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The British Were Coming 

YDS: 5.9 French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: HVS 5a PG13

Type:  Trad, Alpine, 8 pitches, 800', Grade III
Consensus:  YDS: 5.9 French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: HVS 5a [details]
FA: Andy Tuthill and Chris Ellms (8-9-75)
Page Views: 1,176
Submitted By: proto on Nov 19, 2011

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1. Climb the steps and the dark corner above until it's possible to exit left into a V-grove. Belay at the top of the buttress (there is a not so good rap anchor at the far left end of the large terrace). 5.8

2. Climb diagonally right, zigzagging across slabs until you reach a short corner where it's possible to belay. This pitch wanders a bit and has difficult route finding. 5.8

3. Climb the corner and fractured slabs to a small roof. Step left to surmount the roof (crux) and belay above. 5.9

4. A short pitch leads to the base of the obvious bomb-bay chimney. 5.6

5. Climb the chimney to its top (gear deep inside the chimney - strenuous) and exit left and down to a good stance. 5.8

6. Climb slabs to the left, almost to a large dihedral, then back right to a belay on a ledge. 5.7

7. Straight up through a first overlap then slightly left through another overlap. Belay atop a characteristic block. 5.7

8. Easier climbing straight up to the top. 5.6


The route starts in a depression left of Duet Buttress. Start below a dark corner, at 2 large steps.


Difficult route finding here and there. The gears are sometimes a bit tricky but it's generally reasonably well protected.

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By proto
From: Falmouth (MA)
Nov 19, 2011

Stef and I finally climbed this route last summer. It's a great outing with an alpine feeling. Route finding and protections make the route interesting. The rock is generally good. We found that the crux was the small roof near the end of the third pitch. That section does not correspond to the description given by Sykes in "Secrets of the Notch" although we followed the easier path (may be this part was affected by rockfall). Although not for the budding 5.8 leader, this route would deserve to see more traffic!

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