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5.12b/c PG13, Trad, Alpine, 1000 ft (303 m), 9 pitches, Grade V,  Avg: 4 from 2 votes
FA: fa Reed Dowdle & partner ffa J. Griffin Erin Wilson
Idaho > Central Idaho > Sawtooth Range > Elephant's Perch
Access Issue: Please use WAG bags for human waste and pack it out! See request from the Wilderness Ranger in the Sawtooths. Details


an incredible route, with lots of sustained climbing. first pitch is spicy first thing in the morning, but all there. traverse right into the corner at the top of pitch 2. 3 incredible pitches of 11 in a row brings you to the crux. tech 9 fingers and slab traverse*** both climbers should be fairly solid at the grade to attempt the crux, due to the traversing nature and sporty gear. otherwise there's a 5.10 option to the left that avoids piches 6 and 7, which is still an incredible route and lowers the grade to 11+/12-.. the 8th pitch is truly awesome , steep left leaning hands under a roof. this route's badass! if you're looking to work the crux you can run up the mtnrs route for 3 pitches and then take the right traversing hand crack at the base of the large diamond, kinda loose but moderate.. then rappel into crux, takes some kajankery to set a rope on, but doable..


start on Chasing the Dragon (100' left of mtnrs route)


see topo

Photos [Hide ALL Photos]

Justin following the splitter hands and lay back corner of the 5th pitch
[Hide Photo] Justin following the splitter hands and lay back corner of the 5th pitch
7th pitch
[Hide Photo] 7th pitch
pitch 5, perfect fingers
[Hide Photo] pitch 5, perfect fingers
Pitch 7
[Hide Photo] Pitch 7
Justin on the first pitch
[Hide Photo] Justin on the first pitch
working the crux 6th pitch
[Hide Photo] working the crux 6th pitch

Comments [Hide ALL Comments]

[Hide Comment] The first 2 pitches are the same as Chasing the Dragon. At P3, trend up and slightly right, cross over the Mountaineer's Route and pull a short roof to a finger crack. The next 4 pitches are stellar, after which, the route crosses Chasing the Dragon and then aims for a weakness in the large feature/roof. Climb out the roof at 5.11 and follow a splitter hand crack to the top (probably more like 5.8/5.9 than the 5.6 rating Justin gives on his topo). I'll post my topo of the route soon. One of the better routes I have done. Proud to share the send with Justin. Miss his tireless (at times "manic") energy. Aug 4, 2016
[Hide Comment] This route is unbelievably amazing... Except for the 5.12 traverse bit. Fortunately, the extremely jingus slabbing on lichen, dust, and potato chips of this pitch is easily aided. Apart from that the climb is varied, difficult, and sustained. Every pitch is memorable.

A few of the pro bolts could really stand to be updated - especially on the first two pitches (Wafer of Woe) and the belay “bolts” after the 5.12 traverse along with the first pro "bolt" of the following pitch. The latter of these problem-spots are actually just rivets (this is not indicated in the topo) and without rivet hangers the belay after the crux and the first moves of the next pitch are a bit dodgy.

What a route! Aug 29, 2017
[Hide Comment] Jeff Niwa and myself worked on the Mojo over several summers beginning in the late 90's and into 2005 or so. It is the start and original finish of Chasing the Dragon with a middle section of 4 different pitches. We spent a lot of time poking around trying to piece together this route. It went through several versions before we were satisfied with our efforts.
At the top of the 5th pitch we originally headed out right(the way Justin and Erin went) on aid but it looked too difficult to free climb. We settled on a short pendulum left from the belay to get to a pitch of 5.9R. This pitch takes you to the spectacular belay on the right edge of the diamond. From here, we followed the traverse pitch that takes you into a belay on top of a boulder in the Trunkline. From here we continued up and over the wild roof pitch and onto the final slab handcrack. These are the last 2 pitches of the Dragon.
There has been a topo available at the Perch(the store) for many years. If you are not up for the 5.12 section this is an option. One of the coolest climbs I've ever done. Pitch after pitch of 5.10+ - 5.11+ crack. This is the 4 star gold standard of climbing at this level in the Sawtooths.
This part of the Perch is also good for creating your own climb by combining parts of the 4 different routes that are nearby. Dragon to Mountaineers
and other combos. Sep 8, 2017
[Hide Comment] Thanks for posting Reid. Next time I go to the Perch I think I’d like to do this route again but try to avoid that 5.12 slab section by heading left... You spoke of a pendulum but Justin describes being able to free climb at 5.10... any idea how or where that might work?

Also, has anyone explored some of the thin cracks that appear to split the Diamond headwall itself? Looks like some incredible ground up there. Feb 9, 2019