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The Last Unicorn 

YDS: 5.10b French: 6a+ Ewbanks: 19 UIAA: VII- ZA: 19 British: E2 5b

Type:  Trad, 3 pitches, 300', Grade III
Original:  YDS: 5.10b French: 6a+ Ewbanks: 19 UIAA: VII- ZA: 19 British: E2 5b [details]
FA: Ed Webster, Jeff Phesant 1978
Season: any but summer
Page Views: 6,427
Submitted By: Casey Bald on Apr 14, 2007

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Mark following The Last Unicorn


Pitch 1a) Sky Streak start: From the two bolt anchor 25' off the Wonder Wall tree ledge, step left and climb a short, steep wall past two bolts, move up on easier ground to a ledge and a bolt. Traverse right to the first belay on The Last Unicorn. 5.10b.

Pitch 1b) Note: Rockfall may have altered the start of this pitch. The Sky Streak start is more commonly used. The original start: traverse down and right passing the latter two bolt anchor for almost a pitch and start a large, dying, spruce tree. Move left of the tree climbing on cool, angular holds past some pins to small, parallel corners and make a difficult move past a bolt (crux) and belay on a decent ledge at a two bolt anchor. 80' 5.10b.

Pitch 2) Make 5.9 moves up and left past two bolts to the base of a vertical, flake system, crank up the .10b crux past three bolts to an obvious overlap and undercling to a beautifully exposed belay. 100' 5.10b.

Pitch 3) Climb a striking and difficult, open corner past four bolts to a pin and make awesome layback moves to the top. 85' 5.10b.

Rappel from a bolt station 30' to your left to another two-bolt anchor on Science Friction Wall, two sixty-meter raps will get your down.


From the base of the approach for Inferno, climb up the 4th class ledge system traversing right, pass the two bolt anchor for Lost Souls and make your way across the wonder wall tree ledge. At its far, right-hand side, traverse right 25 feet for the Sky Streak start, Continue traversing right @ 5.4 to the spruce tree and the original start.


Standard rack (.3-#3+set of nuts) will get it done, this route has lots of fixed gear but you will want gear in between it.

Photos of The Last Unicorn Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: exposure on pitch 3
exposure on pitch 3
Rock Climbing Photo: my dad heading up the perplexing corner on pitch 3
my dad heading up the perplexing corner on pitch 3
Rock Climbing Photo: A pretty decent climb
A pretty decent climb
Rock Climbing Photo: getting up to the fun traverse on pitch 2
getting up to the fun traverse on pitch 2
Rock Climbing Photo: pitch 2 on a late fall day...
pitch 2 on a late fall day...
Rock Climbing Photo: my dad in the crux on pitch 1
my dad in the crux on pitch 1

Comments on The Last Unicorn Add Comment
Show which comments
By Pat McGinn
Sep 13, 2009

I could not picture a better 5.10 in North Conway.
By lee hansche
From: goffstown, nh
Oct 26, 2009

though this is a great climb i must admit it wasnt as good as all the hype (i gave it 3 stars aka GREAT!) but everyone said it was the best route around at the grade... even in one of the guide books it said "One of the best routes on the east coast"... it would be hard to live up to that... i loved the climb but found a few things that kept it out of the CLASSIC catagory, loose rock, crappy approach/decent, hanging belays and the fact that it doesnt start at the bottom or end at the top... just my thoughts...

do the route but you will enjoy it more if you ingnore the hype :)
By Jay Knower
From: Campton, NH
Mar 31, 2010

I think that while the climbing might not be the best, the position is as good as the North Conway area has to offer. You have to admit that The Last Unicorn climbs a pretty impressive chunk of stone, and it does so at a moderate grade.
By lee hansche
From: goffstown, nh
Mar 31, 2010

i fully agree jay, one of the best positions on the cliff!
By john strand
From: southern colo
Apr 1, 2010

It's a bit harder, but try Centaur some time. Magnificent situation.
By hasan Adil
From: portland,me
Jun 16, 2012

Did the route yesterday, what an amazing location and amazing moves! Pretty well protected with lots of bolts, we placed 3 pieces of gear on the whole route. If you're willing to do one (or two) extra raps, it'll could be done with one rope. We took up a 2nd 70m and felt we could've done without it.
By Reggie Pawle
Oct 14, 2012
rating: 5.10b/c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b

Did this route with the Sky Streak start yesterday. Next time I'd only take #1, #2 C3s, .4, .5 camalots, and a handful of small to medium stoppers. I don't know where you'd find a place for anything bigger than a .5 camalot, except one spot on the third pitch where it's not really necessary.

I found the first half of the second pitch to be a bit spicey, though the crux is certainly well protected (I thought it was hard for 10b, but then I also thought Intimidation was hard for 10b--a running trend!). The last pitch is one of the best face routes I've done anywhere--balancey, subtle climbing with hidden holds.
By lucander
From: Stone Ridge, NY
May 7, 2015

The bolts on p. 2 are getting old and sorta scary. Am I growing soft, or has a lot changed since I was last up there sometime around 2009?
By Chad Laflamme
From: North Conway, NH
Jun 4, 2017

Bolts were recently upgraded by the magical bolt fairy.

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