Type: Trad
FA: Steve Strong, Greg White
Page Views: 11,459 total · 73/month
Shared By: Lizzy Trower on Jan 27, 2006
Admins: Scott Coldiron, Jon Nelson, Micah Klesick

You & This Route

272 Opinions

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Toxic Shock is one of the most gorgeous parallel 5.9 handcracks I've ever seen. To get there, follow the Inner Walls trail way up, cross the stream to your left, just below a large boulder, and continue up towards the west side of the canyon.

The Toxic Shock area has a crack and a bolted arete leading up to an intermediate ledge with a rap station. For Toxic Shock, either layback the crack to the left of the bolted arete (not terribly well protected), or start around the corner to the right on the two 5.8 cracks. Above the ledge, Toxic Shock is the gorgeous amazing handcrack.


Standard trad rack with several (2-4) #1 Camalots (or equivalent) unless you are very comfortable on Index 5.9. If you are starting with the 5.8 cracks, some bigger gear (e.g. #3 Camalot) is nice. There is a rap station/anchor at the top.
The upper crack starts as #1 Camalot, but is mostly #2 Camalot. The first pitch protects perfectly with Aliens. There is a rest 1/4 the way up. Can easily be done as one pitch with the lieback start or one of the two 5.8 handcracks around the arete to the right. Feb 2, 2006
Andy Laakmann
Bend, OR
Andy Laakmann   Bend, OR  
A classic route. The left (layback) start protects perfectly with #0.5 Camalots or red Aliens. The upper crack does go from #1-#3 Camalots as the previous comment mentions. A good rack would be one set of small cams/TCUs, and then doubles of #1-#3 Camalots + nuts. I also did the right start which was fun, but not as enjoyable as the layback in my opinion. Jul 3, 2006
Indianola, Wa
MegaGaper2000   Indianola, Wa
Lower left crack (before intermediate ledge) is inward flaring, I think that's what the OP meant by 'harder to protect. Mar 25, 2012
Jon Nelson
Redmond, WA
Jon Nelson   Redmond, WA  
Another nice video. Good job.

A little drama on the layback at the start, but then a jam cruise. Aug 5, 2013
Alex Seattle  
#2 camalot is still fixed near top of pitch. I believe if you use the Even Steven approach (eg right side of the arĂȘte) then the whole thing is only 5.8 Sep 8, 2014
Russ Keane
Asheville, NC
Russ Keane   Asheville, NC
Some serious taping on those hands... in the video Dec 30, 2016
George Zack
Orting, WA
George Zack   Orting, WA
Fun climb. Felt easier and better protected than the other 5.9 classics at the Lower Town Wall. Bust a move off the ground and place your crux pro above your head from a great stance. Pull the couple of crux layback moves with that gear at your waist, then continue up easy ground that's protects well with nuts to the base of the upper crack. The upper crack starts as a very tight #3 size (#3 cam not necessary), but is otherwise gold and red jams with a jug and great stance near the top. Singles .3-.75. Doubles 1-2. Medium/large nuts. Jul 16, 2017
Lars Teigen  
Here is a route overview video with the 5.8 start variation

youtu.be/RGvKsxr7B7w Jun 30, 2018
Connor Culver
Bellingham, WA
Connor Culver   Bellingham, WA
Great route. I thought it was just slightly harder than Penny Lane at Squamish. I placed a .5 and .4 camalot to protect the layback start. Be sure to stand up on the ledge and stem a little bit so you can place a piece as far above your head as you can, otherwise if you blow the layback you will for sure deck. I thought the hardest part was the short little step over at the top of the 5.8 start variation just before you climb up to the base of the hand crack. But it was all mental (I ran it out a little bit to this point). Just get a foot over to a cut out at the base of the corner and grab the solid crimps. The hand crack is all #1 and #2 camalots with a spot that a .75 camalot will fit. SO DAMN FUN Jul 8, 2018