Type: Trad, 230 ft (70 m), 2 pitches
FA: Ants Leemets and Elmer Skahan, 1965
Page Views: 10,740 total · 56/month
Shared By: Jeff Welch on Apr 23, 2007
Admins: Morgan Patterson, RJ B

You & This Route

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A highly under-rated route, The Last Will Be First is one of my favorite 5.6's in the Gunks, and an excellent test-piece for the 5.6 leader. Pitch 1 features great, sustained, thoughtful face climbing above gear on clean rock, and pitch 2 has a fun overhang.

The route is a short ways left of High Exposure. The start is on an easy, low-angle face with some grassy ledges about 10-15 feet up - look for a vertical crack about 30-40 feet above.

P1: Climb up the easy lower rock to a crack. Follow the steepening crack to its top, then continue up and right across the clean face to an overhang below a left-facing corner. Pull the overhang and climb the corner to its top, where it is capped by another overhang. Escape right and continue up to a small ledge with the stump of a dead tree. Step right and climb easier rock to the GT ledge. 5.6 PG, 160 feet.

P2: Walk left about 20 feet to the first small left-facing corner. Climb the corner to a horizontal, then diagonal up and left to the notch in the overhang. Make some fun moves to pull to overhang, then continue up the slightly dirty corner about 10 feet before diagonaling up and right on easy, broken rock to the top. A worthwhile pitch. 5.6 PG, 70 feet.

Descent: Rappel from the bolt anchor back to the GT ledge (your ropes land directly at the start of P2, so be sure to call before you throw them). On the GT ledge, another bolt anchor appears to climber's left, from which two 60m ropes will get you to the ground, or a single rope will get you to a third bolted rap station. This a popular area of the cliff, so watch where you throw your ropes.

From the clifftop (and other routes), you'll need to scramble down a bit to reach the bolts. Look for the notch where the climb finishes.


The gear is good the entire way, although not always immediately obvious. There are some committing moves above gear. Doubles in the smaller sizes can be helpful (pink tri-cam, 0.5 and 1.0 Friends).