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Bishops Terrace 

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

Type:  Trad, 1 pitch, 150'
Original:  YDS: 5.8 French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- ZA: 15 British: HVS 4c [details]
FA: FA: Russ Warne, Dave McFadden, and Steve Roper, December, 1959 FFA: Chuck Pratt, Herb Swedlund, 1960.
Page Views: 32,377
Submitted By: Salamanizer suchoski on Oct 11, 2006

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BETA PHOTO: Bishop's Terrace enjoying a rare moment of solitud...

Closures for Peregrine Falcon Protection MORE INFO >>>


Start up and right of the main church bowl area. This is the classic double crack seen from the road. One of the best 5.8's in the Valley.One pitch ends at a sloping ledge. Rap from the bolts on top.


Cams .5"-3"

Photos of Bishops Terrace Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Keith almost at the top of the second pitch
Keith almost at the top of the second pitch
Rock Climbing Photo: The optional belay on bishop's terrace. I remember...
The optional belay on bishop's terrace. I remember...
Rock Climbing Photo: best crack ive ever handed
best crack ive ever handed
Rock Climbing Photo: 3rd pitch 5.6
3rd pitch 5.6
Rock Climbing Photo: Looking down from the first pitch belay.  Nice big...
BETA PHOTO: Looking down from the first pitch belay. Nice big...
Rock Climbing Photo: Looking down upon the 2nd pitch.  Nice long hand a...
BETA PHOTO: Looking down upon the 2nd pitch. Nice long hand a...
Rock Climbing Photo: The white streak is the upper half of Bishops Terr...
BETA PHOTO: The white streak is the upper half of Bishops Terr...
Rock Climbing Photo: Keith leading up the first pitch
Keith leading up the first pitch

Comments on Bishops Terrace Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Jun 2, 2017
By Josh Hibbard
From: Los Angeles Area, CA
Mar 26, 2007
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

This is a very fun climb and very popular. The second pitch was more enjoyable for me all around. A must do if you are climbing in Yosemite and can't make it up the big walls (like me...).
By M. Morley
From: Sacramento, CA
Jul 21, 2007

Pitches 1 & 2 can be linked into one fantastic 195' pitch.
By Sirius
From: Oakland, CA
Jul 23, 2007

Agree with Mike Morley - much better climb done as one pitch.
By RockMonkey
From: Concord, CA
Sep 18, 2007
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

Doing it in one pitch is the way to go...just remember to trail another rope (2 - 60M are needed) for the rappel.
By armand rollice
From: rancho cucamonga
Feb 27, 2008

Did this in one pitch. The hand crack at the top is awesome. the view is breathtaking!
By vincent L.
From: Redwood City
Mar 2, 2008

In order to reach the actual bishop's terrace, and the good little aid crack that goes through the roof of bishop's terrace, go directly right from the anchor atop the bishop's terrace route. Then head up an easy crack to gain the right side of the terrace. From here the terrace slopes down to the right.

What i used to do, is do this second pitch as I described, and then rap off the anchors that are on the far right side of bishop's terrace. Here you only need one rope to rap to the ground. Something to think about if you only have one rope, or if there is a party anxious to start up the route and you do not want to make them wait further by rapping the route.
By tooTALLtim
From: Boulder, CO
Jun 9, 2008

How do you call this one of the best 5.8's in the Valley!?!??! This is nowhere on par with Nutcracker.
By Christian "crisco" Burrell
From: PG, Utah
Aug 7, 2008

Just a fantastic crack!
By ccmski body
From: Seattle, WA
Oct 17, 2009
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

Do it in one pitch
By Ian G.
From: PDX, OR
Feb 9, 2010
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

I've seen not one but two people get their knees stuck on this climb and have to be rescued. Apparently they let blood pool in the upper leg which subsequently perma-cammed the knee in. It looked really painful.
By bergbryce
From: California
Apr 21, 2010
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

I also recommend doing it in one pitch. The hoard of people at the base will appreciate that ;-) While it's a fun route, I didn't find it mind blowingly good.
I would recommend taking some big gear. I only had one 3" and wish I had a 4" as well.
By Wesley Ashwood
From: Squamish, BC
Aug 2, 2010

I had a #4 camalot with me and used it. Though you could probably get away without it.
By Scott Reed
From: Bozeman, MT
Sep 18, 2010

Great route. Use gear sparingly on the lower, easier sections to assure you have pro for the upper portion of the climb.
By Aaron Liebling
Oct 17, 2010

"Use gear sparingly on the lower, easier sections to assure you have pro for the upper portion of the climb."

