Salathe Wall questions : LUSENET : Mountaineering : One Thread

I am planning on doing the Salathe Wall this June and have a few specific questions. We're just average climbers and are not that fast; we plan on 5 days on the wall. Our plan is to do the Free Blast, descend, then haul the five rope lengths to Heart Ledge and do a few pitches to Hollow Flake ledge for the first bivy. Is this a bad plan because I've have heard conflicting info. about a bivy on the Hollow Flake ledge. Is the Hollow Flake ledge a decent bivy or not?

Besides some big gear for the wide cracks do we need any special hardware? Are hooks useful/necessary? Does anyone have a suggested gear list? Also, how much of the day is the route in the sun? Are we gonna bake in late June?

Thanks in advance for answering these questions! Any general suggestions you might have would be appreciated too.

-- Russell Callender (, February 25, 1998


I did the route in late June last year and the conditions were perfect: never too hot or cold. The route is in the sun from mid-morn to sunset.

The hollow flake ledge bivy sounds like a good plan. It is definitely the smallest bivy ledge on the route, but it would suffice for two. I have friends who have slept there and they said it was no problem. Bivying there also sets you up nicely for hitting El Cap spire on day two. The alternative, Heart ledges to the spire is a BIG day, with the burliest hauling on the route.

No hooks are needed, but we took a large free rack, from HBs to a number 5 camalot, and used every piece. The hardest aid came the two pitches above sous le toit, which can be linked, small tricams are helpful in the pin scars.

Do you go to UVA? If so, Seneca offers killer training for the wall, as you probably know. Get on agony (10b) for some wide stuff/chimney experience--there is tons of it on the salathe

-- (, February 26, 1998.

The beta that has been given sounds good and correct. Extra beta is bring large gear if you are fearful of running things out in those wide cracks. Lots of them on the route. Consider wearing as much gear on your body during the haul up to heart ledges. The haul is a bear with super heavy packs on that slab. I would plan on six days, especially if you are slow.

-- Ronnie Miller (, February 27, 1998.

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