... and nearly as many bolts! We were hoping that this would be the face that launched all those ships -- it's not -- but I couldn't resist the name. This 2 pitch route takes a line left of Loosey In The Sky
, tackling the left side of the Loosey
slab (P3) and then finishing with a pitch on a stepped arete to the top of The Halidome. There is an additional, short & sweet "bonus" pitch described below.
Approach: Climb the first two pitches of Loosey In The Sky
(.12b and .9, see description). The belay for A Thousand Ships is about 10' left of the Loosey belay after P2 (go straight up the corner where the Loosey belay steps right).
Pitch 1: .12b, 16 bolts, 2-bolt anchor, 115'. Cruise past 2 bolts and cast off onto a nice 5.10 slab until it steepens at a headwall. From here the difficulties increase with each move, topped off by about 15' of cruxes near the end. Lots of bolts should eliminate any anxiety, freeing you to concentrate on solving the puzzling moves (harder to figure out than to do). Getting it all without a hang provides a minor aerobic challenge as well. Move 15' left at the end to belay.
P2: .11b, 6 bolts, 2-bolt anchor, 70'. Scramble up and left for 30' and climb a dark wall leading to the stepped arete. This pitch could use some brushing (we forgot the brushes), but it's climbable as is, just be ready for some lichen.
Bonus Pitch: .11a, 4 bolts, 35'. Directly below the anchor at the base of the final pitch is a short, clean slab with its own anchor on a ledge at its base. It can be approached in a couple of ways -- try this: After leading the final pitch the leader will lower back to his partner, then belay the second up the final pitch, and then lower him all the way down to the anchor at the base of the bonus pitch. The bottom climber can then lower the upper climber so both are at the same anchor. Pull the rope and lead the short slab....
Descent: Rap the route.
About 17 quick draws + anchors. Small cams necessary for P2 of Loosey
(see description). 70m rope recommended, but a 60m will work.