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Star Chek 

YDS: 5.8+ French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- ZA: 15 British: HVS 4c

Type:  Sport, 3 pitches, 400'
Original:  YDS: 5.8+ French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- ZA: 15 British: HVS 4c [details]
FA: prepped: Ron Goldstone 1994-1995. FA stolen by Kevin Mclane and Sig Isaac 1995
Season: spring-fall
Page Views: 12,230
Submitted By: Dru on Apr 17, 2011

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (98)
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My lovely friend Allison following on the second p...


There are three to four pitches depending on how you split the route up. Generally done as a short pitch, long pitch and short pitch.

P1: 20m 5.7, 3 bolts. Start left of the toe of the arete, at a ledge above the high-water mark. Climb up and right to the crest of the arete and a belay ledge.

P2: 40m, 5.6, 8 bolts. Climb on and just left of the crest of the low-angle arete, past an intermediate station used mostly for single rope rappels with short ropes, to gain a big ledge with a number of chain stations.

P3: 25m, 5.8+/9-, 3 bolts. cross the ledge and climb a slab dihedral just right of a blank corner. The crux is immediately obvious past a short overlap and is done with a bolt at the waist; the rest of the pitch is 5.7. At the top, hook back left to the belay ledge and bolts in the trees.

A 5.10c variation to this last pitch climbs to the left, around the corner, to the same upper belay location.


Approach from the top by the scambling trail and make two - 60m rappels or four shorter ones in to the base. Or make the sketchy approach along the riverbank from the north.


8 quickdraws plus a couple extra ones to leave behind at stations on the rap in and collect on the way back out.

Photos of Star Chek Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Annie Simard seconding the middle pitch of Star Ch...
Annie Simard seconding the middle pitch of Star Ch...
Rock Climbing Photo: Lauren following the beautiful 2nd pitch.
Lauren following the beautiful 2nd pitch.
Rock Climbing Photo: CN Railroad trestle downstream from Star Chek.
CN Railroad trestle downstream from Star Chek.
Rock Climbing Photo: Climbing over the river
Climbing over the river
Rock Climbing Photo: First pitch of Star Chek
First pitch of Star Chek
Rock Climbing Photo: For the rappel approach, park at the paved pullout...
BETA PHOTO: For the rappel approach, park at the paved pullout...
Rock Climbing Photo: The base of the route
BETA PHOTO: The base of the route
Rock Climbing Photo: Bottom of the rappel at the base of Star Chek
Bottom of the rappel at the base of Star Chek
Rock Climbing Photo: AMAZING
Rock Climbing Photo: Looking at p1 in high water.  Best not slip into t...
Looking at p1 in high water. Best not slip into t...
Rock Climbing Photo: The Cheakamus River from the top of Star Chek
The Cheakamus River from the top of Star Chek
Rock Climbing Photo: Finishing up Star Check
Finishing up Star Check

Comments on Star Chek Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Aug 23, 2017
By Jon Leighton
May 28, 2012
rating: 5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

Very nice and very steady, perfect for taking that confident, non-climbing friend on. Mostly 5.6 climbing with maybe one or two 5.7 moves higher up.
By dseltzer
From: Boulder, CO
Aug 6, 2014
rating: 5.8- 5b 16 VI- 14 VS 4c

Both the first and the third pitch have four bolts, not three. When rapping the route, use the anchors to climbers left for the second rap, not the ones on the right near the arete which are used for the actual climb. If you have a 70m, you can avoid the last rap as well if you are careful about rope ends. From the second to last rap station, angle slightly left towards the trees and away from the arete. A 70m will just barely get you to the fixed rope along the bottom of the climb.

Fun climb, and not as runout as I expected with the low bolt counts.
By AndySkol
From: Seattle, WA
Aug 25, 2014
rating: 5.9- 5c 17 VI 16 HVS 4c PG13

We rapped the route, but were told there is another rap route just past the top anchors of the route that reaches the ground in two raps with a single 60m rope. This would be far preferable with other parties on the route, because rapping past them while climbing is sucky.

You will see the rap anchors in question if you walk past the top anchors for star chek across the gravelly slab (be careful) and peer over the edge (climber's left from star chek). just past the edge there are two bolts with quick links, which is consistent with the mid pitch two rap anchor on star chek. I did not use these rap anchors, I only heard from other climbers that they lead to the ground in two 30m or shorter raps. Can anyone confirm?

I found that the bolts were very thoughtfully placed, but the route still felt run out to me. There is only one short 5.9 move at the bulge on the top pitch, but I do think that move is 9, not 8.
By Lina Baker
Aug 26, 2014

SUCH a fun climb! Well worth the time it takes to do the raps from the top--make sure the leader has the camera and gets some shots down as the follow comes up; the view of the canyon and the river makes for some beautiful shots (and what appears to be extreme exposure to show your mom!). I took the 10c variation at the top and it was well worth it. It cruxes just above the 2nd bolt on the slab section and the pull over the "roof" is easy and well-protected. If you're on a rest day or are a new leader, this is a great climb!
By Eugene Kwan 1
From: Cambridge, Massachusetts
Aug 26, 2015

Fun climb! There are bolted stations to climber's left that are rigged for 30 m rappels (i.e., with a 60 m rope). The first station is on the starting ledge at the top, though there is also one just below the lip for some reason. We got our rope stuck in a crack in the roof on the first rappel, so be careful. Three raps will get you to the bottom easily, though there are more stations than that.

