Type: Trad, 420 ft, 4 pitches
FA: Mike Engle, Verne Phinney
Page Views: 2,803 total · 13/month
Shared By: Bob Archbold on Jul 8, 2001
Admins: Andrew Gram, Peter Gram, Greg Parker, Mike Madsen, Mark Rafferty

You & This Route

14 Opinions

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Access Issue: Check NPS for Closures Details


Near the left side of the White House Wall, there is a prominent prow marked with a deep gash. The route starts directly behind "Read My Clips". Take the right to left diagonalling crack up for 50 feet thenstraight up the crack above to the natural belay. 1st pitch 100 feet. Second pitch traverse out about six feet then straight up to the overhanging block, undercling and jamming move out right till you gain a small pod at the bottom of a V formed by two cracks joining. Take the left hand crack up trending back to the right up some seams that can be protected with small brass nuts and stoppers. Follow this up and left clipping one bolt and make for the large chicken head. Here the taller you are the easier it is. Climb up to horizontal crack and set your belay.Second pitch is about 140 ft. The third pitch starts off to the right of the belay clipping another bolt and using stopper placements climb up to where you can set a belay to the left before the weakness that will take you around to the right. 3rd pitch about 100 feet. The fourth pitch you traverse to the right on a sloping face weakness. Follow this around until you see a line of bolts. Climb this face with the bolts. 4th pitch about 70 feet. Pitch 3 and 4 can actually be climbed in one long pitch, but I don't recommend it. The rope drag is terrible. I have done both ways in 3 pitches and 4 pitches. I prefer to do it in 4 pitches.


Double #00 - #2, SIngle #3, Nuts, many runners
2 rope rappel


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Does anyone have individual ratings for each pitch? Also, are all belays set from your own gear or is there anything fixed? Thanks much! Jun 9, 2004
Will Buckman
Devils Tower
Will Buckman   Devils Tower
This is a super route, but technically demanding. First pitch is 5.8, build your anchor with 2,3,4 camalots or equvalent. Second pitch is the crux, small tcu's, pink and red tri-cams, and creative nut placements will keep you safe but place them well! Slings will also come in handy for avoiding rope drag and "walking on air". Belay again on medium to large gear. Third pitch is 5.9 and only 70-80 feet in length. A semi-hanging belay can be set up with 1,2, and 4 camalots in a crack system to the left of a small, right-traversing ramp leading to the upper head wall. Fourth pitch rating is probably 5.10a/b. There are only 3 or 4 bolts on this pitch with a ledge that one might land on should you fall before making the third clip. There is a bolted anchor at the top of this pitch for the victorious climbers to enjoy. Have fun. Jul 4, 2005
john walker
john walker  
OK, I did this route and it was way harder than 10b for me. I could go into a bunch of excuses like: my shoes were shit and I was off the couch but thats just a bunch of shit. Maybe I'm not much of a trad climber but my experience on the casual route of longs peak which is 10bat 13000 feet leads me to believe that political prowess is a bit harder than 10b. I believe the guide book says 10+, and I agree with that. Its a great route, I'd call it a testpiece, just be ready for 10+, and potential ledge falls. I'll do this route again with my good shoes on and see how it goes. Oct 11, 2005
Andy Busse
Rapid City, SD
Andy Busse   Rapid City, SD
(Camalots #00-#2 x 2, #3 x 1/Stoppers 1 set/MicroStoppers 2 sets/many runners, 2 ropes for rappel)

Notes on climb:

1)the route protects well, but you must place gear every time you get it, especially on pitch 2 & 3 (LK). be prepared to use the small stuff. bolts were recently replaced, thank Duane Martenson.

3)the traverse pt was not apparent, just below(approx 5-10' below) the overhanging diagonal crack on the headwall, traverse out right blindly following a slight ramp.

4)last pitch is 5.10a and is protected well with new bolts, it is protected better than the above comments make it out to be.

2)walk-off or fixed anchor 2-rope rappel from top anchors, descend approx 40m to the 2nd station just below a large overhang
(note: bring extra webbing to leave at this station, it is just 2 bolts at this time and the webbing was very faded) Oct 21, 2007
Mark McMinn
Mark McMinn  
Thanks for the bolt replacements & this is a really great route. Dec 26, 2012