Type: Trad, 900 ft (273 m), 8 pitches, Grade III
FA: S.P. Parker, Howie Schwartz, Mark Houston, Kathy Cosley, Chris Simmons, Wayne Sayer (2007)
Page Views: 8,679 total · 64/month
Shared By: Bryan G on Jul 15, 2011
Admins: Euan Cameron, AWinters, Aron Quiter, Mike Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Justin Johnsen, Vicki Schwantes, Salamanizer Ski

You & This Route


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Description

A modern classic and one of the best in Whitney Portal. Ghostrider might have better rock quality, but No Country has more varied and memorable climbing and fewer crowds on the route. It's also a step up in difficulty from Ghostrider.

Pitch 1 (5.9) Start in an easy ramp to gain a brushy ledge about 50 feet up. Traverse right along this ledge for a while to a short section of 5.9 face on knobs past a bolt. Gain another ledge and traverse back left to the anchors.

Pitch 2 (5.10b) A long pitch of sustained face climbing past many bolts. Skip the intermediate anchor and belay at the bolts below the lieback pitch.

Pitch 3 (5.10c) A leaning flake/corner provides nearly a ropelength of sustained, awesome liebacking on offwidth crack. Leave the big cams at home and bring all the quickdraws you own, because this baby is bolted the entire way - something like 17 I think, but I lost count. Punch it all the way to the anchors at an awkward stance on the edge of the corner.

Pitch 4 (5.9) Up some more lieback flake, but with more features. Then cut right on a face past a couple bolts to an undercling flake. Then climb up the right side of the flake which is a little scary because the flake is very thin and the pro behind it is questionable. Belay on a big ledge.

Pitch 5 (5.?) The tunnel pitch. Start up some cracks near the right side of the ledge and then traverse left into the giant chimney/cave above. Chimney up and through, past a couple bolts to belay at another big ledge.

I actually couldn't figure out the start to this pitch and did a variation by just climbing up the left side of the chimney/tunnel. This variation was loose but easy, with pro behind the occasional chockstone. I would rate it 5.6R.

Pitch 6 (5.10a) Another great pitch of face climbing on Tuolumne style knobs. You'll probably want to first move the belay from the bolted anchors above the chimney to the left side of the ledge below the bolt line. Then wander up and right past many bolts and a short crux at a left facing corner that you pass through.

Pitch 7 (5.7 R/X) The "death-flake horror-show pitch". Up a shallow corner and then past a precarious loose block that is somehow still clinging to the wall. Then, ever so gently, climb up the super-thin, super-scary flake for about 50 feet. Carefully avoid another pile of loose blocks poised at the top of the flake. Belay at the bolted anchor at the top of the flake. It's hard to say whether it's more dangerous to lead this pitch or belay it.

Pitch 8 (5.9) Up and right on a fun and easy white dike. Then just before reaching the anchors at the top of Ghostrider, climb up and left past a stout 5.9 crux to a bolted anchor.

To descend rappel the route with 2 ropes. At the top of the 4th pitch (after rapping through the giant cavern), rappel straight down the face twice more.

Location

The beautiful lieback corner on pitch 3 is easily visible from most places in the portal. Hike up to Whitney Portal Buttress as per Ghostrider, but then skirt left aiming for this feature. Beneath it are ledges. Begin at the left end of these ledges.

Protection

Gear to 1.5" and an upwards of 15 quickdraws.

Photos