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Pywiak Dome
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Aqua Knobby T 
Dike Route, The T,S 
Electric Africa T,S 
House Calls T 
Needle & Spoon S 
Zee Tree T,S 

Zee Tree 

YDS: 5.7 French: 5a Ewbanks: 15 UIAA: V+ ZA: 13 British: MVS 4b

   
Type:  Trad, Sport, 6 pitches, 700'
Consensus:  YDS: 5.7 French: 5a Ewbanks: 15 UIAA: V+ ZA: 13 British: MVS 4b [details]
FA: Dan Zimmerlin
Page Views: 5,883
Submitted By: littlemike on Nov 6, 2006

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (87)
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BETA PHOTO: the party of two is where the first bolts are at. ...

Description 

Zee Tree Route is a well-bolted face climb located to the right of the Dike route and ascends an independent line for 3 pitches, after which it joins House Calls and Boche-Dope in a left facing book which leads to the base of the crack pitch of the Dike Route.

The climbing is fairly varied. The first pitch, which is the most interesting, starts at a two bolt anchor just where the angle steepens and ascends a short slightly steep section of knobs (2 bolts with old leeper-style hangers), crosses glacier polish (2 bolts) to a miniature roof. Step over the roof (1 bolt) and pass a small tree growing in a solution pocket (Zee Tree). The pitch originally ended at the tree, but to reduce impact on the fragile tree, the route now passes the tree on the right and ascends (5 bolts) to a comfortable stance and a two bolt anchor. This pitch is a full 165 feet.

The angle slackens above and the climbing eases as well. The second pitch is easy (5.5?) face climbing past 3 bolts to a another two bolt anchor. The final pitch is also easy face climbing , though interesting as the angle varies. It heads up and right past 2 bolts, then straight up and ends in a left facing book. This belay requires gear, medium nuts to medium friends.

To exit, climb up the left facing book and belay near the base of the crack pitch on the Dike Route. Either climb this crack (pro to #4 friend) and rappel the east end of Pywiak, or walk off to the west (not recommended).

The route was put up in good style. A mix of eighteen 5/16 and 3/8 inch bolts were placed by hand, on lead, from the ground up, though not in a continuous push. Two others were "filled in" while seconding after leading though originally, to eliminate uncharacteristic runout sections.


Location 

Pywack Dome

Protection 

Well Bolted except for the last pitch


Photos of Zee Tree Slideshow Add Photo
Tristan on pitch 1
Tristan on pitch 1
Sascha Madrid leading p1 on Zee Tree
Sascha Madrid leading p1 on Zee Tree
Taking a little rest while waiting for the line on Zee Tree to subside
Taking a little rest while waiting for the line on...
Tristan higher up pitch 1, near the small overlap
Tristan higher up pitch 1, near the small overlap
leading p1 on zee tree
leading p1 on zee tree
Gemma on the last pitch of Zee Tree
Gemma on the last pitch of Zee Tree
climbers at first belay and next climber on the first pitch
climbers at first belay and next climber on the fi...
Looking down at Deanna on Zee Tree.
Looking down at Deanna on Zee Tree.
Tristan on pitch  1 <br />
Tristan on pitch 1
Line up on Zee Tree
Line up on Zee Tree
Tristan at the belay top of pitch 2
Tristan at the belay top of pitch 2

Comments on Zee Tree Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Jul 9, 2013
By Greg G
From: SLC, UT
May 3, 2011

fun route for those not ready for the mondo bolt spacing on the dike route. the route climbs quickly so it is good to squeeze in after you've already done something harder earlier in the day. not to mention the approach is 2 min.
By Brian
From: North Kingstown, RI
Nov 10, 2011

Has anyone (ASCA sponsored maybe) thought about replacing the bolts on this route? It is a very popular route and has some rusty 1/4" or 5/16" button-heads. Especially the two-bolt anchor on the top of the 3rd? pitch. Granted you are not going to generate a lot of force sliding down this slab but there is no telling what these bolts look like under the rock.
By J. Albers
From: Colorado
Nov 10, 2011
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

Brian,
Hmmm....I'm pretty sure that there are not any 1/4" bolts on Zee. I don't recall there even being any 5/16" bolts (maybe just a couple?). I think most of the bolts on there are 3/8". Perhaps Greg Barnes will see this post and comment, but my recollection is that he told me that those 5/16" rigs that you see all over California are actually pretty truck. That is not to say that the bolts on Zee don't need replacing (though I don't remember being nervous and I am pretty whiny about rusty old buttons), but there are probably many other candidate routes that need the hardware more than Zee does.

