Left Side of the Folly
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BETA PHOTO: Route overlay
Dirty climbing on the lower pitches accesses the clean and spectacular upper pitches. Well worth the effort. This climb has a little bit of everything from thin aid to a mega-long and burly 5.9 chimney.
For the first two pitches we climbed Childhood's End
, which avoids the grungy looking 5.7 starting pitches.
Pitch 3: Climb a handcrack leading up and right to the edge of the corner (this is actually a sort of crazy feature, a hanging mostly detached arch of rock, you'll see it when you're looking back on it from further up on the pitch). Aid a thin crack in a corner up to an old bolt, then lower down and swing around the corner into a really dirty corner crack with trees in it. Start climbing from the lower tree, top-step past a bush, and finish aiding to a larger cluster of oak trees to belay. Rope drag will probably get kind of bad.
Pitch 4: More dirty climbing on hummocks and grass filled cracks wanders up and right. There are two parallel-running cracks which lead up under a big roof. Take the right-hand one. The last 20ft before the roof are C3. The placements are straightforward but you're putting cams behind a really thin and fragile flake which won't hold a fall. The gear gets thinner as you go up, and I finished by doing one free move to a super long reach to shove a cam up under the roof. People under 5'8" might have to camhook some fragile bullshit or hammer in a beak. From here it's C1 out the roof and up the sort of dirty corner (probably 5.10+ to free the corner). Belay at a sloping ledge which is caked in guano.
Pitch 5: Aid the leaning corner to a fixed pin then pendulum right to the bottom of a splitter chimney. Squeeze up a ways until you exit the chimney then climb up and left through a small roof and build a belay.
Pitch 6: An epic pitch leading up and right along the offwidth crack and chimney. One of the better wide cracks in the Valley. A #6 or two would be good to have for some of the narrower bits. After the final chimney either climb around or tunnel behind some chockstones and belay on a ledge. From here it's just a 15' pitch of 5.0 to the summit of the Folly.
Rappel the Right Side route. With two 60m ropes it's just 3 raps.
Pro to 6". A 000 C3 was really useful near the end of the crux aid section.