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North Overhang 

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

Type:  Trad, 1 pitch, 100'
Original:  YDS: 5.9 French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: HVS 5a [details]
FA: John Wolfe and Howard Weamer, June 1969; FFA: John Long and
Page Views: 10,248
Submitted By: Adam Stackhouse on Jun 20, 2002

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (234)
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BETA PHOTO: The full route


You can start it either with the first pitch of Overhang Bypass (from the right) or with it's original first pitch (up the north side). Either way, you end up in the obvious scoop on the righthand side of the north face. Instead of heading right as you do for Overhang, climb up into the left side of the scoop, clipping a couple of (hopefully replaced by now) bolts. Lock on the crack and swing up and around the corner into the steep hand crack that angles up and left to the summit. This move is quite exciting, but a classic!


Pro on this is pretty good; 2 bolts and take some small-medium-large cams and nuts and you're good.

Photos of North Overhang Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Woody Stark leading pitch 2
Woody Stark leading pitch 2
Rock Climbing Photo: Intersection Rock - West Face
BETA PHOTO: Intersection Rock - West Face
Rock Climbing Photo: Sinking the jam and feeling a little more secure.
Sinking the jam and feeling a little more secure.
Rock Climbing Photo: Intersection Rock - North Face
BETA PHOTO: Intersection Rock - North Face
Rock Climbing Photo: The final roof. Overhang Byplass goes right, North...
BETA PHOTO: The final roof. Overhang Byplass goes right, North...
Rock Climbing Photo: Climber topping out on the final crack on North Ov...
Climber topping out on the final crack on North Ov...
Rock Climbing Photo: Having Fun on North Overhang
Having Fun on North Overhang
Rock Climbing Photo: North overhang classic start
North overhang classic start

Comments on North Overhang Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Aug 23, 2016
By Casey Bernal
From: Arvada, CO
Jul 9, 2002

I was at the base of double cross and i saw a guy break his ankle on the crux of this route. From what we could see he didnt fall too far but must have hit his foot on the slab below the steep and angling crux. Be sure to protect this. The resulting rescue took over 3 hours even though they were less than a ropelength from the ground. What a huge difference self-rescue knowledge would have made...casey bernal
By ryan jacobs
Oct 10, 2003

dont let the exposure from the roof get your head its five nine i clipped the bolts under the roof and ran for it the holds are wicked deep
By Kayte Knower
Feb 1, 2004

I almost didn't get on this route due to the other comments about the bolts and broken ankle, but I decided that it looked safe and I think this route is very safe so long as you keep your cool when you turn the corner. Although the bolts arn't warm and fuzzy, there is no sign of rust and they haven't pulled out of the rock at all. The crack protects perfectly, and as for the slab below this is one of the most vertical moderates at J-tree. I think this was one of the best climbs I did and I'm glad I didn't skip it because of the above comment.
By Bo Johnston
Feb 7, 2005

How can one avoid all the rope drag on this one???
By Mike Hack
Feb 7, 2005

We came up the north face (nw corner?), after doing lower right ski track (but you can scramble up to this start). From there, it can be done without setting a belay in the alcove. Then clip the bolts, but don't place any other gear in the alcove, and the rope will pretty much run straight down that east face to your belayer with no drag. I didn't place any gear after turning the corner. By the time I felt secure enough to stop for gear, I was only a move or two away from relative safety. Heady!
By Sirius
From: Oakland, CA
Dec 30, 2005

Remember to protect your second beyond the crux moves. Placing no gear in the diagonal crack after the corner will set them up for a big swing if they come off at the crux.

There is a lone bolt on the summit just about directly above the crux that can easily be accessed once you've topped out. Seems like you could use this as a directional if you didn't get a chance to throw in a cam below.

Not sure why that bolt is there?
By Darshan Ahluwalia
From: Petaluma, CA
Nov 20, 2006

I fell at the crux leading the climb Sunday. The bolt held. I was right at it when I fell, trying to get established in the crack.

A lot of rope stretched but the slab was still a good safe distance below me.
By susan peplow
From: Joshua Tree
Feb 25, 2007

It's hard to believe that people free solo this route. Getting out from under the roof with the no right foot and mediocore left foot is completely sketch. If you're nervous about the bolts and protecting the move (like I was) you can put a cam in but it clogs the crack where your handjam would be. Not only for you, but your second.

After leading it today, it certainly looks like once you get established into the crack and can put some positive weight on your left foot, you're golden. Forget the pro and just go!

By Will S
From: Joshua Tree
Mar 2, 2007

The north side start is awkward flake-humping, the O-Bypass start may be a better option. We did it as one pitch from the ledge, but have seen people belay in the alcove just right of the bolts. There are two bolts just before the crux. The top bolt is complete junk, I didn't bother clipping it because you can wiggle the stud back and forth in the hole and it's pointing down, so a fall would be a "pull" rather than "shear" type should probably be chopped. The bottom one is good enough (although the hanger is a spinner and does look way beat from who knows how many whippers).
By outdooreric
From: Bishop, CA
Mar 25, 2007
rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a

Kind of a fun, exposed one-move wonder. Still worthwhile and a striking line to look at from the campground.

The two bolts are very close together (approx 2 feet) and given their appearance (look like SMC hangers?) should be replaced with one modern one. This would not only make the route safer, but would help eliminate the rope drag caused by clipping the higher bolt with too short of a quickdraw. Any concensus?
By Andy Laakmann
Site Landlord
From: Bend, OR
Apr 18, 2008
rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a

Here's the ultra-cool-no-rope-drag way to send North Overhang.

Launch into the starting flake, protect as you see fit but use long slings on everything. Once you make the 5.7 step left out of the flake, DO NOT PLACE ANY MORE PRO. Zip all the way up to the alcove just right of the bolts protecting the crux (75'). Yes you'll die if you fall, but the climbing is super easy. Clipping the bolts is a little scary without pro facing a 100' fall, so you can place some temporary protection before clipping the bolts. Reach left and clip the bolts with long slings, and add a nut or small cam if you want it. Remove your temporary protection. Flip the rope off the slab. Voila.... a perfectly running rope!

Then send the move! Be sure to go up a few moves after the crux before placing any additional gear or your second will curse you.

If you want your second to love you, don't place any gear in the diagonal (or remove it once your safe) and use the lone bolt as a directional/anchor (you can use the rope to extend your anchor to the rap chains). These two steps will keep the rope out of the crack for your second.
By vanishing spy
Feb 23, 2009

The bolts appeared fine last week. Very exciting to reach out from under a roof, into a crack and face.

Clip the last bolt for your 2nd. I climbed the route as a 2nd and had a horrible time keeping the rope out of the crack where my hands needed to go. The high & random bolt near the end was probably placed just for your follower.
By Adam Leavy
From: Asheville, NC
Feb 1, 2011
rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a

Hello! I replaced the bolts to this wonderful ditty on 12/30/2010. Good to go!! Two nice camo metolius hangers. Only a hanger swap. bolts are just fine! Hanger not so much....
By Donno
From: Newport Beach
Oct 22, 2011

Clip the lower bolt, skip the upper bolt, and clip the directional bolt on the summit.
By Jace Mullen
From: Oceanside, Ca
Jan 6, 2015

Extend the bolts (both upper and lower OR just lower) or you're going to have a bad time. A cam to keep it out of the crack would also be nice idea. I
By Dimes
From: Joshua Tree, Ca.
Aug 23, 2016

Both bolts below the overhang were replaced by the ASCA with 1/2" stainless steel bolts and rock colored stainless steel hangers on 8-23-16. Please support the ASCA so this kind of work can continue. Thanks

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