Ascent of Smith Rock on 2016-05-07

Climber: Emily Nagele

Others in Party:Austin D. Smith -- Trip Report or GPS Track
Douglas Graham
Will Howard
Ed Betz
Date:Saturday, May 7, 2016
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Smith Rock
    Elevation:3200 ft / 975 m

Ascent Trip Report

If you're looking for quality rock climbing route, this isn't the one for you. If you enjoy stellar views and don't mind a really poor quality/sketchy climb to bag a peak, then this would be worth your time. (Allow 3-4 hr, including hiking up from and back down to the river trail)

We approached the summit block from the west. Once you get on top of the spine of Smith Rock, once you're standing a few hundred feet south of and looking at two summit blocks, the one to your right is the one we concluded was higher.

The rock around the base is of good quality, but once you're climbing on the summit block itself, any handhold is liable to disintegrate into gravel when body weight is applied. I can't speak to what a guidebook would rate it, but my estimation would be 5.10 or higher to free climb it (assuming you don't break any holds). We took the approach of having our leader "aid climb" the bolt ladder, and then the rest of our team ascended the rope to get to the top. If you're going to do this climb, I would recommend bringing a full length rope, ~8 draws, anchor setup, aiders, and Prusik or jumar or equivalent. The block is bolted, and there are anchor bolts at the top that seemed pretty solid.

This summit offers exceptional views of Smith Rock, and a drop off on both sides that is not for the faint of heart.
Summary Total Data
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail, Rock Climb, Aid Climb
    Gear Used:
    Weather:Hot, Breezy, Clear

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