Dark Star 5.10b

 
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Temple Crag


High Sierra, California USA


Trip Report
Dark Star 8/20/12
Wednesday August 29, 2012 2:28am
My Friend Zach and I climbed Dark Star on Temple Craig on 8/20/12 Driving through Bishop in a rain storm we were weary of the weather for the following day. After getting our permit in Bishop we drove to the trail head in Big Pine at about 3pm and began the long trek in during the heat of the day.
Zach approaching Temple Crag.
Zach approaching Temple Crag.
Credit: TahoeClimb

The trail was really nice but the heavy loads we were carrying made the hike in rather slow and painful.
You can see most the route it ascends the sky line right to left.
You can see most the route it ascends the sky line right to left.
Credit: TahoeClimb
Finally able to see temple crag we got an idea of what a long day the next day would be.
Temple Crag as seen from the first lake.
Temple Crag as seen from the first lake.
Credit: TahoeClimb
We finished our hike and crossed the Third lake at its outlet on the east side of the lake and got our camp set up and pumped our water just before it got dark.
Pumping water from the Third Lake.
Pumping water from the Third Lake.
Credit: TahoeClimb
We Packed our day packs, racked up, and prepared for our 4am wake up time. There was lightning out in the distance while we slept but nothing near us so the climb was a go.
5am We were able to pick up the climbers trail to the base right outside our camp the approach from camp to the start was not bad at all. We opted to climb the optional 400' of easy 5th class to the start of the first pitch. We had been studying photos of the start and it was easy to find the correct right facing corner.
Zach at the top of the first technical pitch on Dark Star.
Zach at the top of the first technical pitch on Dark Star.
Credit: TahoeClimb
The Crux pitch wasn't too bad just a couple 10c moves then easier terrain.
We aren't super fast climbers by any means but pitch by pitch the climb fell away at what seemed to be a steady pace.
Pitch 2 Dark Star.
Pitch 2 Dark Star.
Credit: TahoeClimb

Pitch 2 Dark Star
Pitch 2 Dark Star
Credit: TahoeClimb

Pitch 3 Dark Star.
Pitch 3 Dark Star.
Credit: TahoeClimb
Pitch 3 Was super fun with just a couple thin finger moves.
Pitch 3 Dark Star.
Pitch 3 Dark Star.
Credit: TahoeClimb
I really liked the chimney on pitch 6 it was secure with good gear I really didn't need to place much. The Chimney was pretty narrow so I ended up trailing my pack with a runner from my belay loop it worked out well. The top of the pitch after the chimney was real loose and blocky the rope drag was terrible.
The top of pitch 5 just after the Chimney.
The top of pitch 5 just after the Chimney.
Credit: TahoeClimb


Zach Psyched for some easy climbing.
Belay 6 Dark Star.
Belay 6 Dark Star.
Credit: TahoeClimb


The Last Steep Pitch of the First Buttress Still a long ways to go.
5.8 Crack pitch 7 Dark Star.
5.8 Crack pitch 7 Dark Star.
Credit: TahoeClimb
After this we Simul climbed for about 500'it seemed like forever then we finally reached the 200' ridge traverse witch was exposed on both sides and really cool.
Zach on the 200' exposed ridge Traverse.
Zach on the 200' exposed ridge Traverse.
Credit: TahoeClimb

Me having lunch just before the 200' Ridge Traverse.
Just Before The 200' Ridge Traverse.
Just Before The 200' Ridge Traverse.
Credit: TahoeClimb

Dark Star Ridge Traverse.
Dark Star Ridge Traverse.
Credit: TahoeClimb

Loose Soloing.
Dark Star Ridge.
Dark Star Ridge.
Credit: TahoeClimb

The Second Buttress was steep and intimidating with many ways to go. We picked what looked the most well protected we think the way we went was about 5.9 or 10a we ended up breaking it into 2 pitches the second pitch was a little loose with a small roof and a lot of steep traversing and route finding.
The Second Buttress Dark Star.
The Second Buttress Dark Star.
Credit: TahoeClimb


Our Camp way way below.
Credit: TahoeClimb

After we topped out on the second buttress we simul climbed for about 700'staying left of the towers almost the entire way across the ridge.
This was a very long part of the climb and I think it may have been better to solo because of all the rope drag.

Looking Back while Simul Climbing.
Simul Climbing high on Dark Star.
Simul Climbing high on Dark Star.
Credit: TahoeClimb

The First 60' Rappel was easy to find then there was more ridge traversing witch was quite loose.
At one point during this Zach noticed a small tv sized block that was loose to the touch. He pointed it out to me and I barely touched it with my foot and it tumbled off the the ledge that we were on and fell 1500'into a gully starting a two minute long scree avalanche.
The second rappel (60') was tricky to find it was just a single cordalette rapped around a block. It was in good shape and led us to the last rappel that was found after some searching and was about 80'.

We followed more ridges to the big red tower and finally to the low angle 5th class gully that was actually not that loose as I thought it would be.
5th Class final section of dark star temple crag.
5th Class final section of dark star temple crag.
Credit: TahoeClimb

Zach Topping out on Dark Star.
Topping out Dark Star.
Topping out Dark Star.
Credit: TahoeClimb


Self Summit photo.
Summit Temple Crag.
Summit Temple Crag.
Credit: TahoeClimb

Summit Dark Star.
Summit Dark Star.
Credit: TahoeClimb

The Descent was really long back to camp. It took 2 hours it wasn't hard just really long. We reached camp just before dark making our camp to camp time about 14 hours a really long day. I really enjoyed this route although it was quite chossy it was still a good time.

