Type: Sport, 90 ft
FA: D. Hatchett, J. McKitterick 1993
Page Views: 3,242 total · 16/month
Shared By: Brian Quiter on Aug 22, 2002
Admins: Aron Quiter, Lurker, M. Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Salamanizer suchoski, Justin Johnsen, Vicki Schwantes

You & This Route

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Located on the left side of the wall, Big Chief arete isn't really an arete for most of the climb. Instead, it ascends enormous clubic blocks that are either 45 degrees overhanging or 45 degrees slab. The climb is very similar in feel to its neighbor Killer Bee, but a little tougher because of a tricky roof about two-thirds of the way up. Vertigo will also be a factor, but its worth it!

Don't pay too much attention to the topo in Carville's book. He has the relative locations of the climbs right, but the rock features he has drawn in don't make sense to me.


8 bolts to a 2 bolt anchor.


Tony B
Around Boulder, CO
Tony B   Around Boulder, CO
One move of 5.10d coming out of the final roof on a weird side-pull. Are you sure that the rotue described here is not 'Headrush?'

Problem is, if this line is big chief Arete, then what is the line between this and Killer Bee, just to the right? That climb there was better, and harder. You can do it to the anchors of the climb described here (10b) or keep going up and right past 3-4 more bolts passing a hand jam(14 in all?) to the top. One of the better climbs at the cliff. I think that is the real Big Chief, and the one described here is Headrush. Sep 29, 2003
Chris C
San Francisco, CA
Chris C   San Francisco, CA
agree with Tony B. the description is incorrect. Headrush starts in the corner under a tree while Big Chief Arete is just left of Killer Bee. See books. Jul 8, 2013
Mike Ferrell
San Francisco, CA
Mike Ferrell   San Francisco, CA
This description page is confusing, so I'm going to leave a comment here for Headrush which is the title of the page:

this is 2 routes to the left of Big Chief Arete and starts behind the tree in the back corner. The route has some plants on key holds since it doesn't look like it's climbed that often. It is in the shade until late afternoon, so good for hot days.

The bottom starts with a scramble to the first bolt followed by some vertical climbing up to a long easy slab (out of site for the belayer). After that, you have a good rest before the crux which is overhanging and sustained for several bolts.

This route is a ton of fun and I highly recommend getting on it. I had a hard time with the crux since spotting the sidepull necessary to get past the overhang was difficult and took a few attempts. Definitely feels like a tough 10 or easy 11 depending on your endurance level.

11-12 bolts (can't exactly remember) to a 2 bolt anchor. Aug 8, 2016