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|Type: ||Trad, 2 pitches, 150 feet, Grade II|
|Consensus: ||5.2 [details]|
|FA: ||R. Ingraham and H. Davis, 1958|
|Season: ||Any, but expect any snow to hang around in north facing areas |
|Submitted By: ||Robert Cort on Jan 17, 2011|
The first pitch of roped climbing, aiming to bypas...
This is likely the easiest way to summit the Lesser Spire. Ingraham calls it 4th class, but he does mention roped vs. unroped climbing, so his definition of 4th likely includes roped climbing. Approach by either east (via Rabbit Ears Canyon), or west (west described herein). From the Topp Hut, hike the road towards the mine, but turn right on an old mining road before the mine proper (this is the approach to Southern Comfort Wall). At the end of the road, follow the climbers trail to Southern Comfort. Follow the climbers trail all the way around to the routes in the middle of the wall, then follow a faint trail leading right and descend a break through the lower wall into the gully. Consistent with Organ Mountain approaches, your 'trail' now consists of finding the path of least resistance. You want to aim for the col just north of the Lesser Spire by ascending a maze of minor gully's. The area is relatively lightly vegetated (by Organ Mt. standards), but there are some thick sections and there is some loose rock to watch for. Once at the saddle, you are afforded with a great view of the Rabbit Ears to the east, and a rare vantage point of the chutes (incl. Boyer's Chute) on the west side of NRE. Belay from the saddle, or better yet to avoid rope drag and some brush, scramble up and a little left to a nice belay stance in some brush. Climb out left, then turn up towards the left edge of a largish roof (low 5th), and set a belay once past the roof. Scramble right then left to a large ledge. From this expansive ledge, you can probably go way left (where the ledge ends)then back right for what appears to be an easy but exposed move, or go up over the headwall directly (right over some flakes, hand traverse left to a vertical crack, and up (we chose the latter). Set another belay amongst some large boulders. From here, scramble to the summit.
From the small col north of Lesser Spire, the route climbs the NE ridge. You can reach the col from the east (Rabbit Ears Canyon) or west (ascend a gully from below the Southern Comfort Wall). Several raps get you back down to the col.
Light rack. As of 1/16/2011 there was a fixed cam in the horizontal crack midway along the traverse on the second pitch. No other fixed anchors, but there are rap slings in several places for descent.
Moonrise over Lesser Spire (center) and ORP (right...
Looking up at the NE face from the col. Belay fro...
|By Aaron Hobson|
From: Las Cruces, NM
Jan 23, 2011
Staying right of the lichen roof on the first pitch is also good, and there is an old rusty piton below a "crux" move.
| || |rusty piton on first pitch variation
Submitted By: Aaron Hobson on Jan 23, 2011
For the second pitch, staying far left is a good way to scramble and is more of a 4th class move, although with plenty of exposure.