Type: Trad, 450 ft (136 m), 4 pitches, Grade III
FA: FA Lee Davis & Bill Hackett, FFA by Paul Horak and Glen Banks ca 1976
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Shared By: Aaron Hobson on Jan 13, 2008
Admins: Jason Halladay, Mike Hoskins, Anna Brown

You & This Route

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Description Suggest change

This is the most direct of the climbs on the Tooth. It follows the most obvious weaknesses up the face, the most prominent being the beautiful crack that slices down the large slab half-way up the route. Some of the cracks have some vegetation and dirt in them, but for the most part the climbing is clean. The route offers good variety too, throwing everything except steep face-climbing at you.

Pitch 1, 80ft: Starts with a short lay-back and continues up a grass-filled crack until it pinches down to a seam. Clip a good bolt here and begin traversing to the right on delicate slabs (5.8+). Build a belay where you turn the corner at an old button-head (backed up, of course). One can easily link up the next pitch, but the corner creates a fair bit of drag. Also it's a nice spot to watch your second. Two alternate starts: A thin seam to the right of the main start gains the belay directly and is rated 5.8R on the old topos (it felt more like 5.10R to a group I climbed with last year). The second more direct route starts farther to the right and climbs a small crack and slab past two bolts to reach the belay. This is the most direct start, but the moves past the bolts feel like 5.11 slab when I tried them, and the two bolts are rusty old 1/4".

Pitch 2, 60ft: From the belay climb right and then up a steep hand-crack (5.9). Continue up past some small trees to a spacious ledge with a good-sized oak tree on it (and chain rappel anchors).

Pitch 3, 160ft: Head straight up a hand crack (5.7) to a second large ledge with a stunted tree on it. To the left is a pair of bolts leading to the bottom of a long, graceful crack which climbs for 100ft to a large break in a head-wall. This is the best climbing on the route (5.9+, or 5.10 in the Dennis Jackson guidebook): delicate slab moves (height dependent) gain the bottom of the crack which starts off as shallow finger-locks. The crack grows steadily in depth, allowing better finger-jams, until eventually it is large enough for tight-hands. The break in the head-wall is hand-fist jams with an awkward exit to a belay ledge. Note: the old topos break this into two pitches, belaying at the second ledge with a tree. One alternative is to extend Pitch 2 to this tree to reduce rope drag on crux moves.

Pitch 4, 160ft: Climb the 5.7 crack directly above and past a bushy oak, or take the 5.9 slab climbing to the left passing two bolts. Both options lead to a stance below a sotol bush with some tattered old bail gear and a piton/bolt. Continue up going left around the sotol to gain a clean, steep finger crack (5.9). Finish up a short off-width/squeeze chimney. This pitch is also broken into two in the old topos.

Location Suggest change

The first two pitches are shared with Tooth or Consequences and Tooth Extraction and start from a slab near the left side of the west face. The crack on the 3rd pitch is visible from quite far away, and is every bit as good as it looks.

3 double-rope rappels to descend. Single rope rappels are possible but do not have as established rappel anchors (only tattered slings and old bolts).

Protection Suggest change

Standard rack. 1st pitch has a single bolt in good shape at the top of the crack/seam. The crux pitch has a two-bolt anchor before the start of the finger crack. One of the bolts is new, the other is an old 1/4". Camelot #2 can be placed fairly early on in the crack itself, followed later by a rusty piton with ample gear placements near it. The last pitch has two pitons below the sotol bush, and a rusty 1/4" hidden behind the bush. Rappel anchors are in good shape and have chains, provided you have two ropes to rap down on.