Sign Up  |   Log In:Login with Facebook
REI Community
Cyclops Rock
Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
Are We Ourselves T 
Aye, Aye T 
Business Trip T 
Carolyn's Rump T 
Circe T 
Cyclops Direct T 
Dino Damage T 
Eye, The T 
Foul Fowl T 
Fractured Fissure T 
Goldilocks T 
Gray Cell Green S 
I, The T 
Leader's Fright T 
New Year's Day T 
Official Route of the 1984 Olympics, The T 
Overnight Sensation T 
Penelope's Walk T 
Slim Jim TR 
Spaghetti & Chili T 
Surface Tension T 
Thin Red Line T 
Ulysses' Bivouac T 

The Eye 

YDS: 5.4 French: 4a Ewbanks: 12 UIAA: IV ZA: 10 British: VD 3c

Type:  Trad, 1 pitch, 150'
Consensus:  YDS: 5.4 French: 4a Ewbanks: 12 UIAA: IV ZA: 10 British: VD 3c [details]
FA: unknown
Page Views: 14,611
Submitted By: M.Morley on Jul 7, 2002

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (291)
Your todo list:
Your stars:
Your rating: -none- [change]
Your ticklist: [add new tick]
Your opinion of this PAGE:    [2 people like this page.]
Night climbing on the Eye


A great beginner route with excellent exposure. Rated 5.1 in Vogel's guidebook, this route in my opinion warrants a slightly stiffer rating. Begin in alcove up low-angle crack. Continue onto steep face with great holds for a full rope length (approx. 150') to the top. Gear belay.

Also makes for a nice free solo at the end of the day.

Descent: walk east down the backside and back around (north) to your pack.


Light rack to 3".

Photos of The Eye Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: the eye at 2am
the eye at 2am
Rock Climbing Photo: Hanging out in the eye on a chilly november night....
Hanging out in the eye on a chilly november night....
Rock Climbing Photo: Andy soloing The Eye
Andy soloing The Eye
Rock Climbing Photo: the kids chilling in the cave at the completion of...
the kids chilling in the cave at the completion of...
Rock Climbing Photo: me soloing up the eye
me soloing up the eye
Rock Climbing Photo: Don't get lost! Photo by Blitzo.
Don't get lost! Photo by Blitzo.
Rock Climbing Photo: the eye
the eye
Rock Climbing Photo: Me on The Eye just before sunset
Me on The Eye just before sunset
Rock Climbing Photo: Ben Larson - night solo.
Ben Larson - night solo.
Rock Climbing Photo: Agina heading up with Nathan above on belay.
Agina heading up with Nathan above on belay.
Rock Climbing Photo: finishing up the Eye
finishing up the Eye
Rock Climbing Photo: great climb. Nice crack in the celling at the end ...
great climb. Nice crack in the celling at the end ...
Rock Climbing Photo: The Eye
The Eye
Rock Climbing Photo: starting up the steep part,  just keep telling you...
starting up the steep part, just keep telling you...
Rock Climbing Photo: Fun first lead of the day.  Great view.
Fun first lead of the day. Great view.
Rock Climbing Photo: peeping through the eye
peeping through the eye
Rock Climbing Photo: Great shot of The Eye
Great shot of The Eye

Comments on The Eye Add Comment
Show which comments
Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Jul 27, 2015
By Brian Reynolds
Nov 4, 2002

I definitely agree about the rating. No way this thing is 5.1!! It's pretty exposed, and there aren't a lot of solid gear placements either. This would make a great beginner climb as a TR, but I definitely wouldn't recommend it for the inexperienced trad leader.

It's in an interesting location, and it ends in a really neat slot, but I wasn't all that impressed with the climbing itself.
By M.Morley
From: Sacramento, CA
Nov 6, 2002

If you do end up toproping the route, be sure to bring 2 ropes. I think you can get away without having to pass the knot, but I can't be certain.
By Anonymous Coward
Jan 22, 2003

A really fun crach leading into a really sweet slot!! The slot has millions of natural achor spots.

four stars

It should be rated 5.3, but it's not?!?!?!
By Anonymous Coward
Jan 23, 2003

I agree with the 5.1 rating. Watch out for the guano at the top.
By Randy
Jan 25, 2003

2 out 3 stars , maybe..., but 3 stars is rather optimistic.
By Tom Black
From: Long Beach, Ca
Mar 4, 2003

A great spot to toprope beginners. Lots of exposure, and an awesome view from the eye...perfect for sunset photos!
By Anonymous Coward
May 4, 2003

This was my first trad lead...not a lot of gear, but solid handholds, and great views. Highly recommended!
By Rock Sucker
Feb 19, 2004
rating: 5.3 3+ 10 III 9 VD 3a

This route should be rated 5.3 or 5.4, not 5.1 (in Vogel's book). I think this is a classic climb. The exposure is great for the grade and the belay is at the edge of a natural rock tunnel with a spectacular view. I enjoy this route every time I climb it.

