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Santiam Highway Ledges 

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

   
Type:  Trad, 5 pitches
Original:  YDS: 5.10a French: 6a Ewbanks: 18 UIAA: VI+ ZA: 18 British: E1 5a [details]
FA: Bill Cummins, John Marshall, Jim Nieland, 1969. F.F.A Jeff Thomas, Brian Holcomb. Oct 5, 1984
Page Views: 849
Submitted By: Derrick Peppers on May 19, 2014

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looking Down the 10a pitch from above.

Seasonal Raptor Closure MORE INFO >>>

Description 

If you are excited about an adventurous route at smith, This route will not dissapoint. The climbing is easy and the rock and pro is reasonable considering the location. Route finding would probably be the hardest part of the climb but even that shouldn't be a problem if you've done adventurous climbs before.
Pitch 1- third class scrambling leads to a large 20 foot wide ledge with anchors on the ground next to the edge where you step out of the alcove.
Pitch 2- 5.8 on questionable rock. once you clip that first bolt, shoot straight up to the next ledge 20' up and look right for bolted anchors.
Pitch 3- 5.10a, go to the bolt line on the far right side of the ledge. Follow questionable rock up a solid bolt line and turn a corner joining a crack heading up to the dihedral above. Expect to use gear in between bolts that are about 20' spaced higher up. follow the crack all the way to a large ledge where the thumb is. anchors on left. Unavoidable rope drag on this pitch. minimize with alpine slings on the lower and upper sections.
(detour)- climb the thumb. It's worth it.
pitch 4- 5.7 unexposed move to a cool gully protected on both sides. continue up the path of least resistance to the first false summit. there are anchors at the top but it's easy to solo and mostly unexposed.
Pitch 5- this is a very long and sometimes very exposed 4th class traverse across several peaks until you reach the true summit with new rap anchors that take you a short distance down the back side to the ground. expect this traverse to be the most exposed part of the whole day and one of the highlights of the climb.(not for the inexperienced)
To get back Walk off north along the cliff band to a small pass and cut downhill back to the start. Have fun!!!

Location 

This route should be studied via topos such as those found in Alan Watts 2010 falcon guide book to be certain of your location. There are a lot of routes surrounding this route that would be bad to get lost on.

Protection 

Gear to 3". I used a single rack to 3" and still had plenty of gear left over.


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By Mitch Jacky
From: Portland, OR
Aug 15, 2016
rating: 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a R

Hands down the most adventurous endeavor I have ever undertaken. We hiked up Burma Trail in 100° Temps with gallons of water. The first route was a small scramble to the belay spot of a 5.9 at the top of which was a bolted anchor and a single hangar. This is the belay spot for the 5.10a (do not do this route in the hottest part of the summer day unless you want to know what dying feels like). Starting here, walk around the ledge to the start of some fun climbing with little crimps, side pulls, and pockets. Make it up to the stout hand and finger crack which is bolted at the start and then transitions to gear. This turns into an off-width sort of thing for a few moves. All in all it is pretty spicy! At the next belay spot you will see a bolted anchor. The real treat is a small 25 foot spire which you can lead (pro at the bottom, no pro until you reach the top bolted anchors) and make sure you stand up and see the breathtaking view! The next pitch is a simple slab climb which starts on pockets, and you might as well free solo as it is simple. The next few bits of the journey will be scrambles on dirty rock until you get to the first minor summit. Then you make the harrowing trek along the ridge (you can solo if you want, but ropes really help with the nerves even if the runouts make the rope next to useless). When you get through all of this you will see Smith from one of the highest vantage points in the park! So transcendentally beautiful, especially if you top out at sunset! You can rap off from the anchors, walk down and around your left and make it back to the start!

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