Type: Trad, 200 ft, 2 pitches
FA: Risse, McKillop, Wojcik, 1979
Page Views: 1,634 total · 25/month
Shared By: Curt Veldhuisen on Feb 22, 2014
Admins: Scott Coldiron, Jon Nelson, Micah Klesick

You & This Route

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Magic Bus offers the fine knobby slab climbing that Darrington is renowned for at a friendly grade with easy logistics. The climbing is fun and straightforward for those comfortable on 5.8 slab. It’s a nice next step from the local warm-up ‘Under the Boardwalk’, with similar climbing and a quality second pitch, making it an excellent place to break into multi-pitch climbing. Magic Bus is faster-drying and often cleaner than many of its neighbors, making it a good early season option.

Pitch 1 (5.8, 40 m): Cross the horizontal overlap at the diagonal white dike (small cam under overlap if desired) with a 5.7 step-over to reach the first bolt. From there, follow seven more bolts up the enjoyable knobby slab. The crux is at the second to last bolt before the anchor, which is just right of obvious cedar bushes.

Pitch 2 (5.8+, 30 m): From the belay, step up right to clip a bolt, then angle rightward, crossing a white streak toward the small left-facing corner. Once across the corner, head directly up a narrow slab with classic knobs. The crux is above the next to last bolt.

Beyond: Pitch 3 has been reworked with a mix of 5.10+ and bolt ladders. Bolts are combo of new and button heads.

Rappel from fixed anchors with double 60s.  You can get down with a single 60 and shenanigans (pitch 2 is about 29 m to anchor - knot your tails, on pitch 1, swing climbers left to reach the ground)

The local guidebook Weekend Rock: Washington by David Whitelaw, includes a topo and further description.


The route is on the SE aspect of Three O Clock Rock. Starting at the Eightmile trailhead (can’t miss the official trailhead sign on the right), the trail follows a rocky abandoned road grade then switches through old growth before popping out into an open talus slope with ferns. Three OClock Rock is in view on your left.

About 200 feet into the talus, find a climber's trail heading straight upward toward the crag (if you miss the turnoff, you’ll find yourself at the base of the North Buttress slab). Hike and boulder-hop to the crag and head left along its base, underneath the huge and obvious 'Great Arch'. Several hundred feet leftward, the trail begins to climb and you will see a long overlap that parallels the base of the slab about 5-10 feet above ground level. The start of Magic Bus is where a thin (~1”) angling white dike crosses this overlap (see Beta photo), and the first bolt is easily visible above.


Bolts plus optional small cam for start. Requires 8 draws.