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El Whampo 

YDS: 5.7 French: 5a Ewbanks: 15 UIAA: V+ ZA: 13 British: MVS 4b

   
Type:  Trad, 5 pitches, 500'
Consensus:  YDS: 5.7 French: 5a Ewbanks: 15 UIAA: V+ ZA: 13 British: MVS 4b [details]
FA: Richard Coats, Larry Reynolds, D. McLean, and D. Ross, 1964
Page Views: 8,010
Submitted By: Roger Linfield on Feb 24, 2006

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BETA PHOTO: Looking down from the top of the first Pitch of El...

Description 

This route starts just right of Northeast Farce, by some shallow cracks. Go up these cracks, traverse left, and then over some small overhangs to a belay. Pitch 2 (5.7) traverses right to a crux finger jam move, leading up to a very nice 120 foot long jam crack. Easier climbing above largely follows Northeast Farce up to the shoulder of the rock above.


Protection 

standard rack



Photos of El Whampo Slideshow Add Photo
Looking up at El Whampo p2.
BETA PHOTO: Looking up at El Whampo p2.
First two pitches of El Whampo.
BETA PHOTO: First two pitches of El Whampo.
Kirk making the traverse from the first belay to the base of the awesome splitter on P2 of El Whampo
Kirk making the traverse from the first belay to t...
This is a 3rd pitch Variation, I found it to be quite enjoyable, but seldom traveled.
BETA PHOTO: This is a 3rd pitch Variation, I found it to be qu...
looking up from the top of p2
looking up from the top of p2
Suicide Rock from north face trail. Had to stop to snap a pic
Suicide Rock from north face trail. Had to stop to...
North Gulley Descent
North Gulley Descent
Sandra approaching the end of P2, then moving (climber's) right and down to the belay.
BETA PHOTO: Sandra approaching the end of P2, then moving (cli...
Agina Sedler leading pitch two. Such a fun crack.
Agina Sedler leading pitch two. Such a fun crack.
Agina Sedler leading pitch two. Great jams.
Agina Sedler leading pitch two. Great jams.
Fixed pin on P4 of El Whampo
Fixed pin on P4 of El Whampo
John Reinig Seconding money pitch El Wampo!
John Reinig Seconding money pitch El Wampo!
Agina Sedler leading pitch two. Such a fun crack.
Agina Sedler leading pitch two. Such a fun crack.
looking up at p5 of left variation. End at large dead tree. Staying out of the gulley to your right keeps the end fun and in the 5.7 range
BETA PHOTO: looking up at p5 of left variation. End at large d...
Nathan Fitzhugh on pitch one almost to the belay.
Nathan Fitzhugh on pitch one almost to the belay.
After the traverse and starting up the crack on P2
After the traverse and starting up the crack on P2
Nathan Fitzhugh on pitch one.
Nathan Fitzhugh on pitch one.
looking up at p4 of the left variation. Start on obvious crack just to left of the frame then work back up and right on a nice layback crack.
BETA PHOTO: looking up at p4 of the left variation. Start on o...
Nathan Fitzhugh coming up pitch two.
Nathan Fitzhugh coming up pitch two.
looking back at the final pitch (p5) of the left variation. After the obvious crack you work up and to the climbers right past 15' of face climbing and then pull up over 5' ledge on good holds. Come back to the dead tree in the last 20'
BETA PHOTO: looking back at the final pitch (p5) of the left v...
Nathan Fitzhugh takes a break on some solid jams.
Nathan Fitzhugh takes a break on some solid jams.
Suicide Rock from the top of El Whampo
Suicide Rock from the top of El Whampo
Tim Kearns, on the great second pitch of El Whampo
Tim Kearns, on the great second pitch of El Whampo
Ralph "swimming" the P2 perfect hand jams
BETA PHOTO: Ralph "swimming" the P2 perfect hand jams
The missing feature in Vogel/Gaines topo for p3 routefinding is the undercling I've drawn in here.
BETA PHOTO: The missing feature in Vogel/Gaines topo for p3 ro...
Graham at the belay of the second pitch
Graham at the belay of the second pitch
El Wampo mixed!!! WI3 M3...
BETA PHOTO: El Wampo mixed!!! WI3 M3...
Deb Castro finishing up the classic 2nd pitch on 'El Whampo' (5.7)
Deb Castro finishing up the classic 2nd pitch on '...
Looking down from about halfway up P2, at a resting alcove (to the right of the main crack) at Ralph and Sandra at the P1 belay.
BETA PHOTO: Looking down from about halfway up P2, at a restin...
rap rings at top of p1
BETA PHOTO: rap rings at top of p1
Looking up from the belay after the 5.7 thin seam pitch. Continue under the arch until an obvious notch to the 4th belay, one long 5.easy pitch after that. I climbed along the right edge of this pic. The exit is slightly out of view here.
BETA PHOTO: Looking up from the belay after the 5.7 thin seam ...
After a group on West Lark pulled down a large rock this guy came to investigate. Thankfully I don't think anyone was hurt.
After a group on West Lark pulled down a large roc...
Comments on El Whampo Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Aug 25, 2013
By PDF
Jun 11, 2006

2nd pitch is great. Best crack at the 5.6 grade I have climbed yet.

By Graham Roff
Jul 18, 2007

After the second pitch it is possible to finish by heading up and slightly to the left over the root of the dihedral (making it a three pitch route instead of five). This avoids the loose uninspired last pitches. From the end of this pitch you can drop straight into the north gully descent.
The best easy hand crack in Idylwild.

