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Third Flatiron
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YDS: 5.10b French: 6a+ Ewbanks: 19 UIAA: VII- British: E2 5b

Type:  Trad, Sport, 1 pitch, 70'
Consensus:  YDS: 5.10+ French: 6b+ Ewbanks: 21 UIAA: VII+ British: E3 5b [details]
FA: Bruce Hildenbrand & Bret Ruckman
Page Views: 1,191
Submitted By: Ron Olsen on Aug 8, 2003
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  • Some crags in this area are closed 1 February to 31 July: MORE INFO >>>
  • Climbing areas reopened after flood MORE INFO >>>

  • Description 

    The climb starts downhill from Shoyu State at the bottom of the ramp.

    The 11d variation starts at a bolt just above the roof band. Make a difficult move (11d) to pass this bolt, angle up left past two more bolts (11a), then continue straight up past three bolts to the anchor.

    The 10b variation starts 15' to the left. Climb left up the ramp to a break in the roof band. Place a 1"-2" cam and surmount the roof on good holds (9). Move right and continue straight up past three bolts to the anchor. The 10b crux is at the last bolt."


    6 bolts (11d variation). 1"-2" cam and 3 bolts (10b variation). 2-bolt anchor with chains.

    Photos of Sayonara Slideshow Add Photo
    Bruce cranking the thin moves past the next-to-last bolt.
    Bruce cranking the thin moves past the next-to-las...
    Chuck pulling the roof. Rather than putting his foot high again and risking another cramp, Chuck dangled and swung both feet up and right.
    Chuck pulling the roof. Rather than putting his fo...
    Bruce dialing in the very thin moves past the last bolt.
    Bruce dialing in the very thin moves past the last...
    Just put your right foot where the excess gear is hanging, and it's easy! Both Chuck's and my right thigh cramped violently and instantly when we first put our foot up. For me it was amusing, but Chuck was in serious pain.
    Just put your right foot where the excess gear is ...
    Sayonara.  The easier start (9) goes left up a ramp and turns the roof to the right.  Protect this move with a 1"-2" cam.  The hard start (11d/12a) begins down to the right and turns the roof on miniscule holds. <br /> <br />The two variations join for the final three bolts: steep thin edging at the 9-10 level with a 10b crux at the last bolt.
    BETA PHOTO: Sayonara. The easier start (9) goes left up a ram...
    Approaching the second bolt. After the initial the roof the route moves right then diagonals left past the second bolt then straight up to the third bolt.
    Approaching the second bolt. After the initial the...
    Comments on Sayonara Add Comment
    Show which comments
    By Bruce Hildenbrand
    Aug 10, 2003

    As a member of the first ascent party (Brett Ruckman and I put up this route several days before I moved to the Bay Area.....hence the name), let me shed some light on the route description.

    First off, I thought the start was near impossible (more like 5.11+), moving up and right to some adequate holds. In fact, when I first spotted the route and convinced Brett to do it with me, I had the easier, alternate, start in mind. Oh well, things happen. Anyway, the easier start goes out a finger/hand crack about 20 feet uphill from the other start and is about 5.9+. Take gear in the 1-2 Friend range to protect the first set of moves; there's no bolt. Let's not start a debate over that decision, please!

    By Ken Heiser
    From: Boulder, CO
    Dec 18, 2003
    rating: 5.11d 7a 24 VIII E5 6a

    I think the opening moves on this are more like 11+.

    By Ron Olsen
    From: Boulder, CO
    Oct 28, 2005
    rating: 5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- E2 5b

    A steep, sustained pitch with great thin edging all the way up.The 10b rating is for the easier start: go up a ramp to the left, place a 1"-2" cam, and turn the roof to the right. The difficulty of this move is height-dependent; at 6'1", I could stem right and reach good holds without much difficulty (8). This move could be 9 or 9+ for shorter climbers.

    Above, step right and follow three bolts to the top on steep thin edges. The 10b crux comes at the last bolt.

    The alternate start, down to the right, looked very difficult turning the roof at the first bolt (11d/12a). I recommend doing the easier start, since this keeps the entire pitch at a consistent level from bottom to top.

    By Bruce Hildenbrand
    Oct 28, 2005

    Ron Olsen and I replaced the tat webbing at the anchor with two 3/8" SS Rawl 5-piece bolts and added quick links and chain for rappel.

    The hardware for this project was provided by the American Safe Climbing Association ( They appreciate your support.

    By Bruce Hildenbrand
    Oct 28, 2005

    You can approach this climb from the traditional start of the Third Flatiron (East Bench). The start of Sayonara is basically straight across from the East Bench but, the easiest way to get there is to climb down about 50 feet and then across the slab and through and obvious break in a long right facing dihedral. Climb back up and left to the left edge of the Third Flatiron and proceed up to the flake with the new bolt anchor just to left of the flake. All in all, about 200-250 feet of climbing (low 5th class) to get there.

    By Ivan Rezucha
    From: Fort Collins, CO
    Sep 2, 2006

    Good climb! The crux for me was getting to the third bolt. I tried straight up, then left, then right, then again straight up, and suddenly I was there. The moves above may be technically harder but went easily with decent hands and a bolt near by. The bolts are pretty far apart and sporty on this and Blazing Biners, as compared with, eg, modern Boulder Canyon sport climbs.

    By Tony B
    From: Around Boulder, CO
    Nov 5, 2006
    rating: 5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- E2 5b

    5.10b or perhaps 10a for the route via skipping the first bolt (pulled on it). I played around on the bottom. I think it's harder than 11d- I suspect it would be called a 12 if there were no preconceptions of its difficulty.