Just to the left of St. Vitus Dance is a fixed line. Follow it up until you hit the crack. Climb the crack to the top of the Lower Apron. This climb has been cleaned since the last guidebook has been published and is now quite nice. The original Beckey line on the way to the Butress.
Submitted by: peas on 2004-07-12
Route ID: 55835
South Arete isn't an all-day effort as it's really only 2 good pitches of crack. And when I say 2 good pitches, I mean very good. You start into a wide crack corner and get into a hand crack corner pitch of 20+ meters. It's sustained fist-jamming fun. I sunk my #4 off the belay then used my #2, then bumped my #3 along because it takes big gear. If you have big gear you could make a gear anchor at the overhang but I didn't so I had to make a hanging gear anchor 5 meters down from the overhang. It was a bit uncomfortable but enough to get my partner up and off for the 2nd pitch. This pitch as well is a fantastic corner crack pitch that starts with an overhang-ish blocky opening. Very positive holds and then into finger and hand jams into the corner. Lots of fun mashing your fists and feet into the very course corner. This route does not seem to get much traffic because it's pristine granite perfect for destroying your hands. I had bloody stumps for hands once I reached my partners gear anchor. The last pitch is a pad up a 5.6 and completely forgettable. If you only have a couple hours, this is a fun outing.
Climbed the first pitch, then exited to the next crackline over since I didn't have enough large cams for a suitable belay. A Barley bolted trad/sport route. Nice climb now that it has been cleaned up.