Also, I think that the route description needs to be updated, because there definitely aren't any Leeper hangers at the anchors on Zee any longer.

On a much more sad note, I think that the last time I drove through the Meadows, I thought that I noticed that the namesake tree is missing from the little bowl it was in. Can anyone confirm this?
By Brian
From: North Kingstown, RI
Nov 11, 2011

They were there in July. Definitely button-heads with Leeper hangers. I wish I took a photo of them.
By Brian
From: North Kingstown, RI
Nov 11, 2011

J. Albers,

You ever climb this route or are you just guessing about the bolts? I looked on SuperTopo and someone said the same thing I did about the bolts.

From SuperTopo: Posted July 23, 2011 "At the bolts for the top of the third pitch, there are two rusty buttonheads that look like they would tear right out of the rock if the leader fell. Above that, the first bolt is a spinning rusty buttonhead that doesn't inspire a lot of confidence given what the belay bolts are, and the lack of gear above that spinning rusty buttonhead. They should be replaced for the safety of the climb."
By J. Albers
From: Colorado
Nov 11, 2011
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

Yes Brian, I have climbed Zee at least 3 times over the last 5 years.....and I surely don't remember clipping any old Leeper hangers. There is a big difference between a couple of 5/16" buttons with SMC hangers (even spinners) and a 1/4" bolt with a Leeper hanger. While possible, it is hard for me to believe that I wouldn't remember if the belays were quarters with Leepers.
By Brian
From: North Kingstown, RI
Nov 12, 2011

I don't want to get too far down in the weeds as to what they are. I can't tell from the button-head whether they are 1/4" or 5/16", a 1/16 of an inch difference. The point is they are old rusty spinners that should be replaced on a highly travelled route. And as of July 2011 they were there. This is approximately what they look like.

Rusty anchor
Rusty anchor
By Michael Schneiter
From: Glenwood Springs, CO
Nov 12, 2011

That's definitely a 1/4" Star Dryvin (safeclimbing.org/education/dan... with a Leeper hanger but I'm surprised they were on Zee Tree as I don't remember any of the anchors being in such bad shape.
By J. Albers
From: Colorado
Nov 12, 2011
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

Yeah, that is definitely a Leeper, but that is not an anchor bolt from Zee. Is it possible that either: (a) you wandered a bit off route and clipped that thing; or (b) that was an intermediate bolt between two good bolts that during a rebolting effort was just left in place?

I remember the bolts being pretty new and the some of the pictures posted above seem to corroborate my recollection. Moreover, if you look up Zee Tree on the ASCA website you will notice that the bolts on Zee Tree have indeed been upgraded.

safeclimbing.org/areas/califor...

If you read the notes on the ASCA website, it states "Replaced 4 bolts; all others good." I think this precludes the possibility of a StarDryvin with a Leeper hanger on Zee. If looking at the ASCA listing of Zee Tree, notice that there is a route immediately right of Zee Tree where Greg et al. replaced some bolts, but left at least one old bolt alone. Perhaps you wandered onto this route?
By Brian
From: North Kingstown, RI
Nov 14, 2011

Yes it is possible that I, and the person who posted on SuperTopo, were off route. Although it was pretty much straight under where you traverse over to the off-width corner crack. I go to Tuoulumne every other year. Next time I'm there I'll climb the route again just to take a photo (if they are still there). I saw that ASCA replaced the bolts in 2005. I can't believe that they wouldn't have replaced the ones in question so I can only conclude that I was off route. Although I don't think there are any other routes close by.
By Weston L
From: Summerlin, NV
Jan 25, 2012
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

From my recollection of leading the route two years ago all bolts were confidence inspiring back then.
By Matt N
From: Santa Barbara, CA
Jul 4, 2012
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b PG13

No leepers on this route.

Only buttonhead I remember (w/ good SMC hanger) that wasn't replaced is the most tightly spaced bolt on the first pitch - didn't expect to see that one so close to the bolt above and below it (which is why they didn't replace it).

Fun route, take the first pitch - its the most exciting, rest is cruiser. On the third pitch, I recommend clipping the first bolt, then heading up the black streak - easy, secure climbing and more enjoyable than going up right past the second bolt.
By Rob Davies UK
From: Cheshire, UK
Sep 12, 2012
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

A much saner way to the top of the dome than Dike Route! 5.7 for the P1 slab is typical for Tuolumne grades but to me it seemed much harder than the 5.7 finishing crack. In UK grades I'd give the latter pitch HS 4b but P1 HVS 5a/b.
By Coco Bell
Jul 9, 2013

Go to the right of the black streak, otherwise you'll miss 2 bolts and have a fun runout.