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 ADVANCED
Looking up the route from the Lower Saddle.  There is a well-defined trail that passes by the Exum Huts at the bottom of the Lower Saddle, up to the the "Black Dike" which can be seen protruding out in this photo.  You will pass just left of, then cross behind the Black Dike before the trail steepens and passes in front of, and to the left of, the large pyramid-shaped "Needle."  The trail moves left under the Needle and will pass by the "Chockstone Chimney" which will be on the right going up the Needle.  Continue about another 100 feet and there will be a small black "staircase" about 2 feet wide climbing up to the right.  It's very prominent.  Climb this black rock staircase.  At the top of the staircase you must traverse right and a little up to swing back around to the "Eye of the Needle" or alternately you can bypass the eye by continuing more or less straight up with some low Class 5 moves.  Once you have passed the Needle, to do the Owen-Spalding route you will want to stay on the left side of the large ridge feature as you climb to the Upper Saddle.  The trail is not well defined here, but there are many ways to the top.  Just stay on the left side of the ridge and be prepared for a lot of class 3 and class 4 climbing to get to the upper saddle.
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Looking up the route from the Lower Saddle. There is a well-defined trail that passes by the Exum Huts at the bottom of the Lower Saddle, up to the the "Black Dike" which can be seen protruding out in this photo. You will pass just left of, then cross behind the Black Dike before the trail steepens and passes in front of, and to the left of, the large pyramid-shaped "Needle." The trail moves left under the Needle and will pass by the "Chockstone Chimney" which will be on the right going up the Needle. Continue about another 100 feet and there will be a small black "staircase" about 2 feet wide climbing up to the right. It's very prominent. Climb this black rock staircase. At the top of the staircase you must traverse right and a little up to swing back around to the "Eye of the Needle" or alternately you can bypass the eye by continuing more or less straight up with some low Class 5 moves. Once you have passed the Needle, to do the Owen-Spalding route you will want to stay on the left side of the large ridge feature as you climb to the Upper Saddle. The trail is not well defined here, but there are many ways to the top. Just stay on the left side of the ridge and be prepared for a lot of class 3 and class 4 climbing to get to the upper saddle.

Submitted By: Rich F. on Jul 31, 2010
On this route:
Owen Spalding (5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c )
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