Type: Sport
FA: Tom Ramier, 2012
Page Views: 1,861 total · 27/month
Shared By: Jon Nelson on May 4, 2013
Admins: Scott Coldiron, Jon Nelson, Micah Klesick

You & This Route

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Multiple cruxes requiring a variety of skills. This route overhangs 20' feet over 90' and stays dry even in a steady rain once it has stopped seeping after the winter months.

Fun climbing on clean rock with incredible exposure. Some parts may have some lingering graininess that should wear off with time.

Use a 70-m rope and be careful while lowering off.


The route starts off of a large boulder just at the end of the Perverse Traverse and just left of Heaven's Rear Entry Vehicle Parked Out Back, Tow-away Zone. There is a lone bolt on a rock below near the top edge of the lower cliff that makes a good belay position when it's not raining. From here it is possible for the belayer to see the entire climb.


12-14 quick draws and a #2 Camalot.


braddean Lignoski
braddean Lignoski   Seattle
I am pretty sure that a 60m will get you down, but DO tie a knot in the end of the rope.

This route is classic! If it were at the lower wall it would be as popular as anything else.

-b May 29, 2013
Someone said Tom did the FA just using gear, but added bolts so others would climb it. Jul 23, 2013
Pretty awesome climbing, but quite hard and cryptic at the roof. It took a really long time to get the rope up. The rock is still a little flaky at the bottom, but should clean up with time. If the route was a little cleaner and more continuous, I would give it four stars. Oct 3, 2013
Even for Index... this is a HUGE sandbag. It's freaking awesome climbing though. One bolt is placed a little awkwardly to the left (I think it's the 3rd). May 21, 2014
Seattle, WA
JCM   Seattle, WA
If this route was in Boulder Canyon it would known as the best 5.13 in the canyon. But it is in Index, so it is 5.12 and hardly ever gets climbed. Great route, deserves more attention. Jun 10, 2017
The position is really rad, but the rock quality is crystalline/grainy and below average for Index, and it gets seasonally dirty from following a broad water streak. It needs tons more traffic and brushing to become better.

There is also a pretty manky fixed rope (clipped through draws, and clove hitched) which had been running down this pitch for quite a while, and which certainly doesn't help make it more popular. Jul 14, 2017
Thomas Ramier
Thomas Ramier  
Rope and draws removed. 7/17/17

Climbed this today for the first time in a few years. It's inaccurate to say this route gets seasonally dirty. The fact is the route was never cleaned in the first place. Not even brushed lightly. I bolted it and worked it a few times on rope solo then on what was supposed to be an exploratory first lead burn by some complete freak surprise I sent it on my first ever lead attempt. Believe me, I was more surprised than anyone. I'd never even tr'd it or gotten it clean on rope solo. Probably why I didn't think it could possibly be any harder than 12- . Ok, so I was wrong about that! I just got lucky. Today I would say 12+.

Since I had a bunch of other projects going at the time I just moved on. To say that it's dirty or scaly by Index or really pretty much any standard simply denotes a lack of appreciation for actually how clean a route that it is. How often(especially at Index these days) do you get to simply slam in some bolts, then without any real cleaning just get right to the climbing?

It's funny that someone would complain about it being dirty and needing more traffic to clean it up but then not even put forth the minimal amount of effort to pull a few leafy greens out of the crack. What do you expect?

It's in pretty decent shape as of today. If anyone wants to go de-scale what little isn't on pristine flawless Index granite be my guest. I'll be over here working on new routes...

Jul 18, 2017
Jon Nelson
Redmond, WA
Jon Nelson   Redmond, WA  
That's impressive that this line was never cleaned, yet still gets nearly four stars.

The route just right of it wasn't cleaned either, but has a pretty low rating.

I imagine then that it would only take one person a few hours or less to brush Normandy up and send it to the top. It's harder to clean an overhanging line, but with gear in place and a comfortable big-wall harness, it should be quite easy. Jul 18, 2017
Thomas Ramier
Thomas Ramier  
You're right Jon. All it would take is a quick brushing and a flat scraper. It's dishearting to listen to whining about routes not being all perfectly fluffed up. Especially the more incipient remarks about "needing more traffic". It's probably due to the fact that when I first started climbing at Index there was simply no question that if you wanted to climb one of the lines that weren't on the short list of routes that actually got climbed on the regular you were going to have to clean it first.

Next time you(and you know who you are) think about posting some iteration of the following statement: "needs more traffic" try saying this instead- "I climbed it, or tried to climb it. It was dirty. I didn't do shit and it's still dirty."

I've done it. We've all done it.

@Jon. If you don't mind updating the grade for me I think 12+ is a bit more accurate.

Jul 19, 2017
Gina Hoag
Louisville, CO
Gina Hoag   Louisville, CO
Hi. This is a bit random but here goes. I went to a Degas exhibit at the Denver Art Museum and saw an amazing painting (by Degas, of course) called Rocks at Bagnoles-de-l'Orne. I was inspired to look into the area as I am a climber/traveller. From the comments I gathered that the routes are done infrequently, and one should plan to clean while climbing. No problem there. Just curious if anyone has an opinion about the area in general. The Normandy route seems worth the effort but wondered if there is FA potential? Thanks!! Cheers!! Feb 13, 2018
Jon Nelson
Redmond, WA
Jon Nelson   Redmond, WA  
Gina, what is the connection between the art exhibit and the climbs at the Cheeks?

Anyway, if you are wondering if one can find new routes to put up at the Cheeks, the answer is yes.
Same answer for any wall at Index, but the Cheeks have less vegetation to remove than most. Good luck. Feb 13, 2018