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Zig Zag 

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

Type:  Trad, 2 pitches, 190'
Original:  YDS: 5.8 French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- ZA: 15 British: HVS 4c [details]
Season: Spring, Summer, Fall
Page Views: 1,221
Submitted By: Sarge on May 15, 2007

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (21)
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BETA PHOTO: 2nd pitch of zig zag


This is a good route. Be careful there is some rotten rock on the route and as the name of the climb denotes, it challenges your route finding skills.

P1. Ascend crack to small ledge with tree (30') and follow zig zag crack to top of the rib.

P2. Veer up and left following dirty low-angled chimney all the way to the top.

Descent: Double rope rappel from large tree or walk off.


This routes is about 40' to the right of Sparerib Buttress proper.


Typical alpine rack. Build your own anchors.

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By Bryan Gartland
From: Helena, MT
Sep 20, 2007
rating: 5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

Big gear is nice to have on this one.
By W.S.
From: Montana
Oct 9, 2009
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

There is a walk off, no rappel necessary. First pitch and first half of the second pitch are great, but the top (scrappy, loose, low-angle chimney) keeps this route from being fantastic.
By Ted Farley
From: Bozeman, Mt
Aug 12, 2010

the second pitch is the toll you pay for a blissful first pitch, totally worth it though.
By Timmamok Murphy
From: Durango, CO
Aug 14, 2011

Climb the face to the right at the end of the second pitch for cleaner face climbing. It is about 5.6R+
By Ball
From: Oakridge, OR
Oct 23, 2013
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

You don't have to chimney. You can stem on the outside and place pro on the left intermittent crack.
By Carl Smith
From: BeaUTAHfull
May 21, 2015

Awesome first pitch with room for big gear. 30ish meters up is a ledge with bolts and chains that are beginning to rust.
By B-Mkll Mackall
From: Bozeman, MT
Jul 18, 2015

Just do the first pitch and tag a rope unless you reallllly wanna top out! Second pitch has about three fun moves in 30m of climbing but really is just a scramble.
By Ted Lange
Apr 9, 2016

WARNING! If you climb the first pitch of Zig Zag (fun and highly recommended as others have noted) to access Piecrust Promise (two-star 11a in Bozeman Rock Climbs guidebook), you need to be climbing a LOT stronger than 11a. Piecrust is definitely quite a good route, but it is one of the more extreme sandbags I've encountered in Gallatin Canyon - which is saying something! Plus the very sustained climbing above the bolt protected crux requires MANY tricky, and fairly desperate gear placements. Piecrust Promise doesn't appear to be on this site yet. So I'll see if I can figure out how to submit a description.

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