This is an amazing crack climb and should be added to everyone's must do list. The rating is right on for Yosemite, with the crux jams being ring locks through a bulge. After that, its all about how long you can stay on before you fall off.
The crack is located at the far western end of the cliff band and faces west. See approach info listed in the Cream area.
Also, you can see the route from the Reed's pullout. Its at the same level and just slightly up river.
Gear to 2.5" Extra 1.5" - 2" pieces. The slings and fixed nuts at the top have been replaced with rappel chains.
Dec 26, 2009
To get through the sustained nature of the crack, I break this climb up into four sections:
1)The bottom - Slowly move up a slightly decomposing wide section about 10 ft. Bomber finger locks (5.10b) take you up 20 more ft. to a small rest. Complete this section without expelling any energy.
2) The middle - From the rest, place a 1.75 friend and climb the bulge (5.11d) with small edges for your feet until you are able to reach for a 2" hand jam. Bring an extra 1.75 friend or two for this section.
3) The upper - Climb from the bulge up steep tight hands (5.11a) with no rests until the crack peters out. Some jams in this section are better than others, but just plug gear and go. This is no place to rest unless you have very small hands. Bring a few extra #2 friends for this section.
4) The top - Protect this with a #2 friend where the crack thins. Traverse right with no pro for a body length over continuous (5.10c) edges to the chains.
There you go. A good friend and I spent a couple of months here one summer and never saw anyone!
|By Will S|
From: Joshua Tree
Jan 18, 2010
I'm glad someone finally added this. It's one of the best off-finger/tight hand cracks around. No real crux, just race the pump on steep continuous 1"-1.25", then see if you've got enough left to crimp and balance across the traverse. A great pitch.
The gully approach can be hard to pin down, and isn't what I'd call enjoyable even when you've got it wired. The crawling/squeezing on ant infested ledges to get over to the right side where EC lies (once you find and descend the proper gully) is "character building". But the payoff on this crag is phenomenal. Cream, Jam Session, Energy Crisis...all classics.
|By Bryan G|
From: San Jose
May 30, 2012
Almost first go. Peeled off the tricky (and dirty) traverse to the anchors. Those last couple moves can be a heart-breaker for sure. If this were at the Cookie it would be one of the best climbs at the Cookie.
From: San Jose
Aug 28, 2012
this climb is much better than it looks from the ground. The crux is very distinct short section at the beginning of the bulge - very sequential, and easy to scrue by wrong gear placement ( take space for jam) or wrong hand placement.
Take as many green camelot you have. On second part of the climb every placement can be done with them