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c. Frog's Head - the Arch
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YDS: 5.6 French: 4c Ewbanks: 14 UIAA: V ZA: 12 British: S 4b

Type:  Trad, 2 pitches, 140'
Original:  YDS: 5.6 French: 4c Ewbanks: 14 UIAA: V ZA: 12 British: S 4b [details]
FA: Fritz Wiessner, Mary Cecil, Betty Woolsey, 1941
Page Views: 11,323
Submitted By: Ron Olsen on Feb 24, 2006

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (253)
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In the off-width


If you can't climb wide cracks, this route will seem a lot harder than 5.6!

From the Uberfall, walk about 2.5 minutes down the carriage road, past the big corner and roof of Matinee, to a huge boulder just below the cliff. Take the access trail just beyond the boulder, and angle left to the cliff, on the left side of the huge boulder. Baby is the striking, widening crack directly above the access trail.

P1: Climb the crack to the wide section. Place a 3-4" piece for pro, and head up into the offwidth (crux). A 5-inch piece is necessary if you want gear to protect the crux; otherwise you're at least 5-10' above gear as you commit to the wide. Continue up the face above to a big ledge with lots of loose rock and a bolt-and-chain anchor. 5.6, 80'.

P2: Climb a left-facing corner and an overhang to the top. This pitch can be sandy after a recent rain. 5.6, 60'.

Descent: From the cliff top, rappel from the bolted anchor (2015).


Standard Rack, plus anything wide (4-5") you have! If you don't have 5-inch gear, be prepared to run it out up the offwidth, where a fall would be ill-advised. The offwidth used to have a chockstone that one could sling for protection - the guidebooks don't reflect the change in protection ratings.

Photos of Baby Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Anthony on Baby, placing his #5
Anthony on Baby, placing his #5
Rock Climbing Photo: Its all good from here...
Its all good from here...
Rock Climbing Photo: looking down P2
looking down P2
Rock Climbing Photo: Getting some good gear after the wide crack crux. ...
Getting some good gear after the wide crack crux. ...
Rock Climbing Photo: Such a fantastic route.
Such a fantastic route.
Rock Climbing Photo: In the womb. There is a #4 below his left foot - t...
BETA PHOTO: In the womb. There is a #4 below his left foot - t...
Rock Climbing Photo: Following the 2nd pitch
Following the 2nd pitch
Rock Climbing Photo: The 2nd pitch corner
The 2nd pitch corner
Rock Climbing Photo: Jeremy leading the second Pitch of Baby, an outsta...
BETA PHOTO: Jeremy leading the second Pitch of Baby, an outsta...
Rock Climbing Photo: Erik leading P1 of Baby. May 2, 2010
BETA PHOTO: Erik leading P1 of Baby. May 2, 2010

Comments on Baby Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Jun 15, 2016
By Paul Crowder
Mar 9, 2006
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

This is a classic Gunks sandbag. The offwidth is really challenging, and I'd rate this thing at 5.8 on any day. Hats off to the folks who put this thing up, 'way back when.
By Adam Catalano
From: Albany, New York
Mar 15, 2006

I agree that the first pitch can be tough through that wide-crack section. The 2nd pitch is always a fun way to finish the day.
By Brian Adzima
From: San Francisco
Oct 3, 2006

I think originally there was supposed to be a chockstone in the offwidth section. Now that it is long gone the route is a little more stout than 5.6. I believe I used a #11 hex at the crux.
By Crimpper
Jul 10, 2007
rating: 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b

I had a blast on this climb! I think the crux on the first pitch looks more daunting than it really is. Though some big pro would make this a bit easier. I dropped a knee in for a sweet, comfortable jam and got a piece in right above the crack to pull over it. Over the first and with a BIG belay ledge - The second pitch is a must as well and it will bring back some comfort to those who did not enjoy the crux on the first with a cozy corner and finger crack.
By losbill
Jul 16, 2007
rating: 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b PG13

Really scratching my head on this one. I see some people gave Baby two stars while giving Maria 4 stars. I just don't understand it.

The first pitch of Maria is a throw away. The second pitch is a great corner, but so is the the second pitch of Baby. The third pitch of Marie is short but a way fun corner with a great, thoughtful, prototypical Gunks overhang to pull at the top. As good as the Maria overhang is. the overhang at the end of the second pitch of Baby is just dang good fun to pull over! I enjoy it as much if not more than the Maria overhang.

