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Cherubim Dome, South Buttress, Archangel

In mid October Dick Leversee and I climbed an unnamed but prominent pyramidal dome north of Upper Hamilton Lake in the Sequoia backcountry. Avoiding drilling as much as possible, we picked a line up a series of flakes and cracks on the nearly featureless south face. The roof skirts a major tiered roof down low via the right side and works back left onto the prominent southern prow of the dome. There were eight long pitches of face-and-crack climbing on superb golden granite, with only one pitch easier than 5.9 or 5.10. The only aid on the route was a short pendulum on the fourth lead to pass a traverse that neither of us could master. On the summit we found an old register and were surprised to find that the last party to climb the dome (via a backside scramble) was in 1946! The route is definitely a classic recommended to the dedicated backcountry rock climber. More information may be obtained at the Lodgepole Visitor Center near Giant Forest. (IV, 5.10+.)

E.C. Joe, Stonesmasher Alpine Club