Type: Sport
FA: Mark Sprague 6/00
Page Views: 4,140 total · 29/month
Shared By: lee hansche on Mar 15, 2007
Admins: Jay Knower, M Sprague, lee hansche, Jeffrey LeCours, Jonathan Steitzer, Robert Hall

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This one can be a little scary if you aren't used to the techniques and exposure involved, but it is a favorite of mine thanks to the awkwardness of the chimney crux and exposed nature of the top...

Start up the chimney on unusually sharp rock. The rock gets less sharp as you climb...The crux of the route is exiting the chimney section. Most of the good holds are on the left as you climb out of the chimney, but they are hard to get to.... After the chimney, the angle eases off and you follow a ridge with great exposure to one more short steep section with nothing underneath you but air. Keep your head on straight and you will be clipping the chains in no time....

Note - There is often a large ravens nest near the anchor. Please avoid during nesting season  if they are there. Ravens have a long memory of individuals who bother them


The far left route at the crag. From the low point where Jolt (5.10b) starts, follow a trail up and left. You will see an inviting crack (Who Done It? 5.9) to the left of the crack bolts lead up in to a chimney...that's your start....


11 bolts to quick clips. Use of a short draw at the top of the corner and careful watching where the rope goes as you pass it can eliminate a lot of rope drag.... 60m rope needed!!! Best cleaned by having someone second.
New Brunswick Canada
Dom   New Brunswick Canada  
WOW this has to be the best 5.8 at Rumney! Well then again there is the Junco at Jimmy Cliff...

Anyways, If you are open-minded about climbing and wanna try something new: Get on ES. It will definitely be memorable. I know, the crux is unlike anything I've ever done before.

If 5.9,5.10- is your limit maybe wear a helmet since it seems like falling in that chimney could make you fall on the back wall. Better be safe than sorry!

Anyways, enjoy it! Apr 29, 2009
lee hansche
goffstown, nh
lee hansche   goffstown, nh  
Dom, im glad to see that we agree on the 2 best 5.8s at rumney... Apr 29, 2009
Adam Conroy
Cambridge, MA
Adam Conroy   Cambridge, MA
Absolutely loved this route. The variety going from the chimney to the exposure and then a little slab action makes you feel like you're really climbing something meant to be climbed! Classic for sure.

It appears to be a little damp early in the season (just did it today, March 6th) towards the top but it really wasn't a problem.

Also have some care in the final hideaway after the slab area, it appears a lot of birds like to do their business in there. Mar 6, 2010
twellman   Cambridge
I did this climb with my dad belaying me after teaching him how to belay 30 minutes earlier..... it was quite an adventure! The climb goes way out of sight and almost out of earshot of the belayer, so once you pull up onto the slab you have a nice moment of solitude with an amazing view to enjoy.

Get on it! Might be better than Junco... Mar 16, 2010
Couloirman Schmiddy
Providence, RI
Couloirman Schmiddy   Providence, RI
As good as 5.8 can get. An awesome lead for those who want the experience of climbing Jolt but aren't quite at that grade. Very similar climb just much easier. 3 stars because the beginning sucks, but the upper arete makes up for it. Apr 19, 2012
V menon
new york
V menon   new york
I was not very convinced about this climb at first but it turned out to be a super fun climb with a lot of varied ground as I started to work on it. Moved out too much to the left on the chimney at the 4th bolt to get some great hidden holds and almost got my helmet stuck!!. Had to think hard to figure a move out of the crux.

Use long runners if possible, lots of rope drag esp after you move on to the slab section.

right at the top, at the anchors, it seems like there is some kind of a nest (falcon ?) on the ledge, seems like its old but still beautiful. There was no birds and it looked dry & weather beaten. Anyone know anything about this ?

The view from the top is amazing. A damm good 5.8 that will keep you guessing on the moves. Jul 9, 2012
M Sprague
New England
M Sprague   New England  
That sounds like a raven's nest. they make a big pile of sticks.

I seem to remember that if you actually used a short draw near the top of the chimney and then watched how the rope ran as you went up and clip the next bolt, the rope would than stay out of the notch where it otherwise catches and causes the rope drag. If you get that right, there should be minimal rope drag above. Jul 9, 2012
M Sprague
New England
M Sprague   New England  
Please check the big rock the anchors are set into. When I used it for the FA it seemed well wedged in and solid, but seeing some of the massive stuff that has come down lately as a result of storms, the thought of this anchor gives me the heebie jeebies. Don't use it if it doesn't look solid any more. May 14, 2013
Alissa Doherty
Boston, MA
Alissa Doherty   Boston, MA
A really beautiful climb with incredible exposure. Do not try to clean this route while lowering unless you want major shenanigans to ensue. Aug 19, 2013
M Bageant
Cambridge, MA
M Bageant   Cambridge, MA
As of 9/2015 the bird's nest is still there. It's got some old fluff in it but no birds harassed me as I clipped the chains. The birds have good taste for a nest location, super cool airy nook with an amazing view! Sep 21, 2015
Graham O.  
It seems like people either love or hate this route but I thought it was great! When discussing the best 5.8’s at Rumney, I would probably take Junco and Metamorphosis over this climb, but don’t get me wrong, this thing has high quality climbing with awesome exposure. Highly recommended. Btw, it is late August 2016 and the nest is still there. Aug 27, 2016
Alan Emery
Lebanon, NH
Alan Emery   Lebanon, NH
I was at the Hinterlands 9/24 and was going to hop on this climb but someone beat us to it. We decided to climb Black Sabbath first and heard the party that did the climb pulled out a microwave block at the top that tumbled down the hillside. Not sure if it is the same block Mark was talking about, but could be if the anchors were moved. Sep 25, 2016
lee hansche
goffstown, nh
lee hansche   goffstown, nh  
So many reasons to climb delicately. Be careful out there. Sep 25, 2016
M Sprague
New England
M Sprague   New England  
^^Yikes! No, the block I was referring to with the anchors in it is more van size, if I remember right. I can't picture where a microwave sized block would have come from, but it has been quite a while since I have been on this. Glad nobody was hurt. Sep 25, 2016
Russ Keane
Asheville, NC
Russ Keane   Asheville, NC
Definitely a great route. Sandbag central!! The upper chimney is tough! Kinda felt like Smokestack Light, for a moment or two. Agree with those who warn against cleaning this puppy on the way down. It has wild angles and swings, etc. In fact, a weak follower who may fall/take will have problems at many spots. Weird and awkward all around. Super fun. Aug 14, 2017
Jay Morse
Hooksett, New Hampshire
Jay Morse   Hooksett, New Hampshire
Awesome, and in case you are wondering it goes great on gear until the top. You will need to clip one bolt to keep it in the G/PG range. Oct 22, 2017
I climbed this yesterday and saw a very nice Petzl draw on the second-to-last bolt. I wondered why and soon found out - as I rounded the corner to the anchor, I caught a raven in its nest by surprise. Its squawk definitely startled me and it was NOT happy. My original plan was to have my partner second up to clean on TR, but seeing that the raven was yelling and circling above me, I decided to downclimb to the bail draw and lowered/cleaned that way. So, be warned... Apr 23, 2018