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Routes in c. Frog's Head - the Arch

Arc of a Diver T 5.9- 5c 17 VI 16 HVS 4c
Arch T 5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a
Baby T 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b
Billy Shears T 5.9- 5c 17 VI 16 HVS 4c
Bloody Bush T 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b
Bloody Mary T 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
City Lights T 5.8- 5b 16 VI- 14 VS 4c
Crusty Waffles T 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
Drunkard's Delight T 5.8- 5b 16 VI- 14 VS 4c PG13
Easy Overhang T 5.2 3 8 II 8 D 2c
Fetus T 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a R
Frog's Head T 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b
Jean T 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a
Kama Sutra T,TR 5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a R
Maria T 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b
Maria Direct T 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
Maria Redirect T,TR 5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c PG13
Morning After T 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c PG13
Night Fall T 5.10b/c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b R
Pas de Deux T 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
Patty Duke T 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
Precarious Perch T 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a
Rock and Brew T 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a R
Rusty Jam T 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
Rusty Trifle T 5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a
Scungilli T 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b PG13
Sixish T 5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a
Size Matters T 5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
Son of Easy O T 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
Sultana T 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c PG13
Sundown T 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
Trusty Rifle T 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
Twisted Sister T 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
Uncle Rudy T 5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b PG13
Wick's Banana T 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
Wrist T 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b
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Type: Trad, 170 ft, 2 pitches
FA: Jim McCarthy and Al DeMaria, 1962
Page Views: 27,044 total · 181/month
Shared By: Guy H. on May 4, 2006
Admins: JSH

You & This Route

452 Opinions

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This may be the best 5.8 at the Gunks if you link both pitches: you get thin face moves, jamming, a long traverse, and a thuggish roof.

Use the same access trail as for City Lights, just below the striking widening crack of Baby. The climb starts 45' left of City Lights, at a thin jagged crack with a piton about 15' up.

P1: Thin face climbing and jamming will lead to a 2' ledge. 5.8, 90'. Build your own belay either directly under the corner above, or on gear 15' to the left, or exit 30' left to the rappel bolts over Easy Overhang.

P2: Aim for the overhanging left-facing corner system. If your belay is to the left of the main corner, you can traverse 10'-15' to the right on a sandy horizontal; there are pitons at the start and end of the traverse. The climbing is steep, and the feet are not as good as you might like. Fire through the steep rock above on well-spaced jugs. Pull right onto the face above, then head up and leftward. 5.8, 70'.

There is a piton anchor below the top of the cliff. Rappel from here (single 70m, or double 60s) to avoid the pebbly gully above.


Standard rack; extra finger-size pro for combining pitches...
Adam Catalano
Albany, New York
Adam Catalano   Albany, New York
Incredible climbing. The first pitch can feel pretty spicy down low. The second pitch is a great jug haul through roofs, much easier roofs than Modern Times. Continuing all the way to the top is my preference, because I'm not crazy about that old two-pin belay station. I don't think you can run it top to bottom in one pitch though. You'd have to stop at the big ledge if you were to go all the way to the top. Rap off Frog's Head bolts to the right. May 17, 2006
Mike fenice
Boulder, CO
Mike fenice   Boulder, CO
For those of you looking to maximize your climbing and stamina you can link both pitches together. When I first led this way back when, I linked them together with a 60m rope and walked down. May 31, 2006
Jay Knower
Campton, NH
Jay Knower   Campton, NH  
This is the best pitch of 5.8 I have ever climbed. I combined both pitches and did the route at the end of the day just when the sun began its descent past the horizon. The upper roof is interesting, but never so hard that you can't pause and look around to admire your surroundings. And what amazing surroundings they are. Jun 5, 2006
Morrison, CO
Monomaniac   Morrison, CO  
Did this in one pitch with little difficulty. Be sure to bring lots of slings though. I wasn't much impressed with P1, but P2 was totally sweet. Really fun moves on huge jugs, with excellent gear and rock. When I topped out I was surprised to find handfulls of loose gravel precariously poised to fall on climbers below. This may have been due to heavy rainfall the night before.

P2 felt easy for the grade by Gunks standards. Oct 16, 2007
  5.8 PG13
  5.8 PG13
I felt that the roof section was easier than Strickley's, and was probably more like 5.7. A fun route overall, and definitely worth doing. P1 is definitely harder than P2. I'm not sure how P2 gets a 5.8 rating when Birdland is also 5.8 and much, much harder. Aug 12, 2008
Anthony Baraff
Paris, France
Anthony Baraff   Paris, France
Wow, I thought that P1(based on the traditional breakdown of pitches, I actually did the whole route as one pitch) was a cake walk. For me, P2 was the one that made me a little nervous. There's no rest leading up to the crux, and you have to place gear (great gear) while hanging off of one hand with your feet in no position to save you if you pump out or lose your grip.

