Mountain Project Logo

Routes in Arrowhead

Airhead T 5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a
Arrowplane T 5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
Artemis T 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
Bequeathed T 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b R
East Face/Arrowhead T 5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c
Full Metal Jacket T 5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
Gimme Shelter T 5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
Glacier Gorge Traverse T 5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
Godfather, The T 5.11a/b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c PG13
Ithaca T 5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a
Lost Arrowhead T 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a PG13
Rain Dance T 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
Ramp Tramp T 5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
Refugium T 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
Ripsaw/Northeast Ridge T 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
Shaft, The T 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b
Shoshone T 5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
Sidewinder T 5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
Sloppy Seconds T 5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b R
South Ramp T 5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c
Thai Hot T 5.11- 6c 22 VIII+ 22 E3 5c C1 R
V-Free T 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b
Warhead T 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
Watership Down T 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a
Unsorted Routes:
Type: Trad, Alpine, 600 ft, 5 pitches
FA: Winkelman & Bearzi, 1994
Page Views: 3,493 total, 27/month
Shared By: Josh Janes on Jun 25, 2007
Admins: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac

You & This Route


15 Opinions

Your To-Do List:

Add To-Do

Your Star Rating:


     Clear Rating

Your Difficulty Rating:


-none- Change

Your Ticks:

Add New Tick
    -none-
Seasonal Closures Details

Description

It's hard to believe that Airhead, which climbs the plumb line dihedral and crack system up the center of Arrowhead's south face, isn't an RMNP mega-classic. Not only is the line itself the most obvious directissima on the wall, but the climbing is really good and the crux pitch is one of the gems of the Park.

After approaching via any of the methods listed for Arrowhead, begin climbing from the highest of a series of ledges below the obvious, hanging, left-facing dihedral. This feature is several hundred feet right of the low-point in the McHenry's-Arrowhead ridge and about a hundred feet left of Ithaca. The first pitch is just left of the clean slab of Ithaca's first pitch. Above the dihedral system the beautiful splitter crack of the crux pitch is visible.

P1: Wander up the path of least resistance to a belay ledge about 25 feet below the true start of the corner system. Do not continue up to what appears to be a sloping ledge at the base of the corner itself as the belay there is poor. Low 5th.

P2: Climb up the corner with good gear and increasingly difficult moves until an opportunity presents itself to swing out of the corner onto the right hand wall and climb the arete for 40 feet. Wild! One can either return to the corner higher up, or continue along the arete to a belay stance. 5.10+, 140'.

P3: With a handful of wires, this pitch is easily linked with the previous one. Continue up the slightly mossy corner all the way to a nice belay ledge (5.10c?), or, after 20 feet, once again swing out right around the arete and follow unprotected, clean face climbing to the same belay ledge (5.10a R). A short pitch, maybe 50'.

P4: Amazing! Ascend the now shallow, left-facing corner for 40 feet before reaching a small roof on the left side. Pull through this and continue up the stunning splitter past a few cruxy sections punctuated by really good rests. This pitch takes great, small gear (that is pumpy to place), but it is nice to have some hand-size cams for pods and the anchor. Lots of thin but positive 5.11 climbing up immaculate rock with one brief section of 5.11+. Belay on a huge ledge, 120'.

P5: Although a bit scary and having less than ideal pro, this pitch is nevertheless great fun. From the right end of the ledge, ascend a corner to a chockstone and then hand traverse back left over your belayer's head for 15 feet. Climb a nice, leaning, finger crack and pull up onto a stance at some loose blocks. Swing around to the right, then trend back left up a series of stacked blocks all the way to the ridge. 5.9 and possibly very dangerous, 80'.

Descend via the walk-off or rappels (one 70m rope plus easy downclimbing).

Protection

Double set of cams from small to #0.5 Camalot, single #0.75, #1, #2, #3. Lots (double set?) of wires, RPs, and draws.

Photos

Stefan Griebel
Boulder, Colorado
  5.11+
Stefan Griebel   Boulder, Colorado
  5.11+
Climbing in RMNP doesn't get better than these middle pitches. Jul 5, 2017
Josh Janes    
 
Dylan, thanks for that great addition to the original description! Jul 16, 2015
On pitch two, as soon as the climbing in the dihedral starts to get difficult, look right and step onto the arete. Follow that for ~40 feet (runner your gear). Then step back into the dihedral at the obvious stance. RPs are nice for this pitch.

I felt that the dihedral on the third pitch was easier than .10c and protected very well. It offers better climbing than on the second pitch and is very easily combined with that one.

The crux pitch is a real stunner and is incredibly fun.

Last pitch is not that bad and offers some fun juggy climbing. There's gear too, just take your time. Jul 16, 2015
Mike Tsuji
Boulder, CO
Mike Tsuji   Boulder, CO
The crux pitch is one of the best in the park. If it were a couple pitches taller or closer to a trailhead, it would be a top five classic route. Jul 13, 2015
Mark Ferguson
  5.11+
Mark Ferguson  
  5.11+
Although short and not a lot of climbing for such a long walk, this route is awesome. The crux pitch is one of the best pitches I have done in RMNP. Aug 10, 2009
Brian Milhaupt
Golden, CO
  5.11d
Brian Milhaupt   Golden, CO
  5.11d
Linking pitches 2 and 3 is probably the best way to go. I didn't see a good belay stance and climbing the entire corner makes for a natural pitch. The directness and great movement make this a four star climb. I subtract one star for the dangerous nature of the final pitch. Tiptoe through the stacked blocks carefully. Jul 17, 2009