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topo and description
|There is no public access road provided by the BLM to the Coyote Mountains Wilderness Area. MORE INFO >>>|
Access is via PRIVATE land and may be CLOSED! MORE INFO >>>
This unique route climbs the prominent left-diagonaling crack system on the west side of Elephant Dome, roughly in the vicinity of the west-side rap route. It has only seen a few ascents despite being put up over 20 years ago. Scary, runout, and loose in places, it also has some excellent climbing. In particular, the crux 4th pitch is sustained, well-protected and probably one of the best pitches in the canyon. The first pitch is classic Mendoza exfoliating face climbing with 6 bolts and just a couple gear placements for a full ropelength. It will keep your full attention from the first move off the ground all the way to the belay.
See topo for full description. The topo is mostly accurate, although the first rappel length is incorrect (see below), and on pitch 2 it's better to continue to the large ledge for the belay.
The route gets sun starting early afternoon. The hard (and best) climbing is over after the first 4 pitches, so one strategy would be to rap from chains at that point and combine it with something else to maximize sun or shade depending on the temps.
Follow the approach to Table Dome, but just before the dome, break off right following cairns that lead toward the right side of Roof Wall. Just below that, a not very obvious series of cairns leads over to the very steep backside of Elephant Dome. Follow the wall until below the obvious left-diagonaling system (see topo).
Descent is the west-side rap (2 ropes). NOTE ONE SIGNIFICANT ERROR ON THE TOPO: THE FIRST RAP HAS BEEN MOVED AND IS NOW 100' INSTEAD OF 70'.
Note also that if you didn't leave anything at the base, you could leave the second rope at home and do the east-side descent, making for a faster trip back to the car.
We brought a single set of cams from 0 tcu to 4 friend, nuts, rps, and some tri-cams. This was perfect. There are some lead bolts so some draws are nice in addition to the usual aresnal of slings. The bolts are over 20 years old but seem in ok shape; on the crux pitch good gear is generally available nearby.
The route follows the prominent left-diagonaling c...