REI Community
1 - Books Area
Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
5.7 Book T 
5.8 Hand Crack T 
Cat Scratch Fever T 

5.8 Hand Crack 

YDS: 5.8 French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- ZA: 15 British: HVS 4c

Type:  Trad, 1 pitch, 90'
Original:  YDS: 5.8 French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- ZA: 15 British: HVS 4c [details]
FA: Vogl/Griffin 1984
Page Views: 4,008
Submitted By: Aerili on Aug 17, 2009

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (27)
Your todo list:
Your stars:
Your rating: -none- [change]
Your ticklist: [add new tick]
Your opinion of this PAGE:    [0 people like this page.]


Starts on the face of the outermost "book." Several cracks split this face, but the most obvious line allows you to start at the very bottom of the book, climb up ~30-40 feet until the crack widens and a small ramp appears across the face to the left. Traverse this way on face moves to gain access to another crack which leads to the top. Seriously good sustained 5.8 most of the way.


The only route on the Books which does not start off the slopey platform. You can downclimb from the platform and try the short hike down and around through the manzanita to gain the base. An alternative is to climb either of the two routes to its right, climb up and over the boulders on the top-out, and build an anchor on the other side above 5.8 Hand Crack from which to rap.


Small to large. Sizes required range from 0.4 to 4. I believe I've used a #5 near the end of the line as well, but it's not do-or-die.

No fixed anchors. A lot of small loose rocks lie near the edge of this route, so bring several long slings or webbing to make an anchor farther back if toproping or rapping off.

Photos of 5.8 Hand Crack Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: topout
Rock Climbing Photo: Blue Sky, warm granite, and fun climbing. Just ano...
Blue Sky, warm granite, and fun climbing. Just ano...
Rock Climbing Photo: Gawking at the features on the Books classy 5.8.
Gawking at the features on the Books classy 5.8.

Comments on 5.8 Hand Crack Add Comment
Show which comments
By Ryan Curry
Aug 28, 2009

This is a really fun pitch. A lot of variety and continuity, it has a Joshua Tree-like feel to it. Save hands-sized gear for the anchor. Also, a #4 Camalot is nice to have near the top.
From: Portlandia, OR
Jun 7, 2010
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

Route protects extremely well
Meanders to the climber's left via a system of cracks before and excellent hands finish near the top.
A #4 protects at the very end, but it's easier to simply go up and over the easy finish and set up a gear anchor. Save #2's and #3's for the anchor.
By Colonel Mustard
From: Sacramento, CA
Feb 13, 2011

I second the Joshua Tree feel for this climb, and actually for a lot of the climbs in Woodfords. Love it!

This is a great route for the 5.8 grade, I highly recommend it. I mostly used fingers to 2" on this route. The crack often takes smaller pro because it'll pinch down in places, and it often has a small crack in the back of a larger crack in which to place. A #4 is all that is needed to protect the topout.

There was a bright orange thread through somebody left up there and I really should have cut. I didn't examine to see if somebody rapped through it (doubtful from the placement) or just forgot it. I'll remove it next time I'm up there or somebody else should because there is no reason for it.
By Tele Liz
From: Corvallis, OR
Jun 18, 2014

Fun climb! Solid 5.8. There are now anchors above the 2 climbs to the right (5.7 and Cat Scratch Fever) so you can top out and rap from those. Fun climb and clean for Woodfords!
By grabski
From: N California
Oct 24, 2016
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

The name is a little deceptive. The main crack is flared, meaning the good pro is smaller than hand-sized at the back of the crack. I'd recommend doubles to 1" plus nuts for the bulk of it, and I agree on the #4 to protect the top crack. And agreed on the 2" cam (or two) for the anchor, plus you can thread or place nuts further back in the blocks. Extend the anchor to reduce rope drag over the lip. To clean, walk over to the anchor of Cat Scratch Fever and rap.

Mountain Project

The Definitive Climbing Resource

MTB Project

Next Generation MTB Trail Maps

Powder Project

Backcountry Ski Maps & Secret Stashes
FREE Stickers · Gyms · RSS · School of Rock · Contact · About