This climb is a great outing, but expect a lot of parties, even on a weekday. The ratings are super soft--there are basically no hard moves on it and even total beginners do it clean when they follow it. It's funny that something like Penny Lane gets 5.9, but this gets 5.8+. Regardless, this is fun climbing in a spectacular setting!
By George W
Sep 15, 2015
rating: 5.9- 5c 17 VI 16 HVS 4c

This was an excellent climb to end our day. An 8+ rating implies that the difficulty is more sustained at 5.8, when in reality it's a lot of 5.7 with exception to a few thin moves near the top of the last pitch. It's run out by normal bolting standards, but not enough to warrant an R. I say it's a 5.9- because of the very short but well-protected 5.9 move(s). Also, as others have noted it's possible to rappel the route on the north side then follow a fixed line to the base, rather than rappel the route and get in the way of others.
By Nick Spitznagle
From: Denver, Co
Sep 16, 2015

Just climbed this on a Friday and didn't see another person until we we're headed back to the car. This climb had everything I like in an adventure. Don't be scared off by all the hype about the crowds of people. Some popular climbs can still be a remote and serene experience if you time it right!
Also I recommend hiking in. It's a beautiful walk, not very long, and there is some cool old mining equipment along the way.
By Scott Heinz
Jul 3, 2016

Had a great time on this route 7/2/16 - despite being a dual Holiday W/E we snuck in between groups and never waited much. We rapped in and assisted another group who was hiking in - not sure if the hike has changed, but it's pretty gnarly right now so I wouldn't recommend it- no clear trail for the last 100' and it's a super loose scree field of mixed sand and sharp boulders. I'd be curious if any recent hiker inners felt differently since I didn't do it myself
By Jennifer L
Jul 11, 2016
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

For the approach, park at the paved pullout and picnic area near the information board for Squamish. Hiking in via the talus slope near this pullout is not recommended. It's pretty loose and sketchy. Instead, walk south along the highway and after crossing a bridge, you will see the mound with the cairn marking the start of the scramble down along fixed lines.
By Josh Kornish
Aug 28, 2016

WEAR your HELMET and watch out for seriously rockfall from people carelessly rapping the route. The top pitch and the base are both shooting alleys for a lot of loose rock and this is easily observed by the multiple smashed bolts on this wall. Only a matter of time before one gumby kills another gumby on this route.
Otherwise a decent route in an incredible setting.
By Luke R 84
From: Georgia
Oct 8, 2016

I know nothing about this route, but the information regarding the FA sounds dramatic- anyone know the story behind it?
By Dru
Oct 11, 2016

It's a pretty simple story. RG had been developing the area since 1994 and planned a sport climb. The arete was partly bolted and not fully cleaned or climbed yet in mid-1995. KM and SI were exploring the area as KM wrote up the Whistler and Area Rockclimbs 1995 guidebook and climbed the arete on very sparse trad gear. Ron finished his preferred 10c finish on the left afterwards.
By Amira Anuar
Aug 1, 2017

We found the guidebook's description of the approach pretty confusing. What we ended up doing was pulling into the gravel parking lot (you'll see Squamish signboards too) and then hiking South past the "bridge" (looks less like a bridge and more like the side of the highway has a railing) until we reached the rocky mound where we easily found the cairn and made the scramble down the fixed lines to the top of the route.

Go to the right to find the rap rings, not the left, since the rap rings on the left are the final anchors for Star Chek. When we went to the right, we found two places we could rap from, -- there were rap rings near a tree as well as rings if you peered over the edge. We decided to use those, since we were worried that pulling the rope after rapping from the rings near the tree would just pull down more loose rock. I found rapping from the edge a bit scary since you're just sitting on the edge and leaning over to secure your PAS before scrambling/falling onto the ledge. From there though, we made it to the ground in 2 easy rappels with my 70m.

We went on a Monday morning but there were still 3-4 parties before us, so there was a bit of a wait. But totally WORTH IT. I led the first 1.5 pitches and stopped at an intermediate bolt. My follow (Allison) led the second half of the second pitch so she could take photos of me, and then I led the third pitch, which had some interesting slabby moves. Overall, really fun pretty chill climbing. Who can say no to arete climbing over the water? There were times I just stopped climbing to sit and stare and enjoy the view (and take photos ^^;)

Rock Climbing Photo: My lovely friend Allison following on the second p...
My lovely friend Allison following on the second pitch of Star Chek!
By Michael T.
From: Mill Creek, WA
Aug 23, 2017
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

Only a classic because of the position. The climbing and the eight other folks on route left much to be desired. If you use a single+tagline you can get to the handlines in one rap, we passed two parties this way.

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