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Lunch Ledge to top in 1 or 2 pitches if doing the 5.4 slab finish?

Original Post
Don B · · Gardena (South Bay) · Joined Sep 2017 · Points: 20

I’m just wondering what most of you do from lunch ledge to the end of the 5.4 slab to belay at that big pine tree where the route converges with The Trough.

I’ve read comments that mention in one long push but I felt like Gaines’ Best Climbs book mentions 2 pitches. I might have misread these though. I led Fingertip Traverse last week for the first time. From Lunch Ledge I climbed up a little left of center and got about 30 feet from the beginning of the traversing flake and got concerned about massive rope drag going up the slab. I wanted to keep going but ended up down climbing to kind of a broken up ledge and built an anchor.

Do you suggest belaying from that broken ledge or should I have just kept climbing? Thanks

FrankPS · · Atascadero, CA · Joined Nov 2009 · Points: 275

You are able to climb from Lunch Ledge to the top, via the slab finish, without too much rope drag. Communication from the top is difficult.

Edit: I don't know where the big pine tree is, as I have not climbed the Trough (I don't remember a pine tree at the top of the slab finish)

M Irving · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Dec 2009 · Points: 0

Was on Fingertip Traverse last weekend...a 60m will reach the top of the climb from Lunch Ledge via either the 5.4 slab or 5.6 crack finish in one pitch but it may not reach the pine tree at the top of the Trough, which is farther up.  It's not necessary to go all the way to the pine tree to finish the last pitch from Lunch Ledge, and there are plenty of good anchoring possibilities below that tree that will finish the climb.  Rope drag will definitely be a factor on the 5.4 finish because of the changes in direction, but it's not a deal-killer and can be managed...communication can definitely be an issue, especially if the wind is blowing, so have your non-verbal signals down...

Ocalslay Onlyyay · · Not That Into Climbing · Joined Jan 2012 · Points: 1,175


Caped Baldy · · Used car lot · Joined Jul 2018 · Points: 55

Keep climbing to the top of the slab and build an anchor or sling the giant boulder.  I never go to the tree at the top of the Trough. Don't see why you would want to. 

I've never been able to hear my partner from there though so be sure you have a nonverbal communication system. 

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

Southern California
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