Type: Trad, 600 ft, 6 pitches
FA: Full Link-up: Luke Stefurak
Page Views: 1,102 total · 23/month
Shared By: Luke Stefurak on Jun 17, 2015
Admins: Scott Coldiron, Jon Nelson, Micah Klesick

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Access Issue: Seasonal Raptor Closure: Upper Cheeks Details


This route is a linkup of existing routes with a little bit of new ground to allow passage up the center of the Upper Town Wall. You can now access some excellent 5.10 climbing on Rise and Fall and Green Drag-on without having to climb 5.12. The pitches listed below can be combined in a variety of ways depending on what you are looking for.

Pitches five and six are bouldery and have really fun movement. Big thanks to Alex and Cody for playing around on this route with me!

Pitch 1 - 5.9 - 90 ft
Climb the 5.9 start of Davis-Holland with fun jams and fingerlocks. This pitch is sometimes wet. Belay at two bolts on a nice ledge.

Pitch 2 - 5.10a - 100 ft
Continue up Davis-Holland, stellar fingers and thin hands in a corner. To a two bolt anchor on a sloping ledge.

With a few back cleaning shenanigans the 2nd pitch of Davis-Holland can be combined with the next pitch which yields an amazing 55m pitch of 5.10 climbing.

Pitch 3 - 5.10c - 100 feet - 8 Bolts
From the belay look up and right for a lone bolt with a black painted hanger. Undercling across the roof, per the right variation of the Davis-Holland, and then step right to a perfect jug under the bolt. Execute a short trickey section which yields a horizontal (#2 camalot) and some moderate face climbing to get onto the second pitch of Rise and Fall. Skip the belay out right and clip another black painted bolt up and to the left.

Follow amazing crystal edges up a dike passed 6 spaced bolts. This is the second pitch of Rise and Fall. The crux comes at the end getting past two different roofs. Belay at a good stance with three bolts.

Pitch 4 - 5.10d - 75 feet - 2 bolts
Start up Rise and Fall passing one bolt until you reach a finger crack. Get some gear and step right below a bolt that is on Green Drag-on. Clip this and continue up to a two bolt anchor under a roof. (This is the end of pitch 3 of Green Drag-on).

Clip the anchor for pro and make a hard move to get established in the steep crack that exits the right side of the roof. Sustained 5.10 crack climbing leads to a stance on the left with two bolts. This anchor is not setup for rappel, so if you want to bail you need to aid up and left on Green Drag-on or climb the next pitch and rappel Town Crier. It is possible to split this into two 40 foot pitches but there is no reason to do so and the P3 anchor on Green Drag-on is fully hanging and an awful place to belay.

Pitch 5 - 5.11c/d - 40 feet - 4 bolts
Climb up the corner with some thin gear to a good jug. Clip a shiny bolt out right. (The bolts above and to the left are for Green Drag-on) A balancy section leads to a tenuous second clip. There are holds, if you look in the right places! Keep working right with a powerful section past the third bolt. Clip the final bolt and step right to the three bolt anchor on Town Crier.

Pitch 6 - 5.11d - 105 feet - 2 bolts.
Start up the flare on Town Crier and clip a few pins that can be backed up with thin gear. Execute a sweet layback sequence (crux) to get established on a flexy flake. Crank past the flake, 2 bolts protect, and then immediately start traversing left on an obvious horizontal crack. (Going up further is the 5.12+ crux pitch of Town Crier)

Twenty feet of sweet jugs bring you back to the Green Drag-on. Follow the final 50 feet of 5.10 crack climbing to an anchor on a busy ledge.

The #3 is useful for the last pitch but everything else above #.75 is not necessary for the last two pitches.


This route starts on the Davis-Holland and finishes on Green Drag-on.

There are many ways to rappel. I suggest going down Green Drag-on and then swinging left to Rise and Fall (clipping a bolt as a directional helps). I prefer this way since it is very very hard to rappel to the Green Drag-on Anchor under the roof. A 60m Rope is sufficient.

You can also rappel down Town Crier with a 60m rope.


