Type: Trad, 385 ft, 7 pitches, Grade II
FA: unknown
Page Views: 3,022 total · 48/month
Shared By: Floyd Hayes on Nov 11, 2013
Admins: Aron Quiter, M. Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Salamanizer suchoski, Justin Johnsen, Vicki Schwantes

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Access Issue: Mt. St. Helena Crags - Fire Damage from Fall 2017 Details


Actually, this isn't even a route; instead, it's a highly contrived "multipitch" adventure linking together seven short and moderate trad routes (5.6-5.8) on six pinnacles as you work your way uphill, with very short walks (15-100') between all but the first two routes (only the first two pitches are truly multipitch). The bolts on a few routes can be safely bypassed using gear instead to convert each route into a pure trad route.

Pitch 1 options: Forrester's Crack 5.7 (recommended), Far Side Chimney 5.6, The Pile 5.8, or Near Side Chimney 5.6 [NOTE: These climbs are on the first rock formation when you arrive at the Far Side.]

Pitch 2 options (can be linked with pitch 1): Rite of Passage 5.6 or Initiation Rite 5.6 (recommended). Descend via rappel down the north face. [NOTE: From the top of pitch 1 these climbs continue up the short cracks to a low-angle slab above.]

Pitch 3 options: Old Tradition 5.7 or Old Spice 5.9. Descend via class 4 off west end (rappel down north face not recommended as the rope easily gets stuck). [NOTE: From the top of pitch 2 these climbs are visible on the large rock about 20' directly across the short gap to the north.]

Pitch 4: North Face of Hummingbird Spire 5.7. Rappel off a single but solid bolt. [NOTE: From the top of pitch 3 this climb is on the opposite side of the short tower about 30' directly across the short gap to the north.]

Pitch 5: Planet of the Grapes 5.6. No rappel anchor (unless you leave a sling); descend by lowering your partner down the route and rappelling down the other side of the rock while your partner anchors you. [NOTE: After climbing pitch 4, walk west about 25 feet over a small gap and 25 feet uphill to a small pillar on the right side of a larger pillar and climb the face of the small pillar to the right of the chimney between the pillars.]

Pitch 6: Koka 5.8. Descend via class 3 walkoff. [NOTE: From the top of pitch 5 this route is on the tall tower about 20' directly across the short gap to the north. Start at the dirty offwidth crack on the left side of the face.]

Pitch 7: Left Behind 5.7. Finish by climbing the upper blocks to the summit of the crag, then descend a trail down gullies to the east of most crags back to the base of The Far Side (you won't get lost!). [NOTE: From the top of pitch 6, look for a crack splitting a rock on a tall but fractured formation about 150' uphill to the northwest. Walk along the ridge 100' uphill to a gap, turn left and follow a trail downhill 75' to the base of the formation.]


Begins with the lowest crag and ends at the highest crag.


1 set of cams up to 4" or 5" (up to 2" will suffice) and 1 set of nuts.


Floyd Hayes
Floyd Hayes  
Trying to do something new and different at The Far Side, I first linked these routes on November 10, 2013 with Cheri Ermshar. For pitch 1 we climbed Far Side Chimney and for pitch 2 we climbed Rite of Passage. A video of the climb is posted here. Nov 11, 2013
Haha. What a great outing. Good climbing throughout esp. old tradition above war party.

We did far side chimney - initiation rite - old tradition - hummingbird spire - koka. I'm going big on the star rating.

We skipped on the other two short climbs mentioned to keep a pretty consistent upward movement throughout the linkup.

Clipped the first bolt you encounter on Koka but otherwise all gear. you could even skip some of the bolted anchors and built your own anchor on some of these.

Chimney, offwidth, hand cracks, finger cracks, face climbing, free hanging rappel and some lichen - what more could you ask for. :) Jul 6, 2015
Floyd Hayes
Floyd Hayes  
Having given directions to a few parties lost on the "route" this past weekend, I decided to post a detailed topo (see jpg image file). Mar 14, 2017