Adam Stack called this the hardest of the Project Wall routes and for good reason -- it's one of the longest and most sustained.
Present Tense is two routes right of Living in Fear, or three routes left of Simply Read. It starts in the same place as Sometimes Always (up on the bone-white dirt heap above the parking spots) but trends right above the first bolt along a seam before heading up into a shallow corner capped by a roof and a long blue streak.
Boulder up the grey rock to the first bolt (the glue-in ring on the right). Underclings get you to the second clip. Sustained, perplexing climbing leads right to a hand jam. Bust a crimpy move into a kneebar rest. The next 40 feet, while littered with positive holds, is very sustained. A knee-scum rest below the finishing roof helps you bleed it back. Straight up over the roof into the blue streak is harder (this is how it originally went), but some climbers have gone left onto Sometimes Always then moved back right on the headwall. Slabby, but interesting climbing takes you to the anchor.
A 60-meter rope just reaches (if you stay into the belayer's side of the rope), so tie a knot in the end and lower slowly.
This is probably one of the most spectacular pitches at Rifle.
15-17 draws and a 60 meter rope (mandatory)
Sep 16, 2012
rating: 5.13d 8b 31 X E8 7a
Easy for the grade, lots of kneebars.