|West Ridge - part C - Pony Express to Long John
The Knife refers to the feature on which we climbed. Some 15m to the SE (climber's right) of the crux roof pitch of Sooberb and 20' NW (climber's left) of the last pitch of Long John Wall is a sharp, knifeblade arete. This is the outside left edge of the left side of the final 'inset' pitch of Long John Wall, but it is climbed from the outside of the knife, not the inner side that is visible. The bottom overhang is split by a decent crack, but poor rock quality guards this from being lead without fear of life and limb. To the Left side (facing N/NW) is a dark, shaded face. Up this face, starting 4M from the ground is a system of flakes and cracks. These run up and left of the face for perhaps 10-12m before running out, just below and left of a good ledge on the arete. Climb this system with surprisingly solid rock and good/available protection to its end. Pop out right by grabbing a few flakes and then the knife-blade arete and stepping up onto the shelf on it. A small seam is at chest level and provides placement opportunity for a few good small nuts- then run up the arete to the top.
Both I and my partner were very pleasantly surprised by the quality and fun nature of this pitch. Two-stars. This is a good alternate finish to Sooberb or Long John Wall if a queue of people develops or if you get spanked off.
The route did not look as good as it was, and is somewhat obscured by other wall features, as well as superseded by other nearby classic pitches. I feel that it is as likely as not that this particular pitch has not previously been climbed.
A set of nuts and cams to 2.5" plus a few very small nuts for the easy arete.
Joseffa has rounded the sharp arete on the mellow ...
Joseffa near the finish of 'The Knife (5.7)'. Phot...