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Shock and Awe

Get ready for the full Goose Egg experience.  This is the Upper Tieton at its best.  We want this route to be climbed to help clean it up.  The more ascents it sees the better it will become.  The route is very well protected, but expect to break holds and be scared, especially on the 'Shock' pitch.  We're not talking about catastrophic, belayer killer, rope chopping blocks, just smaller crimper holds and flakes.  Its all worth it though for the excellent 185 foot 'Awe' Crack, one of the longest pure crack pitches on the Tieton.  So step up to the plate and have at it.  We recommend you climb Ride the Lightning first as an introduction to this type of andesite climbing.

For gear, take a good selection of nuts, TCU's, and cams up to 3 inches; a 4 inch piece is optional.  Take 10 quick draws and long slings.  One 200 foot rope is mandatory. 

How to get there  Follow Highway 12 west from Yakima.  Turn left (south) on the lower Tieton Road, between milepost 168 and 167.  After 2.0 miles, there is a natural spring and pullout on the right.  Look for a small fenced area.  Don't park here!  Continue .1 mile and park in the larger pullout on the left.  Walk back to the spring and follow a climber's trail up through the trees to the base of the cliff.  Locate Ride the Lightning.  Look to your left (west) and locate the prominent buttress on the horizon.  This is the Dirty Sanchez buttress.  Shock and Awe is located on the east wall of this buttress.  Traverse along the base of the wall to the left for a couple hundred yards, until arriving at a small scree gully below a large bowl on the face.  The route should be plainly visible from here.  Look for the long white streak on the side of the large buttress.  This is the Awe pitch.  From the gully scramble up broken slabs (path of least resistance), heading for the ledge atop pitch one.

Pitch 1  Scramble straight up 160 ft. of 3rd then 4th class terrain. Then make a move left past a bolt and up to a large ledge with a two bolt anchor, below a prominent overhanging right slanting roof/corner.

Pitch 2 (Shock)  Climb up a lower right facing corner to the right of the overhang.  After about 40 feet, look for a bolt on the left wall and make a difficult move onto the face above.  Follow seven more bolts straight up on friable rock.  Upon reaching the last bolt, clip it with a long sling and make an easy 30 ft. traverse left on flakes to a two bolt anchor.

Pitch 3 (Awe)  Climb up and right to the obvious crack and dihedral above.  185 feet of pure crack climbing  brings you to a two bolt anchor.

Pitch 4  Follow the easy ramp up about 30 feet, then climb broken flakes and cracks to the prominent notch above (don't go to far up the ramp!)  This is where the route intersects another route on the buttress called Dirty Sanchez.  You can belay here in the notch, or move out left and up 4 bolts on the face above to an exposed two bolt anchor on the buttress crest.

Pitch 5  Finish the last pitch of Dirty Sanchez by climbing up to the knife-edge ridge, completing the Jenga Traverse, and following discontinuous cracks and flakes to the top.  Belay off one bolt and gear.

Descent    Scramble up another 200 feet on loose talus being careful not to send any blocks over the edge.  Traverse several gullies right (east) until you see a small pine tree down low in a gully.  Continue to the next gully and look down for a pink ribbon on a block.   The large pine tree straight across (east) is the top of Ride the Lightning.  The gully you are looking for is about 200 feet before this tree.  Walk down to cliff edge and the first of seven rappel stations.  Rappelling can be done with one 200 foot rope.  Instead of rappelling, one could continue up and left another 300 yards from the top of the climb, to a forth class gully.  The gully is located below the first big pine tree on the edge of the prominent cliff to the west. If descending via the gully, some climbers may wish to make a single rope rappel about halfway down at a large tree.  Descending the gully and walking back to base will take approximately 45 minutes.

First Ascent  Joe Puryear and Stoney Richards, April 19, 2003.

Photo  A climber at the notch on pitch 4.  The Awe Crack is the white streak on the dark wall below.


Goose Egg Mountain
Shock and Awe
III 5.10c

Base Locator


Looking up from the base, shortly after a fun time on Dirty Sanchez in winter.




Copyright 2003-2005 Joseph Puryear.
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