Contact pass rappel.
rappel into contact pass.
rappel into contact pass.
Credit: TahoeClimb

Temple Crag Dark Star.
Temple Crag Dark Star.
Credit: TahoeClimb




  Trip Report Views: 1,649
TahoeClimb
About the Author
TahoeClimb is a trad climber from Westside of the Eastside.

Comments
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RP3

Big Wall climber
Twain Harte
  Aug 29, 2012 - 07:20am PT
Great climb and a GREAT TR!
johntp

Trad climber
socal
  Aug 29, 2012 - 09:51am PT
Nice! TFPU....
Stewart Johnson

climber
lake forest
  Aug 29, 2012 - 10:44am PT
bump for great climbing content.
Jebus H Bomz

climber
Old West Crackramento
  Aug 29, 2012 - 11:02am PT
Good job on the TR, Erik! It was good to share rope on another adventure, aim high, and get it done.

Dark Star is a big day no matter how you stack it. I'm glad we didn't take the easy way out and do it car to car (hah). Those heavy packs really built character (and friction blisters).

Going from full on rain in Bishop, clouds over head most of the time we were there, lightning flashing in the distance.... Yup, we aren't the smartest, but we got to the top!

I think one of the photos was mislabeled as pitch two though, it's actually the simuling pre-start to the Dark Star. Route finding is pretty obvious up the first buttress, the second buttress is catch as catch can (a 100' and a 200' foot pitch where the topo said only 200'), and then... tons of simul/solo climbing.

I still need to do the sit start.

-Zach
JustThatEasy

climber
South Lake Tahoe, CA
  Aug 29, 2012 - 11:01am PT
Doood,

Nice Job! I've wanted to climb this for a while now. Temple Crag is a way rad chunk of choss that I am somehow totally drawn to. It may have something to do with it's awesome architecture and the mind-blowing setting. Needless to say it's not the rock quality, haha!
It's been awhile since we climbed. Let's go do something before the season closes.

Ryan
Bruce Kay

Gym climber
BC
  Aug 29, 2012 - 11:10am PT
Only in the sierra could Temple crag be considered choss!

Thanks for the pics! I hope its not too chilly by late september
Srbphoto

climber
Kennewick wa
  Aug 29, 2012 - 11:38am PT
thanks for the TR and pics. I love that place.
Manimal

climber
SLT, Ca
  Aug 29, 2012 - 12:13pm PT
Climbing bump again
limpingcrab

Trad climber
the middle of CA
  Aug 29, 2012 - 12:34pm PT
Love to see people having fun! Nice TR
Ezra Ellis

Trad climber
North wet, and Da souf
  Aug 29, 2012 - 12:52pm PT
Verry nice, Choss scares me!!!!
Glad y'all had a good time and came out ok!
le_bruce

climber
Oakland, CA
  Aug 29, 2012 - 02:12pm PT
Sweeeeeee-eet. One of the big Sierra lines, in fine style.

Temple descent in daylight - some day I'd like to find out what that's like.

Jebus H Bomz

climber
Old West Crackramento
  Aug 29, 2012 - 02:28pm PT
Dude, doing that descent in the dark would SUUUUCK! Not that it doesn't already ;). That was an advantage of getting at it early with a full summer day ahead.

edit:

Some more pics of the day...

Erik
Erik
Credit: Jebus H Bomz

Temple
Temple
Credit: Jebus H Bomz

Dark Star summit
Dark Star summit
Credit: Jebus H Bomz

Light at the end of the Dark Star
Light at the end of the Dark Star
Credit: Jebus H Bomz
Jebus H Bomz

climber
Old West Crackramento
  Oct 29, 2012 - 05:53pm PT
Bump for ze bitchez!

FREE KOVAR A.K.A. FAROUK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
snowhazed

Trad climber
Oaksterdam, CA
  Nov 5, 2012 - 08:05pm PT
Darkstar!
bmacd

Trad climber
100% Canadian
  Nov 7, 2012 - 06:05pm PT
Killer ascent boys.... I'll be back next year to add this one to my embarrassingly short list of Temple Crag classics checked off.
Cosmiccragsman

Trad climber
AKA Dwain, from Apple Valley, Ca. and Vegas!
  Nov 7, 2012 - 06:10pm PT
BMACD!!!!!

Welcome back, My Friend!
Dirka

Trad climber
Hustle City
  Nov 8, 2012 - 09:37am PT
awesome!
dirt claud

Social climber
san diego,ca
  Nov 8, 2012 - 10:49am PT
Looks like a memorable adventure. Thanks for the description of the route and pics, cool stuff.
msiddens

Trad climber
  Nov 8, 2012 - 03:29pm PT
Very nice, I've GOT to slay this beast this next Summer. The last of the Celestials remains TBD for me.
Prod

Trad climber
  Nov 8, 2012 - 03:33pm PT
That makes for a nice day.

Prod.
RyanD

climber
Squamish
  Nov 8, 2012 - 07:53pm PT
Nice climbing & nice TR, big thumbs up on all the photos too. Looks rad. Darkstar beckons.......
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Temple Crag - Dark Star 5.10b - High Sierra, California USA. Click to Enlarge
The route as seen from Second Lake.
Photo: Ryan Crochiere
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The route as seen from Second Lake.