Type: Trad, 400 ft, 3 pitches
FA: TM Herbert, Gordon Webster, 1966
Page Views: 12,285 total · 78/month
Shared By: Salamanizer suchoski on Apr 3, 2006
Admins: Aron Quiter, Lurker, M. Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Salamanizer suchoski, Justin Johnsen, Vicki Schwantes

You & This Route

238 Opinions

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The crux comes on the second pitch when climbing over several bulges. The bulges are short but sweet with easier climbing in between. A good route to break into the 5.8 realm. The route meets up with several other routes at bushy ledge. Expect crowds on most sunny days.


The climb starts just to the left of bears reach and follows a double crack system. Walk down the decent trail on the back side of the route.


Cams, .5" - 3" Nuts, 1 set.
Oakland CA
caughtinside   Oakland CA
I've always liked this one better than Bear's for some reason. Maybe because it doesn't have the hype? Fun crux moves. Jun 12, 2007
I kinda thought it was a filth pile when I did it, but that was 30 years ago and it could be nice and clean now. Aug 24, 2010
Chris D
the couch
Chris D   the couch
We were going to end out long weekend at the Leap by getting on Bears Reach or Haystack, then had a good conversation with a nice couple over some beverages at Strawberry Lodge the night before. The guy (sorry dude, didn't get your name) told us to do East Crack instead. Said it was better than both.

The first pitch was great. Supertopo calls it 5.6 with a 5.7 bulge (which looks a lot more like a roof than a bulge). In reality, the moves were quality all the way up to the roof, in the 5.7 range, and turning the roof was one of the easier parts of the pitch in my opinion.

The second pitch starts off mellow, then gets spicy for a couple of section of 5.8, the first, and the crux of the route IMO, a very well-protected bulge, with more than one way around it. The second section of 5.8 was more sustained but somehow more casual. Both are very easy to protect. In fact, pro (especially nuts) is absolutely bomber on the entire route.

The third pitch is shared with the other routes leaving bushy ledge, and includes a fantastically fun "hidden" hold to get past what would otherwise be a move much harder than 5.7. You'll find the hold without any more beta than that. It's not that hidden. All in all a great end to a fantastic weekend. My partner and I agreed that East Crack was as good or better than Surrealistic Pillar. Oct 16, 2011
Pat Hastings
Fort Collins, CO
Pat Hastings   Fort Collins, CO
The supertopo shows a bolt and piton at the top of pitch 1. I found neither of those on the route and would guess they were removed. Jun 5, 2013
Rude Boy
San Francisco, CA
Rude Boy   San Francisco, CA
This route is fun and the pitch 2 crux bulge protects well and is not hard. I seem to recall having to get good hands and pulling up to get through it. Jun 11, 2013
Hendo Henderson
Denver, CO
Hendo Henderson   Denver, CO
Great climb. Solid 5.8. Easier than Haystack. More consistent at the grade as well.

Better than Bear's Reach for me. Probably because I'm a crack addict, and I did Bear's Reach exhausted (it has burly moves!) Jul 16, 2013
Mike Grainger
Waterloo, ON Canada
Mike Grainger   Waterloo, ON Canada
Thanks for the comments here steering us toward this quality route. The first pitch has good quality 5.7 climbing. Pitch 2, which I lead, demands solid 5.8 moves on the cruxes, but the entire pitch protects well, so it is relatively easy to commit to the moves needed to get past the bulges. Pitch 3 is pretty casual, except for the bulge with the not so secret hold. If I hadn't known it was there, I would probably not have continued reaching so high and would have had to make some harder moves. Definitely a very worthwhile outing, particularly if you get the lead on pitch 2 Oct 4, 2013
Bruce Lacroix
Las Vegas, NV
Bruce Lacroix   Las Vegas, NV
Good climbing, good belays, the cruxes take gear well, a classic imo. Aug 1, 2015
David Graham
David Graham   Dallas
Try this route out if you get to Bear's reach and there is a long line. not terribly memorable but not bad at all. Sep 16, 2015
Robert Shortt
San Francisco, CA
Robert Shortt   San Francisco, CA
I think the roof/bulge on P1 is as hard as the bulges on P2. I definitely recommend the 5.9 finish at the end of P3 (shared with Bear's Reach). Good 5.8 to lead if you are just breaking into the grade. For sure jump on this one if the other East Wall routes are busy and you haven't done it yet. Oct 26, 2015
Eric Leonard
oakland california
Eric Leonard   oakland california
It’s like the gunks and Yosemite had a child, awesome climbing through roofs/bulges. Great gear, linked the 2nd-3rd pitch with a 70, with a single rack. To link it without simuling, go at least 30-40ft above the pitch 1 bulge for your anchor. Definitely better than bears reach. Rock quality and movement are superior. Nov 3, 2018