Enter the Dragon
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Enter the Dragon climbs the long and varied corner system to the left of Valentine Crack. To access the obvious, right-facing corner, climb any one of three approach pitches described below. Once beneath the steep, streaked green wall, layback and jam your way up the splitter, fist-to-hand crack to a roof. Undercling right along flakes to a small alcove--home to a decent-sized, rectangular detached block. Move right--past the block--and to the start of a steep ramp. Tiptoe past a slabby bulge** to a stance, then through a section of sustained, undercling-lieback moves to reach yet another bulge. Surmount the bulge, then commit to more underclings, past a sporty crux with a bolt, then to a two-bolt belay at a stance. Left of the belay, mantle chickenheads onto the slab above, then up and right past a short, slanting finger crack. Clip the first of four bolts, then launch into the steep-slab Kung-Fu above, past a scary--yet solid--flake, and to a wild finish on chickenheads. Run it out on an easy slab to the two-bolt anchor above. Brilliant! Who knew such line still existed in the canyon?
To gain the large, right-facing corner below the roof, choose any one of three approach pitches:
Option 1--3rd class the first twenty feet of Valentine Crack, then traverse left along bushy slabs to reach the corner.
Option 2--Twenty-five feet downhill from the start of Valentine's is a shallow, left-facing corner with a crack. Climb the crack until it is possible to traverse left along a narrow ledge to a prominent chickenhead. Mantle the chickenhead, then scramble to the base of the corner.
Option 3--Climb left out the undercling flake of Gritish Deal, past two bolts, then onto a right-angling crack at 5.10. From the stance above the crack, climb easy terrain to the base of the large corner.
Bring a standard LCC rack, with doubles in fingers to hands. **Small DMM Peenuts, a 00 or 0 TCU--a hybrid works particularly well here--protects the first bulge. The second pitch is long and involved, so be sure to bring plenty of long slings to protect your second! For the final pitch, we took a blue and a yellow TCU, four quickdraws for the bolts, and--though useful, but not necessary--a hand-sized cam. Rappel the route; from the first bolted belay, a single 60m will reach easy ground in the gully right of the start to Gimme Danger.
BETA PHOTO: Shown in Yellow: Enter the Dragon, with the appro...
At the first crux
near the top of first pitch
starting pitch 2
more pitch 2
Looking up from belay
Annie pulling 2nd bulge.
|Comments on Enter the Dragon
Nov 28, 2009
The route's second pitch, we believe, has been the scene of many thwarted attempts throughout the years; on our initial reconnaisance, we'd found hardware spanning nearly three decades--two rusted 3/8" stud bolts with Leeper hangers, a fixed straight-tapered Chouinard Stopper, several Chouinard and Chouinard-Salewa carabiners and two ancient fixed pins--a Clog LA from the 70s and a Chouinard Baby Angle--at the highpoint, just below the first crux. We also discovered a much more recent sign of passage--a #1 BD wired Hexentric with a bail 'biner, slotted behind a detached block, much lower on the route's second pitch.
The Ruckman guide's topo for the Dragon Arch shows a single bolt below the large roof; upon closer inspection of older Wasatch guidebooks--Thanks, Brian!--we found no mention of any reported activity there. Due to the extent of their wear--both bolts were badly oxidized, and the second, higher bolt protruded by nearly a 1/2"--and to the availability of solid gear within inches, we opted to remove both relics from the route. Their locations--both holes were drilled just below finger-sized cam placements--may also reveal the era during which they were placed.
From: SL UT
Nov 30, 2009
rating: 5.11b 6c 23 VIII- E3 5c
Great route! Bring loads of slings for the pitch that begins under the large roof- every piece of protection needs a sling- and I found myself placing lots of protection!
Feb 21, 2010
As Shingo mentioned, bring small nuts (Peenuts worked great) and 00/0 tcu's or such like, you will be very happy to have them for the first crux.
Take a handsize piece up the last pitch, you will use it.
|By Ben Folsom|
Jul 7, 2010
rating: 5.11- 6c 22 VIII+ E3 5c
Great route! Had a lot of fun on this climb. This newly established route will become a classic. Great line, position and movement.
From: Sandy, UT
Jul 8, 2010
“Notice that the stiffest tree is most easily cracked, while the bamboo or willow survives by bending with the wind.”
Way to find this line, very cool.
|By Spencer Weiler|
From: SLC, UT
Mar 17, 2013
Really great route, very fun with many short crux sections followed by no hands rests. A #4 camalot protects the initial fist crack section, though you can bury a #3 camalot in the back as well. Am I missing something, or is the first crux bulge where Shingo suggests small Peenuts or tcus for pro now protected by a bomber bolt? I was happy it was there for sure. I did not place anything smaller than a blue tcu on this pitch. The exit moves past the horn before the anchor are awesome!
Another great .11 crack in LCC.
Nov 3, 2013
Very much worth the hype! Pitch 1 is one of the best 5.10 pitches in the canyon. Highly varied, great gear with two nicely placed bolts. If you're a .10 leader, this is a must do. Don't be intimidated by the beginning wide crack as it's probably only 5.8 with a cool lip inside through most of it. And, you can rap from the top of this pitch with a single 70. I think this is way cooler than Mexican Crack - even though that is still a classic.
The last pitch was also super cool. I've seen a few of those layaway seams around and love the way this one kept giving and giving. Seems like getting into it was the business, then hanging on.
If you like this you'd love most of what you find at the East Gate. Climbs like:
Christopher of the Everglades
Greying at the Routes
and El Pipe Dream
Finally, if you like the last pitch you'd probably also like The 7th Way