Looking at Green Dome , also known as “Kryptor, from a distance will give you the impression that it’s simply not worth the effort to get to or explore. Thankfully, a few visionary climbers did take the time and the chance to at least check it out. What they found was a formation with the most concentration potential sport routes in all of Santa Barbara.
Green Dome is made of rock not seen anywhere in our area. The entire area, which is covered by heavy brush, poison Oak and trees, is made of Blue Schiste. This type of rock, at least as it is here, lacks cracks, is very angular with sharp edges and glossy surface. The color of Blue Schiste is dark green that makes it blend with surounding plants and trees. I think it was the color that cause it to be known as Kryptor.
west face of Green Dome
It took a valiant effort by a few local climbers to cut a beautiful trail through rattle snake infested heavy brush to Green Dome. And for a period of time, as is traditional, it was the best kept secret by this group of climbers. Once most of the natural lines were established the word of a new area was out.
Climbs of the east and north faces,
Green Dome can be divided into three different areas. The east face is vertical and rather shattered, the North face that is very steep and has several overhangs and the west face that is more solid than the other two faces but it’s overhanging from top to bottom. The east face contains most of the climbs, and they range from 5.9 to 10d. The north face varies in height and the dificulty ranges from 5.9 to 11d. The overhanging west face contains most of the hard climbs ranging from 11c to 13c.
Note- Due to heavy brush and trees it is not possible to get a photo of the entire east or the north faces. The climbs listed below are following the line of bolts from left to right. Top rope possiblities are not listed here.
This is a Turkey Vulture that we saw taking off from the side of the road. In seconds it was a hundred feet up and soaring. When it took off the sound his wings made was audible even with the sound of the engine there.Climbs of the east face from left to right, and all have anchors:
A- This Side of Paradise, 10a, 4 bolts
B- Rock The Casbah, 5.9, 4 bolts
C- Piece of The Action, 10b, 6 bolts
D- Metamorphotosis, originally rated 10c, it has
changed due to holds breaking off.
E- Anti-bro, 10a, 4 bolts
F- Dancing Fingers, 10d, 5 bolts
G- Anachroid Arete, 11b, RX, ground fall potential
H- For The World Is Hollow and I Have Touched The Sky, 11b, 8 bolts
Climbs of the north face listed from left to right:
I- Looking for Spock’s Brain, 5.9, 4 bolts
J- Patterns of Force, 11d, 6 bolts
K- In The Kingdom of Green Light, 11a, 3 bolts
Climbs of the West FaceA historic Note
Stuart Ruckman, an ace Utah climber moved to Santa Barbara for a few years and established the hardest route on the west face of Green Dome. He named the climb “Stealing Fire” and rated it at 12c/d. Stealing Fire soon became a testpiece with a certain amount of controversy. Local climbers started grumbling that the climb was too difficult for the rating.
Ruckman answered back “If I had given it 13b, all the aspiring 5.13 climbers from everywhere would be here crowding Green Dome.” That was in 1993.
West Face of Kryptor
|Climbs of the West Face|
|L||That Which Survives, 11c, 4 bolts|
|M||Stealing Fire, 13b, 6 bolts|
|N||Private Little War, 13c, 8 bolts|
|O||Quartz Crystal, 12d, 6 bolts|
|P||Dagger of The Mind, 12c, 4 bolts|
A few considerations for climbing on Green Dome:
1- Please do not climb on the east face the day after a rain. The holds are known to break off when the formation is still wet.
2- There is a very easy way to get to the top of Green Dome for setting up top rope. There are many loose rocks on top. Please take care not to drop them on the climbers below.
3- Green Dome is at the elevation of 3000 feet and suseptibale to extreme heat and cold. The best time to climb on Green Dome is the cooler seasons. This way you beat the flies and the snakes.
How to get there
Montecito Peak seen from East Camino Cielo
From Gibraltar Rock Gibraltar Rock
drive another 1.8 miles further to its intersection with East Camino Cielo Road. Turn right here and drive about seven miles to where the paved road ends and dirt road begin. Drive another half a mile on dirt road to where the road becomes wide. Make a U-turn and park facing back toward Santa Barbara. The trail drops down steeply for about twenty feet, then it becomes very nice and reasonable. It will take less than ten minutes to the crag.