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Luke has made the starting moves over the roof to ...
This may be the first bomb route I've submitted. We were looking for a nice mellow climb to end the day and chose this one, since it looked decent from the ground. Turns out there's about 15' of nice and pretty exciting hand crack, but the start more than makes up for it, and otherwise the climbing is moderate in difficulty and interest.
Approach: See Rossiter or the instructions on this site for getting to The Main Cliffs. The northernmost part of the west face is a steep gray face capped by a huge red overhang. The right edge of this face is a left facing corner, Guano Master, supposedly 5.7, but I don't know..., that ascends towards the right edge of the roof. Right of this corner is a narrow pillar that starts a ways up with several bolts. That's Pillars of Frenzy 10d. More or less directly below this is a short gray slot with some lichen leading to a tiny pine tree. Above that is some funky "rock" and then a right facing corner leading to an obvious hand crack in green rock.
The climb: Luke was complaining a lot on the climbing above the initial slot. Said it was really grungy, loose, no gear and hard. After a while I decided to say nothing--it looked easy to me. But following I was pretty gripped and almost fell off. There's a thick powder on the rock, and all the holds sound hollow as if full of air. Any gear you could get would be useless. And it's steep and non-trivial climbing, perhaps because of the effort to not pull hard on anything. So this section really sucks. At the top of this funky bulging section you finally get some gear, and soon after that the rock quality improves. Continue up the right facing corner to a roof at the base of the hand crack. Step left to a ledge, and make an interesting move to get past the overhang and into the crack. Several footholds keep the steep perfect-hands crack at only 5.8. Above there's a squeeze chimney which you might choose to climb. We climbed a right angling thin crack just right of the chimney. Traverse left to the bolt anchors and, after backing up the webbing, rap with two ropes to the ground.
Standard trad rack, mostly cams to #3 Camalot. Doubles may be handy in hand size. Descent: 2-rope rappel (50m ropes shouldl work) off of two 3/8" bolts with no chains. Ancient messed up slings and two rings as of now. Bring webbing.
The route climbs through funky rock in the shadows...
By Luke Clarke
Sep 12, 2005
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
Ivan's got it right, this is a bomb. The first 30 feet is over crumbly, grunge rock that decomposes into ball bearings beneath your feet. You're working around some obnoxious brush at a move or two but I wouldn't bother cleaning it out. I think the the blue and green alien size cracks 20 feet up are not so rotten inside but don't fall. Ivan has posted a shot of me at the best part of this pitch, a beautfiul 2-inch hand crack about 100 feet off the deck. Only trouble is, you're past this in three moves. Rock is better above on 5.6-5.7 moves.