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Pine Creek Canyon

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Pine Creek Canyon 


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Elevation: 7,000'
Lat, Long: 37.3822, -118.6724 Map Incorrect?
Page Views: 296,830
Administrators: Aron Quiter, Euan Cameron, Adam Winters, M.Morley, Salamanizer, Justin Johnsen, Kristine Hoffman
Submitted By: Tim Steele on Jan 12, 2007
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Elizabeth shopping for holds on the ultra classic ...

Description 

A beautiful granite canyon nestled between Mount Tom & the Wheeler Crest. Most of the routes are concentrated in Sheelite Canyon, a side canyon that feeds into Pine Creek, but routes are also cropping up elsewhere, especially up canyon. The best season is late spring until the weather craps out in the late fall. Summer conditions are especially pleasant, as most routes are in the shade and a cool breeze often fans the canyon.

The canyon has a long history, with classics such as Pratt’s Crack and Sheila dating back to the 1970's. In the early 1990's, with the boom of sport climbing in the area, Tommy Herbert added what is arguably one of the proudest 5.13a's in the country with his seldom repeated masterpiece, Ecstasy, a 100 foot laser-cut aręte.

The prolific and industrious Louie Anderson almost single-handedly turned Pine Creek Canyon into a sport crag with his development of the Ministry Wall (a dense concentration of quality 5.11’s) and the Planetarium Wall, with his ultra-classic, Atomic Gecko (5.12b) getting the most traffic of any hard route in the area. It stands as a must do for the 5.12 climber. Another standout test piece is 'Wind in the Willows Extension' (5.12d) which sports 110 feet of intense granite climbing.

Recently, there has been a resurgence of development, especially at the hands of the dynamic duo of Marty Lewis and Kevin Calder, who have almost doubled the number of sport climbs in just a couple of seasons, adding numerous new 5.11 classics to the area, including a three pitch affair.

The best source of information for the canyon can be found in Peter Croft's and Marty Lewis’ excellent guide, "Bishop Area Rock Climbs".

Austin Archer on pitch 1 of Moment of Zen
Austin Archer on pitch 1 of Moment of Zen


Getting There 

Take Hwy. 395 North from Bishop to Pine Creek Road. Turn left onto Pine Creek Road. Continue through the town of Rovana and several switchbacks until you see Sheelite Canyon (the obvious deep canyon) on your right. Just across from the Campground, take a dirt road and park in one of two parking areas. Walk up the road and into the canyon.

Pine Creek Canyon
Pine Creek Canyon


154 Total Routes


['4 Stars',25],['3 Stars',88],['2 Stars',28],['1 Star',3],['Bomb',2]
['<=5.6',0],['5.7',5],['5.8',8],['5.9',23],['5.10',44],['5.11',45],['5.12',26],['5.13',3],['>=5.14',0],['',0],['<=V1',0],['V2-3',0],['V4-5',0],['V6-7',0],['V8-9',0],['V10-11',0],['V12-13',0],['>=V14',0]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Pine Creek Canyon:
Birthday Boy   5.9 5c 17 VI HVS 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 70'   Sheelite Canyon / Pratt's C... : Oser Wall
The Big Deal   5.9 5c 17 VI HVS 5a     Trad, 4 pitches, 400'   Scheelite Crags : PSOM Slab
Pratt's Crack   5.9 5c 17 VI HVS 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 165'   Sheelite Canyon / Pratt's C... : Pratt's Crack/Dihedrals Are...
PBR Street Gang   5.9+ 5c 17 VI E1 5a     Trad, 6 pitches, 400'   Scheelite Crags : PSOM Slab
Sheila   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ E1 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 180'   Sheelite Canyon / Pratt's C... : Pratt's Crack/Dihedrals Are...
Armando's Stilletto   5.10 6b 20 VII- E2 5b     Trad, 3 pitches, 345'   Sheelite Canyon / Pratt's C... : Armando's Stilletto
John Fischer Memorial Route   5.10c 6b 20 VII E2 5b     Trad, Sport, 7 pitches, 750'   Scheelite Crags : PSOM Slab
Three Hour Arete   5.10c 6b 20 VII E2 5b     Trad, Sport, 4 pitches, 300'   Three Hour Buttress
Rites of Spring   5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ E3 5b     Trad, 4 pitches, 400'   Sheelite Canyon / Pratt's C... : Pratt's Crack/Dihedrals Are...
Moment of Zen   5.11a 6c 22 VII+ E3 5c     Trad, Sport, 3 pitches, 250'   Lamb Canyon Wall
Coven (Seriously Though)   5.11b 6c 23 VIII- E3 5c     Sport, 1 pitch, 100'   Sheelite Canyon / Pratt's C... : Mustache Wall
Blindspot   5.11b 6c 23 VIII- E3 5c     Trad, 7 pitches, 500'   Sheelite Canyon / Pratt's C... : Blindspot Buttress
Queen of the Heartbreaks   5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- E4 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 130'   Sheelite Canyon / Pratt's C... : Pratt's Crack/Dihedrals Are...
Flame Thrower   5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- E4 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 90'   Sheelite Canyon / Pratt's C... : Mustache Wall
The Megaplex   5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- E4 6a     Sport, 3 pitches, 300'   Sheelite Canyon / Pratt's C... : Mustache Wall
Window Shopper   5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- E4 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 90'   Sheelite Canyon / Pratt's C... : Mustache Wall
The Remington Electric   5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- E4 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 105'   Sheelite Canyon / Pratt's C... : Mustache Wall
Burning Inside   5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- E4 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 100'   Sheelite Canyon / Pratt's C... : Ministry Wall
The Toiler   5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ E5 6a     Sport, 3 pitches, 300'   Sheelite Canyon / Pratt's C... : Mustache Wall
Atomic Gecko   5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ E5 6b     Sport, 60'   Sheelite Canyon / Pratt's C... : Gecko Wall
Browse More Classics in Pine Creek Canyon

