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Southwest Face Midsummer's Dome 

YDS: 5.7 French: 5a Ewbanks: 15 UIAA: V+ ZA: 13 British: MVS 4b

Type:  Trad, Alpine, 5 pitches, 1000', Grade III
Original:  YDS: 5.7 French: 5a Ewbanks: 15 UIAA: V+ ZA: 13 British: MVS 4b [details]
FA: Andrew Embick, Dave Goeddel, & Jack Norris 1974
Season: Spring, Summer, Fall
Page Views: 3,254
Submitted By: Jared Spaulding on Oct 3, 2009

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Eric Hobday enjoying a sunny day on Midsummer Dome...


A moderately sandbagged route on the southwest face of this classic rouche moutonee situated in the middle of the East Fork Valley. Lots of good belay ledges, a bit wandering at first, not much loose rock, and a bit (200+') of fourth class at the top all combine to make this a good route.

I did the route in 6 pitches, with the first two being about 57 meters long. Many options exist for weaving your way up the SW face. (Following Kelsey's description, I found a move of 5.8 and 5.9, but have stuck with his rating in the book) Here is what I did.

P.1 Start below and left of large beautiful right facing corner 200 feet up the southwest face. Climb up and trending left for about 200' to a sizeable ledge. Belay here

P.2 Continue up, trending left and aiming for a ledge with krumholtz on it. Move left to the trees and belay at a crack that trends up and rightish (200')

P.3 Climb up crack, trend right, traverse to big ledge and belay (75')

P.4 Climb up cracks above moving onto a sloping ledge. Climb some flakes and corners up until on a small ledge with some small blocks below a funky looking section of crack. (100')

P.5 Climb short funky section of crack to sizeable ledge below a right facing corner and a set of double cracks to the right (50' 5.8)

P.6 Step right and climb double cracks that are just right of a black water streak. Climb double cracks to a right facing chimney. Belay at top (150' 5.9)

Top out by continued scrambling over 4th class terrain.


The route is located on point 11,172 on the Mount Bonneville USGS quadrangle. This outcropping of rock likes in the middle of the East Fork Valley.

To get to the valley one could do many things. I suggest hiking the Fremont Trail from Big Sandy Opening Trailhead and then taking the Pyramid Lake Trail to Pyramid Lake. This is about 11-13 miles. One could camp below Midsummer's Dome or at Pyramid Lake.

To find the bottom: From the south face and its grassy base, move left until below and left of a large corner 200+' up (this corner is part of the South Face Left route (III 5.10a)) Scramble up some fourth class terrain and belay.

To get down from the top, scramble down 3rd class terrain to the NW to gain easy terrain on the north side.


Standard Rack. Set of cams, stoppers, tri-cams

Photos of Southwest Face Midsummer's Dome Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: One route on the southwest face wanders up corners...
One route on the southwest face wanders up corners...
Rock Climbing Photo: A view of the East Fork Valley upon entering from ...
A view of the East Fork Valley upon entering from ...
Rock Climbing Photo: James at the 5.8 move on pitch 5.
James at the 5.8 move on pitch 5.
Rock Climbing Photo: A not too exact topo photo of the route I took up ...
BETA PHOTO: A not too exact topo photo of the route I took up ...

Comments on Southwest Face Midsummer's Dome Add Comment
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By Brian B Ballard
From: Laramie, WY
Aug 27, 2012

Great route up top. We stayed a bit right at start to get out hearts pumping with a triple lieback straight up on pitch one before trending left. We tried the corner left of the last pitch described here, with no avail. Does anyone know if it tops out nicely?
We agreed with described pitch ratings.
By Mike McNeil
From: Spearfish, South Dakota
Sep 13, 2013

Steve Arsenault and I did this in 2011 and we ended up doing a nice steep dihedral that is about 100ft left of the fifth and sixth pitch on the topo for this route on this site. It was very thin and probably had a hard 5.9 move right before topping out of the pillar it makes. Fairly easy climbing from there to the top. Of the 8 man crew we were with that day there was easily 200 years of experience which included the guideook author, but no one knew what route we were on. Guess it didn't matter as I believe we all top out with significant variations of the same route.

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