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Mirage Direct Finish

5.12b, Trad, 210 ft, 2 pitches,  Avg: 4 from 1 vote
FA: Andrew M. and Shannon Stegg
N Carolina > Laurel Knob

Description

This is a good direct finish to mirage with pumpy overhanging terrain with good holds for LK (including a few jugs on an overhanging wall!). I'd consider it a good intro to the harder routes at Laurel Knob. Since it is climbable when the groove is running, it is a great year round route.

As described below, it starts from the top of pitch 3 of mirage. Though very good, Pitches one and 2 of mirage are usually wet so an alternative way to get to the start of this direct finish is to climb to the top of the second pitch of Oasis and then climb 5.8 slab to the 2 bolt anchor in the lower oasis. Pitch 3 of mirage goes through the headwall here to the upper oasis then the direct finish goes straight through the headwall above the upper oasis instead of going out right to lower angled terrain as the standard finish to mirage does. The direct finish is very much climbable when the groove is running water as was done on the FA and FFA and the rope does not get wet.

Pitch A: Climb overhanging orange corner with bomber gear to a jug on the overhanging wall. clip a bolt then make bouldery thin face moves left to get established in deep water groove. Climb the usually wet groove past 3 more bolts to 2 bolt anchor. (5.12b, 90 feet). The crux is mandatory free climbing.
Pitch B Climb face right of groove past some gear to ledgy area then continue up to a bolt in a bulge and make bouldery moves to get established over the bulge and into the much easier groove to the left. Continue to belay at one bolt and gear in a pod (#1 and #2 camalots)(I did not put in this bolt and have no idea what route it is part of) (5.12a, 120 feet)
From here you can traverse left to anchors of permission granite or fathom direct to rappel or you can continue straight up the easy groove above to the top (an alternate finish to fathom)

Both pitches were pinkpointed on the FFA

Location

Starts from the upper oasis which is reached by climbing pitch 3 of mirage after reaching the lower oasis by either climbing the first 2 pitches of mirage or oasis.

Protection

Well protected except very easy runout terrain on pitch B

before first bolt on Pitch A, a rack of nuts and cams to #2 camalot is needed for the short corner (hybrids useful) after the 2nd bolt on that pitch, there is a brown tricam placement.

On Pitch B, a light rack of cams to #2 camalot is needed. Hybrids are useful as always

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Photo Topo. I ripped the photo from one of Nathan's photo topos.
[Hide Photo] Photo Topo. I ripped the photo from one of Nathan's photo topos.