Type: Trad, 100 ft
FA: Jim McCarthy & George Bloom - 1960
Page Views: 9,832 total · 62/month
Shared By: Josh Janes on Feb 21, 2006
Admins: JSH

You & This Route

205 Opinions

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Absurdland is a wonderful little route just right of Never Never Land, uphill from Wisecrack and Middle Earth.

Climb the obvious, short right-leaning finger and hand crack, make a step right onto the white face, then continue up the crack and face to a belay tree. It is quite a sandbag at 5.8 (it appears in several books as 5.9) and has a reputation for breaking ankles, but a #2 Camalot and a good belayer will help you negotiate the first crux, just a short distance off the deck.


Standard Rack.
Adam Catalano
Albany, New York
Adam Catalano   Albany, New York
I thought this was much easier than some of the other 5.8s at the Gunks. I think Modern Times, Double Crack, Son of Easy O and Pas De Deux are all much tougher.
The gear is abundant, the climbing is super fun. I think the route is a new favorite of mine, albeit overrated at 5.8+. Mar 28, 2007
This route was formerly rated 5.9. It's not as continuous as the other routes mentioned as harder, so it seems a bit easier; however, placing the right gear at the crux is critical. Apr 2, 2008
Paul Shultz
Hudson, Ma
Paul Shultz   Hudson, Ma
Pretty good climb.

A big tip, a gold camalot is not the best piece of gear to use the first move. Instead, stick a blue TCU in the pin scar less than 2 feet above the pocket for the gold cam. May 13, 2009
A red Alien (or .5 BD cam) can also be sneaked in at the bottom. Oct 3, 2009
New York, NY
  5.8 PG13
divnamite   New York, NY
  5.8 PG13
I don't think it's a sandbagged route. It's definitely 5.8 range with some of sustained 5.7 climbing, then ease off when getting to the top. A gold camalot works fine, you can also plug many other pieces in, but the gold is the most obvious one. Nov 27, 2009
The first crux is not that bad, and you can stick a #3 after your climb past the #2 to keep you off the ground fall. The second crux protects well by a 0.3 - a headier move than the first one, IMO. The rest of the climb is a cruiser. Aug 2, 2011
Kevin Heckeler
Las Vegas, NV
Kevin Heckeler   Las Vegas, NV
The two hardest moves are very tough for 5.8 and it doesn't surprise me this used to be graded a 5.9

Great fun, one of the better single pitch gunks routes. Oct 9, 2011

I have a complex mathematical transformation I perform on all re-graded routes ..... aaaanyway, I still think of this as 9. As Kevin said - tougher single moves than either Pas de Deux or Son of Easy O, which are the sane comparisons. Oct 12, 2011
worth russell
Brooklyn, NY
worth russell   Brooklyn, NY
fun climbing with a tough start. Oct 23, 2011
Jake D.
Jake D.   Northeast
definitely on par with Drunkards or Eastertime too. for me Columbia and Birdland were harder. .8 is about right. Nov 10, 2011
Whether or not this is sandbagged depends on your level of comfort with this style of climbing, namely, thin face climbing (think: tiny feet) with occasional insecure finger jams or tiny crimps. This is very similar in flavor to something interesting (5.7+), but I thought this was much harder (in that I came much closer to falling here than on SI). I think this was way harder than even modern times (5.8+) and about as hard as directissima because I LOVE getting pumped and HATE having my feet feel like they could pop off at any second. So, take the grade as you will, knowing that if thin face climbing is your weakness then this climb will be harder than 5.8, and if it's your strength then you'll love this climb and won't worry about the grade. Nov 25, 2011
Stone Ridge, NY
lucander   Stone Ridge, NY
One (ridiculous) guidebook even put this at 5.10-, which is absurd because I climbs this years before breaking into that grade at the Gunks. Jan 9, 2012
Nick W
Orford, NH
Nick W   Orford, NH
One of my favorite routes at the gunks. Impeccable rock quality. Very well protected - you can sew this route up if you want. A gold camalot clipped short protects the first move. Regarding the grade controvery on this route, if you pull the "tricky move" the right way, it feels easy - like 5.7. If you do it the hard way, it feels like 5.9 in my opinion. Apr 26, 2013
Pawel Janowski
Pawel Janowski   WA
Very nice route.

Don't mind sandbags but this one feels harder than Snooky's, Farewell to Arms, P1 Son of Easy O, Pas de Deaux... On par with The Spring, P3 Keep on Struttin, P1 Wasp... In sum, to each his own but in my book this one's 5.9. Nov 18, 2013
Kingston, ny
EricBacus   Kingston, ny
Liked it a lot, fun climb. Felt like a 5.7 to me. May 27, 2014
Josh Smethers
Malvern, pa
  5.8 PG13
Josh Smethers   Malvern, pa
  5.8 PG13
What a solid climb- especially the first 25 feet. Committing to start the route- placed a bomber #2 C-4 and blasted up to the good holds. Got this onsight after some hesitation to start the first moves. Jul 7, 2014
A.wilk Wilk
Olympia, WA
A.wilk Wilk   Olympia, WA
Great climb. I would definitely say that the first 30' of this are harder than Son of Easy O, City Lights, or Snooky's Return but it is definitely not a 5.9. It is well protected though so give it a shot. I would also say that a #2 C4 is not the best piece down low and I was happy to still have it for higher up. Dec 28, 2014