What Scott said. When done as one pitch (which is fantastic) and leading near your limit, be sure to keep some gear for the end or you will be facing some exciting climbing above protection...ask me how I know :)
By Ken Trout
From: Golden, CO
Feb 1, 2011

FIRST ASCENT: Russ Warne, Dave McFadden, and Steve Roper, December, 1959.

FIRST FREE ASCENT: Chuck Pratt, Herb Swedlund, 1960.
By Mark P Thomas
From: Draper
Feb 7, 2011
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

It is not necessary to use the alternate start to do the 5.7 OW variation, despite how it appears in SuperTopo. The alternate start sucks in several ways compared to the standard start. I don't see any reason to use it unless you're climbing with a 50m rope.
By Rodger Raubach
Mar 14, 2011
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

Marvelous crack climbing; spectacular! Solid at 5.8. Takes all the pro you would ever need--or want.
By Ryan Justen
From: St. Paul, MN
May 18, 2011

This is one of the best climbs I've done. Nice sustained 5.7ish climbing with some 5.8 moves.

I brought doubles from .5 to 3 with one #4 (optional 3rd #2) C4's. Bring lots of slings for down low.

One pitch is really fun! (60m rope works fine as long as you trail one for the rappel)
By Yosemitesam
Dec 29, 2011

From the anchor, one 70m rope barely reaches (tie knots!) the big tree you see about 30ft up the route. I've done it twice and the rope pulled clean. A 3rd class scramble reaches the ground.
By Jan Tarculas
From: Riverside, Ca
Aug 8, 2012
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

Just did this climb this past Monday in one pitch. Had doubles in .5-3, one #4 and set of nuts. Climb takes nuts really well, use long slings at the bottom and save one #2 after the double crack up top, which is a lot easier than it looks! Excellent climb!
By Andy Weinmann
From: Silver Spring, MD
Sep 17, 2012
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

Beautiful line. Did this on 15SEP2012 and there's a #3 BD Cam fixed at the bulge below the twin cracks.

Also, if you don't wanna take a #4, I used an offset yellow/blue master cam in a pin scar on the face to the right of the OW...right when my #3 woulda been nearly tipped out in the OW. Bomber.
By Mike Holley
From: Boone, NC
Oct 24, 2012

Amazing Introduction to The Valley Crack climbing!! By far one of the best 8's I have ever done! A Total Must do!! You Can just reach the rappel with a 70 meter if you stop about 20 feet off the deck on a huge ledge, but you will surely need two if your using 60's.

Do It!!!!
By Sara Ann
From: Sunnyvale, CA
Nov 28, 2012
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

Don't take the offwidth up and right of the small roof unless you're sure you can climb it without getting your knee stuck... Much more fun to exit the left side of the roof straight up!

Take a number 4.
By TacoDelRio
From: All up in yo bidniss.
Feb 13, 2013

Trailed a 200ft static behind me (followed my buddy). Rope ended about 5ft above the ground, so from anchor straight down to the start is about 205".

Fixed #4 C4 up there.

When throwing ropes for the rapp, try to throw climber's left of the route. There is a huge flake down climber's right that eats rope. There is a big tree near it.
By Kirk B.
From: Boise, ID
Feb 22, 2013
rating: 5.8- 5b 16 VI- 14 VS 4c

Run out the rope. It's The Way. Perfect fit.
By Kyle Napierkowski
Apr 29, 2013

This route was a good reminder to me that Yosemite 5.8 is different than 5.8 elsewhere. Although, we climbed Nutcracker earlier in the day and struggled much more with this route.

