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Routes in Mount Toll

Barber Shop Traverse (West Face Spiral Route) T Easy 5th 1+ 3 I 5 M 1c R
NE Buttress T 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b R
North Ridge T 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b R
South Face
Type: Trad, Alpine, 600 ft, 4 pitches, Grade II
FA: unknown sod
Page Views: 145 total, 1/month
Shared By: Leo Paik on Jul 10, 2001
Admins: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac

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Description

Not recommended unless you just can't find anything else to do. We jumped on this route because the wind was gusting over the N Ridge at probably 25-30 mph with gusts to 40 mph and we didn't bring adequate clothing to enjoy those conditions.

See the approach described for the North Ridge. Count on about 2 to 2 1/2 h. From the saddle north of Mt. Toll, we traverse SSE to get out of the wind and lo and behold, it was sheltered. There was this narrow rib of rock between 2 chimney systems. However, it turned out looser and wetter than it looked. But we weren't the first fools to do it.

P1. We scrambled up perhaps 150 feet on 3rd-4th class terrain to a small nook/ledge. I'd recommend considering a rope. A wire and #0.75 Camalot for the belay. There was an ancient bolt somewhere near here.

P2. Surmount a slightly bulging bit, 4th class, manky rock to a L-facing dihedral. Found, tested, and pulled out with finger pressure an ancient piton in a crack. 200 feet.

P3. Continued up on funky, loose terrain to a ledge. Used #0.75 Camalot and #1 Camalot at belay at the base of a crack system. 200 feet.

P4. Crux pitch. Up the crack, traverse R, step up, go over a bulge, do some face moves that make you wish the rock were dry. 80 feet.

P5. Continue up more moderate rock as it eases to 3rd class terrain. 200 feet puts you just below the summit.

Protection

Set of wires, cams to #4, hexes, 60m rope useful.

Photos

This will sound strange, but I've heard people say this route is either dead easy or a lot harder than it's graded. Benny Bach and I did it about 15 years ago and we had the latter experience. It was really run-out, no gear, very solidly 5.7 for the parts that were rock (it was in mixed conditions---crampons, tools, the works), and actually kinda scary. The summer after we did it a couple was apparently killed on the route. But I've heard people say they've soloed it and found it dead easy. Weird....anyway, be careful on this one. Apr 18, 2008