American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

North America, United States, California, Gorge of Despair, Silver Turret, Desperadoes

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1997

Gorge Of Despair, Silver Turret, Desperadoes. I started Desperadoes (III 5.12a) with Guy Keesee in 1993. We returned for another attempt in 1995, but Guy suffered a knee injury on the third pitch and we were forced to retreat again. In July, 1996, we returned with Chelsea Griffie for the successful ascent. The route climbs the east face of the Silver Turret and follows the impressive left-arching crack system that leads up to the large “monkey face” feature in the center of the face. Four pitches lead to a hanging belay up under the monkey face. The crux fifth pitch involves a bolted face and a thin crack before moving left under the large roof formed by the monkey’s brow. Three more wandering pitches of 5.10 lead to the top. The second and third pitches are both 5.11+. Double ropes are essential.

Kris Solem, unaffiliated

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