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Sigma Wall
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Nakoma (formerly The Niche) S 
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Sigma 

YDS: 5.12a/b French: 7b Ewbanks: 26 UIAA: VIII+ ZA: 26 British: E5 6a

   
Type:  Sport, 1 pitch, 70'
Consensus:  YDS: 5.12a/b French: 7b Ewbanks: 26 UIAA: VIII+ ZA: 26 British: E5 6a [details]
FA: Mike Dahlberg
Page Views: 7,152
Submitted By: dvsanbt on Jan 24, 2007

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (27)
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Tyler sending Sigma

Description 

A pumpy route. Have the belayer be watchful for the 3rd clip. Clean line with good moves. There are a couple of spots with a bit of crumbly rock.
Not so much of a distinct crux, linking together is the key, IMO.


Location 

Middle of the unquarried wall, about 40 ft from the corner. Look for a flake/crack going up and slightly to the right with bolts to the left of it. That's your line.


Protection 

Bolts, quite a few of them (about 10 or so) on solid rock. Anchors at top - will have to pass the rope, though.



Photos of Sigma Slideshow Add Photo
Shawn Tracy on an attempt to solve Sigma.  Photo by John Pederson Photography.
Shawn Tracy on an attempt to solve Sigma. Photo b...
Brandon on Sigma
Brandon on Sigma
Working through the first crux
Working through the first crux
Possibly the best 12a in Minnesota
Possibly the best 12a in Minnesota
Taking a big ride after blowing the last clip
Taking a big ride after blowing the last clip
Pete on TR, a good look at the whole line
Pete on TR, a good look at the whole line
setting up for the first crux
setting up for the first crux
Stuck it
Stuck it
Nate Erickson on Sigma. May, 2014.
Nate Erickson on Sigma. May, 2014.
shaking out after the second crux
shaking out after the second crux
Sigma
Sigma
Tricky moves near the finish. Nate Erickson. May, 2014.
Tricky moves near the finish. Nate Erickson. May, ...
Comments on Sigma Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Oct 3, 2011
By Chris Hirsch
From: Rapid City, SD
Jan 24, 2007
rating: 5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a

Such a beautiful line that follows this S-curving crack. Pretty much a perfect route with the crux in the beginning, a rest in the middle and a sweet redpoint crux right at the end. There is also two no-hands kneebars and is very well protected. A hidden gem!

By Shawn P. Tracy
Nov 26, 2007
rating: 5.12b/c 7b+ 27 IX- 27 E6 6b

One of the best routes around. Simply beautiful and sustained, challenging moves over immaculate sandstone. Mike Dahlberg spent an outrageous amount of time preparing to bolt this so it would flow safely and smoothly without interupting the climbing. Kudos for the FA in the 1980's and in such a terrific job in protecting it!

By BIATHLON
From: Duluth Mn
May 21, 2008
rating: 5.12a/b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6a

Got on this route and almost got the onsight of it today. Super fun moves. Bolted extremely well, I felt like every bolt was right where I wanted it, Great Job Mike!

By helk0003
Jul 22, 2008

One of the best in the .12s in the midwest, on par with Wiskey a go go or any others! Great work Mike!

By BIATHLON
From: Duluth Mn
Dec 17, 2008
rating: 5.12a/b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6a

Anyone know if this has been led on gear?

By randy baum
From: Minneapolis, MN
Apr 11, 2009

no idea. but it can go. go for it!

By helk0003
Oct 3, 2009

I am not 100 percent positive but I believe that Mike lead many of these thin lines pre "city is cool with climbing" days.

By BIATHLON
From: Duluth Mn
Oct 4, 2009
rating: 5.12a/b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6a

"I am not 100 percent positive but I believe that Mike lead many of these thin lines pre "city is cool with climbing" days. "

By this do you mean he lead them on gear?

By ferrells
Sep 2, 2010

I am not aware of whether he did or did not lead them pre-cool city days, but he would have had to lead them on gear. Bolts were not added to these cliffs until the city was okay with it.

By Shawn P. Tracy
May 4, 2011
rating: 5.12b/c 7b+ 27 IX- 27 E6 6b

Mike Dahlberg got the TR-FA of Nexus, Sigma, Tool Boy and The Niche in the mid 1980's. He waited to bolt Sigma until well after the local non-bolting advocate was gone. He worked 8 days on getting the bolts in the best rock, best locations, and best type of bolt so it's quality was preserved. He got the FA-Lead the next week, mid 2000's. Sigma was not led with trad gear in the past. It would require hammering in vertical knifeblades, on-lead, at a grade not yet achieved in that style in the midwest prior to the bolts. No such scaring is evident in the sandstone. If Dahlberg didn't trad it in that fashion in the height of his trad days (see several of his heinous trad routes from that period) that were at that grade or harder, there's a reason for it. If anyone better than his mid-80's and 90's climbing form led it in such a fashion in that time or earlier, it would surely have surfaced and would have been more likely rehearsed, then soloed (which is conceivable for some of Dahlberg's peers which was their style at that time).

By randy baum
From: Minneapolis, MN
Oct 3, 2011

checked out the gear on sigma last weekend. it goes for sure, and it's pretty safe, maybe just PG rating.

obviously, you'll need lots of small stuff. triples of silver and purple TCU, as well as doubles of blue. you'll also need 3-5 brass nuts, the largest made by BD (5kn). a #1 BD camalot, oddly enough, is comes in handy, as well (it goes in the horizontal crack/pod/jug located mid-route).

all the cruxes protect very well. the only area that does not take the best gear is the dihedral in the end, which only takes brassies.

go lead it!