|Type:||Sport, 5 pitches, 280', Grade III|
|Original:||YDS: 5.9 French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: HVS 5a [details]|
|FA:||Rob Hagler and Mike Tompson, September 2002|
|Submitted By:||Jeff J on Oct 30, 2010|
|Comments on Climbign 101||Add Comment|
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By Joe Petroske
From: North Bend, WA
Oct 31, 2016
Lots of loose rock near the anchors, make sure to bring a helmet. Fossils were visible on the third pitch. There is a short walk on the ledges between the first 4 pitches that make this take a little bit longer to climb. Climbing is just OK, but the view on the climb makes up for it.
When I went up, there were extremely strong winds that made the easy climbing on this more fun.
By Nate George
From: Seattle, WA
Nov 9, 2016
We stayed in the nearby town of Choteau, a scenic 40 minute drive from Blackleaf Canyon that is navigable by passenger car. On our first day the wind was calm, but it was near freezing (last week of October). The approach is a super easy 5-10 minute walk, but allocate ample time to find the first bolt. White spots on the limestone cliffs make the bolts nearly invisible. After deciding to bail at the top of the 3rd pitch (we got started too late) we went back to the hotel. The next day, we arrived at sunrise and enjoyed watching the light move across the surrounding peaks and cliffs as we made our way to the bottom of the first pitch. Conditions the second day were very different. While there was little cloud cover and it was about 10 degrees warmer, winds were ~40 mph sustained with gusts up to 60 mph that rapidly and unpredictably changed direction. This slowed our ascent significantly, allowing the stronger 2 of 4 in our group to finish the 4th pitch, then promptly beginning a miserable, slow descent due to the wind tangling our ropes. If you don't bring the right gear, your ascent could be cold or downright dangerous. The route isn't super great but like Joe said, the view is incredible. It feels alpine like when you get up on the cliff. Good luck finding the first bolt.
-Safety glasses- if your eyes are sensitive like mine, the cold wind could make seeing difficult even without the flying mini-choss
-HELMET!- the amount of choss is ridiculous. there were a few bowling ball sized rocks in addition to the never-ending choss on the belay/rappel ledges, so be careful when you reach the top, are belaying, rappelling, or pulling ropes.
-Pants- I wish I had worn long underwear. wear abrasion-resistant clothes (I ripped my Patagonia down jacket)
-top- I wore a synth-down under a military surplus BDU coat. it protected me well from the razor-sharp rock
-balaclava- the wind was brutal
-camera- Blackleaf is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been
By Christian Spencer
From: North Bend, Wa
Apr 14, 2017
Fun place to get some good exposure. Great view of the canyon and people hiking or hunting will wave at you. Did it in gusts up to 55-60mph which made the 5.8 a really fun climb. Check the weather before you go because it can get pretty windy in the canyon. Tons of choss so bring your helmet!! Sometimes it's nice to get rid of rocks on the ledges where you belay from when there is no one underneath you so your belayer doesn't get a brick to the head. Went in October with a party of 4 but only 2 of us made it to the top of the 4th pitch (5.8)
Climbing is pretty great and the view makes it worth it. Also fun to bivy on top of the second pitch for a starlit night. Just clear choss above you if you're paranoid...