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Gondolier Arete 

YDS: 5.10a French: 6a Ewbanks: 18 UIAA: VI+ ZA: 18 British: E1 5a

Type:  Sport, 1 pitch, 55'
Original:  YDS: 5.10- French: 6a Ewbanks: 18 UIAA: VI+ ZA: 18 British: E1 5a [details]
FA: Kirk Miller
New Route: Yes
Page Views: 8,761
Submitted By: Kirk Miller on Jul 21, 2008

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (354)
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Nice arete....

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  • Description 

    Traverse in from the corner, right of Route Canal, balance past the first clip and gain the arete. Pull the crux above the last bolt.


    See the topo photo.


    7 bolts to chains.

    Poison Ivy Alert 

    Eds. note, there [was] a bunch of PI at the base if you [started] up the slab.

    Photos of Gondolier Arete Slideshow Add Photo
    Rock Climbing Photo: Kirk Miller on his own route. Photo by Justin Wing...
    Kirk Miller on his own route. Photo by Justin Wing...
    Rock Climbing Photo: The rappel, as seen from the comfortable ledge at ...
    The rappel, as seen from the comfortable ledge at ...
    Rock Climbing Photo: Chris on the anchors.
    Chris on the anchors.
    Rock Climbing Photo: Sharon on the crux.
    Sharon on the crux.
    Rock Climbing Photo: Jerry starting the crux.
    Jerry starting the crux.
    Rock Climbing Photo: Ken on route.
    Ken on route.

    Comments on Gondolier Arete Add Comment
    Show which comments
    Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Feb 16, 2016
    By Kris S
    From: Ocean Beach, SF
    Aug 13, 2008
    rating: 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a

    Good rock, fun climbing, lichen on some [good] holds. Several options to start, 1st bolt too low / unnecessary because there is a good stance for clipping the second.
    By Ron Olsen
    From: Boulder, CO
    Sep 15, 2008
    rating: 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b

    Another steep, fun route. The crux at the last bolt was a little tricky and felt harder than 10a.

    On September 15, there were only a few remnants of poison ivy at the base, but be careful when you pull the rope.
    By Darren Mabe
    From: Flagstaff, AZ
    Sep 24, 2008
    rating: 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a

    Thoughtful 5.9ish climbing to off balance crux at the last bolt, grazing the 5.10a mark. First bolt is not necessary.
    By Julius Beres
    From: Boulder, CO
    Oct 25, 2008
    rating: 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a

    I'm going to disagree with the previous posters. I liked the first bolt! Thank you Kirk for putting it there. It may not be "necessary" if you don't fall, but the second bolt would be fairly far off the ground.

    The climb is mostly 5.8-5.9 with one move near the top that makes it a bit more challenging. The last move is easier if you are taller.
    By David Hous
    From: Boulder, Colorado
    Nov 3, 2008
    rating: 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a

    Very aesthetic line, well bolted. I found it about 5.9+, but I am tall.
    Thanks Kirk!
    By Bjorn
    From: Leadvegas, CO
    May 19, 2009

    Cool moves on the arete. A bit ho-hum until the very top, which is pleasantly baffling when you first encounter it.
    By Crag Dweller
    From: New York, NY
    Jun 19, 2009
    rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a

    A nice climb. I don't know about 10, though. Maybe that's because there's a solid stance and a bolt waiting for you after each move. But, I was lulled into a casual state of mind to be startled awake when I got to the last move. Where did the bomber hands and feet go? You mean I'm actually going to have to think now! :)

    As for whether or not the first bolt is needed...I've climbed a lot of routes with the first bolt as high up as the second bolt on this climb and there's a pretty good slab to stand on and clip the second bolt. So, yeah, it's high but it's pretty safe w/o the first bolt.
    By Brett Bauer
    Aug 20, 2009
    rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a

    Crux move: everyone in my party moved to the right of the bolt. I think that move might go at 5.10. I found to the left and on the arete proper to go at maybe 10 also but more fun because you are on the arete! Either way both moves are fun, but like others say easier climbing to the one move make it more like 5.9.
    By Jonathan Reeves
    From: Golden, Colorado
    Sep 13, 2009
    rating: 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a

    This is a really fun route. I would say it's either a really hard 9 or a really easy 10. I had a blast. I completed the crux on the left hand side of the arete. I pushed of the foot hold with my right foot and used my left on the wall for balance until I hit the jug.
    By Luke Childers
    Sep 15, 2009
    rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a

    Good line, but it's really just a one move crux at the top of the wall. I thought 5.9-9+ was about right. Not a 5.10 I don't think. Still grades aside... a good line worth doing for sure.
    By Ben Burnett
    From: Colorado
    Jun 2, 2010
    rating: 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a

    Very fun, quick crux - easy if you're tall. We didn't see ivy at the base of the slab - which is a fun start, but a little insecure w/o any bolts until you can stand and get the second one. Great route for beginning leaders - keep that first bolt on for them.
    By Bal Rau
    From: Denver, Colorado
    Jul 11, 2011
    rating: 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a

    Nice feature, one move wonder before the anchors. Do those who say it's a 5.9 think that the last move goes at that ? I don't.
    By Hoag Hoag
    From: Littleton, CO
    Jul 18, 2011
    rating: 5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a

    This route is 5.8 until the last move to the anchor ledge. There's a good right hand crimper and a little knob for a right foot. It's balancy but fun.
    By Tadd Duncan
    From: Lakewood, CO
    Jul 17, 2012

    Fun route! I'm thinking more in he 9 range tho. Crimp it and rip it!
    By Bruce Hildenbrand
    Oct 11, 2013

    Many of you who think the first bolt on this route is too low are not climbing the route as described by Kirk Miller, who did the FA. If you read his description, you climb up to the first bolt from around the corner to the left very close to the start of Root Canal.

    If you come in from the left side of the arete, you will appreciate the first bolt. If you start the route by climbing up the lower angle slab on the right, you might find the first bolt unnecessary.
    By Kirk Miller
    From: Golden, CO
    Oct 11, 2013

    When the route went in, there was a huge patch of Poison Ivy at the base of the slab. Thus the original start and first bolt placement.
    Thanks to the heroic efforts of Alex Duran and Kirk Raney, the area is now free of the noxious plant.
    By Rob Davies UK
    From: Cheshire, UK
    Oct 16, 2013
    rating: 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a

    Good moves up the arete - easier than it looks - to a crimpy Harmers Wood 5b finish.
    By Bruce Hildenbrand
    Jun 18, 2014

    In October 2013, Dale Haas and I replaced the hardware at the anchor with SS quicklinks and SS rings. The hardware was provided by the American Safe Climbing Association(ASCA)( They appreciate your support.
    By Brad Gone
    Apr 23, 2015
    rating: 5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b

    There is a small hold near the crux that is loose and will probably break off soon. It wiggles in place. It's a key foothold for the crux more and will likely make the route slightly harder when it breaks off.
    By Kathryn H
    Feb 16, 2016
    rating: 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a

    5.7 climbing until a well-protected two-move crux, one move if you're tall. Did not feel like a 10a. 9+ at the most; good first 5.10 lead.

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