Featured Route For Pine Creek Canyon
Area Topo

Armando's Stilletto 5.10 6b 20 VII- E2 5b  CA : Sierra Eastside : ... : Armando's Stilletto
3 pitch corner. Stay left on the 3rd, entering the Bombay chimney. Rap with 1 70 m rope...[more]   Browse More Classics in CA

News and Events For Pine Creek Canyon
Photos of Pine Creek Canyon Slideshow Add Photo
Looking out over the Owens Valley towards White Mountain Peak, viewed from Pine Creek
Looking out over the Owens Valley towards White Mo...
waiting out a summer rainstorm in PC.
waiting out a summer rainstorm in PC.
Mustache Wall in winter
Mustache Wall in winter
A cloudy summer day at Pine Creek.
A cloudy summer day at Pine Creek.
Now he's after the drinks.
Now he's after the drinks.
Parking for one of the crags in beautiful Pine Creek Canyon
Parking for one of the crags in beautiful Pine Cre...
Mt. Tom and Pine Creek Canyon
Mt. Tom and Pine Creek Canyon
the bear grabbed some food, and ran away across the river.
the bear grabbed some food, and ran away across th...
PSOM Slab from the road
PSOM Slab from the road
Early morning light
Early morning light
Pine Creek granite
Pine Creek granite
A big haul this time.
A big haul this time.
Pine Creek Canyon
Pine Creek Canyon
Pine Creek Canyon
Pine Creek Canyon
Looking into Pine creek
Looking into Pine creek
We camped at the pullout near the creek across from the Pratt's Crack area. three "Hillbilly" type men left all of their food stacked in crates. I woke up when the bear knocked over a crate.
We camped at the pullout near the creek across fro...
Beautiful Pine Creek in the spring.
Beautiful Pine Creek in the spring.
After eating the first crate of food, he came back for the next one.
After eating the first crate of food, he came back...
Pine Creek crags. <br />Photo by Blitzo.
Pine Creek crags.
Photo by Blitzo.
He's wet from crossing the creek
He's wet from crossing the creek
Wheeler Crest. April 2010
Wheeler Crest. April 2010
Comments on Pine Creek Canyon Add Comment
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By Greg Barnes
Jan 16, 2007

Bishop local Tom Costa did a great color PDF mini-guide to the sport routes a few years back, he has it in a few different formats at: homepage.mac.com/oohrah

It does not include all the new Marty Lewis/Kevin Calder routes.

By Bruce Willey
From: Bishop, CA
Aug 17, 2009

Tai Devore (AKA Mr. Pine Creek) is putting in so many new routes it's hard to keep track. But go into Wilson's and he'll hand you some topos for some really fine routes.

By Vic Lawson
From: Bishop, CA
Jul 9, 2010

New routes going up left and right...bolted, trad, multipitch, shorties, loooong single pitches, ground up, top down...whooo! It's like a golden age up in heya! Many FA parties are leaving topos at Wilsons to be xeroxed and used...but many single pitch "cragging" routes are still sitting mysterious, and rarely climbed despite their quality. Tim? Tom? You guys gonna give us the beta or what?

over 20 new pitches went up in Pratt's canyon alone over this summer and last. I vote for a community compiling of route info, available for free at Wilsons...or if someone wants to give me a small loan, I'd be happy to pen a Pine Creek guidebook....

vic