Type: Trad, 300 ft, 3 pitches
FA: Tom Frost and Royal Robbins, 1960
Page Views: 11,731 total · 73/month
Shared By: Roger Linfield on Feb 24, 2006
Admins: C Miller, M. Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Salamanizer suchoski, Justin Johnsen, Vicki Schwantes

You & This Route

196 Opinions

Your To-Do List:

Add To-Do · View List

Your Star Rating:

     Clear Rating

Your Difficulty Rating:

-none- Change

Your Ticks:

Add New Tick


This route starts just right of The Jam Crack. Pitch 1 (5.9) is a very nice, clean finger and thin hands crack. Pitch 2 (5.9) starts at the left end of the Pitch 1 belay ledge. It is less sustained than pitch 1, with face climbing up a groove, then a tricky move over an overhang. Pitch 3 (5.8 R) has very poor protection, but fun climbing up a thin dihedral and face above. The route finishes at Pine Tree Ledge.


Standard rack
David Wang
San Francisco, CA
  5.9 R
David Wang   San Francisco, CA
  5.9 R
One can reach the pine tree ledge from the bolted belay at the end of the first pitch with a single 60m rope. Combining pitches might even be preferable as the optional belay is semi-hanging and puts the anchor perilously close to the run out slab section. May 22, 2006
San Diego, CA
mschlocker   San Diego, CA
The start of this route can be identified by a small tree/bush growing out of the crack midway up the first pitch. The original start is from the left, starting up The Jam Crack. A 5.10c direct start leads up from the right which passes a small roof and then a bolt and hits the crack below the tree.

One 60m rope will get you back to the ground from the top of P1. Jul 7, 2006
John Schirmer
Franklin, TN
John Schirmer   Franklin, TN
Great route to climb when all others are taken up. Caution your belayer for he will be distracted from protecting your lead by what ever party is bailing from The Vampire. Some epics occur on that route and are in plain view from the belay stance.

Never did this whole multi pitch route. But Pitch one is classic fingers. Aug 6, 2006
An incredible first pitch, but don't head down too soon! Combining this climb with the excellent 5.7+ pitch of Piton Pooper to the insane 5.8 pitch of Upper Royal's Arch is, in my book, the best climb of it's grade at Tahquitz. If you're looking for a little more challenge in your day try Dave's without touching the tree! (5.11?) Apr 6, 2007
Andy Laakmann
Bend, OR
Andy Laakmann   Bend, OR  
Fricken' awesome finger crack on the first pitch. A little painful on the feet, but more than worth it. Bring small nuts! Jun 11, 2008
The tree was pruned by a lightning bolt last year.

We thought maybe someone had fallen on it, but close examination revealed the burn marks.

Not near as threatening when you get above it now. Aug 24, 2009
tom donnelly
san diego
tom donnelly   san diego
Someone did also fall on the little tree. Aug 25, 2009
I'm sure that tree has absorbed far more than one fall, but we did the route the day after a particularly fierce thunderstorm and the sharp upper branches were barely hanging on. Burnt to the core.

We brought the branch down in a dignified manner. It was a bad accident waiting to happen. Aug 25, 2009
Fantastic pitch that I never tire of. Often see a crowd working on this. Great to use as a first pitch for what i think is a classic link up: Dave's to Jam Crack (pitches 2+3)to Piton Pooper (pitch 1 to link pitch) to Upper Royal Arch finish! WA-Hoo!!! Apr 9, 2010
Tom Fralich
Fort Collins, CO
Tom Fralich   Fort Collins, CO
Four stars for the link-up of Dave's-Piton Pooper-Upper Royals Arch. Jul 3, 2011
Tommy G.
Killeen, Texas
Tommy G.   Killeen, Texas
Pitch 2 is not overly run out if you have some small cams, and I prefer it to p2 of the Jam Crack. Aug 5, 2012
Ryan Bracci
San Juan Capistrano, CA
  5.9 PG13
Ryan Bracci   San Juan Capistrano, CA
  5.9 PG13
Do it in two pitches. Not sure why the description has it in 3 pitches. Simply climb to the bolted anchor/ledge. Then climb all the way to Pine Tree Ledge. Sep 17, 2013
Colin Parker
Idyllwild, CA
Colin Parker   Idyllwild, CA  
Just a note, Bob Gaines new Tahquitz book says that the second pitch starts on the right side of the P1 belay ledge and liebacks the flake until heading up and left on the face above (then around the overhang [crux]) Sep 25, 2013
The Jam Crack and Dave's crisscross in the same manner as The Long and Wong climbs at the first belay.

Dave's descends slightly from the ledge going left to access a crack with suspect rock, tiny pro, a 5.9 move and a for sure ankle breaker ledge below. That's where the R rating at one time came from.

Doing the second pitch of Jam Crack was always more popular and it doesn't surprise me that the new guide has it that way. I don't think I know anyone that has done the original second pitch more than once for what it's worth, (although the climbing above that crack section is pretty good).

The photo titled "second runout pitch" does show the correct face move to the right for the second pitch of the Jamcrack. You can protect it with a piece in the visible crack in the upper lip of the roof and a long sling. A fall there would still be ugly, but it's only a 5.4-5.6 move. Jun 5, 2014
I like the 2nd pitch of Dave's over jam crack. Better and more sustained climbing... some pro can be found. And with the line of bolts to the left, I really like clipping the bolt and turning the overlap/ roof to get to the ledge. Jun 11, 2014
On the second pitch I went up to the roof and moved right and up, and considered climbing the slab above the roof up into the scoop to the belay but it felt harder than I felt comfortable with a big fall onto the low angle slab, so I cheated off right past a tree and some cracks before heading left again. Was this the original route? Climbing looked really good straight up from the roof but gear looked a ways off. Sep 21, 2015
San Diego, CA
steverett   San Diego, CA
Pitch 1 is pretty easy for a 5.9 (felt more like 5.8 to me - maybe I have big fingers) and very easy to protect (bring plenty of thin- to wide-finger cams).

EDIT: after repeating, I think 5.9 is fair. Apr 4, 2016
Safty Third
San Diego, CA
Safty Third   San Diego, CA
Did in two pitches. This may be size contingent, but you can one step up onto the pitch 2 slab and place a black alien in the flake. Made the move a lot easier. We missed the turn off for Upper Royals :[ May 27, 2017
JTLA Tolins
Los Angeles, CA
JTLA Tolins   Los Angeles, CA
Did this yesterday without looking too closely at the beta and ended up traversing left under the roof on pitch two and doing the top of Legend of the Fall. under the roof was a bit gritty but protected well with a number three and was actually a pretty fun link up. Aug 21, 2017