Type: Trad, 3 pitches
FA: Les Ellison, Bret Ruckman, Gary Olsen 1980
Page Views: 1,995 total · 12/month
Shared By: Stan Pitcher on Dec 31, 2004
Admins: Andrew Gram, Nathan Fisher, Perin Blanchard, grk10vq

You & This Route

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Access Issue: Gate Buttress Area Recreational Lease: Climbs on Church Buttress above vault remain closed Details


This is a great route that doesn't seen enough traffic. You start by doing the first pitch of the Great Chockstone and belaying on top of it. The second pitch is the business and is a bit scary getting to the first bolt. The climbing's not too hard but the pro is kinda sketchy in flaring cracks - don't fall. Once you clip the bolt, you continue to the small roof which you traverse under to the right. Use TCU's or small nuts but leave room for your fingers. The crux is pulling out right and getting established on the arete where there's a thank god pin. Then more spicy slabbing past two bolts gets you to a nice belay. The third pitch is more face fun at 5.9. After passing a few protectable cracks you end up on the Final Link slab which you can join half-way up and continue on to the top. From here you can wrap down to the Coffin with a single rope.


Some TCU's, Nuts, QD's & a few long slings. A 3 or 3.5 camalot is comforting but may not hold in flare


Boissal .
Small Lake, UT
  5.10 R
Boissal .   Small Lake, UT
  5.10 R
The first pitch (2nd from the ground) is really dirty, tons of exfoliating granite and surprise micro flake that seem to hold until they explode under your feet. Makes getting to the 3rd bolt pretty nightmarish. The climbing is already heads up enough that you might want to make sure this thing has cleaned up before getting on it (read: go clean it before climbing it).
The traverse and move around the arete are hard and scary but the crux is the slab mantle before the 3rd bolt.
Before getting on this, remember that it is a Les Ellison route and read this cool story:

Quoting Gary Olsen (the whole thread can be found here and here)
I will never forget the first time that I climbed with Les Ellison, talk about an eye opener. Little did he know the impact that he had on my climbing and many other people like Bret Ruckman and Steve Carruthers introduction to rock climbing. The day before I climbed with Les, Bret and I were up at the Crescent Crack Buttress in about 1980. I think we may have done something like the Coffin that day, I don’t remember exactly, but we were headed down and we looked up at a guy climbing out in no man’s land. This guy had his trademark black framed Vuarnet sunglasses on and he was on the edge of the buttress above the Great Chockstone. He was grunting and trying desperately to mantle a sloping hold. The last pro was a ways down and it looked way sketchy. Next thing you know, he’s off. Falling on a mantle when you are going for it is terrifying and Les swung upside down on the rope, nearly loosing those Vuarnet’s. I had never seen anything like that. Oct 3, 2008
This great route was another one of those rite of passage lines that had to be climbed by aspiring, self proclaimed hard men of the late 70's & 80's. Some scary plunges were taken on the infamous mantle. Even if you didn't succeed on this pitch, you at least got some respect and credit for taking the "big one."

The first bolt on pitch 1 was not part of the first ascent. Mar 28, 2010
Tim Wolfe
Salt Lake City, UT
  5.10 R
Tim Wolfe   Salt Lake City, UT  
  5.10 R
Classic old school LCC slab. A bit gritty back in the 80's and still the same. Apr 16, 2011
Boissal .
Small Lake, UT
  5.10 R
Boissal .   Small Lake, UT
  5.10 R
It appears that there is still a bail biner on the crux bolt of P1. Even though it's hard to tell I suspect it's the same one I left in October 2008... Unless someone swapped it and scored a locker.

Either the route hasn't seen an ascent since that time or all attempts have ended there. Someone should go get that locker and I'll buy it back from them. Giggles. May 2, 2011
madskates   slc
Fantastic root! Les really had to have a creative eye to find this and link the features together. Boissal i think i may have your biner? If so we were the first people on the route in about 8-9 years, but it did seem relatively clean. The climbing is heads up for sure in some sections but this route is amazing. If you get scared just remember, Les drill this on lead!!! Mar 12, 2016
Did this many moons ago ('80s) and there was a bashie (original?) in the 1st pitch grooves leading up to the roof. I ran into a guy in the early '90s that got off route (!) on Great Chockstone to Lazarus ended up on Missing Link and fell on that bashie ... ripping it out and going for a scary fall. They bailed immediately thereafter. So he said.

I think the bolt was added in place of the bashie sometime later.

Everyone has a story about the mantel on the arete! Sep 19, 2016