Needle Arete Top 50

3 Stars

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A finely positioned and exposed route taking the central arete of the buttress, finishing at the needle.
Start low down on the front face amongst the trees beneath a very short boot-wide layback crack.
1) Climb the crack and easy slab to a ledge with some big trees. This pitch is easily avoided by walking to the ledge from the right.
2) Using a flake climb to the wide crack just to the left of the arete. Follow this and the awkward corner above. Traverse right to a tree belay.
3) Climb above the tree on good holds until some moves left around the arete access a corner/groove. Climb to the needle
FA. Jim Simpson 1949


We skipped the first pitch as it's just a rank looking mossy crack and slab and you can just walk to the top of it, making it feel a bit pointless.
You might as well link the last two pitches as belaying at the tree actually produces more drag as the rope runs round the corner.

Better as a single pitch route imho; you still get the best of the climbing and you save time.
majormajormajormajor - 23/Jan/06

I combined the first and second pitches (couldn't see any good reason not to!). A very pleasant climb, that was made better by doing the top pitch of Camel rather than the scrappy 3rd pitch.
DaveF - 11/Jun/07

The first pitch is well worth doing (and not a layback, at least not the way I did it). Almost led the whole lot in 1, but the semi-hanging belay by the tree was in too tempting a position to resist.
I did both the normal final pitch (to remove gear), then the "Camel" variation, and both were good (though the latter wins it on exposure)
Simon Caldwell - 04/Sep/11

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