To reach the base of the Lost Arrow Direct route, one must climb Sunnyside Bench route ( 5.0 ) or the talus field behind the Park Service maintenance yard and wandering up sand and brush covered slopes. See Yosemite Big Walls by Don Reid or Yosemite Big Walls: Supertopos by Chris McNamara for more information.
The following is a description for doing this climb in its original style and rating ( 5.9, A3 ). For those who lead 5.11, see the two guide books mentioned above.
Pitch 1 - about 40 feet to the right of giant blocks which lean against the face at the base, climb a easy jamcrack followed by a 5.7 traverse to the left ending at a belay bolt. Pitch 2 - 125' of aid from hooks and bolts leads to a belay ledge. Two pitches ( 5.9 and 5.8, A2 ) up the chimney system forming the right side of the First Error ledge ( good bivy spot ) follow. Pitch 5 - a bolt ladder leads to an A2 crack. Pendulum right to a 5.7 crack. Free and aid climbing ( 5.8, A1) lead past a roof to a sling belay. Pitch 6 - free and aid climbing up a crack followed by a pendulum right leads to a crack system which is followed for 2 pitches to the top of the Second Error bivy ledge. Pitch 9 - climb a 70' blank wall using hooks and bolts foolowed by a 5.7 traverse right to a blay ledge. Pitch 10 - A3 nailing followed by 5.8 jamming leads to the top of the First Terror flake. Pitch 11 - A1 nailing followed by a pendulum right into a crack. Aid climb the overhanging crack to a sling belay in a big " hole " on the face. Pitch 12 - A3 climbing leads to a large ledge below the Lost Arrow notch ( bivy possible ). from here you can either climb to the notch ( 5.6 ) and jug the ropes your friends hopefully have placed for you or climb 2 pitches up and left ( 5.7, A2?, hooks needed ) to Salathe Ledge on the Tip route. Continue up the last pitch of that route to the top.
Note - one must have friends( or do it yourself prior to the climb ) fix ropes into the notch from the rim. Climbing to the rim from the notch is not recommended!
1rurp, 3 knife blades, 8 lost arrows, 2 each 1/2" & 5/8" angles, 3 each 3/4" & 1" angles, 4 - 1 1/2" angles, 1 each 2" - 4" bongs, nuts to 3", Friends to #4, hooks including bathooks.
This was my very first big wall climb, and I have only one note in the guidebook - " Excellent "! I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!