Type: Trad, 80 ft
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Shared By: caughtinside on Jun 9, 2008
Admins: Aron Quiter, Lurker, M. Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Salamanizer suchoski, Justin Johnsen, Vicki Schwantes

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Access Issue: Black Wall seasonal raptor closures Details
Access Issue: Donner/Truckee area Details


NOTE: The Carville guide shows this as a right hand variation to the Rat's Tooth. The 1986 Jenkewitz-Meytras guide shows this as Touch and Go. Given the volume of errors in the Carville guide, I think this is touch and go.

On the right side of the Rat's Tooth is this climb, which goes up a cool looking flaring squeeze, with the rat's tooth flake at your back. There is a handcrack all the way up the back, so this climb protects really well, always nice in a chimney!

Physical moves up steep rock will get your heart pumping. Shares the last 40' with the Rat's Tooth, to some chains. Rap off.

EDIT: There is an upper pitch to Touch and Go, which I have not done. From the bolts, step around left and climb a handcrack to lizard ledge.


Take extra #2 camalots, 4 would be nice on the route, it eats them up. Nothing bigger than a #3. Upper section takes some smaller items as well.


The very right side of the Rat's Tooth, obvious flaring chimney. On the left side of the Black Wall, just left of the classic One Hand Clapping.


Scott T
Alpine Meadows, CA
Scott T   Alpine Meadows, CA
There are two more pitches to reach Lizard Ledge. From the bolted belay, move left around the corner, climb up easily passing a two bolt anchor for (Empty Sky Direct?) to a great hand crack in a left facing corner (5.7), leading to a sloping belay ledge beneath an impossing headwall.

The third pitch takes the large right facing corner, beginning with a 15 ft crack. Climbing the dihedral directly is fine, but watch out for a bunch of rotten and loose rock - better to climb the crack. Continue up the dihedral, now free of loose rock!, making a perfect rightward traverse to the arete - exhilarating! Continue up the exposed arete to a small roof feature and Lizard Ledge. Incredible pitch! Save some small Aliens for the arete or you'll get runout real quick! Also, long slings are crucial through the traverse and arete. Feb 6, 2011
amselby Selby
amselby Selby  
the back side of Rat's tooth is great, but Touch and go can go in two pitches and is easily reached from inner recess. From the two bolt anchor on the right, climb up the clean hand crack (5.7) to slab crack then exit right on the vertical very thin crack (5.9) on the left facing wall. This leads up to a chimney/lieback/hand crack with an exciting finish.The upper pitches are just as great as the lower, climb to the top!! Enjoy Sep 17, 2011
Reno, NV
BruceB   Reno, NV
There are quite a few ways to do this climb. This is how I did it on my first attempt. It seemed to work out as a natural line.
Pitch 1: I started the climb by going up the right side of cannibal gulley (5.7?) to the fixed anchors and nice ledge below Empty sky.
Pitch 2: Goes up a 5.7 corner. Nice hand jams with some lie back and face moves. Eases off to a ramp up to a head wall. Natural pro anchor.
Pitch 3: I climbed up the nice clean corner, through the delicate thin crux (5.9) to a small ledge, then I traversed right to the arete. This arete is very exposed with not much pro. You can get a very small cam in half way up the arete. Goes at 5.7(ish) with a 5.8 finish. The exposure on this section is amazing.
Pitch 4, anyway you want to exit Lizard ledge.

On my second attempt (Aug 2012) I went up the left side of Cannibal gulley. The start is harder than it looks. The crack system is not really OW, but it is awkward. Maybe 5.7. The right traverse to the chains is easy but runout.
On pitch 3 I did the 5.9 finger crack that starts about 10 feet before you reach the headwall/corner. This is a really nice sized finger crack that feels very secure. After the crack joins the corner 20 feet up and then reaches the small ledge, I continued straight up the corner rather than going right to the arete. This corner is quite clean now and takes nice hand jams. It's well worth doing and probably goes at 5.8

Whichever way you do this climb pitch 3 is great climbing. Oct 12, 2011
Mike McL
South Lake Tahoe, CA
Mike McL   South Lake Tahoe, CA
Great route if done to Lizard Ledge.

The P1 flare on the right side of the Rat's Tooth is very nice. Somewhat strenuous with few rests. Fortunately that hand crack in the back makes it moderate. Take extra #2 and #3 camalots if you want to sew if up. 3 of each would not go unused. We had 3 #2s and 2 #3s and used them all. Climb through a roof, move left, and belay at bolts. These bolts are below Hungover Hangover.

Alternately you could climb the middle of the Rat's Tooth at 10a or head up the more moderate gully to the left of the Rat's Tooth.

P2 steps left around the corner into the gully. If you started on Cannibal Gully the routes would meet up here. You can belay at bolts to make an intermediate belay for rope drag. If not, head up a 5.7 corner with a hand crack. Belay below the splitter finger crack or the large right facing corner, depending on which variation you do on P3.

We did the splitter crack to start P3. It's short but very good. You can also go directly up the dihedral at the start. There's an awkward move where the crack meets up with the corner. Felt 10a to me. I continued all the way up the corner to Lizard Ledge. I missed the arete. The top of the corner is dirty/mossy but it's got some interesting stemming and laybacking. From Lizard Ledge you can continue to the top or rap. We were able to rap the face with 1 70 meter rope. Just watch your ends. Nov 21, 2011
Patrick Mulligan
Reno, NV
Patrick Mulligan   Reno, NV
Great Route. Did the dihedral the whole way as its been heavily cleaned and was great climbing. When I did this 10 years ago you would not have wanted to do that as it was covered in moss and there were alot of flakes in the lower dihedral. the finger crack of T&G may be a little harder and you miss the airy 5.7 while out on the arete, but its a classic line. Sep 9, 2012
Timbo Stillinger  
HIGHLY recommend linking from the belay bolts from in cannable gully up the hand crack, to the splitter finger crack on the face on your right, into the dihedral up to the bolts on lizards ledge. Really really good continuous pitch with all types of fun climbing! The dihedral is super knobby, very clean, and not that hard, plenty of good gear all the way if you ration your rack wisely. You'd be missing out on a five star 5.9 pitch if you rapped before this. Jun 24, 2013
andrew bogaard  
Can we update this page to reflect the most common 4 pitch variant ala Jackson? It goes 5.8, 5.7, 5.9+, 5.6, although I think that first pitch is a stiff 5.8 Jun 15, 2014
Vincent Gallegos  
Doubles in #2 and #3 works fine. Second pitch is a bit funny and serves as a tiny approach pitch for the third pitch dihedral. If you did it just right you could do this climb in 2 pitches and some rope drag. Wonderful hand cracks and stemming! May 13, 2018
Climbing Ivy
Climbing Ivy   Reno-Tahoe
Superb line. If you're comfortable at the grade, gear only up to doubles #3 and down. Placed only two #3 and a #2 on P1 squeeze - you basically can figure-4 one leg behind you the whole way up for great rest. Super secure.

Lots of mirco cam placement opportunities on P3 Aug 1, 2018
Ryan Pfleger
North Lake Tahoe, CA
Ryan Pfleger   North Lake Tahoe, CA
If you want to sew up the first chimney pitch, four #2s and two or three #3s sounds about right. Other wise try walking gear up with you. There are a couple spots for a #1, and the easier climbing at the top of the first pitch takes smaller gear. Seemed hard for me. I actually took a fall, which was surprising as the climbing felt secure but strenuous. But I suck at wide. Sep 19, 2018