Type: Trad, 550 ft, 4 pitches
FA: Mike Flood, Rob Brown, Troy Bailey - 1992
Page Views: 99 total · 17/month
Shared By: Josh Janes on Sep 5, 2018
Admins: Matthew Fienup, Muscrat, M. Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Salamanizer suchoski, Justin Johnsen, Vicki Schwantes

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Description

Bird of Prey climbs the SSE face of the Warlock (lots of sun) in four pitches just right of S Crack before joining that route for its 5.10 OW/Squeeze pitch and final pitches to the summit. The climbing is varied and interesting, and the second pitch is a real standout. There are some dangerous sections on the route but they are generally at an easier grade.

Start: Scramble down the far side of the Warlock between the Warlock and Voodoo Dome. The best path keeps away from the rock faces in favor of the loose pine-needle gully in the center. Continue a long ways down until you can traverse over to an obvious weakness (a complex deep gully system with many cracks) that marks the starts of the South Face and S Crack routes. Bird of Prey begins in a prominent left-facing dihedral that is just right and uphill of the mouth of this gully.

P1 (5.7, 80'): Climb the dihedral which starts off as hands and widens (good smaller gear) to the top of a pillar. Belay from a tombstone flake.

P2 (5.11b PG13, 150'): Step left from the belay to some hollow flakes and climb upwards to the first bolt - don't fall before clipping this bolt. Continue, with commitment, up to the pretty left-facing corner above. Spaced gear placements, bolts, and increasingly difficult climbing leads up the corner to a crux approaching and passing the final bolt. Continue up the corner more easily before pulling an overlap to reach a hanging belay at bolts.

P3 (5.10a with 5.8R, 140'): The original description speaks of climbing up a crack to a bolt, then following more crack to another bolt. This did not match any features visible from the belay. Directly overhead on a steep bulge was a 1/4" bolt with Leeper hanger, but unwilling to risk committing to that path, we stepped left to a system of water grooves which were followed for 60' (5.8R) of unprotected but secure climbing to the left end of a steep overlap. Here you can place good gear, then traverse slightly right to a second bolt. Continue past a third bolt (5.10-) and then follow low 5th class terrain (R/X) for another 70' up and right to a bolted belay on a ledge.

P4 (5.9, 180'): A really fun pitch: Climb unprotected rock above the belay to gain a nice left-facing corner. Continue up this to its top, then traverse left under a roof and pull the roof on the left up into a right-facing, right-leaning corner system. Follow this to an awkward move passing a chockstone and up to a bolted belay (old quarter-inchers but you could belay elsewhere off better gear) below the 5.10 OW/Squeeze pitch of S Crack. Runner your pro well to mitigate drag on this pitch which was originally broken into two.

Descent: I recommend finishing with S Crack. Having left gear at the base, we had committed to rapping but were gambling with only one rope and no bolt kit (see comment below). If you rap, head straight down (not over the route) to another bolted belay (1/4" bolts and tat - anchor for Giant Steps/Gathering of Wolves). Rap again, aiming slightly left, to another bolted belay (1/4" bolts and tat), and make one final rap to a long ledge system which can be followed back right towards the start of Imaginary Voyage (inconvenient to return to the base of the route). We used a single 80m rope but a single 70m would probably work too. All bolts on the rappel were 1/4" and tat/rings was terrible or non-existent.

Location

SSE face of the Warlock just uphill from S Crack and South Face Routes. Scramble down the far side of the Warlock between the Warlock and Voodoo Dome. The best path keeps away from the rock faces in favor of the loose pine-needle gully in the center. Continue a long ways down until you can traverse over to an obvious weakness (a complex deep gully system with many cracks) that marks the starts of the South Face and S Crack routes. Bird of Prey begins in a prominent left-facing dihedral that is just right and uphill of the mouth of this gully.

Protection

1 each to #3 Camalot.
2 each tiny to 0.4 Camalot/Yellow Alien size.
Wires & RP's.

Anchor bolts are good 3/8". Pro bolts are 5/16th button heads but seemed OK.

Photos

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Josh Janes

  5.11b R
Josh Janes    
  5.11b R
Some notes on rapping and bolt replacement...
  • There is no fixed anchor atop P1, but the anchor atop P2 is good and equipped with chains. If you wanted to retreat from here you could easily rap down and left (~120' rap) to a tree in the S Crack gully system and rap from there to the ground.
  • The anchor atop P3 is good but it isn't equipped for rappel. With some rings/links, you could rap from this anchor back to the anchor atop P2 (~140' rap). An enterprising individual could also replace that 1/4" bolt above the P2 belay and see if that is where the third pitch is "supposed" to go.
  • The anchor where Bird of Prey and S Crack meet (below the 5.10 wide pitch of S Crack) is a pair of terrible 1/4" bolts that are not equipped for rappel.
  • Both of the anchors below this (part of Giant Steps/Gathering of Wolves) are also terrible 1/4" bolts that are not equipped for rappel. It appears that the pro bolts on these routes are also 1/4".
Sep 5, 2018