Sunset Strip - A Perfect "5.10" Barometer

Check here for new routes information. Post new routes here.
User avatar
BlahMatt
Junior Member
Junior Member
Posts: 76
Joined: Mon Sep 13, 2010 8:29 am
Location: Vancouver, BC

Sunset Strip - A Perfect "5.10" Barometer

Post by BlahMatt » Tue Jul 16, 2013 7:19 am

Got on Sunset Strip on Saturday as a final climb with an amazing climbing partner who is moving far away to Scotland. Thought I'd post a quick review of this absolutely stellar new route. We ended up starting at noon with 3 parties above us, but everyone moved quickly and we only caught up to a party on the last pitch. Finished around 7PM. Took us about 7 hours climbing (including stopping for lunch) and 8 hours car to car.

Consistency
For me, this climb is the perfect barometer for "Can you climb 5.10 in Squamish". It's stacked with well protected, high quality and fun 5.10 pitches with only one "giveaway" pitch (the 5.8 Crap Crags pitch). If you can get up this route and feel confident on all the pitches, I can't think of a single well protected 5.10 in Squamish that you should feel hesitant about getting on.

Fun
Nearly every pitch was fun. We had a blast climbing and after almost every pitch we were smiling and thinking: "Wow, that was surprisingly fun."

Protection
The harder pitches the bolts are super close (almost to the point of being bolt ladders) which was fine for me as they are face climbing moves, all the crack pitches had plenty of gear. Also, the rack beta given on the topo was spot on for what we needed

NOTE: There's a green camelot for bootying on pitch 6 that I shoved into an undercling without looking :(.

Position
Very cool, direct, steep line up the dihedrals. Beautiful view the whole way and you get to stay in the shade a lot for a hot summer day.

Summary
For my money, this is the best long (more than 5 pitches) 5.10 multi pitch I've climbed in Squamish. Better climbing than Angel's Crest. Comparable to Borderline for difficulty.


1. Given Grade 5.10c. Personal Grade 10b/c. Length 35m.
Awesome pitch. Fun quick slab move then up the crack with beautiful jamming. Loved it and was grinning by the end. Didn't feel like 10c to me, but my partner thought it was spot on.

2. Given Grade 5.10b. Personal Grade 10b/c. Length 18m.
Chimney up to clip the first bolt (if you are nervous, do what I did and place your 4 in the chimney then clip the bolt and remove it, you'll need it later!). Laybacks aren't my forte, but this one felt super secure. I got a bit nervous walking my 4 up, but I think I could have gotten my 3 in if I was brave enough to stop and get it from my harness. Another great pitch. Felt a bit harder than 10a for me.

3. Given Grade 5.10b. Personal Grade 5.10b. Length 40m
Long, fun pitch. One of my favorites for the route. We took the right variation and there were a couple of touchy moves to get through the crux, once established in the crack it was a blast. Felt really long.

4. Given Grade 5.10c. Personal Grade 5.10c. Length 18m.
Great money pitch. Awesome splitter (save your purples and greens!) and if this pitch were in the bluffs, it would have people on it non stop. Not exasperator or split pillar quality, but easily better than a lot of the "top 100 climbs" (similar style to crime of the century and flying circus). Did think that the bolt on this pitch was a bit superfluous as there is a perfect placement right below it. However, the bolt does keep your rope from running over the edge which is much appreciated.

5. Given Grade 5.9. Personal Grade 5.10a/b Length 20m
Not the best pitch, but still interesting. Felt harder than 5.9, though we may have gone off route a little. There is a scary looking flake lodged in the roof that we stepped very gingerly around. If it goes, it's right above the belayer and the lower pitches. Might be worth getting it out of there at some point?

6. Given Grade 5.10b. Personal Grade 5.10a. Length 20m.
Nice pitch with a fairly short crux. Enjoyed it a lot, but was tired from all the laybacking so far! Also, got my green c4 stuck :(.

7. Given Grade 5.10a. Personal Grade 5.10b. Length 20m
We were definitely feeling tired at this point. Did notice the chopped trees, seems like a good idea to chop them as far as I'm concerned. The pitch was another fun pitch without too much difficulty, but nicely consistent. Great fun.

