Coke Explosion is a pleasant three pitch (the first pitch involves just a few 5th class moves) climb that will probably see more attention over the coming years. It is located on the lower southern flank of Cathedral Mountain and made a good combination to do with Voodoo Rooves (5.10; 5 pitches) which is just a little further along the Angels Landing Trail. Coke Explosion is a relatively new route (2005) put in by Eric Draper and Bryan Bird. The rap/belay anchors (2011) were in great shape and there is only one protection bolt on the entire route. Coke Explosion is a full on south facing (sun soaked) objective.
The first pitch is nothing more than a high step 5th class move to gain a short slab that leads to the main wall. Someone put a single rap ring on the main wall, but with double 60m ropes, there is no real need for it. The first real pitch is an easy going 5.9 hand crack/corner that rides a weakness that slants rightward through a few trees to several ledges the furthest of which has a fixed station. The second pitch starts with a short and easy layback that quickly turns into off width that protects relatively well without a lot of large gear. It ends at another ledge with a fixed station below a chimney with a single bolt out on the left face. The last pitch is the crux of the climb. Up the chimney and then a short section of a hand crack before taking on a squeeze chimney/off width section to the top of the wall. With double 60m ropes, we made it back down with two raps.
Get off the bus or park at the Grotto as though you are going to Angels Landing. Cross the bridge and turn right onto the Angels Landing trail. Continue a short distance, five minutes or so, looking for a cairn marking a somewhat indistinct trail on the left. As is always the case, it is easier to find a clear path on descent down through the brush versus during ascent. We encountered some bushwhacking on ascent, but if you venture left every time you run into brush, you should find a light climbers trail that takes you to the base of the climb.
Route Description (s)500’+/-, 4 Pitches, 5.10
1st/2nd Pitches- 45m- 5.9/ Make one high step move up to the slab and continue on to the second pitch which follows a corner/ramp system with solid hands and pro for another 100’ through several trees to a ledge. Continue up to the next ledge for the fixed belay.
3rd Pitch- 25m- 5.10/ Climb through a short section of easy lay back and into the wide crack above. Climb the off width to another fixed station.
4th Pitch- 45m- 5.10/ Start in the chimney clipping the only fixed pro on the route, a single bolt out on the left face. This section pops out on a ledge below a short hand crack. Take the nice hands which bleed into the crux of the route, some sandy off-width which runs to the top of the wall. Belay at a significant tree straight away.
DescentRap from a tree at the top about 20’ to climbers right. With double 60m ropes, stop at the top of pitch three. From there you can reach the ground with one full double 60m rap.
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