3x green and yellow aliens plus a double rack to #1 Camalot with a single #2, #3, #4.

All anchors are bolted.

The most gear demanding pitch is the 2nd pitch of the Davis-Holland.


Jon Nelson
Redmond, WA
Jon Nelson   Redmond, WA  
Sounds fantastic Luke.

So, why does the dragon cry? Jun 18, 2015
Luke Stefurak
Seattle, WA
Luke Stefurak   Seattle, WA
Jun 18, 2015
Jon Nelson
Redmond, WA
Jon Nelson   Redmond, WA  

However, I think the correct answer to this koan is 'Because it wasn't a bobcat'. Jun 18, 2015
Chris Mutzel
Seattle, Washington
Chris Mutzel   Seattle, Washington
Did this yesterday to change it up a bit from the classics (DHLA, Heaven's Gate, etc).

Thought it was pretty spectacular, some notes for future suitors:

1) Linked 2nd pitch of DHLA into the 10c bolted pitch up the dike as described above. This was quite the pumpfest, and rope drag could have been improved via more/longer runners around the transition between the two routes, and on the middle couple bolts on the dike. Placed a #1 C4 after the first bolt off of the DHLA second anchor (which is after the lieback sequence off the belay). Crux felt to be the first of the two roofs, while the second is still slightly cryptic.

2) The right facing corner on the 10d pitch felt was extremely strenuous. While the gear is great, it is not as easy to drop it in and go like most of the other climbing at Index. The bottom of the dihedral was slightly wet after 3 days of sun but created no issues. You can easily avoid the slime/water. The corner after the intermediate anchor can be protected well with a single rack to #2, you'll probably want blue and purple Mastercam sizes for the lower and upper sections of this pitch.

3) The 11c traverse pitch with three bolts is **** awesome! I put it a .5 and blue X4 in the pod that can be seen from the belay, before the first bolt, and felt well well protected.

4) 11d pitch - This flare seems harder than Iron Horse, but the sequence up and through the flake is great. The gear on the traverse is finger size and a bit manky - plug and go! Up above, the 5.10 cracks were nearly unprotect-able due to the amount of goo filling them. I dog-legged back right to the intermediate anchors on the last pitch of town crier, which required some unprotected down climbing across the grassy ledge and shenanigans for my follower.

Highly recommend everything on this climb other than the last pitch of town crier due to reasons listed above. Mar 20, 2016
Stig gles
Stig gles   Seattle
I found the final 5.10 cracks to be dirty, but completely protectable. I could see it staying wet later than a lot of the other stuff around there. Anyway, I had fun on that section. Jun 6, 2016
Thanks for creating this cool route, Luke!

Since much of the route is in right-facing corners, it gets shade earlier than other routes on the UTW, and you can basically be sure nobody else will be on it.

Here's an alternate pitch breakdown:

P1: DHLA P1 into DHLA P2, but veer up and right at the end of the pitch, and belay around the corner on the ledge per Rise and Fall. ~58m 5.10

P2: Rise and Fall P2 + start up Rise and Fall P3, then veer right onto G. Dragon, skip the hanging belay, and climb the 40' 5.10 corner to a 2-bolt anchor and small stance. 45m 5.10+

P3: The .11c pitch is only about 10m long, but really fun. It ends at an awkward stance. Link it into the .11d pitch. The final 2/3 of the .11d pitch (now back on Green D) is a very filthy 5.10 crack (sadly it's a seasonal gutter for the upper wall) that never sees traffic and has a lot of zigs and zags. Next time I'd probably just finish by using the Town Crier bolt ladder to AO directly to the bolted anchor. Aug 21, 2017
Luke Stefurak
Seattle, WA
Luke Stefurak   Seattle, WA
Sweet! Nice work linking the two crux pitches. Getting to the top of the UTW in three pitches must have felt awesome!

Funny that the last pitch is so dirty. I remember removing some moss but nothing too bad. Then again I was up there a lot that that year and the 2014/2015 winter barely happened. T-Shirt weather in February. Aug 22, 2017