8. Given Grade 5.8. Personal Grade 5.7. Length 30m
The only "giveaway" pitch on the whole route. Pretty easy and reminiscent of the first 4 pitches of the buttress. Scrambly. I accidentally went left to a belay ledge when I was supposed to go right. Turned out to be good as we had some shade to hang out and eat lunch in.

9. Given Grade 5.10d. Personal Grade 5.10c. Length 25m.
The face climbing is short with only a couple moves of any difficulty. The bolts are very close together which I didn't mind as it's a high graded pitch for the route and I am terrible at face climbing :). Above the face climbing was quite a bit easier and a lot of fun.

10. Given Grade 5.10a. Personal Grade 5.10b. Length 25m.
I wouldn't exactly call it a hand/fist crack as it's quite a bit wider in places (thank goodness for the bolts!). Does involve some laybacking, but also some really nice hand and fist jams. Don't miss the belay out right or you'll be doing the 10d traverse with a ton of rope drag (as my partner accidentally did!). A beautiful pitch. The position and climbing are supreme.

11. Given Grade 5.10d. Personal Grade 5.10c. Length 15m
Fun traverse. A bit slippery for the hands as there is loose rock in those underclings. Short crux with only one or two particularly tricky moves. Great pro to keep the leader and follower safe.

12. Given Grade 5.9. Personal Grade 5.10a. Length 15m
This pitch felt a lot harder than 5.9, but that's probably due to A) My lack of chimney skills and B) My tiredness at this point. Also, this was the only place that I felt the first bolt was challenging to get to. Again, this is likely due to my lack of chimneying skills. I made it, but I felt pretty nervous getting to it. For most people, I'm sure it's a cake walk to get to it.

Rack: A single set of cams to #4 BD and nuts, 2 X .3, .4, .5, and .75 BD. We brought an extra #1 camelot, but I don't think we placed both on any pitch. Spot on rack.

Like I said at the top, for me, it's an excellent test to say "Are you a '5.10 climber'? (at least in Squamish)". I'll definitely be getting on it again. Thanks to Colin Moorhead and anyone else who worked on getting this climb open. Amazing.

User avatar
jonny2vests
Full Member
Full Member
Posts: 168
Joined: Mon May 28, 2012 7:38 am
Location: Vancouver & Sheffield

Re: Sunset Strip - A Perfect "5.10" Barometer

Post by jonny2vests » Tue Jul 16, 2013 3:02 pm

Nice write up.

Kyle
Junior Member
Junior Member
Posts: 41
Joined: Sat May 04, 2013 6:18 pm

Re: Sunset Strip - A Perfect "5.10" Barometer

Post by Kyle » Tue Jul 16, 2013 5:29 pm

This route sure is getting a lot of hype. I'm really excited to get on it soon, maybe on a weekday as the crowds seem to be flocking to it heavily. I'm wondering if anyone can tell me if I could get away with using my wild country #4 instead of having to borrow someone's black diamond. I think mine is just a centimeter smaller.

Brendan
Posting Maniac
Posting Maniac
Posts: 714
Joined: Mon Mar 20, 2006 7:36 pm
Location: North Shore

Re: Sunset Strip - A Perfect "5.10" Barometer

Post by Brendan » Tue Jul 16, 2013 9:23 pm

Kyle wrote:I'm wondering if anyone can tell me if I could get away with using my wild country #4 instead of having to borrow someone's black diamond. I think mine is just a centimeter smaller.
You should be fine. If you forgot your #4 BD it would still be worth doing the route as the cruxes have nothing to do with the big cams. Both "crux" pitches are bolted and the other crux pitch - the .10c rattly finger crack - is .75 Camalot size where it matters.

skimboard
I'm New Here
I'm New Here
Posts: 8
Joined: Sat May 19, 2007 4:55 pm

Re: Sunset Strip - A Perfect "5.10" Barometer

Post by skimboard » Wed Jul 17, 2013 6:48 am

Climbed the route yesterday. I agree, amazing route!!

