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White Twin
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West Face S,TR 
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West Face 

YDS: 5.8 French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- ZA: 15 British: HVS 4c

   
Type:  Sport, TR, 1 pitch, 45'
Consensus:  YDS: 5.9 French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: HVS 5a [details]
FA: Harvey Carter and Art Howell, 1960s?
Page Views: 1,661
Submitted By: Barrett Cooper on Mar 9, 2002

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (23)
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Description 

This route is located on the west side of White Spire in the center of the Garden. It follows the line of the protection and is listed at a 5.8 in my guidebook, although it would definitely feel harder on lead due to the zig-zag nature of the route. There are three manky looking pins on the west face if you are wanting to lead this climb. The first pin is on the left of the face about 15 feet up and the second pin is to its right and another 15 feet up. Both of these pins are obvious from the ground. The third pin is hidden on the right side of the face in a small pocket about 10-15 feet above the second. The easiest and safest way to do this route is to lead climb the 5.6 South Ridge of White Spire and set up a toprope. While not very complicated, this route does require a bit of balance and is a nice toprope to do, since you will already be set up if you have led the north or south side climbs on White Spire.

Per Stewart M. Green: The "West Face" of White was a Garden testpiece back in the late 1960s. There was a parking area on the Gateway Road just east of Red and White, so it was convenient and always lots of folks congregating there to climb, to BS, or to watch. There was of course, no paved trail or stone wall at the base, just dirt. There are actually 3 starts to the route. The left start with the old piton is the "Dudley Start," named for first ascender Mike Dudley. The middle start was first climbed on top-rope by who knows who...I did it in 1968. The right start is "Kor Start" climbed in 1964 by Layton Kor and belayed by John Auld on one of Kor's forays to The Garden. From the ledge with the piton on its right side, several other variations happen. You can climb up left on shallow, rounded scoops on the "Muff Traverse," named for first ascensionist Steve Cheyney in 1971. We all worked on that baby trying to get the first ascent. I did the direct (toprope) up to the pothole below bolt 3 in 1974 and declined to rate it since it seemed off the chart for the ratings at the time. It's very bouldery.


Protection 

There are three pins on the west face if you choose to lead the route, but it can be set up as a toprope from the two other easier routes on White Spire.



Photos of West Face Slideshow Add Photo
The bomber undercling.
The bomber undercling.
Who's got the belay?
BETA PHOTO: Who's got the belay?
Eva taking on the crux.
Eva taking on the crux.
Nina rapping the W Face.  Photo by the 1-handed belayer.
Nina rapping the W Face. Photo by the 1-handed be...
Eva climbing the upper section.
Eva climbing the upper section.
Comments on West Face Add Comment
Show which comments
By Sean O'Dell
Mar 22, 2002

Given the fact that over half of this route has groundfall potential (the second pin is 2/3 of the way up the face, and a fall while clipping it would almost certainly have you smacking the deck), AND because there isn't much in the way of placements, I'd be tempted to give this route an 'R'. Maybe I'm just a puss.

By David Danforth
From: California/Colorado
Oct 22, 2002

The west face isn't very difficult, but it's a lot of fun. Do the south ridge first, though. Use the two pins (and bring 1 0r cams along if you want the extra security.) Both the south ridge and the west face are worth the time.

By Anonymous Coward
Dec 12, 2002

I liked all 3 routes on this rock, it's very solid. This route is a one move wonder. I'm tall, and it felt like a 5.8 to me, but my partner is about 5'6, and it was considerably harder for him. I pulled on the mono by the first pin, and there are 2 holds right by each other about a foot above the mono that are decent. Grab the undercling with your left hand and walk your way up to the traverse. The rest of the climb is easier.

By Stewart M. Green
Apr 28, 2003

The "West Face" of White was a Garden testpiece back in the late 1960s. There was a parking area on the Gateway Road just east of Red and White, so it was convenient and always lots of folks congregating there to climb, to BS, or to watch. There was of course, no paved trail or stone wall at the base, just dirt. There are actually 3 starts to the route. The left start with the old piton is the "Dudley Start," named for first ascender Mike Dudley. The middle start was first climbed on top-rope by who knows who...I did it in 1968. The right start is "Kor Start" climbed in 1964 by Layton Kor and belayed by John Auld on one of Kor's forays to The Garden. From the ledge with the piton on its right side, several other variations happen. You can climb up left on shallow, rounded scoops on the "Muff Traverse," named for first ascensionist Steve Cheyney in 1971. We all worked on that baby trying to get the first ascent. I did the direct (toprope) up to the pothole below bolt 3 in 1974 and declined to rate it since it seemed off the chart for the ratings at the time. It's very bouldery.

By Michael Heinrichs
Sep 7, 2003

IMHO, this route is not 5.8. I spent the better part of the Spring and Summer climbing 5.8-5.10, and while this route finishes in the 5.8-5.9 range, the first several moves are in the 5.9-5.10 range. I can't say that I have seen a 5.8 with a mono pull. I will comfortably sport lead 5.8 and can lead 5.10. This route feel 5.10 to me, and I will not lead it.

By Dan Russell
Sep 7, 2003

It's a 5.10 route alright, but that's with the upper moves if you climb the face directly. Those first moves aren't 5.10, though they are kind of height-dependent. Unless you're short, the mono is just for balance while you jump from your feet to the undercling. I could be wrong on this, as it's been several years since I did it.

By Larry Shaw
Nov 19, 2003

Felt like an .8 or .9 but really not that bad. There is decent pro at all the hard spots, but there is a little pendulum risk after the second bolt if you traverse right then back left. After the mono and before the undercling, there are 2 or 3 good intermediate crimps to ladder up on. I thought the upper section was harder than the bottom. Next time I climb it I'll check out the direct route like Green suggested.

By Leo Paik
Administrator
From: Westminster, Colorado
Dec 7, 2003
rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a R

Tried this a vue yesterday as a GOG virgin. Fun, committing for 5.8, solid. Better rock c/w Red Spire, Montezuma's, 3 Graces. 5'10" or taller makes it easier but still felt 5.9 R. 1st pin is a stretch at 5'10". It seemed best to hand traverse until below 2nd pin. A #2 Camalot slot up & right of pin 2 in the line suggested (retrospectively) by M. Rolofson's guide.

By Douglas Argyle
Mar 14, 2004

I would like to concur with Dan Russell about the height thing. I am 6' with ridiculously long arms, and I found the first few moves on the left start very easy.

It's a nice bouldery route and very fun on a toprope. I wouldn't recommend leading it without some trad gear. (The route can be done without the monos, you just have to get creative and look for alternatives.)

By jay baichi
Mar 2, 2008

This wandering route is much harder than 5.8. Not worth the time.