Avg: 4 from 178 votes
|Type:||Trad, 4 pitches, Grade III|
|Page Views:||43,672 total · 187/month|
|Shared By:||Steve Levin on Sep 25, 2001|
|Admins:||Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac, Tyler KC|
The Cathedral Spires area, including Block Tower, Cynical Pinnacle, Snake Buttress, the Dome, Hall of Mirrors, Sunshine Wall, and Poe Buttress, are closed annually starting March 1 for raptor nesting. After careful monitoring of nest sites, Jefferson County Open Space opens certain areas of Cathedral Spires and maintain spot closures for active nests through July 31st. Check back periodically during times of closure for updates: jeffco.us/open-space/parks/…
Note, JeffCo Open Space has notified us that access to The Bishop and Poop Point (along with all the Cathedral Spires Area) currently goes across JeffCo OS land. Despite information in some guidebooks (published or soon-to-be-published), the entire Cathedral Spires area is subject raptor nesting closures. Please be aware of the hefty fines associated with failure to observe these regulations.
5 stars. This may be THE best crack climb in the South Platte region. If you have not done this route, get after it ASAP. The climb takes on the awesome, striking crack and corner system which splits the south face of Cynical Pinnacle.
Hump up the hill, and find the steep corridor which leads to the start of this and the Center Route. The route described here is "The Complete Wunsch's Dihedral", which avoids the original first pitch.
Pitch 1: the Breashear's Finger Crack, 5.11d. Climb the tight, straight-in finger crack that splits the end of the alcove. It is hard right off the start, with a tricky move through a pod and bulge. The crack remains strenuous most of the way to the end of the pitch. Protect with many wireds and TCUs to 1 or 2 inch cams. Belay on an excellent ledge (fixed anchors). This is a long pitch and is outstanding.
Pitch 2: 5.10d. Climb the sustained, brilliant hand crack directly off the ledge to a semi-sling belay in an alcove below a roof (fixed anchors). Bring extra hand-size cams. It is incredible.
Pitch 3: 5.11. Awkwardly surmount the roof (possible 4" cam), then stem and lieback your way up the incredible corner. Use wired nuts and TCUs for protection. The corner opens up to a wide 5.8 hand-fist crack higher, so have a piece or 2 in this size also. Belay on a large sloping ledge below a bolt ladder. This is brilliant.
Pitch 4: 5.12b. Ascend the bolt ladder directly. This is very thin, steep nubbin climbing. It is easily (and often) aided. It is also possible to diverge left at the 3rd or 4th bolt and climb the unprotected face at 5.11 (the original free variation). It is stupendous.
Descent: You can descend from the summit of the Pinnacle with one 60 meter rope, but a 70m is a bit more comfy. First, use the rap station to the NE, bringing you to the shoulder at the top of the Center Route. From there, you can descend the front side face, to the climber's right of the center route on new bolt anchors. The rappels wander slightly but reach the ground in 4 clean and simple rappels.
This formation is closed Feb. to end of July for bird nesting. It can get pretty hot up there in August, and this is doable even mid-winter on a good day.