Finally, on Baby, with the first pitch, you have more variety of climbing than Maria offers. The first pitch is great. I just simply don't understand all the angst some people have with the dreaded "off-width"??? Crimpper's comment put it in perfect perspective. It is a fun move and one you don't often get to experience at the Gunks. After that you have some quality climbing up the twin cracks to the GT Ledge.

To offset the folks that rated Baby 2 stars and Maria 4 stars I going 4 stars here, even though I would be more comfortable rating both at three stars. Thus far in my Gunks climbing career, Madame G's is the 5.6 climb I'm holding above all others. Can I give it 5 stars? The bottom line is Baby and Maria are both terrific climbs well worth doing more than once.
By asmith
Oct 11, 2007

Great climb. One of my favorites. Love the second pitch. The first is only hard if one never has done offwidth. Otherwise it is very easy 5.6 climbing.
By Tim Schafstall
Apr 2, 2008

The famous rock in the P1 off width that you could use for pro and a handhold has been gone for a few years now, making the crux a tad harder and neckier w/o a big cam.

Please do not rap this route for descent. The ledge atop P1 is full of loose rock and there are always parties below. It's probably faster to use the downclimb at the Uberfall and it's definitely faster to use the downclimb at Radcliff.
By Michael John Gray
From: Queensbury, NY
Jul 23, 2008
rating: 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b

I dont know about this route being sandbagged? I thought the whole thing was 5.6 all the way? Although I think there are a lot of sandbags in the Gunks. The O/W was not even the crux to me.
By Don MacKenzie
From: Seattle, WA
May 2, 2009

Great route.
I led it in Oct '06 and the chockstone was still there in OW section at that time. That and a somewhat tipped out #4 Friend were adequate to protect the crux on that pitch.
By Kalil Oldham
From: Brooklyn, NY
Aug 23, 2009

Serious foot camming and little in-cut sidepulls in the OW made this 5.6 for me, otherwise ... harder.
By doligo
May 3, 2010
rating: 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b PG13

Finding the correct layback and foot jamming makes it a 5.6+ (easier if you are tall). Bring a #5 camalot and stiff crack shoes (my Mythos desperately bent and slipped). My partner led P1 and off-widthed it, I led P2 - also a fun lead.
By gblauer
From: Wayne, PA
May 23, 2010

Using a #5 makes this climb "g" rated. Offwidth technique or layback, it's all about what's comfortable for you. Last year, I was all about jamming myself into the offwidth. This year, I am really enjoying the layback. This is just a very fun climb from bottom to top.
By Robbie Flick
From: Denver, CO
Sep 5, 2010
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

A great moderate. I have very little experience with crack climbing, let alone off-widths, so I found this part challenging. I laybacked on it, which felt a bit insecure, but worked out. A #5 is great, but a #4 can also be placed lower on the crack if you don't have any huge cams.
By BrianRH
From: Jersey City, NJ
Nov 7, 2011

climbed this to practice placing my new big bros and found it more stimulating than anticipated. Can't claim to be a great offwidth climber so not sure about the rating, but I wouldn't have argued had it been rated 5.7 or 5.8. Found it spicier than Drunkards Delight - but that might say more about me and my faith in my big-bro usage than the climb.
Second pitch was comparatively easy, even with rope drag no more than 5.6. Perhaps 5.5.
By Ryan Abernathey
From: La Jolla, CA
Apr 6, 2012

The posts here exaggerate the difficulty of the OW, in my opinion. It is over before it begins. By the time you are standing on the chockstone, your hands are on jugs. It's really just one move to get into the big crack. I had a #5, but this is probably unnecessary if you sling the chockstone. Super fun climb!
By Galen Rahmlow
From: Woodbury, MN
Apr 28, 2012
rating: 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b

So good. It's a nice friendly off-width and gets you use to the concept. Second pitch is well worth doing. A black or purple c4 are useful at the top of the second pitch right at the final crux. Also I found that a #3 big-bro is too large to be any help in the off-width. By the time you have a gap large enough to fiddle with it, the crux is over.
By Carl A
From: brooklyn, ny
May 29, 2012

I've done a lot of offwidths out west, and although I'm not one of those guys that's into that kind of stuff, I'm pretty comfortable on them.

