Type: Sport
FA: Chris Smith, as a sport route 2005. Parts were climbed previously by others using trad gear and pins
Page Views: 8,379 total · 56/month
Shared By: Jay Knower on Oct 23, 2006
Admins: Jay Knower, M Sprague, lee hansche, Jeffrey LeCours, Jonathan Steitzer, Robert Hall

You & This Route

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Polly Purebred used to be a runout and neglected trad climb until a retrobolting modernized it a few years ago. It's proximity to the most popular 5.10 at Rumney (Underdog) guarantees heavy traffic.

Easy juggy climbing leads to a rest ledge. Put a long draw on the bolt off the ledge and launch into the overhanging crux (previously "protected" by a shady pin). This crux can be baffling until the correct sequence is found. Layback up the wonderful hanging corner. Slabby moves give way to another crux below the anchors.

Welcome to the 21st century Polly, we're all glad you're here.


Bomber eyebolts. The anchor is glue-in Wave bolts with drop in pigtails as of Sept 22/ 2015. Please make sure you TR off your own draws, not the pgtails.
M Sprague
New England
M Sprague   New England  
FA trad version (alternative start to Underdog): Mark Sprague (edit- It sounds like Bradley White did some version of this earlier , when the big block was still there)
FA sport version (added the top): Chris Smith

Jeez, I thought it protected great. I put gear in. The bolts are very welcome though, especially as you can now do the top. I pulled a refrigerator sized block out of the alcove before climbing it. Nov 9, 2006
L. Hamilton
L. Hamilton  
I agree, the old trad version had fine protection, and was "something different" amidst all the clip-ups. On the other hand, the new bolted finish is better.

If Rumney were a less specialized area that could still tolerate mixed routes, Polly Purebred might have been a good one: bolts where needed, especially on the finish, but no retrobolts at the overhang where solid trad gear can be placed.

Some of the other old moderates would likewise be more fun, but not necessarily more dangerous, if you had to carry and place a bit of gear to lead them. Nov 10, 2006
lee hansche
goffstown, nh
lee hansche   goffstown, nh  
i like that it is now a nice independant line that gives me another warm up... and it does get me quite warm... i too would be happy to place some gear (people who know me know i love placing gear)...

on a side note this line feels 5.10c to me most days (not the 10b the guide book suggests)... Jan 29, 2008
Sandwich, NH
matthewWallace   Sandwich, NH
Any word on the condition of this anchor now? Jun 13, 2009
Todd Anderson
Seattle, WA
Todd Anderson   Seattle, WA
I didn't notice any glaring problems with the anchor today, but confess I wasn't actively looking for them, not having seen this page before.

On a side note, my friend (whom I was belaying) somehow missed the bolt on the first crux, and by the time he was at the next bolt he had the rope wrapped around his leg so he would have flipped over if he fell (I yelled at him about the rope, but I didn't see the crux bolt either). We didn't realize there was another bolt there until he finished the climb.

I guess the take-home message is that if Polly seems run-out, you're doing something wrong. Jun 6, 2011
Matt Wilson
Vermont, USA
Matt Wilson   Vermont, USA
I felt like this was runout at the crux... I ended up climbing in to the nook rest above the crux, terribly out of breath (apparently I don't breath when I climb hard), and then reaching around the corner to clip my next bolt. I don't even want to think about the fall that would have been had I stayed out of the nook and fell at the next clip.... But then again, I am a giant pansy when I lead, so maybe it's not really run out. Sep 24, 2012
Jeffrey LeCours
New Hampshire
Jeffrey LeCours   New Hampshire  
More common is to fall while trying to get into the notch, which is a perfectly clean fall. Wedging yourself into the notch will give you a comfortable no hands rest. It's also quite easy to use a knee bar in that area too. I thought protection was right where you'd want it. Sep 24, 2012
S. Neoh
S. Neoh  
Both anchors seem fine today.
Such a fine route. Good amount of exposure just after the crux and before the comfy ledge. The slab above was surprisingly technical for me with some holds "facing the wrong way". Nicely bolted, to be expected for a Smitty route. May 4, 2013
Nick Grant
Natick, MA & Tamworth, NH
Nick Grant   Natick, MA & Tamworth, NH
Sweet Polly gets a 5.10 b/c rating in the 2009 guidebook. That seems a wee bit low to me. Holding on to the undercling with the fingies and making that l-o-n-g lefthanded reach for the vertical crack hidden around the corner seemed more like solid 5.10c or even 5.10d to me. (But then it always seems that I'm on this climb went it's a bit wet.) Does anybody else out there think that this one is underrated? Or is it just plain old weakness? Aug 3, 2013
S. Neoh
S. Neoh  
Nick, I am short (5'5") and that long move always give me pause. That said, I feel that SPP is as hard as Millennium Falcon but a tad easier than Peer Pressure. The route that I feel under graded is Romancing The Stone. It is always a struggle for me. Aug 3, 2013
E thatcher
Plymouth/ North Conway (NH)
E thatcher   Plymouth/ North Conway (NH)
Hey Nick,
sounds like you've had a rad tour of Rumney's classics recently. right on. The way you describe doing the crux on SPP indeed sounds hard. I think with some refinement through that crux you'd find it more appropriate at the grade. Similarly, there is an in obvious way to do the final upper section that makes it casual. I'll spare the inter webs my beta spray, but if you want an idea of another way to get through that crux drop me a PM. If you hang out at main cliff long enough I'm sure you'll be able to witness some better beta as well. best. Aug 4, 2013
Harrison Harb
Harrison Harb   Portland
this and Know Ethics might be the best 10's at Rumney. Very high on the flow factor. Dec 4, 2013
john strand
southern colo
john strand   southern colo
Remember, Nick is quite old..even older than me . Dec 4, 2013
S. Neoh
S. Neoh  
How is that even possible? :)

No worries, Nick, we past-our-prime kind still find ways to get up steep Rumney routes .... but only because we are crafty. :) Eric, Coach Paul, SteveA, even Al(!) still show up and not embarrass ourselves too badly. Dec 4, 2013
Torie Kidd
Torie Kidd   NH
Today was my first time doing the route, so I'm not sure if this was new or one of those things that's always been that way... On the traverse to the right, after the crux, I found one of the jugs (it was kind of fin shaped) to be loose (I'm relatively light and it made a grinding sound and moved). My feet were okay and there were other options for hands, so I was able to get off it asap.

Either way, I had an enjoyable time on the climb. Jan 6, 2016
Graham O.  
Wow certainly very fun! The upper part looks like it's a jug haul, but it's actually all slopers as if the rock wanted to make you work for it. Aug 13, 2016
Jay Morse
Hooksett, New Hampshire
Jay Morse   Hooksett, New Hampshire
A variation of this route can be done pretty safely on gear. Climb up to the ledge, then plug a piece in the weird pocket (Tricam was great) and extend. Then climb Underdog's first two bolts (no pro until after the 2nd bolt). Break right up the weakness (with plentiful gear) to meet up with Polly. After passing the first crux and gaining the rest flake, make an easy traverse over to Know Ethics and finish at those anchors. There is gear everywhere it matters and you can do the crux moves on a bomb #2 and #3 cam. If you are comfortable climbing Underdog's first two bolts with bad consequences, you'll find that the rest of this climb is quite safe. I suggest it! Apr 11, 2018
Luke Mertins
Worcester, MA
Luke Mertins   Worcester, MA
Interesting and tricky crux on this. Very fun once you have the beta, otherwise makes for a nice little whip. May 6, 2018