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Labyrinth Wall
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The Minotaur 

YDS: 5.10- French: 6a Ewbanks: 18 UIAA: VI+ ZA: 18 British: E1 5a R

   
Type:  Trad, 8 pitches, 1000', Grade III
Consensus:  YDS: 5.10- French: 6a Ewbanks: 18 UIAA: VI+ ZA: 18 British: E1 5a [details]
FA: Karsten Duncan, Andrew Gomoll -Nov 10, 2007
New Route: Yes
Page Views: 951
Submitted By: Karsten on Mar 26, 2008

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Spectacular views from near the top.

Description 

The Minotaur is a relatively moderate climb in a spectacular position. You get great views of Wilson, the Strip, and all the First Creek Slabs below. The climbing isn't that bad either but does have a few runout places. Be careful on the 7th pitch. It is easy climbing but pro is sparse. Combining this with any of the lower slab routes would make for a big grade IV day.

There are no bolts on this climb but belays are generally good and easy to get. This is probably the easiest way to get up the labyrinth wall. As with any new route however, be aware that all holds may not be bomber. I give the route 3 stars because of its position, length, and a few really neat pitches. That being said, it has some sections of mediocre rock, is runout on some easy terrain, and would be better compared to a Resolution Arete style of climbing. In short, its a moderate level adventure that if combined with the lower slab routes provides for 2000+ft of climbing.

Pitch 1: 5.10a/b 180ft
Start up a right angling crack that turns vertical. Continue up the thin crack and face and make a delicate traverse right 10 ft to gain the upper thin crack. Belay at a bush.

Pitch 2: 5.9 205ft
Climb up 15ft and traverse left into the right facing dihedral. Climb the dihedral to a ledge.

Pitch 3: 3rd Class 50ft
Scramble back and up 3rd class terrain to the right.

Pitch 4: 5.9 165ft
Climb up a right-facing corner passing a short 6” offwidth section and up a groove. Where the groove dead-ends into a steep blank wall traverse left and climb up onto a short step and belay.

Pitch 5: 3rd Class 40ft
Step left and through a short corridor to another wall.

Pitch 6: 5.9 215ft
Climb the handcrack up 40ft, traverse right to another crack and take it up and through a roof . Belay where the crack bends left and makes a small ledge.

Pitch 7: 5.7 R 185ft
From the belay first traverse right on the face for 15ft. Place gear and move up and generally trend left on face holds and almost no protection to a ledge with stacked blocks around the left corner.

Pitch 8: Move up and then left from the belay and follow a large crack on poor rock. Continue up a white rock chimney to another ledge.

Location 

Approach:
Climb any of the many routes on the lower angle first creek slabs to the ledge system. The route starts up the first available crack on the face to the right of the Guinness Book dihedral.

Descent: 2-3 single rope rappels, 1 double rope rappel

See the description and pic for the descent on the main Labyrinth Wall page.

Traverse to the back of the ledge and climb down (south) until you reach a somewhat narrow gulley. Scramble and walk down the gulley (heading east) doing 1-2 single rope rappels. Once at the bottom of the gulley take the SECOND gulley to your left (to the north). Move down this slot eventually downclimbing and squeezing under a huge chockstone. Rappel or downclimb an easy offwidth just below the chockstone to get to big ledge system. Traverse this ledge system west (skier’s left) until it is no longer possible and do one double rope rappel to the original ledge system atop the first creek slab routes. (It may be possible to do multiple other rappels of this ledge system) From there continue west on this ledge system to just below the Celtic Cracks route and take the standard first creek slabs descent on orange webbing.

Protection 

Its a big route. At least doubles from green alien to #3 camalot and singles into the big sizes. A few micronuts may be useful.


Photos of The Minotaur Slideshow Add Photo
Drew makes tenuous moves to get to the crack on th...
Drew makes tenuous moves to get to the crack on th...
Gomoll goes up the 4th pitch preparing to travers ...
Gomoll goes up the 4th pitch preparing to travers ...
The Minotaur
BETA PHOTO: The Minotaur
Pitches 1 and 2
BETA PHOTO: Pitches 1 and 2
Sunlight finally hits as Andrew tops out the 2nd p...
Sunlight finally hits as Andrew tops out the 2nd p...
The journey of 1000ft begins with an alien.  Drew ...
The journey of 1000ft begins with an alien. Drew ...
2 of the 4 pieces of pro you get on this pitch can...
2 of the 4 pieces of pro you get on this pitch can...

Comments on The Minotaur Add Comment
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By Andrew Gomoll
From: Las Vegas, NV
Apr 9, 2008

this route was surpisingly good. although the pro is thin, it is all there and at a suprisingly moderate grade.