Type: Trad, Alpine, 100 ft, 2 pitches
FA: Glen Dawson & Jules Eichorn, 1931
Page Views: 14,906 total · 95/month
Shared By: Nick Wilder on Jun 22, 2006
Admins: M. Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Salamanizer suchoski, Justin Johnsen, Vicki Schwantes

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Access Issue: Yosemite National Park climbing closures and conditions Details


Despite being 5.4, this is a very cool climb, and a great way to cap a day on Cathedral Peak. When you look down on it from the summit of Cathedral, you'll know you have to do it.


Climb Cathedral Peak and downclimb a short ways until you can easily traverse to the notch between Eichorn Pinnacle and the summit. Rope up and do a horizontal pitch with lots of exposure but easy climbing. The climb starts here and goes up and to the right.


Normal rack, nothing bigger than 2-3 inches.
John J. Glime
Salt Lake City, UT
John J. Glime   Salt Lake City, UT
I agree, when you look at the pinnacle from atop Cathedral, you probably feel the need to stand on top of it. However, the north face route itself is unexceptional (the old pins are nice though.) After the great moves, asthetic line, wonderful rock, beautiful summit, etc. of Cathedral, Eichorn felt kind of 'blah' to me. Perhaps I was just tired. My thought is that you shouldn't feel too bad if you miss it. Jun 26, 2006
M. Morley
Sacramento, CA
M. Morley   Sacramento, CA  
While the route itself is unmemorable, the summit is well worth the effort.

Due to the wandering nature of the route, rope drag will be heinous if you clip the first pin or place much gear.

A single rope rap (60'??) gets you back down. Jun 29, 2007
Euan Cameron
Mammoth Lakes
Euan Cameron   Mammoth Lakes  
To avoid rope drag it is possible to belay at the end of the traverse. The belay isn't that bad, and it does reduced drag a lot. Jun 29, 2007
Chris D
the couch
Chris D   the couch
I disagree entirely that the climbing is uninteresting. I suppose if it were a route at some junky local crag, I'd maybe agree?

Not only is the climbing quite thoughtful for the grade, it's on quality rock that is quite different from the rock you just climbed on Cathedral. Since you can't preview the route from the approach (it's around the "backside" of the pinnacle) it's a series of small surprises from the end of the traverse all the way to the summit. Even the traverse is fun, taking you quickly from zero exposure to hundreds of feet of air underneath you.

I found that other than the three well-placed fixed pins, I only needed one piece of gear for the whole route.

From the summit of Eichorn, you get an unparalleled view of Cathedral, and other climbers experiencing the summit you just came down from. The view is phenomenal. Better than the view from the summit of Cathedral. Both my partner and I agreed that Eichorn was the highlight of the day.

Even if everything else about it was mediocre, it's a pinnacle... What more reason do you need to climb it?

Don't skip it! Sep 26, 2011
Boulder, CO
boulderkeith   Boulder, CO
I agree with Chris. The setting is fantastic, the climbing is steep for the grade, the pro looks absent but is 100% there.

If you are doing this with an inexperienced or less confident partner, you might try this setup:
Move towards the route from the traverse from Cathedral.
Set a belay at the beginning of the hand traverse. There is a good body pod as well as a crack for ~0.75" or 1" cams.
Lead out the hand travserse (5.0 but very exposed) to either the crack below the aplite band (harder) or 10' further to the 'stance' and corner for an easier start. You'll need to protect for your 2nd and sling them really long. The hand traverse takes 1" to 2.5" or so.
Lead up the corner to the aplite band past the 3 pitons. If you want to back up the pitons, an orange alien works well.
Continue up ~25' above the aplite band slightly right to ridgeline. You can build a nice gear belay here. This is the 'optional' belay indicated in the supertopo.
Assuming you slung everything long (24"+), the rope drag is totally fine. You will need to watch the tension on your 2nd during the hand traverse of course.
Then you can continue to the top in a short pitch without rope drag.

Why did I do it this way? My 2nd didn't like the hand traverse w/o a belay and the anchor options where Supertopo indicates to build the zero belay are not great. Oct 1, 2012
Climbed this last Saturday of June 2018 from the Cathedral saddle. I was able to clip the piton most guides say not to clip due to rope drag, with a double length runner. I proceeded to make the turn upwards past the other two pitons. A party setup belay here at the two pitons, I proceeded to continue on my pitch to an obvious ledge about 30 feet under the summit with very little rope drag. Just an FYI that this is an option and a very comfortable belay stance for two. Jul 10, 2018
Fun route. A little hard to spot since it is mostly around the corner. Start is about 10 feet down from the notch with a sharp flake for your first foot positions on the hand traverse. I agree with long slings and skipping some of the pins. The rope drag is tough but the climbing is easy enough that you can just power up with your legs. No need to do this in more than one pitch. The summit is awesome and more spacious than Cathedral plus you can hang out there since few people go up there and you just rap off. Aug 17, 2018