Paul B
Casual Observer
Casual Observer
Posts: 14
Joined: Fri Jul 05, 2013 4:06 pm

Re: Sunset Strip - A Perfect "5.10" Barometer

Post by Paul B » Sat Jul 20, 2013 7:12 pm

Nice write up! Every time I look at this route it seems to be fairly busy, hopefully I'll get on it soon.

andypl100
Casual Observer
Casual Observer
Posts: 22
Joined: Tue Jul 28, 2009 6:07 am

Re: Sunset Strip - A Perfect "5.10" Barometer

Post by andypl100 » Wed Jul 24, 2013 9:11 am

I can't seem to find a topo/details for Sunset Strip on the site? I'm sure I'm just missing something obvious :)

Any hints?

thanks
Andy

User avatar
BlahMatt
Junior Member
Junior Member
Posts: 76
Joined: Mon Sep 13, 2010 8:29 am
Location: Vancouver, BC

Re: Sunset Strip - A Perfect "5.10" Barometer

Post by BlahMatt » Wed Jul 24, 2013 10:10 am

andypl100 wrote:I can't seem to find a topo/details for Sunset Strip on the site? I'm sure I'm just missing something obvious :)

Any hints?

thanks
Andy
http://squamishclimbingsource.com/sunset-strip/
Or
http://lmgtfy.com/?q=sunset+strip+squamish+climbing&l=1

;)

c-plus
Junior Member
Junior Member
Posts: 98
Joined: Thu Jun 08, 2006 8:11 pm
Location: Burnaby

Re: Sunset Strip - A Perfect "5.10" Barometer

Post by c-plus » Wed Jul 24, 2013 8:08 pm


Paul B
Casual Observer
Casual Observer
Posts: 14
Joined: Fri Jul 05, 2013 4:06 pm

Re: Sunset Strip - A Perfect "5.10" Barometer

Post by Paul B » Thu Jul 25, 2013 4:58 pm

Are the face pitches on this actually 'face' (i.e. basalt dyke) or friction? Apologies for having to be so anal about it, I'm just in a dilemma having destroyed my good shoes (which are sitll ok on friction) and having a pair of what seem like planks as the other alternative.

Brendan
Posting Maniac
Posting Maniac
Posts: 714
Joined: Mon Mar 20, 2006 7:36 pm
Location: North Shore

Re: Sunset Strip - A Perfect "5.10" Barometer

Post by Brendan » Thu Jul 25, 2013 8:45 pm

Hey Paul,

The first bolted face pitch is typical Squamish face climbing - small edges etc (no dykes) - ending in a short lieback crack and easy climbing to anchors. It's more like Cruel Shoes type of climbing and is very obvious where to go.
The second fully bolted pitch is a left > right mostly undercling traverse and is very casual to the end, which is where the crux is and involves a couple of .10+ moves on some smallish edges as you climb directly up and right to the anchor. The crux wasn't as obvious where to go as the rock is a bit more broken up there so I had to feel around until I landed the best edges. According to my photos of my partner seconding the crux, there seems to be basalt holds near the end of the crux moving to anchors. It's not Cerberus dyke-climbing if that's what you are wondering ;)

Paul B
Casual Observer
Casual Observer
Posts: 14
Joined: Fri Jul 05, 2013 4:06 pm

Re: Sunset Strip - A Perfect "5.10" Barometer

Post by Paul B » Fri Jul 26, 2013 4:47 pm

Oh yes, Cerberus... I think a friend is going to kill me if I leave Squamish without jumping on that.

Well we did this today (I chose the planks) and thought it was probably one of the best lines we've done in Squamish over the past month. Lots of quality pitches linked together, great rock (its not quite as nice towards the top but still very good) and it just climbs really well throughout! If this route doesn't make it into the next iteration of the Top 100 list then I'd imagine the Chief has quite simply fallen down.

We made a slight mistake and broke out of the easy ramp on P8 to the anchor on the tree'd ledge. No real issue. The pitch descriptions and topo was easy to follow. The people above us knocked a few bits down which seemed to funnel down the chimney on P2 so I'd be aware of that.

Looking at the large ledge at the end of P6 it's obvious just how much work must have been put in to sort this route out, thanks to the FAs (and please don't take the next paragraph too personally, after all its only my opinion).

