Avg: 3.5 from 122 votes
|Type:||Aid, 800 ft (242 m), 8 pitches, Grade IV|
|FA:||Olevsky and Jones, 1978|
|Page Views:||56,851 total · 246/month|
|Shared By:||Joe Collins on Oct 30, 2002|
|Admins:||Andrew Gram, Nathan Fisher, Perin Blanchard, GRK, DCrane|
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I understand this can be a pretty crowded route on weekends so if you're planning on doing a one day ascent, you might as well forget about it if you get behind a party that's hauling. It gets good sun (SW facing) so it can be done comfortably in cooler weather.
The common strategy for this route seems to be to fix the lower section the first day and then come back the next day and fire to the top. A trail leads to the base of the climbing, a short section of sandy rock that leads to a ramp.
P1 (Easy 5th) Begin by climbing up sandy rock to the large, left-trending ledge/ramp above. Follow the ramp to the base of a chimney (identified by a tree about 10 feet up the chimney).
P2 (5.6/5.7) Climb the fun chimney to a belay (two drilled pins) on a large ledge. If you are fixing a line from here, you may want to back the belay up with a cam (#3 Camalot). We had a 70m rope but a 60m should be able to reach the ground if fixing.
P3 (5.5) Walk around right and climb a sandy trough up to a ledge at the base of the headwall.
P4 (C1) This is where the steepness begins. Aid the bolt ladder and eventually a thin crack on a steep slab, reaching a belay where the wall steepens.
P5 (C2) Continue up the crack system to a belay. Skip this belay and tension right into a thin seam. Aid the seam (crux) with creative nutwork and continue up to the next anchor. The seam aids perfectly fine with nuts, offsets, and tricams, so leave the cam hooks at home (camhooks aren't exactly clean aid pieces in sandstone)
P6 (C1) The crack at this point widens enough that it can be free-climbed at a reasonable grade. The guides claim 5.10 but it looks a bit harder and very sustained. If you're still in aid mode, as is likely the case, continue upwards in your aiders to the second set of anchors.
P7 (C1) This pitch looks like it might actually be 5.10. The crack leans pretty seriously to the right by this point, making retreat difficult. Continue aiding upwards to the enormous Solar Orbit Ledge which looks like a good, but slopey, bivy.
P8 (C1) This is the cool part! Traverse the ledge to the far right side, surmount the roof, and aid the bolt ladder to the top. Make sure you look down for a while at the lip of the roof... big exposure! The second has the option of taking a running swing into space at the lip (highly recommended).