Type: Trad, 50 ft
FA: Bernard Gillett and Justin Dubois, 2010
Page Views: 3,246 total · 29/month
Shared By: Bernard Gillett on Oct 29, 2010
Admins: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac

You & This Route

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Access Issue: Season raptor closures Details


That Hideous Strength climbs one of the more prominent pitches on the Book—it’s curious that it was left alone for all these years.

Pitch 1 (110 feet, 5.10a): Climb the first pitch of Perelandra, but belay about 6 feet right of the normal stance on some good footholds in the dihedral that defines the right side of the Fat City alcove. This belay can also be reached by climbing the first pitch of Howling at the Wind (5.9). Upon reaching the wedged block at the top of that pitch, undercling left and up to the belay. The latter option requires some larger cams (up to a #3.5 or #4 Camalot).

You may notice a 3/8-inch bolt hole at the first belay: I have no idea who drilled the hole, or for how long it's been there. Could have gone in at about the same time the first pitch anchors on Fat City were updated (I seem to recall Lawrence Stuemke installed those, though I may be way off). The belay on Perelandra always felt a little funky, so maybe someone wanted to beef it up with a bolt? It may be an indication that someone tried this route at an earlier time, though I doubt they did the undercling section (lichen, many chips/small flakes that needed to be cleaned, etc.).

Pitch 2 (50 feet, 5.11): Jam up the corner (beautiful 5.10 off the belay) to reach the spot where Perelandra breaches the roof. Continue with the corner, which soon bends left into a pumpy undercling section (5.11, with a very helpful fixed wire near the end of the undercling). Face climb for a short distance to the very top of the Fat City slab, and then perform a burly 5.11 undercling up and left to reach the lip on the Fat City roof. Pull through the overhang (feels harder than normal due to the pumpy climbing that precedes it), and belay as with Fat City.

Continue to the top of The Book with a route of your choosing.

Though pitch 2 probably covers only 35 feet of new climbing, it’s as good as everything else in the vicinity (superb describes it well), and it deserves a spot on the Lumpy Ridge 5.11 must-do list.

Please leave the fixed nut in the undercling section. It’s in a sheltered spot, and should remain in good condition for many years to come.

The three books that comprise C.S. Lewis’ well-known space trilogy are Out of the Silent Planet, Perelandra, and That Hideous Strength.


That Hideous Strength connects Perelandra to Fat City, following the obvious, prominent corner/overhang all the way to the roof on Fat City. See photo for exact location.

You may want to save this route for a day when you don't expect a lot of company at The Book. If there's a party on Fat City while you're on this route, one team will have to wait it out.


Bring a set of wires (a few extras in the small sizes are handy for pitch 1 on Perelandra and for the crux pitch) and microcams to #2 Camalot, with doubles in the #0.1 through #1 Camalot (more than you need, but may as well come prepared). We ended up using three #0.75 Camalots (one for the belay at the base of the crux pitch). Obviously you may need additional gear for the line you choose to top out. Several long slings are recommended for the top of the crux pitch.