Type: Trad, Alpine, 800 ft (242 m), 8 pitches, Grade III
FA: Upper 2 pitches Wiessner and Underhill 1933; lower slabs Dan Brodien, Roger Damon & Andy Fisher 1962
Page Views: 37,456 total · 197/month
Shared By: Joe Heinz on Oct 12, 2008 · Updates
Admins: Jay Knower, M Sprague, Lee Hansche, Jeffrey LeCours, Jonathan S, Robert Hall

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Description from Joseph Heinz Suggest change

Oct 2018:
For this description of the pitches I give below, use the 2 pictures in the photos that shows all the belay spots with red dots and shows the climb with the yellow dashes.  In the comments below I will call this the “overall reference picture."

P1 Find also the base picture in the photos.  From this base, head directly upward for 70ft to a small scree ledge.  70ft

P2 Climb up on top of the first angled ledge about 10 to 15 feet directly in front of you and then head hard left and traverse at a slight angle upwards until you see the large obvious crack that is about 1 foot wide (found in all the photos).  Belay just at the end of this large one foot wide crack.  100ft

P3 In front of you there are angled ledges. Get on top of the second ledge and head left again on friction climbing.  Continue until you end up 20 ft beneath the truck sized block.  Under this ledge there are large cam placements on the left edge OR small cam placements on the right which you can use to create a belay. 100ft

P4 At this point I'm leaving the course of the overall reference picture above. It shows that you should take a downward angle now, but I took a similar angle to pitch 2 and 3 (upward).  Feel free to take that downward angle if you wish. Go about 10 ft on your present climbing angle and then step down off your angled ledge.  Continue then on your slight steady angle up the mountain that you've kept on Pitch 3 and Pitch 2.  If you're using a 60-meter rope, you will just about run out of rope to get to your belay.  Your belay spot should be just beneath the start of the next pitch, which is a dirty gully alpine climb. Whether you take my path or the path shown in the overall reference picture mentioned above, you need to end up at the base of the dirty gully.  At the base of the gully climb section, there is a low angle flake with a tire sized crumbling hole in the face of it. At the top of this flake there is a 10ft vertical jumbled rock section.  190ft

P5 Climb up the jumbled, vertical, cracked-out rock section that is in front of you and access the dirty gully. This gully is filled with little pieces of rock about 1 cm in size... like kitty litter. There are no placements in the gully which runs for about 100 ft.  Be careful not to move any of the larger unsettled rocks in this gulley.  They could hit your partner or a group down below on Consolation Prize.  Continue up this gully until you reach the next belay ledge (at the base of the vertical face beneath where the Old Man used to be).  At the base of the vertical face go to the far left side and create your belay at the obvious 2 to 3ft wide crack system.  210ft
Another option is to avoid the dirty gully altogether by going 40ft to the left and taking a more vertical approach.  This route is found in the other route picture found in the photos…the photo marked with a blue route and white rap spots.  This may be more safe if you are uncomfortable the long alpine runouts.  It may also provide more solid rock for the belay of P5.

P6 Head up the crack system 50ft until you gain the top of it. Then make a gentle move to head left for 10 to 15 feet to gain the next thinner crack system, which is also straight up vertical climbing.  Go to the top of it to gain your next belay.  The belay is right where it tops off and then begins friction climbing again.  Belay before the 15 foot of low angle friction climbing.  You should see the hard flake move (seen in the photos) to gain the chimney. The chimney is not visible from your belay... And you will not see it until you are at the flake.  80ft

P7 Place a solid Jesus nut immediately in front of you. Then climb the low angle friction slab to the flake. Place a piece at the base of the flake somewhere and extend it with a long alpine draw. Climb the flake and leave your feet dangling until you gain the top of the flake with your hands and then get a heel hook behind you where your hands. If you fall here, it will be very nasty. This legs dangling opportunity is the crux.  Once you gain the top of the flake, head up the obvious V shaped chimney to the top. Belay off the various large structures found at the top.  80ft

I would highly recommend a 70-meter rope for this climb. Depending on whether you find the right belay spots, you could run out of rope with a 60 meter.  The 70m will give you more options for better rock, which is a problem on this route.  Many of the flakes are crumbling.

Descent: At the top you will find a 3 foot wide concrete channel (to channel water away for the old man's face before it collapsed).  Follow this channel to the climbers right and down to an obvious small wooded trail which leads to back the base of the mountain.  You will come off the mountain at the North end of the lake and then head south on the Pemi Trail to get back to the original trail you started on and the parking lot.  There is no talus in the descent.

Original Description from Jay Knower (2008):

Lakeview used to be a popular route. Then the Old Man fell down and strafed the middle pitches with rockfall. Ever since, climbers have seemed reluctant to climb on Cannon's right-side slabs. While Lakeview crosses right through the danger zone, the loose rock is not horrible and pretty easily avoided. The first few pitches and the last two might offer better climbing and better rock than on the over-crowded Whitney Gilman.

Start on the far right side of the cliff, at an obvious clearing. Head up, over 5.3-5.4, terrain for about 100 feet. When the overlaps start to angle up and left, follow the weakness in the rock, more left than up, past a runout 5.5 slab and then onto easier, but loose and gravelly, terrain. You should be crossing from right to left under the fresh rock scar where the Old Man once looked out proudly over the valley.

The general idea here is to head to the deep inside corner left of the Old Man rock scar. This is the Wiessner Corner. The pitch before the corner is classic, well-protected and steep. It's probably about 5.6 and is much better than any climbing on the WG. Belay on a sloping ledge. Then climb the obvious inside corner, which is blocked by a short, steep wall at its base. This wall is the crux and is not well protected. The holds are big, but a fall here would be ugly.

Once in the corner, enjoy the exposure and top out at a great, flat, overlook. You can belay off the remnants of the failed engineering project that was used, in vain, to keep the Old Man from succumbing to Cannon's tendency to fall apart.

Protection and directions Suggest change

Getting There:
In Franconia Notch, on the south side of the Tramway parking area is Profile Lake (along Route 93). At the very southern end of this lake, on the southbound side of 93, you'll find the parking lot.

Head south from the parking lot along the paved bicycle path for a very short distance (80 yds) until you cross the professionally built footbridge. Immediately at the edge of the footbridge turn right along the dirt Pemi Trail. Follow this trail until you hit the first small stream crossing on wooded planks. Don't cross. Instead, turn uphill to your left. Follow this trail up to the talus field. Stay on the right side of the talus field and spot the climb. Head towards the base of your climb on the talus field.


Standard Cannon rack and certainly a helmet. There are no fixed anchors.  The longer pitches (200ft) could require some extra placements, if you are not comfortable with slab friction runnouts.