The first ascent of Crime of the Century was in 1978 by Peter Croft and Tami Knight, and ever since then it’s been the must-climb test-piece 5.11c single-pitch trad route at the Smoke Bluffs in Squamish.
It starts just left of Penny Lane 5.9 at the Penny Lane wall and starts with a few bouldery moves off the ground, which might leave your pinky numb, and leads to a great finger crack above. It finishes with a sting-in-the-tail mantle.
This technical and balancey route isn’t for everyone’s tick-list, in fact if you’re not confident placing gear at 5.11+ then you should skip it for another nearby classic like the legendary Penny Lane.
You park in the Smoke Bluffs parking area, the approach takes 10 minutes, for gear you’ll want small finger and nut sizes and unlike the late Brad Gobright in the epic photo below, you’ll want a rope and helmet. You can find more beta in the new Squamish Select (4th edition) guidebook here.
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End of the day laps at the smoke bluffs last summer was as common as coffee in the morning. Crime of the Century is a mega classic finger crack at Penny Lane. I don't see free soloing as an adrenaline rush. It's more just a way to get a lot of climbing in. Photo by @dankrauss
Crime of the Century