Gothic Cathedral/Last Gasp
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BETA PHOTO: Looking up from the base
This is a sandy, extremely chossy, and littered with pigeon poo chimney. The climbing is pretty easy (5.7) for the first pitch, with a bit of a possible challenge at a well-protected roof about 40' up. Beware though, because all although there are myriad placements, the overall picture is one of a giant conglomeration in a gully of choss. Minimize rope drag at the beginning because the climbing turns into runout 5.6 to the "anchors" (the big yellow Smith guidebook says there are anchors) which is an old (1/4") bolt w/ a thin hanger. Unless you brought the big gear for the second pitch with you, I only saw one crack to build an anchor with the gear I had left. And yes it is still all choss.
The second pitch consists of about 20' or so of mank over a bulge with good feet and hand jams to where the reason to climb the route to begin with is located, the 35' feet of good 5.8 off-width. This is where the "R" in the rating comes in if you don't have the big bros, or can't place them because of all the undulations. The crack did widen up enough for me to get totally in between it, with great views through the other side of Smith of the Cascades. The chimeny squeezes shut to a proper 5.8 off-width again just below the top-out, at which there are about 6 pieces of sun-beat webbing slung around reasonably sized boulder. Plenty of room up there for two people to stand, though I wouldn't recommend belaying someone up there who will be jostling and jangling on the rope while squirreling their way up the OW.
Bottom line is, this is one climb that the Smith guidebook's description is lacking, though understandable since it isn't climbed often due to the poor quality of rock. Be prepared to build anchors (not something most at Smith tend to do) and wear a helmet because you and your partner will be kicking rocks and pebbles down the whole time. I'm pretty sure you could rap from the top of the second pitch, which is only maybe 60' feet long, with two 70' m, but since we rapped from the top of the first pitch with two 70's, and there was plenty of rope on the ground, I can only make an intelligent guess on that one. If you're looking for a bit of adventure climbing and want to do something different from the usual Smith sport, then this will be a few fun hours.
This climb is obvious, a few bolted lines downstream from Revelations, a popular 5.9. It's in the guidebook as Gothic Cathedral (first pitch) to Last Gasp (2nd pitch)
mixed nuts and SLCDs, .5-6, bring the Big Bros if you have them. Build anchors at the top of the first pitch, and bring some webbing and rap ring(s) for the top if you don't want to trust what is up there (I reluctantly rapped off of the existing webbing but it should get replaced...)
From: Bend, OR
Apr 23, 2013
For the general safety of those climbing the popular moderate routes below this climb, please save this climb for a very low-traffic weekday morning and not a busy Sunday afternoon!! or make sure you have helmets for your partner as well as everyone climbing on the ground!
By April Koperniak
From: Bend, OR
Apr 24, 2013
Yes, totally agreed. Had I known there would have been that much shrapnel we'd of climbed it a different day...many apologies to all those who were below us..