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(e) Maiden Buttress
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The Illegitimate 

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

Type:  Trad, 3 pitches, 500'
Original:  YDS: 5.9 French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: HVS 5a [details]
FA: Royal Robbins and TM Herbert, May 1959
Page Views: 2,394
Submitted By: Roger Linfield on Feb 24, 2006

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (16)
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This is the link up of the Illegitimate to the Bas...


This route lies at the junction between the Northwest Recess and the Maiden Buttress. It starts with a left-slanting hand crack (5.8). You can shorten the length of the first pitch by scrambling up along the easy part of this crack and setting up a hanging belay. Pitch 2 is the crux, and is quite sustained. It involves face climbing past several sections of the crack (some 5.9) and then an exit right (not obvious) around the corner and down to a belay. A 5.8 pitch takes you to the junction with White Maiden’s Walkaway.


Lots of wired nuts and slings for the crux pitch.

Photos of The Illegitimate Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Ted just turning the lip on P3 (the crux).
BETA PHOTO: Ted just turning the lip on P3 (the crux).
Rock Climbing Photo: The lower blocky section of P3
BETA PHOTO: The lower blocky section of P3
Rock Climbing Photo: Ted finishing P2
BETA PHOTO: Ted finishing P2
Rock Climbing Photo: Old Piton...not expecting it to hold, but it was t...
Old Piton...not expecting it to hold, but it was t...

Comments on The Illegitimate Add Comment
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By Fat Dad
From: Los Angeles, CA
Jan 22, 2009

I find this route everybit as good as Consolation and the other North Face routes. While it ends at White Maiden all too quickly, the 5.9 pitch feels really improbable for its grade and has great position. Definitely one of the better 5.9s on the rock.
By ChugachMan
Jun 7, 2009

I feel like we must have been a little high on our "improbable traverse" as we traversed across a very lichen full overhanging flake just a couple feet under the roof. It looked like maybe the real "improbable traverse" was about ten feet below that? I ended up traversing to about 8 feet below a tree in the crack system 20' to the right, and belayed from that tree (no "down to a stance" bit). The move around seemed more like a mid-10 move, and the rock didn't seem to have as much traffic once you'd climbed 15' above the piton seen in the picture. Anyone have any thought on that? Also, my partner pulled off a flake about 1'x1' when doing the traverse, but managed to hold onto it, and keep from dropping it on anyone below (he tucked it in his shirt, and stashed it on a ledge higher up). Fun route though, and not your typical tahquitz style. I felt the 5.9 pitch really made you think.
By Tradiban
Jun 4, 2014

I liked this one, pretty interesting. On P3 I tried to exit direct through the roofs (listed as The Bastard 10b in Vogel's book). I whipped a bit and then decided to take the right exit. About a dozen feet below the roof at ring-pin with old green tat on it I exited right onto the face and went up and right (not right and down) at 5.8 R to join White Maiden.
By Sean
From: Oak Park, CA
Sep 10, 2016

careful not to make the Illegitimate P2 arete/sideroof turn too early. about 20 ft before that, there are two closely spaced old fixed pins that lead up and right to the (awesome) roof of Zeno's Paradox and then up to that route's hard slab protected by two bolts. those fixed pins are not marked in book topo prob bec they're not actually part of Zeno's Paradox's crack and arch that comes in from the right, only the higher slab bolts are marked
Sep 12, 2016

I agree with Fat Dad 100%. I've done this route a few times but not in a while... I remember the first pitch being pretty good and the second being great, one of Tahquitz's best 5.9s IMHO.
By Ryan Strickland
From: Idyllwild, CA
Jul 5, 2017

I thought this was pretty hard for Idyllwild 5.9. The second pitch was quite sustained and the step around was not obvious to me from below. The gear is good and I didn't need any RPs and nothing smaller than Green C3, but you need to work for it sometimes. I don't want to falsely inflate grades but I think it's fair to call it 5.10a, especially compared to nearby Whodunnit and Consolation, which are much more straightforward.

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