Star Trekin, Mt. Russell 5.10c

 
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High Sierra, California USA

  • Currently 5.0/5
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Summary of All Ratings

SuperTopo Rating:   
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  • 5
 (5.0)
Average Customer Rating:   
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  • 5
 (4.3)
Your Rating:     (none)
Rating Distribution
4 Total Ratings
5 star: 50%  (2)
4 star: 25%  (1)
3 star: 25%  (1)
2 star: 0%  (0)
1 star: 0%  (0)
Tattooed 1

Trad climber
Sebastopol, Ca
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   Aug 14, 2009 - 03:35pm
My partner and I climbed this route the last week of July. We climbed Fish Hook, Mithral Dihedral and Startrekkin and both agreed it was the most fun of the three. Mithral is physically more sustained and I would definately give it 5 stars but this climb was just plain fun. The exposure was worth the approach. Nothing like a hanging belay on a sheer face looking staight to the ground 600' below. Most of the climb involves stellar 5.9 straight in jams. The wall goes to dead vertical and the crack starts get wide at about 3/4s the way up. It looks very intimidating from below but there is a band of red rock at that section that is full of knobs and edges and although steep is no harder than 5.8. My partner and I both thought that the crux was actually the last 20' or so of the crack on the face before you get to the blocky ridge. The crack is set back into a wide flare with very few foot holds on the face so although the wall lays back slightly it actually climbs like it is overhanging. Definately 5 stars.
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looking sketchy there...

Social climber
Lassitude 33
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   Sep 15, 2008 - 05:22pm
Had the pleasure of climbing this route last weekend. While the actual crux was the long hike, in all honesty this route is no harder than 5.10a, but a lot of sustained 5.9.

Gear: The crack eats a good variety of sizes (nothing super tiny and not much real big), but once you leave Mithral, there is a lot of thin hands to hand sized crack and some finger. Even when the crack widens, it is only temporary and .5 to 2 camolots will fit nicely most places. One larger piece (3.5) might be nice for the last 15 feet of the route.

Definitely the final several hundred feet of 3rd, 4th and 5th class to the summit is longer than you would like.

We had planned on heading down the ridge to the east and then directly to Boy Scout Lake (much faster back to car) -- which is the way to go if you do it in a day from the car -- but a recent dusting of snow nixed that plan and forced us to take the very loose (standard) descent gully to the right of Fish Hook Arete (Yuck) and then retrace our approach past Iceberg.
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Anal C#nt

Boulder climber
Bald Knob, AR
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   Aug 15, 2008 - 02:06pm
Definitely climb the Mithril Dihedral first and then this; I feel like the former route is cleaner, more direct, and has a better finish than Startrekkin'. The beta about having a solid 5.10 leader handle the crux is right on -- it is *weird*. I can see how someone would find it NTB if they unlock it on the first try, but it is certainly less straightforward than its neighbor to the right. Far less sustained than Western Front, but 10c for the bearhug move seems about right; it is delicate and balancy. Hopefully if more parties do this route, it will get to the point where it is as clean as the Mithril; the relative lack of traffic for Startrekkin' means that there is still plenty of crap in some of the features, at least as of a year or two ago. Still a fine route and well worth doing. (Are there any routes on Russell that aren't?) As with all Russell routes, if you camp at Iceberg lake, be very careful to locate and follow the cairned descent trail after you summit, or you will lose *hours* scrambling around on 5th-class choss and scree.
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del cross

climber
Aug 12, 2008 - 10:59am
 
I didn't find the crux to all that much harder than 5.9. But after telling a couple of friends this they went and then came back and basically called me a sandbagger. So I must be wrong. But then again Western Front seemed quite a bit harder to me and it's 10c.

Also, isn't it Startrekkin'? That's the way I've seen it in guidebooks (including the photo credit in the Supertopo).
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clustiere

Trad climber
berkeley ca
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   Aug 7, 2008 - 06:08pm
Bring a regular rack w cams to 3.5 inch perhaps a 4 inch piece. A small aliens protect the crux which is a bearhug on pitch 2.
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Mt. Russell - Star Trekin 5.10c - High Sierra, California USA. Click to Enlarge
The route as seen from Mt. Whitney summit.
Photo: Chris McNamara
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