Exposed climbing on the arete during the FFA. Phot...
A beautiful, airy pitch which climbs out the top half of the wall.
Start on a cushy belay ledge. The climbing starts out with stemming and edges with a few good finger jams below the crux. The crux involves hiking your feet up into a splitter stem, with a shitty jam (I found one finger to be the key) and a slopey crimp. Then deadpointing or stretching for the distant jugs. After your feet are on the jugs think left... At a small ledge with a slight bulge above you work left to easier climbing to the top on good, but still scruffy rock.
The route is about 30 feet south of Road to Emerald City. Maybe 60 feet south of Danger High Voltage.
Small wires and brass are ticket with some bomber blue Metolius or the same BD down low. The crux is well protected. The top 15 feet or so is run out, but the climbing there is 5.7ish or so. Yellow and orange Metolius or the likes in a jaggedy horizontal are your last pieces. Nuts or small hexes or tricams even may work better here.
By Frost Sep 9, 2007 rating: 5.11c6c+24VIII-E4 6a PG13
This is easier than 12a and very worth doing. 1 move crux that isn't rocket science. If you are nervous about dropping a rope on it, go for it!
By JJ Schlick Administrator From: Flagstaff, AZ Aug 2, 2008
Re-cleaned post FFA, but I am sure it is still a stunning experience on the Head. I changed the grade/safety to represent the consensus. I also want to note that after the FFA of this line I renamed it Birds Of A Feather, and submitted it here as such. It was changed to Rick's original name. Minnesota is the only place I can think of where a top rope ascent is celebrated more than an FFA... Some weird backwoods hero worship.
By chris deulen From: Merriam, Kansas Aug 11, 2008 rating: 5.11d7a24VIIIE5 6a
PG-13? This felt pretty secure the whole way. James' good cleaning job makes this a great and safe lead. I recommend this quick fun climb for anyone who likes stem problems.
By randy baum From: Minneapolis, MN May 9, 2009 rating: 5.11c6c+24VIII-E4 6a
Tops out on a small ledge located 10 ft or so below the top of the cliff. the small ledge is blocked in by a few large boulders and wide cracks (BD 6 and bigger). looking over the edge of the top out, you can just make out the top of the dihedral, which is about 40 ft down.
Solid fixed nchor at the belay ledge.
New pin at the start. Fixed pro at the crux. Otherwise, protection includes nuts and small cams to .5 BD.
Rap/TR anchor takes long webbing (to sling a boulder) and a hand-sized cam (place under boulder located at the cliff's edge). A BD 6 cam can also be used.
By ScottRiz Oct 14, 2009 rating: 5.11b6c23VIII-E3 5c PG13
Beta on the setup: Setup as for Oz, but equalize more or less due-south. This involves a couple #1 and/or #2 Camalots and a bunch of webbing or a static rope. No big gear or boulder-slinging necessary! Look for the hand-size crack about twenty feet back from the cliff edge; just behind the deep chasm that parallels the cliff. The dihedral is easy to see once you're leaning over the edge.
This is definitely not PG-13, except maybe for the very top 15-20 feet, which is probably 5.7 or 5.8. Make that last piece count!
I found this route in the 80's after climbing past it during the first ascent of the Road to Emerald City. I went back and TR'd it the following Summer. It looked impossible to protect (remember this was the 80s and we had different standards for cleaning back then) but it was a new route so I named it for a small yellow feather I saw on the ledge (remains of a peregrine kill?).