Straight-in hand jam section was pretty short and the wide cracks were tough for me as a yosemite neophyte.
By Ryan N
From: Bellingham, WA
Jun 16, 2013

BEWARE, if you only bring gear to 3", be prepared to runout offwidth for 8-10ft. I suggest that you bring 2 #3, and 1 #4 camalot in addition to a regular rack.
By Landon McBrayer
From: Salt Lake City, UT
Apr 25, 2014

Set of nuts; doubles to 3"; 1 #4 C4. Easily rappelled with one 70m to the half-dead tree that is plumb-line below the anchor. 3rd class scramble from there to the deck. A great pitch.
By trying hard
From: Sierra East Side
May 22, 2014

Used a 70 meter rope, led in one pitch. Rapped to the tree. ***There is a down climb right in front of the tree that is really mellow if you want it saves a rappel.***
By Dr Williams
Aug 11, 2014

A good short 5.8 crack route that is good for a warm up and to get ready for bigger (and harder) Yosemite routes. Can easily be done over and over again to work on technique.
By dnaiscool
Mar 31, 2015

Done in one pitch, you will need:
a regular assortment of nuts (nothing below a #8 stopper...if I recall)
then double #1, 3, 4 Camalot
and triple #2.

Drop those nuts in all over the lower portion of the route, saving the cams for the meat higher up.

If you want to do another "5.8" crack, head over to the Left Side of Little John for some more of that old school, full value, no BS Yosemite crack climbing...and make sure to haul along those #4 & #5 Camalots...just sayin'...
By Alex Motal
Apr 13, 2015

Climbed this in 2013. It's a great route but we got our double fisherman's stuck in the crack on the rap down. I would suggest using an overhand knot for a double rope rappel. Also, a number 4 is helpful on this route.
By Max Rausch
From: Monterey, California
Jul 9, 2015
rating: 5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

Potentially my new favorite lead in the valley. Forgot to bring a #4 with me and ran out the entire off width section. (Almost pee'd myself.) Did it as one pitch at dusk and got a fantastic sunset from the top. If you want to feel safe, bring a #4, maybe even a #5. If you want to scare yourself, bring neither.
By Anthony Andersen
Feb 10, 2016

The large tree at the ledge you can repel to has fallen down and is now on the groumd, supported by 1 or 2 smaller trees, with the base end up. A little sketchy.
By Chris D
From: the couch
Sep 27, 2016

Oh my goodness, this is an amazing route. As I followed the last 40 feet, I couldn't help but chuckle, both at the beauty and improbability of such a steep crack going at 5.8, and at the thought of all the people who have probably come to the Valley and made this their first lead, just to get an idea of what 5.8 in Yosemite means. Ha! They'd have been better served trying their hand at Harry Daley. The second half of this route is burly sustained 5.8. What a beautiful climb!
By Chad Lawver
From: Yosemite Village, California
Sep 30, 2016

If anyone finds an iPhone 5 by the base, that would be mine. A message if you find it would be much appreciated. Thanks! I'll remove this in a few weeks if it hasn't been found....
By Erik Sloan
Mar 8, 2017

Good News: As of Dec 2016 we added a station for one-rope rappelling. So you only need one 60m rope to climb the route. The rappel station is straight down from the anchor, 95 feet, about five feet to the right of the crack as you climb up.

Awesome Climb!

Erik -
By Rude Boy
From: San Francisco, CA
Apr 24, 2017

If you want a little adventure do the next pitch after topping out on the double cracks. Continue up the corner to the roof and then skirt along the wall under the roof to a bolted anchor/rap station. Easy but mostly unprotected. 1 rappel with 2 60m ropes and you will hit the ground.

Rock Climbing Photo: up the corner
up the corner

Rock Climbing Photo: along the wall
along the wall
By Julius Elinson
Apr 24, 2017

I can confirm the new rap station has been added and has some nice shiny new bolts -- thanks Erik!

However, we had a single 70m which gets you just a bit further down to a big ledge directly under the anchor. From there, it was a straight-forward scramble down to the base. No need for the hanging belay & second rap.
By Nicole Golden
Jun 2, 2017

Thanks for the new rap anchors, hopefully this will help with clearing up some of the traffic.

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