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Checkerboard Wall
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Checkmate T,S 
Circus Finish T 
Cross-trainer T,S 
Green Thumb T 
King Me T,S 
Knight's Move T 
Lone Piton T 
Pawn's Promotion T 
Punch In The Nose T 
Queen's Gambit T 
Ring Leader T 
Ring Route T 
Sotol Roof T 
Worth the Effort T 
Unsorted Routes:

Green Thumb 

YDS: 5.6 French: 4c Ewbanks: 14 UIAA: V ZA: 12 British: S 4b

Type:  Trad, 150'
Consensus:  YDS: 5.6 French: 4c Ewbanks: 14 UIAA: V ZA: 12 British: S 4b [details]
Page Views: 980
Submitted By: Aaron Hobson on Nov 17, 2006  with updates from Bill Lawry

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Robert Machina after the crux. The OW resolves int...


This is another Un-named route that I have dubbed. It is on several old topos for the Checkerboard as one of the more prominent first pitch variations. What makes it nice is that it is easy to recognize, and offers a fixed anchor midway up tha wall. It also has good rock (except for the start which is flaky), fun moves, and a beautiful and easy off-width portion. The crux move is getting into the offwidth.

The climb follows the wide crack and traverses right under a roof or two. After one such traverse, there is a prominent and attractive off-width which cleaves a smooth slab (about 20 ft long). Optionally you can continue traversing right passing some old poot slings, and climb a chimney variation (with a big tree in it).


The middle of the Checkerboard wall has a large protruding buttress. This climb starts on the right side of this buttress in a large crack with two roof sections jutting out. From the belay ledge, a double rope rap can reach the ground, or continue up other variations to the summit.


Standard rack, with a few large pieces, especially for the off-sidth section. the off-width crack can be climbed without a large piece by protecting at the crux move with a bomber nut, and then running out the rope for 20 ft on easier terrain. The belay ledge has plenty of loose rock, and has one old 1/4" bolt, as well as some poot-slings for fixed gear.

Photos of Green Thumb Slideshow Add Photo
Looking up at the start. The OW is on the slab imm...
BETA PHOTO: Looking up at the start. The OW is on the slab imm...
Green Thumb as originally described. Photo Cheryl ...
BETA PHOTO: Green Thumb as originally described. Photo Cheryl ...

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By Aaron Hobson
From: Clinton, TN
Nov 17, 2006

I dubbed this route Green Thumb due to the amount of vegetation that had to be cleared out of the off width. It was so choked with vines that it was not even clearly recognizable from below. But they came out very easily, and revealed this nice climb.
By Marta Reece
From: Las Cruces, NM
Dec 20, 2012

Once you get established int the off-width the climbing is pretty much over if you stay there, but you can step right and continue on good rock to the regular belay.

You can continue by getting up onto the boulders leading up to the branches of the large tree. Step over to the left there and go up an easy slope to a nice ledge for belay of Pitch 2.

Pitch 3 can be done on the other side of the buttress, up a groove and then left before yet another tree. From there walk left under the head wall to a rap station on top of a large boulder. A single two-rope, 70m rappel will take you to a fourth-class terrain.
By Bill Lawry
From: New Mexico
Mar 11, 2013

The "attractive off-width" was great to find cleaned out, Aaron (referred to below simply as a V crack).

Recommend that Green Thumb be modified to include all of Route "B" as shown in this Photo which is the 1980 topo just recently contributed by climber pat. I only followed on the pitches above your current description (3/2013) but would describe all as indicated below.

Rating 5.9-

P1: Lead past / around right of three roofs. At a point about 20 feet below a bush and the V crack, veer right right 10 or 15 feet and then head up shallow cracks 20 feet to a hanging belay. This belay is a few feet right of the bottom of a ~20 foot tall V-shaped crack that cleaves the above slab (don't rely on the old poot slings if there). 30 meters. 5.6.

Alternately, I believe the topo is showing a belay to the left of the bottom of the V Crack. In that case, at 30 meters one probably goes through the bush and left to a ledge-y area rather than veering right before the bush to then climb up to the hanging belay.

P2: Lead up the V crack, then step right and up into a vegetated area. Cross right onto a slab and then up roughly another 30 feet to a belay ledge. Distance? 5.6.

P3: Continue leading up the slab getting gear here and there where you can. One can set a belay out at the top of the slab for communication but eventually you'll move into the huge grassy alcove left of the big green bush at the top of the slab. Distance? 5.7.

P4: Lead directly up the major crack system. The moves just past first pro may be the crux. At the roof at the top, exit left (5.9- crux in the topo) and find a broad / tall flake at left to head up onto easier terrain.

One more easy lead gets everyone on top.

Gear: Standard rack plus double up (about 6 pieces) - in the range of 2 to 4 inches. Some hexes in this range are nice. A 4 inch cam works well at the advertised crux in the topo.
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