves through the roof. Jugs lead to a finger crack. An inobvious move makes it pretty easy. You have to do some work to get the gear. The first gear in the roof is mediocre, but enough to protect you as you pull up on the jugs to get the good gear. Make sure to protect the second after you gain the ledge, since you have to hike right and up a gully to the next gear.
    Starting the moves through the roof. Jugs lead to ...
    Comments on West Face [3rd Flatrion] Add Comment
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    By Ivan Rezucha
    From: Fort Collins, CO
    Oct 27, 2002
    rating: 5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- E2 5b

    This is an exciting and fun climb. I led this clean yesterday 10/26/02 after hanging on the ceiling a couple of times last week. The ceiling was much easier than last week using a trick move discovered by my partner Luke. I'd say it was hard 5.9. Last week it was definitely hard 5.10 and left the backs of my fingertips shredded due to sliding down the parallel crack.

    I disagree with the S rating. There is a very good small horizontal cam (green Alien) as you start the hard moves which last only about 8 feet. There are good feet under the bulge and an undercling which makes the moves pretty reasonable, if you are tall enough to use them. There is a good cam and brass nut immediately after the hard moves to protect the leader and the second. Be careful these don't lift up as you do the roof. There is a good wire above the first tier of the roof. The wires on the underside of the roof are pretty bad. You have to climb up on buckets to get the wire with your good gear about 10 feet to the left, but it's easy to reverse the moves. It may be possible to get a #4/purple Camalot in a rotten pocket under the roof (a #4 Friend was too small and the rock too rotten), but it's not worth it unless roofs really psyche you out. You may want two big cams at the wide crack start. I used a #3 Camalot and a #4 Friend. You second can leave them on the ledge at the start.

    The belay is about 15 feet up and right from the crux. Lasso a tower with the rope. There is an ancient ring bolt you can use to keep the rope from riding up. You can also get cams on both sides of a loose block. Downclimb (on the lead) the south side (5.5?) to the Friday's Folly rappel.

    My gear list: Several of the bigger brass nuts, #4, #7 DMM Wallnuts, double Aliens green, yellow, red, single cams about that to gold/#2 Camalot, 6+ long runners with biners, 7+ long draws.

    By Tony B
    From: Around Boulder, CO
    Jan 15, 2003

    From the post:"Protection at the crux is solid .5"-1" cams, but there is some rising traverse leading to this point which is 5.8 or 5.9 and runout. "

    From Ivan's Comment:"I disagree with the S rating. ..." - (snip - you can read above)

    Ivan, you made it a point to disagree with the S rating, and you state that the crux was well protected. But do you disagree that the rising traverse was not well protected? I'm trying to understand your point of view. Mine was that if you refuse to put distance between your placements that you can not lead this route. There are places, intrinsic to this climb, that will not be well protected in my opinion. I think that there is 'S'evere fall potential.

    Do we really disagree or are you saying that if it's not 'S' at the crux, that it's not 'S' at all? (In which case, Paris Girl is no longer S).

    By Ivan Rezucha
    From: Fort Collins, CO
    Oct 26, 2005
    rating: 5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- E2 5b

    Does anyone, other than Tony, do this route? I've now done it 3 times, leading it twice (once very badly) and now following it (scary on the traverse). I think it's really cool. Like an easier version of the West Overhang on the Maiden. Good 8 and 9 climbing leads up to the roof. The traverse right is exciting, but not death. You have to work a bit at the roof to get gear, but there's a no hands ledge to rest on. There's a trick move that makes the crux overhang pretty easy, maybe 10a. Maybe easier! Hard to say. But I'm only going to downrate it a bit, since the first time I did it it sure felt like 10c.