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West Ridge - part D - Xanadu to Pony Express
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YDS: 5.9 French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI British: HVS 5a R

Type:  Trad, 1 pitch, 120'
FA: Dallas Kloke, Chris Weidner ??
New Route: Yes
Page Views: 209
Submitted By: Chris Weidner on Jul 15, 2004
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Climbing reopened after flood MORE INFO >>>


"Whatever" is located on the mega-classic 'Rotten Wall' section of the upper West Ridge, right of the route "Inverted Vee" in Rossiter's guidebook. The climb starts near two trees at the base of a prominent, narrow arete that extends perhaps 40 feet up the wall. The easiest start climbs just right of the attractive arete over very large, loose-looking blocks for about 12 feet. A direct start up the edge of the arete is enjoyable, yet contrived and unprotectable. Once above the blocks, hike 25 feet up the bushy gully to a roof. Climb out the left side of the roof finishing with a slot (5.9). Go right under a second roof on loose blocks and continue up a short squeeze section. Climb right around an arete to a final 20-foot hand crack leading to a large ledge and bomber rappel tree. This pitch can, and maybe should, be split into two pitches to prevent horrendous ropedrag. The belay tree had a sling on it when we arrived leading us to believe that this pitch had already been climbed. While that is a plausible assumption, this tree may have been used as a means of escaping from the top of the cliff reached by other means. It is also possible that a different new route was climbed adjacent to "Whatever" since this tree would be a logical belay for anything topping out nearby. Who knows? . . . whatever . . .


Bring a double set of cams from #1 TCU through #3 Camalot, and a set of nuts.

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By Tony B
From: Around Boulder, CO
Aug 3, 2004

Brooks would have missed it first, then Dougald. I however, might not have missed it. I suspect the slings were mine. The rock is pretty indistinct up there, so it's hard to say most of the time by simple descriptions.

By Steve Levin
From: Boulder, CO
Dec 17, 2006

There are two routes in this area from the 1980s, unreported in the current guide, and never well-described to begin with:

Office Hours 5.9
First ascent in 1982 by Carl Harrison and Sandy East.

SNFS 5.9
First ascent in 1982 by Carl Harrison and Sandy East.