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Approach the East Face of the Old Woman and look for a line of bolts on the south end of the south slab. After one bolt, two lines diverge, one straight up, and the other wandering to the right. Judas goes straight up past two bolts total, to reach a right leaning ramp, from which you can either move a few feet right and continue on Toe Jam (5.7, and recommended, but likely crowded) or continue up and onward to the rap anchors above Chongo Bolt Route and Bearded Cabbage (harder).
The crux of this route for me was right off of the ground, getting into position where I could comfortable place gear. I saw a team of climbers just before we were there standing on each other's shoulders to get established on the line. I guess that should have been a clue that the start was difficult. There was one additional friction move up higher that I found difficult. In the attached picture, the line is essentially where the climber is rapping off.
I did not find this climb as fun as many of its nearby neighbors.
This climb protects with 2 reasonably good bolts and a few cams, from .75" to 3". The larger pro is for when you join the route Toe Jam, up top.
This climb is not rated "S" in the Vogel book, but I have rated it as such. The route is protected well enough for the bulk of the climbing, but the first few moves are bouldery and could produce an ankle-twisting/breaking fall. I protected relatively soon on a TCU, but it was not a textbook placement, and a fall (even if it held) from below the first bolt still could have been bad.
Nathan Scherneck on 'Judas'. Photo by Sheila Roma...
Moving past the last bolt of Judas (5.10b), Joshua...
BETA PHOTO: The Old Woman - East Face
Sep 7, 2003
The crux in the start and me bing 5'-8" found it quite hard to conclude it was 5.10c (5.10b in Volgel's guide).The crack is about 3/4" wide on a buldge that you mantle. There are some great foot holds but you are pitched over 90 degrees at that point with the off-finger crack and a left hand sloper for holds. The friction section above was and fun and delicate and the protection was good from the start but the hard moves are off the deck and a tight belay is reccomended.
Fun and worth doing.
Off-fingers on steep rock warrants my rating.
|By Anonymous Coward|
Mar 31, 2004
Just wanted to point out that if you have small hands, its really not that hard, and I'm only 5'4". Just be sure to reach for the highest jam you can before rocking over onto the left foot...
|By Darshan Ahluwalia|
From: Petaluma, CA
Apr 24, 2006
I don't think this climb warrants an R rating. You can place a cam standing below the crack, before you begin the climb. Push it deep into the crack so it doesn't block your hand jams. Red TCU.
|By Adam Kimmerly|
Apr 30, 2007
At 5'9" and slightly smaller than average hand size, I found the start of this to be very stout for the 5.10b rating. Tall climbers can reach out right to the flake and smaller climbers may actually be able to get a decent tight hand jam in the crack. For the average climber, your tight-hands/off-fingers technique must be up to par or you'll never leave the ground.
|By Will S|
From: Joshua Tree
Mar 23, 2009
rating: 5.10c PG13
Without taking a specific piece (a yellow C3), this will be a tad run at the top. After the second bolt there's really not even a seam, but a couple of slots/scars show up in one spot. It's really your only option for pro and one of them will take a good yellow C3, but anything with a wider head and you're SOL...a yellow tcu gets you about 2 1/2 lobes engage. I didn't have the C3 and wished I did, YMMV.
From: San Francisco
Apr 8, 2009
Moves off the ground are hard, but protect well with cams placed high.
A good spot and well placed gear will definitely keep you off the ground just as that very combination did me when I was attempting to figure out the starting sequence.
The rest of the route is easy, if I remember correctly 5.9'ish.
|By Will S|
From: Joshua Tree
Nov 8, 2009
rating: 5.10c PG13
Yesterday I watched a guy take the big whipper on this, from the last move before joining Toe Jam, the last bolt as his last pro. Kind of an ugly fall when he hit the rope, getting flipped/spun and ending up closed enough to the deck that an inattentive belay could have meant grounding. It's about 5.9- friction at the end of the runout, so be solid or place some gear after the bolt.
From: Clearfield, UT
Feb 14, 2011
I thought that this was a fun varied climb. The crux is definitely getting off the ground with the off fingers overhanging crack. I thought it was about 5.10c, but it would certainly be easier if you have small enough hands to get a good hand jam. The protection was good, I got a perfect .75 camalot in from the ground, then a decent #2 camalot once I was established above the crux. The face climbing was fun and relatively well protected for J-tree slab, then the upper section of Toe Jam protects well, so I don't see any reason for the pg-13 rating.