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Routes in North Buttress of Cathedral

Beer Gut T 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b PG13
Double Down T 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
Family Flake T 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b PG13
Garden Party T 5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a PG13
Grand Central T 5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b PG13
Hops'n'Barley T 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b PG13
Metal Pecker T 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b PG13
Muscle Fat T 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b PG13
Party of Two T 5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a
Pedestal Center TR 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
STD T 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b PG13
Slab Time T 5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c PG13
Slab Time Crack T 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b R
Small Arch Left Side TR 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
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Access Issue: Yosemite National Park has yearly closures for Peregrine Falcon Protection March 1- July 15 Details

Description

The Southeast Buttress of Cathedral Peak is justifiably one of the most well-known and popular climbs in Tuolumne Meadows. Its lesser known sibling, the North Buttress, which was climbed decades ago as evidenced by the remnants of old gear, has languished as little more than a photo-op for hikers on the John Muir Trail. This is finally changing as a result of new route activity started in 2014.

Cathedral Peak is a classic glacial horn with ridges that extend westward (Eichorn Pinnacle) and northward from the summit. The north-trending ridge branches into two parallel ridges, forming a U-shaped cirque that opens up toward Fairview Dome. The eastern and longer of the two ridges is the North Buttress.

The new climbs are located on the west and north sides of this buttress, near its toe. The toe of the North Buttress is only 150 feet from the highly-trafficked John Muir Trail. The North Buttress has several new routes of bolted face and trad climbing no harder than 5.7. It is also possible to top-rope more climbs up to 5.9 from the routes'’ belay anchors. Additional routes are currently in project state (a route is in a project state until all ¼ inch bolts placed on the lead have been replaced with permanent 3/8 inch bolts and all rappel anchors include a pair of 3/8 inch bolts with rappel rings).

The beta for some of the older routes (Muscle Fat and Beer Gut) on the buttress has become available here by the climbers who climbed these routes in the past. The current state of the belay/rappel anchors on these routes is unknown.

Getting There

Follow the John Muir Trail (aka Cathedral Lakes Trail) for 1.3 miles (40 - 50 minutes). The toe of the Buttress is 150 feet from the John Muir Trail (JMT).

GPS: Closest Point of JMT to the Toe of the Buttress: N37.86292 W119.40036

GPS: Toe of the North Buttress: N37.86267 W119.39994

14 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at North Buttress of Cathedral

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b PG13
 4
Hops'n'Barley
Trad, Alpine 2 pitches
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b PG13
 3
Metal Pecker
Trad, Alpine 2 pitches
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Hops'n'Barley
 4
5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b PG13 Trad, Alpine 2 pitches
Metal Pecker
 3
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b PG13 Trad, Alpine 2 pitches
More Classic Climbs in North Buttress of Cathedral »

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