This offwidth was doable but tricky, especially for the grade, i was more using the face holds than any chicken wings and I couldn't really get all the way into it because the edges are offset.

Anywho I strung together these two pitches for 190 feet of great "5.6". I ran out the middle and placed a high piece above the ledge and the rope drag wasn't bad at all.
By Logan Schiff
From: Brooklyn, NY
Jul 16, 2012
rating: 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b

Nice climb. I'm no offwidth specialist, but I still found the move to be pretty manageable, probably even a bit on the easy side for Gunks 5.6. A #4 cam worked well in the lower portion of the offwidth section (#5 would get you pro higher up). Second pitch was definitely worth doing.
By Medic741
From: Red Hook, New York
Aug 5, 2012
rating: 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b PG13

Great climb, but bring a big cam if you have one... felt pg13 on the OW. There IS a chockstone part way up, maybe there used to be another??

Biggest cam I had was a Camalot #3 and the exposure was very spicy. Soon as I got back from this picked up a #5...
By Simon Thompson
From: New Paltz, NY
Apr 27, 2013
rating: 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b

I second the above comment about a #4 being pretty adequate with a #5 making this very well protected. Either way, just stuff yourself into the big-ass crack(you can get a single leg-jam rest before the crux if you're a fatass like me) and you won't fall. Squirm up to the jug. This climb is probably my favorite 5.6 in the Gunks. A very direct and striking line with an awesome off-width and an awesome corner on P2 that is as good or better than say... Maria's corner. The only downside is it's popularity and loose rock on the ledges so be careful!
By kenr
Jun 9, 2013

I think the off-width is more fun done as a layback - (also more committing) - (likely more scary).
Sometimes I wish the Gunks had some good practice on off-widths, but I've found the possible off-width here is too short to be useful.
By Jon Booth
Jun 10, 2013
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b PG13

Nice offwidth. A #4 C4 works well at the bottom of the O/W, and a #5 is a perfect fit higher up. There is alot of loose gravel at the top of P2, please use the uberfall instead of rappelling.
By micah richard
From: Litchfield, Connecticut
Sep 18, 2013

A freind of mine fell off the offwidth with a #4 freind up as far as she could get it. She broke her ankle badly on the ledge, that you too will hit if you fall. This route should really not be climbed without a #5, or #6 cam, if you want real pro at the crux.
By Mthoresz
Oct 27, 2014

We didn't have anything big enough to get in the crack, so we started with the first part of Twisted Sister, which was really enjoyable. The second pitch of this climb was really something!! Felt like 2 or 3 separate cruxes in there, and the last was super cool (and committing, and scary, exiting right). Great route!
By Dom R
From: Estes Park, Colorado
Nov 24, 2014

If you go right side in at the off-width it's not that bad. Get the leg jam, then chicken wing/butt scum a few inches and you're at the jug. It's not as intimidating as it seems when done this way. Partner went left side in first and got his leg stuck.

Am I the only one who thinks the second pitch is harder? I found the slippery laybackesque move to clear the last roof wasn't any cakewalk. Pro is solid though.
By WillamR
Mar 28, 2015

I've led this climb thrice at this point. With proper footwork in the crack this climb is no harder than 5.6. Any competency with footjams and chicken wings makes the off width a breeze. I led it each time with a #5 and would admittedly feel uneasy without it.
By Systematic
Oct 19, 2015
rating: 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b

This is a fun lead. Good practice for foot jamming as well as other weird off-width techniques. If you don't know anything about such techniques, be ready to experiment. A #4 C4 is both low and marginal as protection for the off-width.

This climb is not just about the off-width, though. The rest of the route is really fun, interesting, and perfectly protectable.
By M Bageant
From: Cambridge, MA
Apr 18, 2016

If you are not confident on 5.8 offwidths, just bring the #5. The #4 will go in below your feet but I would not want to take that fall due to the slab below.

I did it without the 5-inch piece and found myself very much wishing that I had gone through with my joke to carry up one of the 5-inch rocks from the ground...!
By David Aguasca!
From: New York
Jun 15, 2016

The offwidth is 5.6, folks, it's just barely a body length, and it's less than vertical.

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