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North Rabbit Ear
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Little Question 

YDS: 5.9 French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: HVS 5a

Type:  Trad
Original:  YDS: 5.9 French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: HVS 5a [details]
FA: Mike Bryan, solo
Page Views: 133
Submitted By: Marta Reece on Nov 24, 2013

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The description below, found in NMSU archives, was created by the legendary Southwest Mountaineers. It is at a minimum twenty years old, but likely dates as far back as 1970’s. The rock itself may have changed since that time. The rating system certainly has. Original rating for Little Question was "hard fifth" with "5.7?" after it. For comparison, the Davis Route is listed in the same document as 5.3 and Boyer’s Chute as 5.2. So please treat what follows as a rough guide to an adventure, not as a solid and current info. If you do climb the route, sharing of what you learn would be appreciated.

The overhang mentioned in the "location" below can be passed on the Right. Ten feet above it, you can traverse 25' right and then traverse 20' back to the left. (Or you can go a few feet right and up.) Now above you is a large cluttered ledge leading left and on it is a large flake behind which you can chimney. From the top of the flake move up and right along a ramp until you find a break in the overhangs above (about 50'). Climb through the break and onto forth class climbing for about 60' (until you reach the Miracle Route). Now move down and to the left around a corner and onto a huge ledge, the Bivouac Ledge. This first part of Little Question can be done as an alternative beginning for the Peapod of Awful Buttress.

Walk along this ledge until you find a fairly clean, blank area above you (about 40' along). Just past this is a gully (part of the Pea Pod). Start up the gully add after about 8 of 10 feet move out and to the right onto the blank area. Angle right toward a crack overflowing with moss. Scramble up and left across the moss and then continue up weaving as necessary until you get to the base of a large, bush-filled crack. Thrutch (thrash and clutch simultaneously) up this crack about 40 feet (just past this point there is a distinct break in the bushes). From here you can traverse left on friction climbing. Continue left, toward and up a 10' dihedral. From the top of this, edge left around a corner to an alcove. Go left and up to a jam crack. Above the crack, you will find yourself on a broken knife edge. (The Pea Pod itself is down and to your left.) You are again on the Miracle Route. Finish by moving down and to the right and then back up as you would for the Miracle Route.


If you look at the base of the North Rabbit Ear from the Rabbit Ears Canyon, you can easily see large black streaks running up from almost ground level to about 100'. To the right of this is the base of Surprise Buttress. Standing near the base of the North Rabbit Ear, under the black streaks, you will notice that to the right of the black streaks is a brown area and to the right of this the rock is covered with green lichen. In the green area, near the edge, is a steep, broken ramp. This ramp, containing a small overhang about 50 feet up is the start of Little Question.


As for hardware: a selection of nuts including a #5 Chouinard stopper and #6, 7, and 8 Hexcentrics (the First Ascent was done clean). (Note: this advise is also from the 1970's)

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