I like to finish off my day cooling down on this climb and watch the sunset from the summit (don't everyone rush to this climb at sunset... :-) It has super cool natural features making the actual climb very fun with options. The route does have a certain amount of exposure (for J-Tree). This was my second trad lead ever, so it has a bit of sentimentality to it for me. I thought it was an excellent beginner climb with various options for pro. I'd give it a 5.3 or 5.4 rating though. As far as my lucky stars, I'd dub it *** if climbed at sunset and ** if climbed any other time.
By Ryan Avery
Feb 28, 2005
rating: 5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c

This thing is better as a solo than a lead. There are ok gear placements higher up but a fall wouldn't be pretty from any part due to all the ledges. Good thing the climbing is really easy.
By Bo Johnston
Feb 22, 2006
rating: 5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c

My buddy and I free soloed this and were a little surprised at the committing level with how steep it was. The holds are crazy big though and the route killer!
By Blitzo
Sep 15, 2006

I think 5.3 is a fair rating.
By Bill Rusk
From: Duluth, MN
Jan 29, 2008
rating: 5.3 3+ 10 III 9 VD 3a

This route was my first trad lead. I have lead a couple since then and I have to say that I was able to place plenty of gear on the Eye. Long runners are nice. There is definant risk of decking onto a ledge but a climber who is starting to lead trad should be able to pull those easy moves no problem. Fun route.
By Jay Strine
From: Rancho Cucamonga, CA
Apr 14, 2008

I agree with most this is more than a 5.1. I feel it is more of a 5.4. Took a while to set up top ropes, but it is do-albe.
By Fink
From: Jackson, WY & Bozeman, MT
Oct 20, 2009
rating: 5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c

I managed to set up a toprope for some friends with a single 60m rope and an anchor built on top, extended out over the edge. The ends came to about 4' up the "slab" at the bottom.

Would be quite easy with a 70m rope.
By Kevin Craig
Apr 12, 2011
rating: 5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c

If you don't want to scramble down the back side and have a 70m rope, you can use the rap anchors on the SW face shown in the new Miramontes (sp?) guidebook (he says the rap is 100' but it's longer). Go through the tunnel, turn right then go west through a gully until you see the chains. A 60m will leave you about 15-20' short but on down-climbable terrain if you carefully (sic) rap off the ends of your rope(be careful to hang onto one end or you'll have a nasty solo to retrieve it for pulling). A great (but serious for the grade) route!
By Josh Cameron
From: Moab, Colorado
Aug 20, 2011
rating: 5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c

Pretty airy for 5.3 but the holds are all there. Extend your slings to avoid the dreaded rope drag.
By Colin Schour
From: Big Bear Lake, CA
Jan 23, 2012
rating: 5.3 3+ 10 III 9 VD 3a

Great solo with holds in all the right places.
By sdrockstar81
From: el cajon, CA
Sep 13, 2012
rating: 5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c

I give it a solid 5.4 with 3stars only if you free solo it with headlights!!! A ton of fun for the midnight solo sessions!
By Alex Doria
From: San Diego
Aug 25, 2013

Great solo. Gets your heart rate up but full of monster holds.
By Emmanuel B
Jan 2, 2014
rating: 5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c

I climbed this last week. When I got to (what I think is) the crux, a hold broke and I took a 20-25 ft fall and my piece held. The interesting part about this is that right before we started, 2 guys free soloed it and just as I was cleaning up the anchor, another guy soloed it. What a timing...
By Phil Esra
Feb 9, 2014

Where else are you going to find a climb this rad that goes at less than 5.7? Mega-classic for super-easy category.
By Ben Crowell
May 25, 2014
rating: 5.1 2 6 II 7 MD 2a R

Vogel calls this a 5.1, Gaines 5.5R. I'd call it a 5.1R. Climbed it on TR. I have no desire to lead this, due to the skimpy possibilities for protection. If I was with someone who had never climbed before, I would stick them on this climb, on a top-rope. There are excellent opportunities for setting up a belay from above, using either natural or gear anchors. A gear anchor is probably better, since the natural anchor possibilities make for an awkward belay on the floor of the cave. Access from the back is super easy. Throwing down a rope from the top isn't going to work due to the ledges, so it's necessary to lower someone off or have someone rap off on a single strand.
By Cracker
Apr 28, 2015
rating: 5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c

I thought this climb was reasonably well protected. I would give it a PG rating. There are options for pro, I think the key is to avoid tunnel vision and look around you a lot. I thought there was good pro pretty much where it was needed. I scouted this climb the day prior to my ascent. I saw someone belaying up two seconding climbers. I suspect he was a guide, or just tons of experience, because it looked as though he put in only about 4 pieces. I sewed it up with 7-8 pieces. Couple of medium nuts, small and medium TCU's, and a couple of medium to large Camalots. Steepest and most exciting 5.4 I've ever been on, hands down. Plus a cool cave and an easy hike off.
By polloloco
From: Diamond Bar, CA
Jul 12, 2015
rating: 5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c

Fun climb with some exciting sections. The crux is starting to get a little greasy, likely due to lack of rain.

That said, I wouldn't recommend this as a first lead for most since gear gets pretty thin right at the crux. I ended up doing nuts in opposition for that section when I couldn't find anything else.
By UpRope
Jul 27, 2015

The Eye is so classic . Must have done it at least 6 times . Still consider it a climb to be assessed by its uniqueness and not its grade and the like. BTW a suggested rating of "5.1R " is jumping the shark a bit.Seriously.
A JT must do and a great lead for the beginning leader but not as a first lead --due to its usual greasiness ,high angle, and slightly awkward moves. But what a view west from the eye, and east!

The Definitive
Climbing Resource

Inspiration & Motivation
to Fuel Your Run

Next Generation Mountain
Bike Trail Maps

Backcountry, Sidecountry
& Secret Stashes

Better Data. Better Tools.
Better Hikes!