Type: Trad, 2100 ft (636 m), 17 pitches, Grade V
FA: Kor, Dalke, Goss, Logan
Page Views: 11,369 total · 47/month
Shared By: Steve Levin on Sep 9, 2001 · Updates
Admins: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac, Tyler KC

You & This Route

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Access Issue: Seasonal Raptor Closures Details


The Southern Arete takes on the massive left shoulder of the Painted Wall in roughly 15-20 pitches. This is one of the longest climbs in the state, and should be climbed more. The climb has three somewhat distinct sections, the lower-angled buttress pitches; the central chimney system; and the exit cracks and final arete. Expect a very long day of climbing with some minor routefinding issues, lots of simul-climbing, lots of wide cracks and chimneys, and passable-to-pretty good rock.

NOTE: On the final part of the approach, contouring across the slopes below the Painted Wall will lead you to unpleasant dirt slopes that would be difficult to cross; better to stay closer to the river, then hike directly up the lower buttress to the start of the route.

Begin at a white slab and corner about 200 feet above the river, in the large R-facing corner. Climb the corner, then make a 5.8 traverse left to a belay at a couple of fixed pins. Now climb 2 more pitches, up to 5.8, along crack/corner systems, to a large terrace below a smooth wall. Walk left 200 feet on the terrace. Now follow (simul-climb?) moderate grooves 400+ feet to a comfortable belay, then walk right through a chimney-gap to belay. Climb a nice 5.7 or 5.8 crack system, then work up a clean slab (simul-climb?) to the start of a steep chimney system that starts as a gaping slot. 5 belayed pitches and much simul-climbing.

The central and noticeably steeper climbing begins here. Climb the 5.9+ slot to a long chimney (5.8, little pro) in 2 pitches. Now comes the crux, a 5.10 move getting into a wide crack at a bulge (fixed tube chock). Above follow a long chimney, exit the chimney right at some blocks, to a belay right of the arete (routefinding issues). 5 belayed pitches.

Move up and slightly left to steep finger and hand cracks going through two overhangs (5.10, a long pitch or two shorter ones). Move left onto broken terraces, then back right and up the arete, topping out in 3 more pitches.


1 set RPs, 1 set stoppers, cams 1 set TCUs to 3.5, extra 0.75 to 2, 4 medium-large hexes, optional 5 inch piece, and long slings. Bring a helmet and headlamp. 60m ropes are nice, a second cord is optional.