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Areas in Black Wall

Left Side 17 / 4 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 20
Right Side 28 / 4 / 2 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 33
Elevation: 6,752 ft
GPS: 39.326, -120.314 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 75,144 total · 470/month
Shared By: Paul Rezucha on Aug 4, 2005
Admins: Aron Quiter, Lurker, M. Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Salamanizer suchoski, Justin Johnsen, Vicki Schwantes
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Access Issue: Donner/Truckee area Details
Access Issue: Black Wall seasonal raptor closures Details

Description

Black Wall is the largest rock formation in the Donner Summit area. The large east facing wall is the first rock formation you encounter on the right as you drive up from Donner Lake. Many routes are 3 or 4 pitches in length to a height of 400-600 feet. Although most of the routes are trad requiring a good solid standard rack, there does exist some sport routes also. To descend, walk off the left side (west) and follow trail down and eventually cut back left over a ridge to gain access to bottom of cliffs.

Getting There

Driving up from Donner Lake, Black Wall is the first rock formation you come to on the right side sitting high above the road. If you are driving from the west, you would exit at the Soda Springs/Donner Pass Road exit off of I-80. Continue on Donner Pass Road east for several miles to reach to the Donner Summit area. You will pass many climbing formations as you drive down the hill. Black Wall will be the very last one on the left side. There is a small parking pull off area. There are two ways to approach the cliffs. For climbs on the left side, follow a small trail that begins up a little from the parking area. The trail meanders up and eventually you just climb boulder to boulder to get through the boulder field heading straight up to the cliffs. To gain the right side, it is easier to follow a small trail just left of a small creek. Follow trail and creek bed to a point where the trail turns left to the base of the wall. Approach is about 10-15 minutes if you are acclimated to the higher 7000' altitude. If you are arriving from the Bay area, expect the approach to be a little tiring! Beautiful rock in a beautiful setting!

53 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at Black Wall

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b
 35
Labyrinth
Trad 3 pitches
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
 118
Rated X
Trad 2 pitches
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 188
One Hand Clapping
Trad 4 pitches
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 147
Black September
Trad
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 69
Touch and Go
Trad
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 54
Primer
Trad
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 46
Rat's Tooth
Trad
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 31
Hungover Hangover
Trad
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 17
Bourbon Street
Trad 4 pitches
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 11
Touch A Cannibal
Trad 4 pitches
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
 67
Firecracker
Trad
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b
 28
New Moon
Trad
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
 45
Finger Licker
Trad, TR
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c
 12
There Goes The Neighborhood
Trad
5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a
 3
Headstone
Trad
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Labyrinth Right Side
 35
5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b Trad 3 pitches
Rated X Right Side
 118
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b Trad 2 pitches
One Hand Clapping Left Side
 188
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Trad 4 pitches
Black September Right Side
 147
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Trad
Touch and Go Left Side
 69
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Trad
Primer Left Side
 54
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Trad
Rat's Tooth Left Side
 46
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Trad
Hungover Hangover Left Side
 31
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Trad
Bourbon Street Left Side
 17
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Trad 4 pitches
Touch A Cannibal Left Side
 11
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Trad 4 pitches
Firecracker Right Side
 67
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Trad
New Moon Right Side
 28
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b Trad
Finger Licker Right Side
 45
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c Trad, TR
There Goes The Neighborhood Left Side
 12
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c Trad
Headstone Right Side
 3
5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a Trad
More Classic Climbs in Black Wall »

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Photos

JVB Project
Berkeley CA
JVB Project   Berkeley CA
The second repel anchor from the top only has one loose bolt remaining. Somebody ran a backup dynamic rope to the upper anchors in case the bolt fails. Its sketchy. The backup rope can be seen from the road.

IMO The entire band of granite is crap rock. The one bolt remaining needs to be removed and a new anchor needs to be installed either just below, in the adjacent band, or 30m down from the top.

Be safe. Jun 25, 2017
Matt Franklin
Sacramento, CA
Matt Franklin   Sacramento, CA
Just a heads up, the Access Fund Conservation team along with CRAGS will be conducting an Adopt-a-crag event at the Black Wall area on Saturday 06/30 from 9 a.m to 2 p.m. doing trail maintenance and rebuilding. For more information see the CRAGS FB page:
facebook.com/events/2003506… Jun 29, 2018 · Temporary Report
jahmountain74 Hayes   Napa, CA
Any Raptor related closures on Black Wall this Year? Jul 16, 2018

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