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This 8 pitch beauty sends you up slabs and cracks to Blueberry terrace which is just a little below the summit that is Exfoliation dome. The crux is "The Flange" on pitch 4 but there is plenty of other 10A pitches along the way to keep your head in the game. Be prepared for moderately spaced bolts as is the norm in slab climbing. All of the chains are Fixe rap chains, but DO NOT rap this route as flakes will EAT your rope and make for a horible trip down. To rap off either climb the three bonus pitches to the summit and rap off into the gully on the west side of the summit, or rap of Blueberry terrace via Jacobs Ladder on the east side of the terrace, or connect with Westward hoe by raping of the climber right side of the terrace. Westward hoe from the summit starts with 5 single rope rappels, then doubles from here. All rappels of the terrace should be done with double ropes.
Pitch 1 5.7 Climb up and right passed moderatly spaced bolts till you reach the first set of chains. 45M
Pitch 2 5.10A Climb up and right passed bolts to a clean swath of slab with a 10a move then over a lip on the right and up to the chains. 40M
Pitch 3 5.10a Climb up and left to a series of flakes with bolts and small gear for protection, be careful on the flakes as they are fragile, then head directly up to chains. 40M
Pitch 4 5.10c Climb straight up past 4-5 bolts to "The Flange". One starts out under the left side of the flange then traverses right to its base. Climb up along the right side of the lip on small nobs and friction moves. Very sustained pitch. 45M
Pitch 5 5.9+ Climb up past the flange then head left to a thin crack system using small gear and a couple bolts for protection. Once on the crack proper climb straight up until you reach the chains, a couple very small offset nuts will protect the upper moves well. I think a block has broken off this section in the last year making the last couple moves a little harder and scarier. 35M
Pitch 6 5.10A Climb up and left over a series of lips until you reach a large ledge system with a belay on the left hand side. 40M
Pitch 7 5.8 Head off right on the ledge before heading up and making a bold but easy move to reach the first bolt, a hand size cam behind the first block can protect from a long painful fall. Continue up clean slab off to the left until you reach the chains. 40M
Pitch 8 5.5 Continue up and left along sparsly protected but easy slab to the finish. This section can hold water late into the year, so creative route finding might ensue.
At this point you have reached Blueberry Terrace. You can rap from here as described above or continue up the last three pitches. Description is as follows. Head climbers left on the ledge and traverser above the Jacob's ladder chains until you reach a small bush about 30 feet below your first bolt. At this point you should be practically around the corner above the eastern gully system.
Pitch 1 5.8 Climb up past the first bolt using gear were possible then head left and back right through a crack sytem to the first set of chains. 30M
Pitch 2 5.8 Head straight up 40 feet to the first bolt then off left and through a small gully between two larger blocks, the chains will be directly above and to your left. 40M
Pitch 3 5.5 From here one can traverese to the ridge proper and head up, or just pick the most appealing line that heads up to the summit through either dry or easy climbing. About 30M to the summit, all gear.
This route is located on Exfoliation Dome which is across the Clear Creek Valley from Three o'clock rock. About 0.5-1 mile before the Squire creek pass trailhead (3 o'clock rock) turn left and cross Clear Creek. Follow the road till its end, if you don't mind a few scrathes on your purdy little vehicle. At the end of the road is a washout that has come down from the Granite Sidewalk, you can see the dome from here. Head up the gully on the left and climb the sidewalk for 1200 vertical feet to the base of Exfoliation Dome and hope your calfs are still ready for some good slab climbing. When you reach the top of the sidewalk there is a patch of trees that marks the start of the Blueberry route. Just below this is a largish tree, head about 100-150 feet left of this and look for a single bolt that marks the start of the route.
A small rack with gear to 2-inches, bring a few extra small sizes and some tiny offsets for pitch 5, and a few bigger pieces if you want to do the three bonus pitches to the summit. 14-16 draws should be enough and a few alpine draws wouldn't hurt. Also do not climb on this wall without TWO ROPES or getting down will be scary if not out right deadly.
Following pitch 3 Dark Rhythm.
Contemplating the crux moves of getting up onto th...
BETA PHOTO: Looking down on pitch 5 from the belay.
Looking down at the first pitch of the three summi...
|By Daniel Coltrane|
From: Seattle, WA
Jul 11, 2011
As of 07-10-11 there has been some rockfall on the second and third pitch so the belay at the top of the second pitch may not be there, heven't got a chance to climb up to it yet. Will try to fix it as soon as possible.
Aug 1, 2011
Rap beta: don't rap the route, it eats ropes. On the way up, we found a perfectly good bail 'biner and didn't understand why someone would bail there. On the way down, sure enough, the rope chocked behind a flake and we had to re-lead up to free it- right to that bolt. We left the temporarily-bootied biner where we found it. :-)
Aug 1, 2011
Approach beta: as you cross the granite sidewalk on the approach during the early part of the season, pay attention- the sidewalk is what it is because it's an avalanche track.