Avast Ye Maties!
This classic test piece was originally done as an aid line. In 1978, it was free climbed by then 16 year old Tony Yaniro, who later went on to climb the Grand Illusion, near Lake Tahoe and other spookfests. Even in this era of big numbers, this is a difficult route that sees very few free ascents on lead. And when it does see traffic, its usually in the form of clean aid; an excellent line to hone ones aid skills on. Most folks climb the first pitch only.
Find The "Tresure"
The climber's trail to Suicide Rock starts across from some large water tanks located just past Forest Drive (where the main road starts to bend right). Follow the trail downhill, cross a seasonal stream, and then make a right onto Foresthaven Drive (paved). Walk the paved road to it's end and then make a left onto a trail where you'll see a climber sign-in box. After about a 1/4 mile, the trail is unmaintained and becomes much steeper and rocky. The trail will deposit you close to the right end of the Buttress of Cracks. Head left along the base of the Buttress Of Crack, spotting such climbs like 'Arcy Farcy' (10dR), 'The Hernia' (5.8) and 'Sword Of Damocoles' (5.9). Continue along the base of the buttress for approximately 150 feet, scrambling up a few ledges and boulders. Pass a large dead tree and up to a level area next to the rock. On the face of the rock is a very thin crack leading up approx 85'. This is 'The Pirate'.
"Raise The Anchor and Cast Off, Scally Wags!"
This route sees very few free ascents on lead and most inspiring climbers will climb 'The Buccaneer' (5.10c), an adjacent route to the right of 'The Pirate' in order to TR it. On the other hand, this route makes an excellent clean aid climb (C2). Either way, the climb is very straight forward since a majority of the climb follows a thin crack for 85', with the .12d crux near the bottom third of the climb. The exiting moves to the anchors (7 feet to the right of the crack, on a ledge......3 bolts with 2 of them with rap rings) require a short stem across to large holds above the anchor. Single rope rap from the anchors.
When considering to climb 'The Pirate' as an aid line, use the bolts and a large patina plate above the bolts to equalize both the lead line and the tag line, which allows the follower to clean to the anchors without making a pendy by switching jumars over to the fixed tag line
The Booty.....Er, Gear
Small Aliens, both regular and offset
-Double set of small nuts (#5 and below, emphasis on offset brassies)
-Metolius cams (sizes 01 and 00)
-A few medium cams (.5 and .75 BD Camelot)
-26 ovals or 13 quickdraws
-(2) 60 meter ropes *(see note above)