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Pony Express is a great way to start the day. The first pitch is worthy of 3 stars, a lieback flake for a ways then it turns into a left-facing open book.
The second pitch only deserves 1 star... continue up from the belay on easy climbing for ~20 feet then use a wide crack in the gully to pull a bulge (5.9). After the crux its 3rd class to the top.
Finding Pony Express is quite simple too. It starts in the middle of a clean face on a very obvious flake - the only one in the vicinity.
Up to 3 inches, there are bolts atop the first pitch, and plenty of huge boulders to sling atop the second.
Walk off to the north.
BETA PHOTO: First pitch of Pony Express (5.8) at sunset
There are frequent big rests.
The corner above the first ledge.
Laybacking to surmount the step in the upper corne...
Paul making a big layback move. Is it really this ...
Beautiful panoramic shot highlights the west side ...
Perfect spring day for Pony Express
BETA PHOTO: loose flake. wehn she climbed it seemed as just th...
From: Oakland CA
Feb 19, 2008
Fun handcrack. Would be a great warmup but it's on the shady side of the Loaf in the am. Brr!!
It's worth toproping the .11b to the left from the bolted anchor if you're so inclined. thin edging fun.
From: Sacramento, CA
Feb 28, 2009
If just climbing the first pitch, a singe rope is sufficient to get you back down. Somewhere around 80' or so.
From: San Francisco
Mar 31, 2009
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- HVS 4c
More like 5.8 (Supertopo rating)
Crux consists of a few 5.8 lieback moves. Great gear.
I used the anchor out to the right on the face. To spice up the route, bypass the bulge and go out and right directly onto the face (direct to anchor), no gear for ~8 ft or so and maybe a 5.9 move or two.
Aug 24, 2010
The first pitch is classic.
|By Colonel Mustard|
From: Reno, NV
Mar 14, 2011
The second pitch isn't classic by any means, but it is still fun. Your experience probably won't be tainted unless your psyche crumbles at the thought of touching 2 star terrain. A #4 gnu skewl camalot is recommended.
|By Josh Cameron|
Jul 17, 2011
First pitch starts out at 5.7, has a distinct 5.8 section (perfect for a #1 C4) and finishes with 5.6 liebacking. The second pitch is 5.9.
|By Floyd Hayes|
Aug 15, 2012
rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI HVS 5a
Pitch 2 has a committing 5.9 lieback section about 10' long protected by big #4 and #5 BD cams, followed by a rest on a ledge and then another 15' or so of 5.7 crack. Don't underestimate the "5.9 move to 3rd class" described in the SuperTopo guide.
|By Mitch M|
Nov 27, 2012
Pitch 2 was an awesome awkward wide crack,a #3 fits just off the deck and a #4 BD fits perfectly about halfway up. Don't let all the haters deter you, it was a fun grovel past the bulge with some fists and chicken winging tossed in the mix.
From: Salt Lake City, UT
Nov 4, 2013
I love that Mitchell Rhodes has apparently made an account only for posting useful spray comments. Too bad he doesn't realize there is a "ticks" feature on his profile.... :'''-(
Nov 4, 2013
warning-the large flake on the left near the bottom of the route is very loose. i added a photo showing it. not sure if it was just the top half that wobbles or if it was the entire flake. either way it's huge