However (and please bear in mind I'm not local and I've been described as suffering from 'British Ethical Hangups'), for me, there were a lot of completely unnecessary bolts right next to perfectly viable natural placements. Thoughts below, feel free to gloss over, ignore etc.

P1: Stiff pull off the block (probably more b than c) and then fantastic to the anchors. 2nd bolt near the top - Ok I suppose I can see it so that you don't knock anything in the gully down on your belayer / anyone else?
P2: Nice, no real need to place the 4 as the laybacking is easier than it first appears.
P3: We took the RH variation, very good. This pitch will eat medium wires all the way.
P4: My partner found this the crux. There are two bomber cam placements (that I still had on my suggested rack at this point) that are just (10cm?) below the bolt, easy to place too. The edge gave me zero worries for my rope so I can't see it justifying the bolt.
P5: The flake others have mentioned seemed fairly lodged (and chalked, although I did avoid it given it'd been mentioned specifically). Fun pitch and not as steep as the photos I'd seen previously. 5.9.
P6: Fun pitch again, more 5.10a than 5.10b (comparing it to things like the middle pitch on centrefold and others on this route).
P7: Another good pitch, the footholds seem perfectly placed. Its actually easier here to plug in a 0.75 cam on the right than clip the bolt at the start (for me anyway).
P8: Probably the least good pitch on the route.
P9: More c than d (IMO). Nice position when the bolts run out. The belay on the right that the description talks off has red tat on it currently (therefore its easy to see)..
P10: Wide Crack: I know others have praised the bolting here but it seems fairly unnecessary (again, IMO) given you're already carrying a number 4. It narrows fairly regularly (both at the back and the crack itself) that it'd protect just as well as with the current bolt spacing with doubles of the larger sizes.
P11: Bolts galore! The undercutting is very steady until the end of the pitch. You could miss out every other bolt and still this pitch would be 'well' bolted.
P12: The final sting in the tail: the chimney seemed fairly full value to me, more in line with Yosemite chimneys than what I've experienced here in Squamish.

The fact this route gets so much shade is awesome too.

wed
I'm New Here
I'm New Here
Posts: 9
Joined: Tue Apr 02, 2013 3:07 pm

Re: Sunset Strip - A Perfect "5.10" Barometer

Post by wed » Mon Jul 29, 2013 9:19 am

Climbed Sunset Strip yesterday Sunday and was extremely impressed with the work that went into cleaning it. My hats off to the "Diggers"

We actually escaped after Pitch 9 on the 5.8 chimney of Europa to Bellygood.We were tired and being 6'3", I was scared of the squeeze!

What a great crack climb! Reminds me of the alpine or Yosemite!

Pitch 1 and 2 stand out as totally quality and fun pitches in Squamish. Grades spot on.

Pitch 4 seems to be the crux due to its enduro nature. I found the move at the bolt to be extremely pumpy and would grade just that move 11a.

The 5.9 overhanging blocky roof pitch was wild, weird and wonderful. Grade spot on. Loose block chalk marked with big X still visible. What an adventure this pitch is!

Short pitches with big ledges make this a very fun route!

Way to go scrubbers. I will be back for the squeeze soon!

mcfly
Junior Member
Junior Member
Posts: 59
Joined: Fri Mar 16, 2007 8:35 am
Location: Powell River, formerly Squamish

Re: Sunset Strip - A Perfect "5.10" Barometer

Post by mcfly » Thu May 22, 2014 8:57 am

Finally got on this route yesterday after work.
Lots of fun - enjoyed every pitch. The recommended rack is spot on.
Some serious effort went into cleaning portions of this line and it shows - everything is still very clean (and bone dry as of yesterday evening). My favourite Squamish route of 2014 thus far.
Many thanks to CM for establishing this line (and for adding bolts to the 10d pitch of The Gauntlet!)

Cheers,

MD

harihari
Senior Member
Senior Member
Posts: 221
Joined: Mon Jul 25, 2005 11:13 pm
Location: Vancouver

Re: Sunset Strip - A Perfect "5.10" Barometer

Post by harihari » Mon Jun 02, 2014 6:59 pm

great route.

bring more gear-- I'd say double rack from .3 to #3, a tcu, a lue alien and 1 #4 or maybe I am just a wuss.

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests