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Arm Forces 

YDS: 5.9 French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: HVS 5a

   
Type:  Trad, 1 pitch, 120'
Consensus:  YDS: 5.9 French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: HVS 5a [details]
FA: Joe Herbst, Nanouk Borche; 1973
Page Views: 1,723
Submitted By: John Hegyes on Sep 18, 2005

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (15)
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BETA PHOTO: Arm Forces

Description 

This route is located on the far left side of the Illusion Crags, about 15 feet right of French Bulges in a prominent right facing corner that features three roofs. The route starts on a small belay ledge at a yucca, just below some bushes. Ascend the corner, working some cracks on the left side and then pull the roofs. Very fun.

There is a two bolt anchor above the third roof, with some slings you can rappel off the route - a 60 meter rope reaches to about ten feet above the base of the climb, but the downclimbing from here is easy. Watch out when you pull your rope, there is a high potential for snagging it in a crack.

Or you can continue past the bolts, up easy terrain, and walk off right down the first gully.

Protection 

Standard rack


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Arm Forces long shot
BETA PHOTO: Arm Forces long shot

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By 10b4me
Nov 28, 2005

My guess is that the climb is named "arm forces" because of the arm bar needed to finish the off-widthy second roof. I was able to place a #4 below the roof and a #3 in the roof. I might have liked a #3.5 instead but the #3 held me when I fell just after pulling over the lip, so it certainly did its job.
By John Wilder
From: Las Vegas, NV
Dec 26, 2005
rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a

Definitely take a #3 and a #4 for the middle roof (crux) and sling them both long to reduce rope drag.

Be very careful pulling your ropes. The lower-most roof is a rope eater- the crack there is perfect for snagging a rope and not letting go! I had to climb up and hang on a piece for a couple of minutes to rescue it, and then I had to down climb the thing! Spooky!

Great route- a definite classic, I'm shocked it is not done more often.
By TomCaldwell
From: Clemson, S.C.
Jun 6, 2012

A definite classic. Even though the last section may look like and off-width, it is definitely not. You can face climb on jugs below the lip and lie-back the corner very easily. It may change the route to 9+ that way, but still better than trying any off-width moves. Our 60m did not get us all the way to the ground. We could easily walk off to the climbers right (some loose rock), but this meant pulling the rope near the rope eater, which it did. Luckily another party was climbing up to pull the rope out.
By Andrew Yasso
Jan 11, 2014

Used a 70M rope and was able to rappel within two feet of the ground. Walked about 20 feet away from the base of the crag to pull the rope and had no issue.

On lead I pulled the moves under the crux utilizing a fist jam that was very not off-width in my experience. My partner followed completely face-climbing, which like the poster above, likely makes it a tad harder.

Overall, excellent climb. Fun techy stemming at the bottom, a bit pumpy in the middle, all on stellar rock.
By MN norske
From: Henderson
Apr 6, 2014
rating: 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a

Has anchors at the top with multiple old slings for rapping off of. No doubt about it this is a classic climb. My rope got stuck at the first roof like everyone else. Good luck with that. Easier for the upper body strong.