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The Tenth Degree 

YDS: 5.10c/d French: 6b+ Ewbanks: 21 UIAA: VII+ ZA: 21 British: E3 5b

   
Type:  Trad, 4 pitches, 300', Grade III
Original:  YDS: 5.10c/d French: 6b+ Ewbanks: 21 UIAA: VII+ ZA: 21 British: E3 5b [details]
FA: Greg Bourassa
Page Views: 461
Submitted By: jeremyrobichaud on Sep 15, 2017

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The Tenth Degree

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Description 

The Tenth Degree is this crag's signature line. Although it sees very little traffic, the Tenth Degree is easily one of Maine's best, multi-pitch routes of it's size. With more publicity and traffic to help clean it up the route will, no doubt, become a destination line for New England climbers.

The Tenth Degree is the obvious, four pitch crack/corner system that runs straight up the cliff's center to it's highest point. Pitches two and three are the routes real gems. Although it is likely that no individual move on either pitch is harder than 5.9, the sustained and burly character of both pitches puts them each in the 5.10 realm. This is one of those climbs that the leader, who will be placing gear under stress, lacking solid stances, will probably find to be a grade harder than the second, who will get the luxury of humming along, enjoying the fine movements on TR.

Pitch One (5.8): Technically, the route starts right at the base, where the Wavy Wall and Main Wall meet to make a 90 degree corner. However, the first pitch is almost always wet, overgrown, and blocky. You can bypass pitch one by doing any route that gets you to the top of the Wavy Wall and then do a short traverse into pitch two. A good, moderate (but slabby and scary) option to get around pitch one is Wavelength.

If you climb the original pitch one then build a trad anchor on top of the block below the big, corner crack. If you bypass pitch one via accessing the top of the Wavy Wall, there are three, old pins at the far left corner.

Pitch Two (5.10a): Climb the blocks to access the off-width corner. You can stem, using both sides of the buttress for the first four or five moves before the left side vanishes away and the routes turns into a lay-back. Once you mantle up to a shelf above the corner take a good rest, finish up and left about 20 more feet, over a block to a nice belay shelf and a set of bolted anchors. If you bring two #3's and two #4's the lay-back corner stitches-up well. If not, be ready to jog your 4.

Pitch Three (5.10a): Continue up the obvious corner right off the belay shelf. The first bolt is a bit far off the deck but the corner will take a #2 about 10 feet up that will protect you while you access the first bolt. Clipping stances are strenuous and the right wall is lacking good feet. A #4 protects the mantle move above the pin. Look up and right, behind the small bush, as you attempt the mantle or you'll wonder how the hell getting onto the slabby shelf is possible. Once on the slabby shelf traverse left about ten feet, past two bolts, to a new set of bolted anchors.

Pitch Four (5.10c/d): Pitch Four has a couple options. The 5.10d options starts right at the anchors; climb the obvious, left trending finger crack into the blocky roof that is about 12 feet off the shelf. You can bypass this option, making life a little easier, by starting left of the anchors and climbing a dirty ramp that takes you to the top of the blocky roof and is protected by an old bolt. Either way, above the blocky roof climb on quartz and granite square cut holds until you can access a bolt below the second roof with a v-notch. Up and over the v-notch roof, and over another block, to a slab and the summit anchors.

Route can be descended in two raps with a 70m rope. Three to four raps with a 60m rope.

A WORD OF CAUTION: The top of pitch four, about 20 feet from the anchors, goes over a blocky roof with a sharp edge that could present some real, potential, rope-integrity issues for the second. I highly suggest mitigating this risk by going into this climb with a fatter rope that has a nice, hardy sheath or by having the leader extend their personal anchor system down to the edge in order to pad it for the belay. If you do not have a nice, fat, rope or the leader does not have the technical skills to extend down and protect the edge, then I highly suggest calling it quits at the top of pitch three and rappel from there.

Location 

Last climb on climbers right of the Main Wall. Starts where the Main Wall and Wavy Wall come together at a 90 degree corner.

Protection 

In 2016 Charles Drew, Jeremy Robichaud, Ben Smith, and James Puckett worked to revive the route. A large part of their efforts involved replacing the outdated bolts on pitch three and at the anchors. Most of the climb is trad requiring a standard rack. You'll be happy with doubles of 3's and 4's on pitch two, but you can jog your 4's if you do not have doubles.


Photos of The Tenth Degree Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Jeremy following through the sustained section of ...
Jeremy following through the sustained section of ...
Rock Climbing Photo: Tenth Degree from base
Tenth Degree from base

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By chuckdrew
From: Cape Elizabeth, Maine
Sep 15, 2017

Great, very well protected route - reminds me of the Catheral Ledge classics like Deirdre or Intimidation.

The first pitch is almost always wet and dirty so I recommend bypassing it by climbing Wavelength and belaying on the spacious ledge at the very top of the Wavy Wall.

I hope to see more people getting on this route, it needs traffic to stay clean...
By Ryan Gibbs
Sep 15, 2017

Wow fantastic work guys and thank you. On the to do list for sure.
By Ben Townsend
Sep 15, 2017

This is a more direct version of Greg Bourassa's route "Ten Degree" (an old place name from the narrow gauge railroad that once ran below the cliff). At the top of the first pitch, Greg's route traversed straight left (very airy A0 off two bolts) to a small ledge and belay, then climbed a nice 5.8 corner left of the big main corner to rejoin this route. Wave Length was the original first pitch.
By jeremyrobichaud
Sep 15, 2017

Thanks for the info Ben! Those two "bolts" are still there and, man, does that traverse look amazing but very airy! We looked long and hard at that variation. Those bolts really need to be replaced if the route is going to be re-done that way; one of them is an old, rusted, angle-iron. I would not trust them after all these years. It's defiantly a worthwhile looking project; I'd love to try that traverse, it looks WILD!

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