Silent Running

Page Type Page Type: Route
Location Lat/Lon: 48.16230°N / 121.6178°W
Additional Information Route Type: Trad Climbing, Sport Climbing
Seasons Season: Spring, Summer, Fall
Additional Information Time Required: Half a day
Additional Information Difficulty: III 5.10B
Additional Information Rock Difficulty: 5.10b (YDS)
Additional Information Number of Pitches: 7
Additional Information Grade: III
Sign the Climber's Log


Silent Running is a classic 7 pitch 5.10B slab and crack climb first put up in 1973 by Dan Brooks and Brent Hoffman. The route features excellent sustained thin slab and cracks on clean beautiful granite. This route is the most popular on Three O’clock Rock, and is very clean and solid. All belays are equipped with 2 bolts, a chain, and a rap ring offering easy rappels or easy bailing at any time if weather encroaches.


See the description on the main page. Silent Running starts at the lowest point of the rock adjacent to the Eightmile Creek Trail. Look up for a bolt above you and a thin finger crack below it with a brushy dihedral to the right.

Route Description

Pitch #1 - 5.6 – Climb up the easy slab towards the finger crack and jamb this (low fifth) to its end. Protection is microcams in the crack. Start up the easy slab clipping the bolt until you reach the right angling dihedral. Protect the dihedral / flake with small cams. Traverse up and to the left on 5.6 slab to gain the chains on a small ledge. 170 feet

Pitch #2 - 5.8 – Work your way up the nice thin steepening slab clipping 6 bolts. There is a healthy 20 foot runout on 5.7 / 5.8 terrain between the third and fourth bolt that keeps it interesting. Belay at the chains on another small ledge. 160 feet

Pitch #3 - Sustained 5.9+ - This classic pitch is regarded by some as the best on 3 O’clock Rock. Climb up the steeper very thin slab clipping numerous bolts. Climbing is a calf burning footwork and balance challenge. About halfway up traverse to the right and up more classic slab. Sweet pitch! Belay at the chains. 160 feet

Pitch #4 - 5.8 – This pitch is much easier than the two below it climbing up the knobby slab. The crux is right off the belay. After that clip 4 bolts and enjoy the nice knobby face. 150 feet

Pitch #5 - 5.8 – Climb up some more classic thin slab moving up and to the right. This is a shorter pitch and is well protected by 5 bolts. Belay at the chains on the ledge below the steeper section. 120 feet

Pitch #6 - 5.9+ - Make your way up the steeper slab passing over an overlap. After that climb up the sustained 5.9+ slab section for forty feet to a good rest below the anchor. Note: This pitch has several old rusty bolts, and is the only pitch without current hardware. The crux section is well protected by new bolts. Belay at the chains below the multiple overlaps above. 150 feet

Pitch #7 - 5.10B – Even though this is the crux pitch it is actually easier than the third pitch, due to its less sustained nature. Climb up to the overlaps then clip the bolt above. Pull over the 2 overlaps (crux) then work your way up some thin slab towards the dihedral. The going gets hard just below the dihedral at the last bolt (5.10A slab). Jamb the dihedral with good pro via small cams, then lieback the nice thin crack for thirty feet to the belay at the chains.

Down - 7 50 meter rappels off the route’s belay stations will get you to the ground.

Essential Gear

2 50 or 60 meter ropes
1 set of cams from tiny to a #2.5 friend (#2 camalot)
Extra microcams and Ballnuts are helpful (I placed mostly .25 to .5 inch cams)
A few small nuts
10 Draws or Slings
Several 24” slings are needed at gear placements to avoid horrendous rope drag.

Other Resource

Topo provided by Matt Perkins. This is an excellent topo, very accurate.

Miscellaneous Info

If you have information about this route that doesn't pertain to any of the other sections, please add it here.



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