The Whiskey Cliff is a larger, more broken, and slightly lower angle version of Eagle Lake Cliff. Whereas Eagle Lake Cliff has more Yosemite-style cracks, this has more featured cracks, face holds, and edges. While only a few hundred feet from Eagle Lake Cliff, it sits in a narrow canyon and remains hidden until you reach the base. There’s a sweet swimming hole at the far end of the cliff. This is just the beta for rock climbing. There is also ice climbing in the winter. This area is called Eagle Creek Cliff in the South Lake Tahoe SuperTopo guide.
The Whiskey Cliff Near Eagle Lake Cliff
Credit: Chris McNamara
Approach: Walk to Eagle Lake Cliff. You’re now only 300 feet away, but the Whiskey Cliff still is not visible. From below Space Walk (about the middle of Eagle Lake Cliff), continue southwest 70 feet through the talus without gaining or losing much elevation. Eventually there should be a little trail that leads to the top of the cliff and skirts down around the left. There is a trail along the base of the entire cliff.
When to climb: Climb on hot summer mornings when the climbs are shaded or on cold spring
or fall afternoons when the routes go into the sun. If you show up and the routes are too cold, then walk across the river to the Eagle’s Nest. Because the climbs are above a seasonally raging river, it’s smart to bring a water filter so you don’t have to carry water on the 45-minute approach.
Toprope / Mini-Traxion Beta: It’s easy to walk to the anchors for routes 1-19. Routes 19-32 usually require either rapping in off a tree or leading a 5.10a or 5.10b trad route. A 60m rope lets you toprope most climbs but a 70m rope is more convenient. This place in a “mini-traxion dream.” Cruise in with shoes, harness, mini traxion/trango cinch and a 120” 9mm rope and you are good to go! If you run or hike fast and are efficient, you can probably get 10 routes in car to car in under 3 hours.
Cell Phones/Emergency Contact: Cell phones with AT&T BARELY work next to the anchor for route 3.
**This is still a work in progress. Some routes still need names. Some routes are dirty and some are very clean. Some routes with names are already named ice climbs (please email email@example.com and let me know what they are).
Nice work on all the Exellent rock climbs
I've often admired the stellar stone
while ice climbing in the canyon.
And the best lines are looking
Cleaned up in the past few years
Thanks very much for the work!
As far as naming the routes
Differently for the rock climbs
Than the long ago established ice climbs
It is a tricky ethical dilemma.
When I get to a real computer I'll try
To get the ice climbs matched to your
Once again thanks for the climbs
Can't wait to hop on a few!
This is the area formerly known as Eagle Creek Cliff, eh? I thought it was in a guidebook of yours already? Regardless, more beta doesn't hurt! My favorite aspect of the cliff is you mostly get around the corner from the highly traveled Eagle Lake shore and things start to feel wilderness-esque.
edit: Ah! I see you say as much about the former name and guidebook inclusion. Reading rules.