There aren't many climbs in Yosemite that lead to a true summit. But of those that do, the Lost Arrow Spire has to be one of the most famous and exciting of all. The Lost Arrow Tip was first climbed in 1946 by a party that used some rope tricks to rig up a tyrolean traverse, a popular way to end the climb today. The first actual climb to the top was accomplished by Yosemite pioneer John Salathe and Anton Nelson in 1946. They climbed the Lost Arrow via the Lost Arrow Chimney ( V, 5.10a ), the first grade V big wall done in the U. S. Today the Lost Arrow Tip and tyrolean traverse return are one of the classic climbs of Yosemite!
Routes on the Lost Arrow -
Lost Arrow Chimney - V, 5.10a ( to the notch ).
Lost Arrow Direct V, 5.8 - 5.11, A3.
Lost Arrow Tip and tyrolean traverse III, 5,7 - 5.10, A2- or 5.12b
Yosemite Pointless V, 5.9, A3
Note - if climbing one of the grade V routes to the Lost Arrow Notch, one must have friends fix ropes into the notch from the rim. Climbing to the rim from the notch is not reccomended! Or, there is a rappel route from the notch back to the base of the wall.
For the grade V routes on the Lost Arrow, one must climb Sunnyside Bench route 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 for more information.
For the classic Lost Arrow Tip, either hike up the Yosemite Falls trail or down the Hetch Hetchy trail from the Yosemite Creek campground on the Tioga Pass road. Once at the falls, follow the trail to Yosemite Point. From trees about 300 feet west of the railing, rappel about 250' into the notch.
There is a park entrance fee, currently $ 20.00 per car. There are no permits or use fees required for climbing. Bivouacs on climbs in Yosemite Valley do not require a permit. Wilderness permits are required to camp at the top of Yosemite Falls if desired prior to climbing the Tip. See the Yosemite Park weblink for more information.
When To Climb
The best climbing months are May through October. Climbing can be very hot in mid summer ( July and August ) and cold earlier and later in the season.
There are numurous fee camping sites and cabins / hotel rooms available in Yosemite Valley. See links for weblinks to reservations and more information. Please note that Yosemite Valley is a very popular summer destination and reservations book up quickly and far in advance.
See the Yosemite Valley Logistics page for more info - Yosemite Logistics page
For current information go to http://www.nps.gov/yose/index.htm