Strictly allows you to throw a foot out to the right tip of the corner, so you can actually be hands free and resting, albeit awkwardly, while placing gear. May 27, 2009
You can do it as one pitch to the trees with a 60 meter. However you do not end up with enough back rope to get to the cliff edge to see your second come around the overhang. Makes communication a little difficult as well. 70 meter give enough back rope to belay from the cliff edge. Sep 21, 2009
Jay Harrison  
Traditionally, this was done in two pitches, by climbing leftward to the belay ledge for P1, then making a scary move straight up off the ledge to a traverse shelf and hand-traversing 10' right to the bottom of the corner (very scary if you try using this shelf as a foot traverse!).
Most folks combine these pitches into one nowadays, by forgoing the leftward move to the ledge, instead moving slightly right and up the steep, sparsely-protected face then up and left to reach the beginning of the corner.
I generally back up that anchor near the top of the cliff (the one with beat-up fixed cams and pin) to bring up followers, lower everyone else, then pull my gear and pray as I rappel. I've always tested the fixed gear and it *seems* rock-solid, but boy does it look hammered...
And yes, 70m rope required for that rap. Jan 17, 2010
J. Albers
J. Albers   Colorado
Simply stellar route. Kinda surprised by Mono's comment about pitch one because I actually thought that the first pitch in particular was amazing, though I would agree that the second pitch roof seemed a bit soft at 5.8 for Gunks standards. As Mr. Knower says, maybe one of the better pitches of 5.8 around. Aug 12, 2010
Chris Duca
Downingtown, PA
Chris Duca   Downingtown, PA
Climbed this yesterday for the first time in a LOOOONG while! Simply outstanding! Mar 13, 2011
Jake D.
Jake D.   Northeast
Did this yesterday at 1 pitch.. it's funny how it has something for everyone's strength.. the slab climbers love the bottom and the roof climbers love the top. I'm a roof climber so i thought the top was easy for me. Jun 29, 2011
Jaysen Henderson
Bronx NY
Jaysen Henderson   Bronx NY
The huge roof had me pretty intimidated from the ground, but the real business is down low at the small crack. I didn't think much of the moves but they weren't very strenuous and very well protected. You get a fantastic rest before you embark on the steep journey to the beginning of the roof, but once you get up to it it has jugs in every dimension, and once you get into pulling the roof you have great feet out right to rock onto and it feels superb. Long runners under the roof are a must tho! A fantastic climb, a surprising joy ride. Jul 1, 2011
I'm just a climber and really like the whole thing. Jul 3, 2011
gblauer Blauer
Wayne, PA
gblauer Blauer   Wayne, PA
could there be a better 8? I think not. THis is a fabulous climb from bottom to top. The bottom is harder for me, I love juggy roof climbs. Oct 15, 2011
worth russell
Brooklyn, NY
worth russell   Brooklyn, NY
Can someone point me in the direction of a better 5.8. God I love this climb just amazing Nov 28, 2011
Kevin Heckeler
Las Vegas, NV
Kevin Heckeler   Las Vegas, NV
Pitch 1 is the money, P2 is just a jug haul. Like night/day. In a way it makes it a nice climb because you get the best of both rock climbing worlds (delicate face and crack climbing vs. mindless pullups). Sometimes jug hauls can be stellar (Madame G's comes to mind). Sometimes they're just exercise. This falls directly between. Not enough can be said about the moves on the first pitch. Never the same thing twice and relatively sustained. Mar 8, 2012
The sketchy old pin anchor at the top has been replaced with a new one consisting of 3 brand new pins (not even any scratches yet) with chains. Jun 28, 2012
Germantown, MD
CatChen   Germantown, MD
P1 was the crux for me. Sustained and so much fun. The pro was great, so it was never scary. You can really sew up this pitch. I almost unloaded a full set of nuts. P2 roof looks scary, but was very juggy and felt easier than 5.8. Aug 20, 2012
Jersey City, NJ
BrianRH   Jersey City, NJ
Linked both pitches and think this is the best 5.8 I've climbed in the Gunks. On pitch two you can escape around right onto the face just after the crux for a rest, but it is more fun to contuinue straight up through the corner roofs. Jul 10, 2013
christopher adams  
Probably the best 5.8 at the gunks. Definitely the best 5.8 I've lead anywhere. Aug 15, 2014
Dylan Randall
Denville, NJ
Dylan Randall   Denville, NJ
Linked the pitches. Best 5.8 I've ever been on. I felt both pitches were super quality. The upper roof section had me grinning ear to ear. GET ON THIS. Oct 13, 2014
Dom R
Estes Park, CO
Dom R   Estes Park, CO
Ya, pretty much my favorite 5.8 anywhere. I love slab, I love roofs, I love fingerlocks, I love good gear, I love this climb. Also, link the pitches for the best experience. Oct 14, 2014
Dan Katz
New York, NY
Dan Katz   New York, NY
I highly recommend doing this in one pitch, as it allows one to skip the somewhat pumpy/sketchy traverse that becomes required when breaking the route into two pitches. I found the overhung section easier to find rest stances on than Strictly From Nowhere, and certainly no single roof-pulling move is more difficult than the crux of that climb. Oct 4, 2017
artem Vasilyev
New York, NY
artem Vasilyev   New York, NY
First pitch felt harder than 5.8 - perhaps because I did it in July and felt sketched out by the lack of friction.

Second pitch goes at 5.7 imo, bucket jugs everywhere you look, and good pro. Link both pitches into one, would be a waste of time to split it up Dec 7, 2017

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