Type: TR, 60 ft
FA: unknown
Page Views: 1,117 total · 8/month
Shared By: Rick Shull on Nov 2, 2006
Admins: Lurker, Rick Shull, M. Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Salamanizer suchoski, Justin Johnsen, Vicki Schwantes

You & This Route

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Urchin follows the Standard Route until it exits left into the chimney. At the top of the upper dihedral continue straight up ever steepening finger buckets until the surprise move to the "urchin". Find the two finger pocket with your left hand and mantel onto the slab.


Start Standard Route (look for the blocky holds).


Stainless bolts above top out. Use long slings to extend over the chimney.


Nick Black
Arcata, CA
Nick Black   Arcata, CA
Another variation is to head right across the upper face and do a big throw to a jug on the arête, then slap your way up it on good slopers to the anchor Oct 17, 2015
Mike Horan
San Francisco, CA
Mike Horan   San Francisco, CA
There's currently a single bolt for this anchor. I can see where a second bolt used to exist but it looks like it was pulled out. I ended up extending from the bolts for regular route.

Fantastic climb. The last few moves form the crimps through the undercling to the urchin are some of the best on the rock. Probably harder than 10c for shorter people unable to reach the urchin. Sep 5, 2017
Ryder Dschida
McKinleyville, CA
Ryder Dschida   McKinleyville, CA
The two bolts used for anchors at the top of this route (the old ones) were in a bad placement. I was there the day that bolt was pulled out. By hand. It was an accident that thankfully never happened.

Two more bolts have been placed on the second ledge about 20' below the original two, and are solid placements. I suggest anchoring yourself on a 30' cordelette to the old bolt on top, and then back that up with either the Karen/Standard bolts or gear with another cord or long runners. Downclimb or carefully lower yourself to the new bolts, and set up the toprope. Feb 5, 2018
Well, I finally got a chance to check out the new bolt placements and I'm pretty disappointed. I highly recommend that first time bolters consult with long time locals before drilling holes where new holes are frowned upon. Tip, if you've only been climbing for two years, perhaps consider consulting with someone before you bolt, especially where there have been issues with bolting in the past. (It wasn't Ryder, he's just the messenger!) The new anchor is really in a lame spot and stops you from doing the mantle, which was the best part in my opinion. The anchor was placed down low so you don't have to use chord on your anchor, but instead you have to lower down off a mix-mach anchor with... chord... to get to the new bolts, and you still need slings. There is no downclimbing to those bolts. They have only been there for three months and they are already rusting (while none of the existing bolts on the cliff have rusted during their entire lifetime.) The existing bolt in the original anchor is solid and there are a few spots nearby that would be solid for a three bolt anchor near the original location. I am considering pulling and patching these bolts, and doing the anchor proper, but am not excited about putting more holes in Karen Rock. May 15, 2018
Ryder Dschida
McKinleyville, CA
Ryder Dschida   McKinleyville, CA
This is a sacred site for the Yurok. Karen Rock historically marked the southernmost boundary of their territory. As such, climbing on Karen Rock is, shall we say, not well-liked. I'm not an expert at bolting nor am I that experienced of a climber, but my two cents -- for what it's worth -- is to not disturb the rock any further. I know, it sucks. Urchin is one of my favorite climbs, a classic Humboldt test piece. Would running long cords from the Standard Route/Karen Crack and Assembly line anchors work? Or would that place too much stress on those bolts? May 15, 2018
Ryder, you’re right. All of the rocks we climb here are very important to the Yurok, everything up to Footsteps. Karen rock got extra attention in that it is so public. I was told that there was a push once to have all the bolts removed, but luckily this did not happen. Chalk is usually more of a visual impact than bolts. The point was made though; extra attention is needed when establishing/maintaining anything on our coastline.

There are remnants of chopped bolts up there. When I can here in 2009, the anchor used the bolts for Standard Route and Assembly Line and was super awkward. ASCA bolts were added maybe 7-8 years ago and as we know, that left one was junk! If anyone was consulted on this, I’m sure it would have resulted in a simple rebolting instead of a retrobolting. May 21, 2018