Yearly raptor closures typically begin March 1 and remain in effect until August 1, or until further notice.
East of Glacier Point Apron. Closure includes all routes above 200 feet from the base of the cliff east of Glacier Point Apron including "A Mother's Lament" to the Illilouette Gorge. Half Dome, South Face - Overlooking Little Yosemite Valley. Closure includes all routes from "Autobahn" east to and including "South Face Route."
Often times people belay at the bolted anchor at the top of the first pitch. It is better to go up the easy ramp to the base of the roof near the dead tree and belay instead. Doing this frees up that anchor for toproping the bolted route to the left of harry daley, and it also allows people to rap from the anchor on the way down from the top of harry daley.
The variety of cracks- fingers, hands, fists, a traverse, all in short sections of 20 feet or so,- and the roof pull on solid pro and jams make this route an absolute joy. At two short pitches it is not too much of a commitment, either, short enough to keep things fun and enjoyable. A great climb! Belaying from the tree is recommended, even comfortable. Two ropes to rappel, 60m ropes will get you down to the first 3rd class bench from the chain anchors. The 10b slab climb to the left of the route (Variation on a Theme) is an enjoyable and challenging toprope from same anchors.
By Chris Owen Administrator From: La Crescenta and Big Bear Lake Sep 20, 2009 rating: 5.85b16VI-15HVS 4c
Second pitch is a lot of fun.
"Class 3" approach could mess with some people's heads, especially the descent.
Rapped with two 60m ropes. From the first bolt anchor these got us to a ledge about 20' below the starting ledge, which made the descent more casual .. class 2-ish. If the initial scrambling wigs you out there are usually rap slings off a bush on the right side of the starting ledge.
Classic line, really glad we did this one. I agree, though, that last section of the approach around the base blocks felt a bit sketchy for Class 3. Might be easier to keep left a bit at the rock base, and use switchbacks until you're almost directly under the start of the climb.
For reference, I'm 6' and a solid 5.7/5.8 leader with about 100 pitches of trad under my belt all-time.
Definitely felt like the crux was the leftward traverse on P1. Analyze where your pro will be on this section ahead of time, as it's a critical spot to protect you and your follower and there aren't a ton of placement options. Climbing this in April, though our route was dry, the friction feet were still not 100% dry on the rock, making this section feel committing. That said, I committed and had no problem getting through it traversing hands on the small crack and using friction feet on the face. I later saw another climber put feet in the crack and use undercling hands in the same crack as well for this part, which looks like it might have felt easier (though probably would have made the pro more awkward).
After the traverse on P1, if you've got big hands you'll be treated to an all-too-short splitter crack, followed by the aforementioned tree belay (good idea).
For P2, I found the roof move right above the tree to be easy with my big hand jams, but my 5'2" female partner with small hands had quite a bit more difficulty with it. In either case, it's short and the rest of the climb offers nice slab moves and great pro opportunities.
I find the easiest way to do the traverse on the first pitch is to plug in a solid piece and then stand up on the little ledge. Walk across it. Hands on the blank face for balance. It's only a few moves left and there are big pockets for your feet. Forget the pro! Just go for it. It's easy and it would be scarier having to stop and place gear. Also, regarding the above comment about the second pitch. I would say that after the roof the rest of the climb offers sweet 5.7/5.8 crack climbing. Not much slab. I've never thought the 3rd class approach was any big deal. Pretty standard stuff.
Like a stepped-up version of The Grack. I thought the opening moves were the crux.
By Weston L From: Summerlin, NV May 24, 2012 rating: 5.85b16VI-15HVS 4c
Climbed this last October. Fun cruise, don't miss out on the short but sweet Chouinard Crack after P1 (it's the fun-looking thing that goes left, very easy and very fun). Casual cruise, with some entertainment provided on the section where you walk the crack. Just laugh while you're up there and think of it like walking the plank, only different.
We approached from the right into the rotten corner up to the bush/tree with tat. I do not recommend this, despite what supertopo shows. Here's a better route: scramble up to the first ledge by the dead tree. Next, move left along the ledge until you see some nice slab/scramble moves on better rock closer to the base of the climb.
Also, for descent, you can rappel on two 60 meter ropes from the first anchors down to that first ledge. Traverse west to the dead tree and scramble down.
P1 was great! Unfortunately I had to bail from the end of it because it was getting dark.
As some others mentioned, I'd recommend plugging a cam into the traverse crack before stepping into it. It's pretty easy to stand on it and shimmy across, but it'd be awkward to place gear once you've stood already. I didn't think about this beforehand, and it felt sketchy to bend down and do it once I was on the ledge, so I ended up running it out to the anchor to avoid rope drag, which was a very stupid decision in retrospect.