Himmelen Kan Vente
Trad, 1200 ft (364 m), 9 pitches,
Avg: 2.7 from 3
FA: FA Patrik Fransson, Thorbjorn Enevold 1997
("Heaven Can Wait") Besides Vestpillaren Direct, Himmelen is the easiest way up Presten with some supurb pitches, even if the climbing feels disjointed and uncohesive because of how the route crosses over many other routes on the cliff. Do this one if you finished Vesetpillaren Direct early and want to get more climbing in, including some great wide climbing! The finishing pitches are wonderful and sit at the very pinnacle of the cliff.
P1) 5.6 50M. From the approach in the gully to the right of Presten, move over broken ground past a small overlap that leads into a slightly vegetated groove. This was tricky to find, so I suggest downloading the pictures or getting the guidebook. Move up the lightly vegetated groove until you can break left along a ledge system over dirt to belay at the bottom of a wide crack of perhaps 6-8 inches. Another option is to belay underneath some cracks through overlaps up and to the right of the base of the clean wide crack.
P2) 5.9 50M. One of the few true off-widths you'll find in the "Top 50" climbs around here! I believe it would protect with a BD camelot #6, and you can get a terrible BD #0.1 in a seam halfway up, but really you should probably put your off-width hat on and run it out. The wide crack accepts a leg readily and is low-angle enough to feel stable. If you get tired, just slump into the crack for a bit and breathe. This wide crack meets the overlaps and cracks to the right after 30 feet or so, at which you can get some good gear and enter the 4-5in crack (BD #4 C4 camelot or similar) above. This crack is also pretty stable, so you can either bump a #4 the whole way (it's a long way) or bring multiple #4s. This crack will peter out at a flake, where you can either climb around to the left, or undercling boldly (fun!!) out right. After the flake, you can continue up the thin crack (micronuts) at a stiffer grade around 5.11, or break back left to the arete. When the arete and thin crack meet, don't follow the vegetated gully out left, which leads to the top of the 4th pitch of Vestpillaren. Instead, break right to belay at a small stance. The guidebook has this pitch at N6+ or 5.10+. If you've spent any time climbing wide in Yosemite or elsewhere, you'll find the pitch to climb more like a bold (if you skipped the #6) 5.8-5.9, unless you do the right variation flake/thin crack.
P3) 5.2 20M. Work up easy ground about 15ft right of a big house-sized block to the base of a groove. Can be linked with pitch 4.
P4) 5.9 40M. Climb this groove and the crack that continues, breaking over a small arete to the right and then up to a bushy ledge. Move left along the ledge to the base of the first large, leaning, right-facing corner system.
P5) 5.8 40M. Climb this corner system with fun moves. When the corner starts to peter out/transition into large roofs out right, move left over the arete to a belay stance.
P6) 5.10a 35M. Continue up a pleasant technical corner, optionally breaking out onto the juggy face. Join the belay stance at the base of Vestpillaren's "Slanting Corner" a clean, right-facing corner that slants rightward.
P7) 5.10b 45M. Crossing over Vestpillaren Direct leftward, make your way up and left into a groove, past a small overlap, and leftward across the face to another right-leaning groove. Climb this to a stance. This pitch is not intuitive and the gear is somewhat sparse.
P8) 5.10a 35M. Following a series of left-facing flakes/grooves, make your way up to the right side of the larger of two roofs that can be seen at the top of Presten. Belay at the right end of this roof with some great airy views.
P9) 5.9 30M. Move left under the roof with great airy moves at the very top of presten, and then pull around right after climbing the short corner. Here, you can move left into a left-facing corner system, although be very careful here. As of 2018 a loose flake that was a useful hold to transfer over into this corner system was very loose. It will probably come off if you use it. Try using the other holds or do the stupid option, which is to pull over to the face out right and do mildly licheny, completely unprotected 5.9 slab moves upward. This latter option is definitely R. I would strongly suggest going left, but for the love of god avoid the flake. After this, bust out to the summit!
Descent: follow the normal Presten descent, following the ridgeline towards Festvagtinden but descending left before the summit to descend the talus between the reservoir and the Festvag cliffs.
Hike up the gully to the right of Presten up dirt steps on the left side. Stop in a grassy area that looks slightly used. Hard to describe the start with words, so get a guidebook or look at the pictures.
Standard rack plus 2-3 4-5in pieces (BD #4) and potentially a 6-7in piece (BD #6).
Kyle on the clean, somewhat spicy face of pitch 7
Kyle heading up the corners of Pitch 5
The starting pitch from the gulley for Himmelen Kan Vente and the original Vestpillaren (not Vestpillaren Direct)