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The Witch
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Airy Interlude T 
Ankles Away T 
Brute Force T 
Entity, The T 
Gorilla Warfare T 
Green Tide T 
Igor Unchained T 
Innersanctum T 
Nautilus, The T 
Pegleg T 
Phosphorescent Flow T 
Pit & The Pendulum, The T 
Pizzazz T 
Pulp Friction T 
Shazam  T 
Spook Book T 
Terrorvision T 
Wicked West of the Witch T 
Witch Doctor T 


YDS: 5.9 French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: HVS 5a

Type:  Trad, 3 pitches, 400'
Original:  YDS: 5.9 French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: HVS 5a [details]
FA: Mike Jaffe, Herb Laeger (July 1978)
Page Views: 896
Submitted By: Murf on Sep 21, 2009

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You've had a great time at the Needles, and climbed all the classic moderates. Its your last day and you're looking for something fun to ease your aching boots into before you head for the highway...or more likely, the queue for Airy and Igor is 10 deep and you want to get on something before nightfall. Shazam looks like that classic Needles corner climbing capped with a large roof with wild exposure, or a cave finish to scuff up those pristine Carhartts you wore.

Full disclosure: Shazam is not that route.

Pitch 1: Starts in a left facing corner down and right of Igor Unchained. You have to navigate between the initial corner and a subcorner a bit to the right. The gear is tricky, the rock grainy, and the experience suboptimal. Belay right on a wide ledge that may have some rap slings. An alternate start is a larger left facing corner starting lower down the slope.

Pitch 2: From the belay continue up the corner to a wide ledge. The rock improves somewhat, but the pitch feels awkward at times and the gear continues to take a bit of fiddling. The climbing feels harder than it should to someone who thought about getting on Spook Book, and it leaves a bitter taste in your mouth.

Pitch 3: Climb up to the large roof, deciding early if you're going to attempt the airy roof to the right, or the "Spelunker's Variation" to the left. While it looks like you can work your way back to the right after climbing into the alcove, the rock is lichenous and the traverse unlikely. If you continue too far to the left, you will default to physical offwidth. Either way, this is the "money pitch" such as it is.

If you find yourself deserving a small bit of punishment and decided to go caving, a few pointers: not recommended for those with jacket size above a 42 regular, leave the shoes and helmet for your partner, and as always enjoy.


A full Needles rack, with the understanding that this route doesn't take nuts quite as well as many of the other routes. A big piece or two would be helpful as well.

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