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Northeast Face East 

YDS: 5.7 French: 5a Ewbanks: 15 UIAA: V+ ZA: 13 British: MVS 4b

Type:  Trad, 5 pitches, 800'
Original:  YDS: 5.7 French: 5a Ewbanks: 15 UIAA: V+ ZA: 13 British: MVS 4b [details]
FA: Don Wilson and Royal Robbins, September 1954
Page Views: 1,358
Submitted By: Tradiban on Jun 19, 2014  with updates from Donno and 1 more

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (13)
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BETA PHOTO: Climbing topo of Northeast Face East at Tahquitz.


There are no bolts on this 1954 Royal Robbins route.

P1: Climb flakes left of a right-facing dihedral until you're in a left-facing dihedral.

P2: climb up into a right-facing dihedral with a wide crack (a #4 is helpful). Belay at a ledge with a small tree.

P3: leave the ledge and follow a thin crack in a very nice right facing dihedral past two fixed pitons. When under a small roof, make an exciting traverse straight right 15' (5.6) to gain a crack system and then up to a belay spot.

P4: climb up into a right-facing dihedral.(There is a fixed pin ~3' left of the line, just before a smooth crux.) Continue up over a couple of bushes. Belay at a fixed pin in the corner.

P5: continue up steep chunky blocks and trend rightward as desired to gain a rock-filled chute with a tree at its base.

P6: follow the 4th class chute to the topp.


Next crack system right of the large roof, right of El Grandote.


Pro to 3", #4 C4 helpful.

Photos of Northeast Face East Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Pitch 3 at the traverse looking down at thin crack
BETA PHOTO: Pitch 3 at the traverse looking down at thin crack
Rock Climbing Photo: Topping out on P6
Topping out on P6
Rock Climbing Photo: P4 which is shared with NE Face West Variation
P4 which is shared with NE Face West Variation
Rock Climbing Photo: Coming up P2.
Coming up P2.
Rock Climbing Photo: Start of NE Face - East Variation The route starts...
BETA PHOTO: Start of NE Face - East Variation The route starts...

Comments on Northeast Face East Add Comment
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By hjaved
Jul 17, 2014

Did the route in May 2014. Sustained route. 5.6-5.7. The guidebook wasn't helpful so we went off track. Fun route!
By Donno
From: Newport Beach
Jul 6, 2015

I climbed this two days ago and found P3 to be stellar. Try to ignore the "Partners in Crime" bolts placed too close to this line and imagine how it was for Robbins in '54, first time up.
I was able to follow the topo from Vogel's '85 guide :-).
See route description under "updates".
By Countzen Shin
From: Santa Monica, CA
Jul 30, 2015

There are some orphan pitons on p3 or p4. Just use your best judgement and don't follow the pitons to a blind corner thinking it's the route.

You will end up on a 40ft runout on slab, definitely above 5.7 grade.

I think I pooped my pants.
By Jo Nathan
From: San Diego, CA
Aug 8, 2016
rating: 5.8- 5b 16 VI- 14 VS 4c

Challenging route-finding here, especially in the dark. A few notes: P2 climbs a wide crack as listed, not a broken up flakey crack thing - a wide one. Don't go left to a R-facing dihedral. P2 ends on a no-shit, car-size ledge with a small 4in diameter tree AND a two bolt anchor. P1/2 cannot be linked together with a 70m. Should you desire to link P3/4, one MUST extend/direct one's traverse gear away from a couple perfectly rope-width-sized flake that will grab your rope and never let go. Head these lessons and you won't return to your car at 1:29am.
By Ben Crowell
Jul 4, 2017
rating: 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b

I've posted a topo. Please let me know if you see anything that looks inaccurate. Vogel shows a right-hand variation of P5, detouring around the overhangs, which I haven't tried, but I've heard it's harder. For pitch 6 there is a 5.3 variation leading up and to the left, which gets you into the north gully a little more directly than the 4th class line to the right. A fun route in a less popular area where you don't have to climb in a conga line on a Saturday. A possible negative is that there's a certain sameness to a lot of the climbing on pitches 2, 3, and 4.

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