|East Fork Valley
The north-south "ridgeline" between Ambush and Raid contains a lot of rock which is often overlooked in lieu of the impressive nearby Raid and Ambush. As Arsenault recently commented,"We used to think, 'Why bother with all that little stuff in between when you have such impressive long routes at both ends'."
A long attractive slab route line with interesting features two buttresses to the north of M Buttress and two buttresses to the south of Raid lured us to check out and find a technically challenging clean line with low commitment.
At the lowest toe of the slab, we traversed under an overhang on snow to an area on the gray granite where two vertical dark brown colored "dots" mark the start. We 4th classed up and right to a ledge where you will find two bolts. All bolted belays were established while rapping the route, which is straight down the face. Gear belays were used during the ascent.
Pitch #1: Climb straight up from the ledge to the right of the "brown dots" and to the left of a pair of prominent water streaks. 5.5, 60m.
Pitch #2: Make your way to a left leaning steep seam/slab to find a bolt and continue up and slightly left past 6 more bolts to a right facing dihedral and ledge with a two bolt belay. 5.10a, 70m.
Pitch #3: ("The Pantry Raid Pitch") Move up initially left, then trend right passing two bolts protecting very tricky moves and reach a thin left facing corner. Pass another bolt way up there and layback right out a tips roof eventually reaching a right facing corner small hands crack and belay. 5.10c/d, 60m.
Pitch #4: Climb up and right of a suspicious flake under a roof into a hand crack. In darker rock now follow slab until faced with a steep, technical, and improbable left traverse. Pass a bolt and a fixed nut to a great ledge and two-bolt belay. 5.10a/b, 60m.
Pitch #5: Pass three bolts (5.9) to a left sloping ramp/ledge. Follow the ledge to the left (5.5) until a belay in an alcove near a spike of rock is possible. 5.9, 45m.
Pitch #6: Climb up a nice ramp/crack right facing dihedral system past the spike to a pin/bolt belay ledge. 5.7, 55m.
Pitch #7: Climb straight up to the top of the climb and scramble out right up a gully (3rd class) to the top of the formation. 5.6, 70m
Rappel the route.
We called this unknown chunk of rock Son Of Raid. It is two formations to north of M Buttress and two formations South of Raid. The impressive shield of rock to its left (south) was reportedly explored by Henry Barber in the 70s.
Rapping this route provides a fast and easy descent back into the cirque.
Set of Camalots to #4 and Nuts. All bolts drilled on lead with belay/rap stations installed on descent. Easy pulls with two 60m ropes for a quick return to the base. Two cairns were placed at the ridgeline top of the gully to facilitate finding the raps for eventual climbers descending from Raid (which normally is a long and involved affair).
BETA PHOTO: Here is a super easy, quick descent from both the ...
Following the wild 3rd Pitch of Son Of Raid
Jonathan Baldassare and Steve Arsenault at the top...
The 4th Pitch of Son Of Raid
Reaching the end of the slabby section of P2
The beautiful view from the base of the climb
The beautiful Son Of Raid slab in the morning ligh...
Baldy above the crux of pitch 3
|By stephen arsenault|
Sep 13, 2013
rating: 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
I did this route with 2 other younger, strong climbers from N.H. in August.
We really enjoyed the route, which had some pretty amazing face climbing on many pitches.
There was little natural pro. and the route must of required much effort to put in, on the 1st ascent. We skipped the last pitch, as a storm moved in, and the rap off went super quick, which was great!