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Bellagio, The T 
For Whom the Bells Toll T 

The Bellagio 

YDS: 5.7 French: 5a Ewbanks: 15 UIAA: V+ ZA: 13 British: MVS 4b

Type:  Trad, 4 pitches, 600'
Consensus:  YDS: 5.7 French: 5a Ewbanks: 15 UIAA: V+ ZA: 13 British: MVS 4b [details]
FA: Tristan Higbee, Spencer Parkin, September 2011
New Route: Yes
Page Views: 1,144
Submitted By: Tristan Higbee on Sep 23, 2011

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BETA PHOTO: Topo of the two routes on this side of Waterfall D...

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This is a fun route. Itís not as steep as For Whom the Bells Toll and the rock isnít quite as good (it's a little grittier), but it's got some really neat and enjoyable climbing on it. The route is characterized by smooth slabs and chickenheads. Lots and lots of chickenheads.

Pitch 1: Long pitch. Climb up some slabs that are interspersed with horizontal cracks (there are 2 bolts on the slabs). Do some mantling and then head up the corner to the right of the knobby roof (which looks like a roof from the ground but is really just a steeper section of rock). Make a reachy move out left to a massive chickenhead on the steep section, clip a bolt, and then follow the chickenhead ladder to a 2-bolt belay. 5.7-, 70m.

You can set up a gear belay using finger- and fist-sized pieces under the knobby roof if rope drag is too bad. If the knobby roof isnít to your liking, thereís a gnarly flared 5.6++ chimney out right.

Pitch 2: Climb up the slab with sweet vertical dikes and chickenheads past 3 bolts. Some shallow horizontals can fit a piece or two, sling a chickenhead, clip a bolt, and finish the pitch at the 2-bolt belay. 5.7-, 55m.

Pitch 3: Climb up the fist-ish crack, sling a small bush, go up the face (1 bolt). The pitch then levels out a bit. Head up and right to the solitary bolt in the middle of pitch 4 on For Whom the Bell Tolls. Finish up that pitch (up the cool chickenhead headwall) and then climb the last short pitch of FWtBT (#5) to the summit of the formation.

Rappel down FWtBT with a single 70m rope (7 rappels, 2 of which are short).


Bushwhack up to East Waterfall Dome and head left to the base of the route Kinabalu. From Kinabalu, head straight west on a faint trail to the base of For Whom the Bells Toll, then keep heading past that route for 40 or 50 feet to the base of The Bellagio.


1 set of cams from tips to #4, with maybe an extra #2 and #3. Tons of slings. Several 48Ē slings would be awesome to minimize drag on the long pitches.

Photos of The Bellagio Slideshow Add Photo
Looking up at pitch 2. Note the cool dikes and chi...
Looking up at pitch 2. Note the cool dikes and chi...
LCC from the summit. The view from the top is pret...
LCC from the summit. The view from the top is pret...
Start of the route. The knobby roof (that isn't re...
BETA PHOTO: Start of the route. The knobby roof (that isn't re...
Looking down pitch 1 from partway up the pitch.
Looking down pitch 1 from partway up the pitch.
Looking down pitch 2.
Looking down pitch 2.
The "knobby roof" that looks isn't nearl...
The "knobby roof" that looks isn't nearl...
Having slung the holiest of all holy chickenheads,...
BETA PHOTO: Having slung the holiest of all holy chickenheads,...

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By spencerparkin
From: Salt Lake City
Sep 24, 2011

I'll just add a few thoughts about the route, FWIW. The over-all route gets a rating of 5.7 because of the crux moves, but it's certainly not sustained 5.7. I'd say that more than 90% of the route is about 5.5. On pitch 1, I'd say the crux move is 5.6. In my experience, (which, admittedly, is no where near as much as Tristan's), to go from 5.6 to 5.7, there's got to be a bit of pumpyness involved, and there's no pumpyness in this crux move. It's just balancy and heady to me. In fact, there's a smaller little roof you pull just before it, and I thought that was harder. Comparing the 2nd pitch to the West Slabs of Mt. Olympus, I'm thinking it's 5.6 friction. Maybe there's some 5.7 friction in there? I'm impressed that Tristan did it on lead in the circumstances that he did. Pitch 3 starts out interesting, but turns into a hike just before hitting the big wondrously knobby bolder. I would agree that this is at least 5.7. It's pumpy unless you commit to and move through the moves quickly. It's definitely the crux of the whole route in my opinion, though all the friction slabbing is perhaps more freaky to me.
By Michael Buchanan
Apr 5, 2015

This climb is way better than for whom the bell tolls. Each pitch is more sustained and less 5.5 slab than the route to the right. The offwidth is awesome and protects with a double length sling (no need for anything bigger than a size 2 BD C4 on the route). Brings lots of runners to reduce drag. You can easy do FWtBT and this route in a day.
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