Nice climb, but it seems that it's been climbed many times, and the little features are getting polished above the bulge. On the other hand, Sh#t Hooks (10b) immediately to the right seems much less climbed and hence more definite on the face.
We TRed the first pitch of this climb after doing Golfer's Route. The rap from Golfer's to Darth's anchors was a bit tricky; make sure to have a daisy "at the ready" to clip into the anchor as soon as you get there.
A fun hand traverse gets you from the starting crack to the roof... the multitude of knobs above the roof make it much easier than it looks. Features above the roof aren't as huge as those on Golfer's, but there are more than enough of 'em.
This is such a fun route! I would've liked to run a few laps on it, but got shut down by approaching thunder and lightning. Never a good sign!
With the tight bolt spacing, it seems to be well protected, especially by Tuolumne standards. I didn't notice much polish, and with a good selection of knobs to use, didn't worry about it.
Funny to see complaints about relatively minor retrobolting (12 bolts instead of 9) of what was one of the most tightly protected routes of that era. Not to mention that the retrobolting in question was on easier terrain for the route, was done 20 years ago (between '86 and '92), and was probably done by the FA party itself.
It's hard to think of any test piece of Tuolumne climbing that was retrobolted, and TONS of the old hard scary routes now sport recently replaced bolts (last 10 years or so). The hard scary stuff is still there, still WAY runout, and loads of those routes have great bolts - get on it!!
This might also be a good place to point out that seven years ago Alan Nelson - who had the FA on tons of free solos in Tuolumne (including 3 free solo routes on the right side of Fairview) - INVITED people to retrobolt his routes, even offering to pay for the bolts himself! No one took him up on it - not exactly a raging problem with retrobolting in Tuolumne.
Darth Vader's Revenge is number 2.
Photo: Greg Barnes
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