Type: Trad, 1000 ft (303 m), 7 pitches, Grade IV
FA: Mike Pennings and Josh Wharton, 4/07, FFA Josh Wharton, 5/07
Page Views: 2,876 total · 27/month
Shared By: j wharton on Oct 12, 2012
Admins: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac, Tyler KC

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Access Issue: Seasonal Raptor Closures Details


This is one of my favorite climbs in the Black, and probably has the most difficult crux pitch of any route in the canyon (although the H-Wall is much more sustained overall). There's lots of good climbing, so it's worthy even if you A0 through the crux pitch, in which case the route is 12- A0.

It's a relatively short route, but it's nice to catch the crux in the shade, so an early start on warm days is recommended. It gets sun around 12:30 in the spring, likely earlier in the fall.

Tommy Caldwell did the second free ascent with me, a few months after I did the FFA. I don' think anyone else has free climbed it, but you never know. It deserves more attention.

P1. There are three options: climb the wide crack on the right side of a pillar, 10+; climb the left-facing, slicer flake just right of the open book, 11; or stem up the open book, 10+ (my favorite option). Belay at some fixed gear on a nice stance below a small roof, 60 meters.

P2. This is an awesome pitch. Climb easy rock to some techy stems. Avoid the chimney on the left, and transition into a left-facing flake then a right-facing corner above--super fun 5.10+. Belay at a small stance, 11+, 55 meters.

P3. Another nice pitch. Head out onto the left wall of the book past a steep bit of wide crack, which eventually fades into a seam and some face moves. Stop at an uncomfortable hanging belay at some bolts, 55 meters, 11+.

P4. The crux; a piece or two leads to into a steep, fading corner, and bolts through a black bulge--awesome, devious, crimpy climbing somewhere in the V8/9 range. (This pitch can be easily french freed at 12- A0.) Belay at a nice ledge, just 20 meters above.

P5. Spicy face climbing past a few bolts eventually leads left into right-facing corner with a fixed nut. Belay atop a small pillar, 30 meters, 10+ R. This is the last truly cool pitch, but hey it's the Black, so 5 out of 7 makes it a classic!

P6. This has tricky route finding. Head up the fading corner above, and then traverse straight left across two flakes to a large, right-facing feature. Climb up this corner to a pegmatite flake, now traverse right to a seam on a subtle arete, and find a belay stance just above, below a steep, right-facing flake that's a bit chossy looking. 35 meters, 5.10 with a bit of spice.

P7. Pull the bulge/flake above, and meander to the top, 60 meters, 10-.

From here, the easiest way off is to traverse across a bushy ledge and scramble to the rim via a 4th class chimney.


The route starts in a large open book to the left of the Plunge Pillar. Head up the gully (hint of 3rd class) left of the start of the Stoned Oven for approximately 10 minutes.


1 #00 TCU.
2 each #0 TCU to #1 Camalot.
1 each #2 to #4 Camalot.
1 set RPs and wires.


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