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Crescent Crack, Left Variation 

YDS: 5.10- French: 6a Ewbanks: 18 UIAA: VI+ ZA: 18 British: E1 5a

Type:  Trad, 6 pitches, 700', Grade III
Original:  YDS: 5.10- French: 6a Ewbanks: 18 UIAA: VI+ ZA: 18 British: E1 5a [details]
FA: Ray Ringle, Dave Baker 70's
Page Views: 2,294
Submitted By: Chris Prewitt on Nov 17, 2010

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A composite image of the west face. Crescent is th...

Restrictions January 1 - April 30 MORE INFO >>>


Crescent Left is a great, Sonoran alpine-type route with huge exposure and consistent climbing up the proud central buttress and dihedral of Table Mountain. Expect strenuous crack climbing, easy to moderate chimneying, and even a bit of slab. There are sections of looseness, but only enough to heighten the experience. Other sections are as bulletproof as it gets. All belays are on gear except for p4’s single anchor. Partial sun on pitches 3-6 can be a blessing or curse depending on temps.

P1 Climb the thin crack past steep rock to gain a good belay spot in a large corner. (5.10a, 80’)

P2 Move right 10 feet to climb a flake and left facing corner. Fire up the awesome crack, eventually reaching easier climbing up blocky terrain, all the way to a belay behind a huge boulder. Be sure to have medium nuts along for this sustained rope-stretcher. (5.10, 190’)

P3 From the right side of the belay ledge tunnel up the fun chimney until a funky roof necessitates moving right, then up past some beargrass to a gear belay. (5.9-, 115’)

P4 Climb the giant right-facing dihedral to its end and then traverse right 15’ to a stance around the corner at a bolt belay. Many hand to fist sized pieces on this cool pitch. I used a #5 friend but probably could have gotten by with substituting another #4 instead (save some weight). There are two original ¼”ers, one fat new bolt, and possibly a piece back towards the traverse for a belay. This could use another new belay bolt. (5.9-, 150’)

P5 Head up the open book plugging gear into pods until a move left to slabby arête and bolt. Continue up the slab to a traverse left past an agave then up to easier ground. (5.9, 100’)

P6 Pick a way to climb up through the summit overhang, watching for loose blocks. (100’)

Descend via north rap (1 double-rope) or descent gully (2 single rope raps and scrambling).

Approach and Start 

Northwest Buttress of Table Mountain

Approach via Pima Canyon and rap N side or up from Rams Field Pass to the west.

Begin at a good belay spot slightly below and right from the highest point of the toe of Table, just up from the rappel tree for the original start. To get to the start of the original route, rap and traverse over to a bushy ledge and crack system. Three pitches up these two routes join at the boulder ledge belay. See Kerry guide for original beta.

North Rappel bolts are 40' down ledges off the end nearest the next formation to the east (Great campsite nearby at the summit). It may be wise to bring tat for the anchor. It's about 160' to the tree, a 60M allows passing another slab. From here, another short rap or a scramble around and down brings you to the ramp cutting along the east face.


cams: 1 ea 0.5-3", 2 ea 0.75-2.5" (maybe 3"), 1 ea 4" (optional)
1 set nuts, esp mediums
ropes: 1 60M, or 2x60M if doing N rap

Photos of Crescent Crack, Left Variation Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: H after the second pitch of the Left Variation of ...
H after the second pitch of the Left Variation of ...
Rock Climbing Photo: Dan and Jared atop Left Crescent
Dan and Jared atop Left Crescent
Rock Climbing Photo: Crescent Crack Left 5.10, 700'  Start of Left is j...
BETA PHOTO: Crescent Crack Left 5.10, 700' Start of Left is j...
Rock Climbing Photo: Looking down pitch four. (5.9-)
Looking down pitch four. (5.9-)

Comments on Crescent Crack, Left Variation Add Comment
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By Jared Guglielmo
From: Tucson, Arizona
Dec 2, 2013

Pitch 2 is a RIGHT facing corner and is an absolutely fantastic pitch. I climbed to the end of the rope and belayed behind a ~7 foot tall block on a ledge. The 3rd pitch had nothing resembling "tunneling through a fun chimney" and was more like climbing over loose blocks to fun moves right around a roof. This is a great route.
By JMo
From: Tucson, AZ
Apr 28, 2014
rating: 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b

I don't get these pitch counts. We did 4 plus a slabby summit scramble. 2 and 3 were both 200 feet- 60 required - and w a 60 don't plan on any rope left for the anchors. This puts you at a 6 foot tall block to sling w long cordalette at top of 2, and just below the little traverse to 3 bolt anchor at top of 3. We were 2 rope teams and unanimous that the better belay for p3 was top of big corner just below traverse. Amazing light blue offset DMM nut (large) you can slot in from above and left of the old rusty pin for p3 careful what you pull on and place behind on this route. It's amazing backcountry experience right in the heart of the ol tuce, but p1 and p2 both have you standing and pulling on death blocks. Stellar experience. Get up there and do it!
By Lucas gibson
From: Tucson, Arizona
Mar 1, 2016
rating: 5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a

Done this route twice, couldn't find the descent gully the first time and spent the night on top in early December with David. I recommend doing the rap off the North side, It is 1 very straight forward double rope rap and then some scrambling down to the start. This is a Really high quality Sonoran alpine back country adventure route. Long beautiful hike, Glorious climbing up great cracks, precarious death blocks, chimneys and a reasonably spicy face. Definitely want a few no. 3's for the crescent pitch or maybe big hexes. Have fun.

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