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Coffin Nail 

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

Type:  Trad, 2 pitches, 200'
Original:  YDS: 5.7+ French: 5a Ewbanks: 15 UIAA: V+ ZA: 13 British: MVS 4b [details]
FA: unknown
Page Views: 17,686
Submitted By: Roger Linfield on Feb 24, 2006

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (192)
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BETA PHOTO: A good view of P.2. climb Solid on this one and ye...


This large, clean, right-facing dihedral is to the left of the start to Traitor Horn, and just left of On the Road. Pitch 1 starts with third class scrambling, followed by 5.3 crack climbing. The long second pitch has strenuous hand jamming near the start, an easy finger crack above, and then a crux move over an overhang. The climb finishes on Jensen’s Jaunt.


extra hand size pieces

Photos of Coffin Nail Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: coming up the P1 chimney from the alternate, highe...
coming up the P1 chimney from the alternate, highe...
Rock Climbing Photo: My wife heading up just below the crux.
My wife heading up just below the crux.
Rock Climbing Photo: Looking down where the angle lessens and the hand ...
Looking down where the angle lessens and the hand ...
Rock Climbing Photo: Route overview. First half is 4th class and chimne...
BETA PHOTO: Route overview. First half is 4th class and chimne...
Rock Climbing Photo: Standing over the roof on Coffin Nail. Belay from ...
Standing over the roof on Coffin Nail. Belay from ...
Rock Climbing Photo: The start of Coffin Nail after the easy 5.2 scramb...
BETA PHOTO: The start of Coffin Nail after the easy 5.2 scramb...

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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Apr 30, 2017
By The Gray Tradster
Feb 25, 2006

The best way to approach Traitor Horn or Pearly Gates
By Christian "crisco" Burrell
From: PG, Utah
Aug 14, 2007

Climbed outside the wide gully at the beginning. On the face to the left I actually found a few new bolts (is this some 'new' route?), that although runout, were really easy to follow. I was able to rejoin the crack right when it steepens and becomes tight hands for a few moves. I thought the the roof jam crack at the top was fantastic! Used this route to approach "Traitor Horn."
By tony grice
Aug 28, 2007

The best 5.8 crack on Tahquitz. A must do. Hey crisco I think you were on the arete moves on P.1 of El Camino real.
By ACassebeer
From: Mojave, CA
Aug 25, 2009

Well-protected crux on clean rock. This would be a good first 5.8 lead at Tahquitz.
By Justin Tomlinson
From: Monrovia, CA
Aug 8, 2011

I found the hardest climbing to be near the start of the crack. The lieback dihedral/roof section proved to be very fun and quite solid hands/protection. I agree, a great first 5.8 lead.
By Tradiban
Jan 14, 2012
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

A classic second pitch. We linked this with Traitor Horn for full value. With a 70m rope I belayed for the 2nd pitch after the first traverse past the "traitor" horn. With long runners rope drag can be avoided easily.

For clarification:
Pitch One: Easy 5.3 to an alcove with a tree.
Pitch Two: 5.8 crack with a nice to hands rest on the left before committing to a nice layback to a good roof pull. Complete the first traverse under the "Traitor Horn" to a belay if linking to the "Traitor Horn" route. 70m rope might be required for this.
Pitch Three: Up the corner a bit from the belay, then traverse right to clip a pin then figure out how to mount the horn. Don't blow the moves onto the horn or you will find your self with a ugly fall. Once standing on the horn. Move over the lip and belay 30ft higher in a wide crack.
Pitch Four: Up and right for a nice friction pitch. Standard friction descent from there.
By The Ruin-er
From: CA
Apr 8, 2012
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

did this into traitor horn today, its amazing and 5.8
By natebloser
May 27, 2014

We approached the route using the start to El Camino Real, then up and right past a bolt. Nice extra credit.
By Sam Cannon
From: Salt Lake City, UT
Jun 19, 2014
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

As a counterpoint to an opinion above, I think it would be cruel to put someone on this as their first 5.8 lead. Stout for the grade and sustained.

That being said, this combined with Traiter Horn -- HOLY FUQ. Coffin + Horn = maybe the best 5.8 I've ever done. Just superb.
By Chris Bersbach
From: Arroyo Grande, CA
Jul 15, 2014
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

Some may find Sam's comment above to be true, although Coffin Nail was my *second* 5.8 gear lead, after Traitor Horn (my partner and I did the first two pitches of Jensen's to TH the day before, then CN to TH that day). It definitely felt stout to me at the time, but the pro is so, SO good that I still think it's a solid, if challenging example of what sustained 5.8 feels like, and therefore a good lead for the emerging, ambitious 5.8 leader. I'm looking forward to going back and doing it again, and expect that it'll feel much more casual, now that we've climbed some of the hill's classic 5.9s.

I *definitely* second (third? fourth?) the notion that Coffin to Traitor makes for a truly incredible 5.8 when linked.
By DJ Reyes
From: Northern Nevada
Sep 18, 2014

Led this years ago and I can confirm that this is pretty stout for the grade. A great route to be sure, just be aware that the climbing is somewhat sustained. I can still remember all these years later how much fun the little roof section was. Have fun.
By jeffblankman
From: San Diego, Ca
May 25, 2015

Great climb w/link to TH. Belay high after the five-nuthin P1 and you can reach the alcove after the false horn with a 60m rope. We did, and drag was not bad w/thoughtful rope management.

W/good crack tech the lower "strenuous" crack section of P2 was a cruise, I thought. The "5.3" section (Vogel Guide) below the lieback was not bad, but stiffer than advertized IMO.

Knowing what I know now--how good the hands and pro are--I'd rest up at the amazing stance at the start of the lieback, then fire up it only placing one piece until the roof, then plug a small cam there and make the move up.
By Anouk Erni
From: Portland, OR
Sep 8, 2015
rating: 5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

A very good climb, but it just gets greasier at the first moves above the chimney every time I do it. The crux for me is the jamming before getting to the coffin section. The face is super slick and the corner makes it awkward to properly jam (I'm sure back in the day it was a solid 5.7), so I'd upgrade this first section to a 5.8+. Everything beyond that is fun 5.7. The pull over the roof at the top of the coffin is way easier than implied. Good protection, and a solid finger or hand jam above will help you easily pull that move. Link this route up with Traitor Horn for even more fun!
By Steve_Sil.
From: Los Angeles, CA
Oct 5, 2015
rating: 5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

We started to climb this route on Oct 3rd 2015 and were attacked by bees (wasps?) at the first tree belay. We bailed off as quick as we could but my partner and I still received about 20-30 stings each. It sucked. Be careful.
By polloloco
From: Downey, CA
Jun 20, 2016

Great climb. Be careful of a very loose, long, thin block on the left about 10 ft before you exit the chimney. An unaware person would easily pull as it would be a great jug or step.
No wasps when we did it 6/2016.
By Jon Ruland
From: Tucson, AZ
Apr 30, 2017
rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a

5.8? hah! that's a good one.

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