9 Mile Cigarette

In November 2019, after doing The Cult Leader in Mormon Canyon, I was left with a bit of a sore finger to rehab. During that month, I took the time to explore and equip a few new lines for free climbing, including Dickels Delight and the line that would become the 9 Mile Cigarette.

I spent a few days here and there rope soloing on the pitches, but winter came and went twice before I got around to actually climbing on this route. It was always on the back burner until this summer. Zach Harrison and I went out for the first day of real climbing on it, and had a great time in pretty warm conditions. The bottom 4 pitches of the route are quite shady and inside a gully so they stay pretty cool in summer. That day we sent the first three pitches and did some cleaning work and anchor moving on the upper pitches. The first three turned out even better than I had hoped, with varied climbing on cracks of all sizes, usually with some feet and face holds mixed in.

A couple weeks later I came back with Wilson Cutbirth to lead pitch 4, the crux, and pitch 5, the slightly sandy but still-hard topout pitch. Conditions were crisp and I was able to send both pitches quickly.

The whole route turned out great and required little cleaning and relatively few bolts.

Here’s the route description I put together for this top-accessed climb (Typical for Insomnia Canyon)

The route top is on a subledge on the same pillar as Daedalus (https://goo.gl/maps/u4KbeFLPJ5B3puhG9).  Scramble down from the rackup patio and traverse up-canyon 15′ to find the two bolt anchor.  It is exposed to access this anchor, so consider bringing a 30′ rope to anchor to the big tree to access the anchor.  

Good crack climbing route on near-vertical grey sandstone.  South facing route but in a gully so stays shaded all morning and most of the mid-day.  Top pitch gets sun from noon on.

Best strategy is probably to rappel the route with an 80m and a third hand on your ATC.  Some pitches are 40m so rappels will be close to rope ends.  Tie knots.  

Good practice to blow/brush holds on the way down, especially on the last pitch which can get sandy.  The rest of the route stays pretty clean.

Grades are very approximate and could be several letters off. 

P1: 5.12- 40m  Hands in corner with a funky boulder leads to tricky slab dihedral crux. 1 bolt

P2: 5.11- 25m  Fingers in corner to chimney with 1 bolt to hands out a steep flake.

P3: 5.12+ 30m  Climb up and right on fist to fingers flake.  Pull a roof and climb up to a stance.  Step right and traverse past a bolt to a finger/tip crack seam with awesome crimps.  Clip another bolt and head up this seam/crack.  At times you will use holds out left in/near another crack for compression.  You can skip this awesome climbing by not traversing through the bolt and climbing left in a varied moderate crack.  This variation has not been climbed and is not cleaned. 

P4: 5.12+/13- 40m  Off the belay, climb up through slopy cracks to a bolt and do a slab-tech boulder up a crimp seam.  Place some gear and do another slab-tech boulder up another crimp seam.  Then climb 30m of really fun 5.11+ varied finger cracks.

P5: 5.12-?  30m?  Climb up a hand/finger crack until it kindof ends and then trend right through slopy holds to the first bolt. Cool sloper compression moves with pockets leads to another bolt and then easier but sandy climbing leads to the anchor.  Consider brushing/blowing this pitch on the way down.