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Buttress of Cracks - Left Side
Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
Aqualung T 
Arcy Farcy T 
Bacon Bits (aka Razor Games) T 
Bluebeard T 
Bocomaru T 
Buccaneer, The T 
Captain Hook T 
Double Exposure T 
Double Exposure Direct T 
Frustration T 
Ham Sandwich T 
Hernia - Direct Finish T 
Hernia, The T 
Insomnia T 
Pass Time T 
Pirate, The T 
Swashbuckler T 
Sword of Damocles T 
Walk the Plank T 
Winter Solstice T 

Sword of Damocles 

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

Type:  Trad, 1 pitch, 160'
Original:  YDS: 5.9 French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: HVS 5a [details]
FA: J. Gosling and Larry Harrell, March 1968
Page Views: 1,728
Submitted By: Roger Linfield on Jan 25, 2006

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (29)
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This is the third crack to the right of the Captain Hook chimney. The "sword" (loose flake in the crack) that gave the route its name is gone. It is a mediocre crack and chimney route. To descend, walk right to a tree and rappel 160' to the ground.


standard rack

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By C Miller
From: CA
Jan 28, 2006
rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a

Not a standout but it has some intriguing moves in the flare. Not a bomb, in fact you could do much worse.
By Paul Rezucha
From: Alameda
Jun 8, 2006

This was an intereting climb with hard moves right at the start and then in the flared chimney. A bolt there protects the awkward moves. Definitely worth doing!
By Michael Ybarra
From: on the road
Jul 1, 2008

I enjoyed this a lot more than Hernia, which I thought had only a single interesting move. Sword had several places where you had to think a bit, which I don't mind doing now and then. Plus the huge belay ledge on top was wonderfully shady and had a great view.
By Carl A
From: brooklyn, ny
May 4, 2009

That chimney was a hoot. Bring your offwidth technique to this party.
By mmurduff Mic
Jul 11, 2009

Very thought provoking. Used heal toe smearing in the flared chimney. Exiting the Chimney was the Crux in my opinion.
By Tradiban
Mar 25, 2013
rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a

Thank god for the bolt! Hip scumming appeared to work best in the chimney.
By Ian Z
From: Los Angeles, CA
Sep 2, 2013

In my opinion a cooler climb than the higher rated "Hernia" climb to the right.
By armand rollice
From: rancho cucamonga
Sep 9, 2013

The Sword is an excellent climb. The start has delicate moves protected by small gear. The chimney, not to difficult o/w is great, use chicken wing left side in. This climb has everything!
By dnaiscool
Mar 22, 2015

When I led this route in '85 the "sword" was loose and dangling right in the way, there was no bolt, and I was sporting that flashy lycra we were all (well...a lot of us) were wearing back then. The slippery nature of my skin-tight French-style pants made the thing feel like greased .11d! I was twitten shinkies as I scummed up that "five nine" groove in my old school EB's. I never went back, but I do recall marveling at the "Potato Chip" flake that presents itself near the top...such a cool thing to climb: I even drew it into my topo for the route, right along with "POS".
By Ryan Strickland
From: Idyllwild, CA
Apr 28, 2016

Never a line for this climb. I think this was my first 5.9 lead. I've done it twice and think it's a pretty interesting route. It also gives you easy access to the super-anchor on top of Captain Hook, Passtime, and Frustration.

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