Login with Facebook
South Early Winters Spire
Select Route:
Direct East Buttress T 
Hitchhiker, The T 
Northwest Face T 
Passenger, The T 
South Arete T 
Southwest Couloir 
SW Rib T 
Mountain Project has launched a new site: Powder Project, and we're giving away loads of gear, including skis & Oakley goggles. Check it out!

Northwest Face 

YDS: 5.11 French: 6c+ Ewbanks: 23 UIAA: VIII- ZA: 23 British: E4 5c

Type:  Trad, Alpine, 6 pitches, Grade III
Consensus:  YDS: 5.11- French: 6c Ewbanks: 22 UIAA: VIII+ ZA: 22 British: E3 5c [details]
FA: Boving and Kerns 1977
Season: Summer
Page Views: 744
Submitted By: Zack Sinner on Sep 15, 2011

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (5)
Your todo list:
Your stars:
Your rating: -none- [change]
Your ticklist: [add new tick]
Your opinion of this PAGE:    [0 people like this page.]
BETA PHOTO: Start of Climb


The northwest face is a fun varied route up the shorter west face of SEWS. Fairly serious climbing right of the ground and multiple minor cruxes make this more of an undertaking than the west face of NEWS. However, it makes for a more adventurous and challenging route.

Pitch 1: Traverse into the steep corner and make committing 10ish moves up to a prominent ledge, groups may belay on small gear from right side of the ledge but we continued past a committing 10 move to a good belay in a small tree with pitons and cams for pro. (10ish)

Pitch 2: Continue up the right facing corner with limited feet and hard gear placement. This was rated 11a in the guide but is solid for that grade. (11)

Pitch 3: Head up a short chimney and continue right into a vegitated crack. Continue working upward past a block and into a big ledge to belay. (8)

Pitch 4: Scramble or rope up and head for the base of the prominent set of overhangs above.

Pitch 5: Climb over the pair of obvious overhangs and belay in a gully. Good pro and commiting moves. (10)

Pitch 6: Climb straight up a nice hand crack past a 9ish move and head right to the top. We belayed after the hand crack and then simuled/scrambled to the top. (9)


This route is on the climbers right looking up the gulley between NEWS and SEWS. The route starts with a short traverse over to a steep corner just below the last rap out of the gulley.


Standard rack with extra TCUs or aliens.

Comments on Northwest Face Add Comment
Show which comments
By Eric Fjellanger
Jul 7, 2014
rating: 5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c

In contrast to the description above, Supertopo describes the crux pitch as 5.11a with good gear, good for aspiring leaders to break into the 5.11s. I agree with that, the crux is short and if you have an assortment of small cams you can protect it nicely.
Beyond the Guidebook:
The Definitive Climbing Resource
Inspiration & Motivation
to Fuel Your Run
Next Generation Mountain
Bike Trail Maps
Backcountry, Sidecountry
and Secret Stashes
Better Data. Better Tools.
Better Hikes!