Devil's Spiral Variation
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Our victory shot. The notch is visible in the back...
This climb is a variation to the traditional Devil's Thumb Spiral Route
, and because the climbing is so nice through the final moves, it deserves its own description.
From the notch north of the Devil's Thumb, begin climbing north, north-east from the notch as per the Devil's Spiral Route
. After 40 feet, when you effectively reach a ramp band that spirals along the east face of the thumb (the Spiral Route
continues this way), head straight up to the summit for approximately 60-70 feet following crack systems the whole way.
20 feet from the summit block proper, you will encounter three choices to the summit. We took what I wagered as technically the easiest line, straight up a 5.5-5.6 hand crack which diagonals up and left. The foot work is great, and the crux protects with pieces ranging from 0.75--1.5 inches (I used a hex here).
Although the crux is relatively short, the line is direct, aesthetic, and generates very little rope drag. It should be done in 1 pitch from the notch. Moreover, it allows the leader to watch the second all the way to the summit block.
DESCENT: Rappel from slings around the summit block. One 60 meter rope is required here. Bring a 4-6 foot sling to back the old ones up.
Arrive at the notch north of the Devil's Thumb as described in the Spiral Route
. We climbed the class 4 gully to the north of the Thumb in 1 pitch; then we down climbed class 3/4 to the notch for the second pitch.
Small rack required. I used mainly small to mid sized nuts. Through the crux, I placed a BD #8 hex and 1.5 inch (approximately) Metolius Cam.
BETA PHOTO: The route sans the first 20 feet from the notch (b...
BETA PHOTO: This was our "second" pitch traversing t...
BETA PHOTO: MaryKay following the direct line to the summit bl...