By The Gray Tradster
Jul 26, 2007

A spicier and longer finish is to go up then right over a small overhang.(this is well below the bolt)
Run it out right face climbing to a vertical crack and ascend to under the arch to a comfortable belay, (5.7).

There are several alternative exits from the arch, all about the same difficulty. The highest quality alternative is to continue with an easy long pitch and exit at the overhang that is shared by N.E. Face West and several other routes.

This produces about a six pitch climb and adds a couple of quality ones.

By Dave Daly
From: Temecula, CA
Sep 25, 2007

Bolt? What bolt? The ORIGINAL way it was done was to take the arch exit to where the route joins the NE Butt. exit. Exiting where the NE Farce goes IS NOT El Whampo. Yep, the 2nd pitch was fun for the grade but the third pitch (headin up and right along a thin crack/seam) was fun too (5.7 friction).

By Dynomight510
Sep 11, 2009
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

Great crack on P2. I always back off going right on P3. Did not see any pro. Opted for going more right to the arch. very enjoyable.

By Jack Ziegler
From: Golden, CO
Jun 21, 2010

missed the double cracks for p2. I continued up the dihedral (maybe 5.9?) until I reached the end of 70m (starting from the base). There was a long sling for a rap where I stopped, with which with a 70m you can rap to a sturdy bush where I discovered the double cracks.

By Chris D
From: the couch
Jul 26, 2010
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

Ha! Wish I'd read these posts before I went out on this one today...or perhaps it's best I didn't!

I was pretty sure I was off-route on the slab above the second pitch, since there's really no pro until you get a pin scar near the top of the slab. Pretty good feet for slab...there are a bunch of black inclusions in the rock that seem to give a pretty good purchase, but there's no hands. Run-out is maybe 20-25 feet. Not sure. Merits a PG13 probably?

Get gear under the roof you go over to get onto the slab. What a fun route!

Edit June 2012: This time went up and left toward the dihedral on P3 (instead of straight up). Turning the "roof" (more the remnants of the giant dihedral than a roof) is easy if you find the right way, much easier to protect, and there is much less loose rock than if you go to the right. Once you get over the roof, stay high on the buttress and it's easy going on clean, pretty solid rock to the dead tree where most people (?) unrope. Tom (below) must have found a different seam than the one i followed. I scoured it for placements and found nothing but a lot of dirt and moss in a shallow thin crack.

The crack on the second pitch is spectacular for the grade...in it's way as good as The Grack - Center in the Valley.

By Tom Fralich
From: Fort Collins, CO
Jun 24, 2011
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

The thin seam on P3 protects well with small nuts and is another fun pitch. You can barely make out the seam up and slightly right from the belay at the end of P2. There's a great #1 Camalot before you step out onto the slab and the seam is reached about 8 ft later. No runout and very mellow.

By Rob Selter
From: running springs Ca
Jul 23, 2012

P2 is sooooo good!! One the best hand cracks I have ever been on.

By Chris Norwood
From: San Diego, CA
Jul 23, 2012

^ Rob knows :) 4 stars for the second pitch

By Tradoholic
Sep 16, 2012
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

The origional third 5.7 pitch is well worth doing but the crux moves are unprotected, might get a tiny nut in, it gets easier soon with good albiet small pro.

Follow the guidebook topo to finish it up, basically another traverse pitch and pull through a notch for another pitch of 5.easy climbing above.

By Will P.
Jun 17, 2013

There is a terrifying amount of loose rock higher up. The climb was great, but climbing under another party wouldn't be wise.
I'll second Chris D's note, stay high on the buttress after p4. This was a little confusing.

By Climb To Safety
From: california
Jul 16, 2013

What a fun route, climbed 7-16-2013, not a single person on the route, and not a single person on the rock, at least to my knowledge. 2 rangers were waiting at the trailhead for the north face approach of tahquitz, warning people to stay off the mountain, and even claiming that the mountain might be shutdown due to the riverside county fire, the fire made for some cool looking smoke clouds while climbing tahquitz, too bad i didn't bring a camera.

First few pitches of this climb are a lot of fun, the 2nd pitch crack is great and deserves the hype it gets. Also, the 3rd pitch runout really isn't that bad, a small nut works perfectly in the thin seam, as tom mentioned earlier. Definitely go for the slab, runout or not, it's not hard. Rest of the climb got weaker and weaker by every pitch, but other than pitch 6, each pitch has something very interesting about it. Highly recommended.

By Jeff Botimer
Aug 25, 2013
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

Just did the left variation finish after p2, fantastic climb! I found it every bit as good as Fingertrip.

From the top of p2 head up and left for ~30-50' (don't remember exactly) before working your way right under a large dihedral before finally pulling over it to end p3 whenever you want. Great pro the whole way but use runners to manage the rope drag.

From here I worked lightly left again until I reached a great layback crack that headed up and right and eventually ended by pulling over a small dihedral. P5 I stayed away from the gulley to the right to keep climbing in the 5.7 range. About halfway up you it levels off for about 20' and then you have the choice of working right into a gulley or going straight up a 20' face. This face can be protected with a #2 C3 or maybe a .3 C4 about halfway up if you look carefully between the small bushes. After this face head right under a large dihedral and pull over it on good holds when you hit a corner after 10'. Then finish up to the top (dead tree) however you see fit!