The Checkerboard Wall Rock Climbing
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|Shared By:||Charles Vernon on Dec 31, 2000|
|Admins:||Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac, Tyler KC|
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The Checkerboard wall is a small (for The Black!), oval-shaped cliff just upstream from the North Chasm View Wall and the Cruise Gully. It is about 500 feet high, and thin, somewhat faint intersecting bands of pegmatite are the reason for the name. The main wall faces south, is very smooth, and has a noticeable lack of crack systems; the Checkerboard Wall route climbs the only feature passing for such, angling up and right across the face. The narrow west face is less-attractive looking but has more cracks, including the continuous Maiden Voyage system, which is probably the most climbed route in the Black.
Approach by descending the Cruise Gully. Halfway between the campground and ranger station on the rim, find a path into the woods which is now marked with a sign indicating the Cruise Gully. Follow the steep gully down past 2 sets of rappels (currently sporting a fixed line at the first) to where it opens out into bushy talus. Checkerboard Wall lies just east, situated midway between the canyon rim and bottom.
From the summit block, one can rappel 80' from slings to the west, or down-climb the last pitch of Maiden Voyage in the same area. A forested ledge leads north across the top of steep gully to some forested gullies which offer access to the rim -the west-most gully is best, and a ramp and ridge to the west of it (4th Class) are another alternative. In recent years, it has become popular to finish by climbing "King Me" up the wall above the gully. It is also possible to rap the gully immediately to the left of Checkerboard Wall with a single 60-meter rope and some downclimbing, in order to link up with a route on North Chasm View. Routes like A Midsummer Night's Dream or Leisure-Summer make for good warm-weather link-ups to maximize shade.
Classic Climbing Routes at The Checkerboard Wall
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