Elevation: 7,010 ft
GPS: 39.327, -120.317 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 1,303 total · 150/month
Shared By: Lurker on Feb 4, 2019
Admins: Aron Quiter, Lurker, M. Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Salamanizer suchoski, Justin Johnsen, Vicki Schwantes
Access Issue: Donner/Truckee area Details

Description

Obscure Summit crag that features some excellent climbing and a really nice perch above Donner Lake. A new trail may facilitate a bit of increased traffic but you're almost certain to have this place to yourself. If you're looking for solitude and some shade, and don't mind a bit of a hike, Cuckoo's Nest will fit the bill.

Getting There

There are two approaches to Cuckoo's Nest - both take about the same amount of time (25-30 minutes), but one gains much less elevation. The easier version follows the PCT for about 95% of the way and can easily be combined with climbing at Shark Wall. For this way, park for standard Grouse Slab/Star Wall approaches and head north on the PCT. Go up the switchbacks to where the PCT flattens out and start dropping elevation again. Pass a small pond on your right and keep going for a few minutes until the trail makes a hairpin left-turn. Leave the trail here, cross a dry creek, and you'll immediately pick up another trail on the other side. Follow this south for a few minutes until you see a short wall (Catfish Crag) on your right. Head down some low-angle slabs until you see an obvious dead tree on the ridge to your left. From the dead tree, scramble down an easy ramp and you'll be at the far right side of Cuckoo's Nest.

The alternate approach is a bit harder, but allows combining Cuckoo's Nest with Black Wall, Stealth Wall, or Dragon's Nest. Park for Black Wall and hike up and around the right side of Stealth Wall. From the upper right side (which also provides access to the top of Stealth Wall), follow a trail through low manzanita to a massive, slightly tilted granite slab with a seasonal creek at the bottom - Cuckoo's Nest should be obvious from here, high on the hillside to your left. Continue north on the slabs for about 5 minutes, until you've passed the north end of Cuckoo's Nest. Keep your eyes peeled for a dead tree that's very large in diameter and missing all of its bark. Cross the seasonal creek here and the trail should be very obvious, starting on the opposite side.

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