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Silk Road - Khyber Pass


A significant variation of Silk Road, leaving the original line midway thru pitch 5, adding 8 new pitches, and finishing on the same anchors. A good alternative if the black roof pitch on Silk Road is wet. Sustained 5.10 climbing with a 5.11+ crux pitch. All belays have bolted rap rings. 60m ropes will get you down, but 70m recommended for leading. 13 long pitches, almost all with some challenging sections. Some runouts, protection where you need it. Bring double rack to 2", including small wires, with a strong collection of small cams; recommended 4x Metolious #1, 2x #0, and even a #00 for luck. Devon Girard, Grant McCartney, Pete Wainwright, Kelsey Mostertman - 2020.

Approach: Follow Saloompt Bluffs trail for about 45 minutes (approx 15 min past the lower-bluffs trail junction), then follow a flagged line directly upwards through steep timber to the base of the large wall. Approximately 90 minutes.

Descent: Continue through alpine terrain to gain the ridge, then descend the Goat Ridge trail to rejoin the Saloompt Bluffs trail. Or, rap the route.

Pitch 1 - A hard start past a single bolt gains a short thin seam; hard climbing past tiny gear for a few moves leads to easier cracks and a friendly slab, gain a small belay ledge. 5.10+
Pitch 2 - Climb right from the belay past a single bolt, then up through zig-zagging cracks with sections of face climbing, as you finally trend right onto the main wall of the 'Teapot' feature, to a belay below a long thin crack splitting the face. Be mindful of rope drag; a long and interesting pitch. 5.10
Pitch 3 - Face climb past bolts to gain the partially bolted thin seam. Climb the shallow crack to a crux overlap, then up the remarkable flared groove through easing difficulties to the spacious Teapot ledge. A bit runout at the top. 5.10+
Pitch 4 - Start a few meters right of the belay, and traverse left to face climbing past bolts into a shallow corner above. Continue up left past a bolt, then gradually right past another bolt and through disconnected cracks to a small belay ledge. A long pitch. 5.10
Pitch 5 - Climb up edges past a couple bolts to hand cracks. Gain the large face via a narrow pillar; face climb past more bolts to the belay on top of a large flake. 5.10-
Pitch 6 - A delicate friction traverse leads to harder face climbing past 5 bolts, then veer right from the Silk Road line (original line goes left to the base of the large black roof) - friction climb past 4 bolts and some thin spots to a narrow foot ledge and belay. 5.10+
Pitch 7 - A few face friction moves past a bolt leads to the base of a long friendly flake; climb to the top of the flake, then up and left past another bolt through some thin climbing, to nice belay perch and anchors. 5.10+
Pitch 8 - Climb past 3 bolts (a bit runout) to gain a ledge and base of large corner; stem up the corner, passing 2 more bolts and some gear. Before reaching the top of the corner, exit left to a narrow belay ledge and anchors. 5.10+
Pitch 9 - Trending left, friction climb past 4 bolts to the top of a faint pillar feature, then through a thin crux past another bolt, then a bit more trickiness past a 6th bolt and some gear to gain a nice belay ledge beneath the looming headwall and crux cracks. 5.11-
Pitch 10 - Technical face moves right off the belay lead to the base of a steep, splitter finger crack. Climb the slightly overhanging wall; burly moves up positive fingerlocks to a no-hands rest; step left and continue up the splitter crack for a few more hard moves to easier ground. Faceclimb past 2 bolts to a spectacular belay perch and anchors. 5.11+
Pitch 11 - Climb left past a bolt into an attractive seam splitting the glacier-polished wall; continue up the friendly crack to a small ledge, then face climb past 2 bolts (5.10-) to easier ground and another bolt (or continue up the easy vegitated corner 5.8). Continue up and left of some greenery to a huge ledge and belay anchors. 5.10-
Pitch 12 - Climb easy ground trending generally leftwards, then up friendly handcracks to gain another huge ledge just left of some greenery, at the base of a compact, orange wall split by several cracks. Belay anchors at the base of a left-trending crack. 5.8
Pitch 13 - A stout lead after a long day; climb the left-leaning crack with difficulty to a hanging slab; step left to the juggy exit cracks and final anchor. Bouldery moves off the deck lead to good gear; bring double cams in 1-2" range. An excellent pitch and a fitting end to a grand day out (the pitch can be avoided to left or right, if conditions require). 5.10+

13 pitches