Woodfords: The best crack climing in Tahoe, Hands down T'rad

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Chim-Chim

climber
Topic Author's Original Post - Jun 15, 2009 - 10:23am PT
Thers is no doubt that Woodfords Canyon in Alpine co. has the best and purist crack climing in the entire Tahoe area. There are over 100 5.10 cracks that are clean and ready to climb. This area lacks the dikes and other face holds that allow easy passage, but this lack of face features enable one to push their limits with out the fear of hitting something during a fall. Excellent protection,splitter cracks and virtually no competition create the perfect opportunity to become an expert crack climber. Come on out and sample the treats. Chim-Chim
Salamanizer

Trad climber
Vacaville Ca,
Jun 15, 2009 - 10:52am PT
Why don't you write a guidebook? Within months there will be a toprope strung from every route, the place will be swarming with people, trails will be stamped out to every nook and cranny, creative parking spots will be found and the crowds will grow with every passing year.

Careful what you wish for, you might just get it.

I'd enjoy the place while you can, it won't be like it is forever.
aldude

climber
Monument Manor
Jun 15, 2009 - 03:07pm PT
You're being facetious....right? Is it really IN Tahoe? What about Grand Illusion,Star Walls @ Donner, Silly Willy and on and on....
Tahoe climber

Trad climber
a dark-green forester out west
Jun 15, 2009 - 03:20pm PT
Thanks for the super positive vibes, guys.

OP: A more sincere thanks to you for reminding us of some sweet climbing.

TC
Chim-Chim

climber
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 16, 2009 - 10:29am PT
Sure Donner Summit, Sugarloaf, and other areas have great crack climbing but how many people really climb 5.13? Not many. I know two people who have successfully redpointed Silly Willy Crack at the leap. Both are world class climbers. The only place that compares to The Woodfords for "mortal" climbers is Eagle Lake Cliff. Many 5.10 and a few excellent 5.11 cracks exist, making it a fantastic area. However for sheer numbers and variety The Woodfords is hard to beat. This area has more first ascent potential than the rest of Tahoe put together. And compared to the mileages to the other areas you mentioned it is as close or closer. Although Woodfords is not in the Tahoe Basin, either are the other areas you mentioned. So no I'm not being facetious just statisical and the numbers tell all. Come check it out and if you want to put up some 5.13 cracks they're here waiting to be uncovered.
mrtropy

Trad climber
Nor Cal
Jun 16, 2009 - 11:20am PT
Chim-Chim,

I have driven through that canyon tens of times through the years. How is the potential for easy to moderate routes there? That is .8- mid .10. I know many areas have a lack of these these climbs because the developers climb harder. This is the level I climb and have put a bunch of climbs on Ebbetts Pass at this level. I guess I should head on up and check it out.
aldude

climber
Monument Manor
Jun 16, 2009 - 03:01pm PT
Oh I've climbed there...even done some FA's including King Diamond (11b)w/Crawford&Root. One of These Days is a fine one pitch route.....but that's about it... flaky rock - grovelly,bushy,sandy uphill approaches for 1/2 pitch routes relegate this area to the obscurity heap.
taylor

Social climber
the local crag
Jun 16, 2009 - 03:13pm PT
yes, a obscurity heap indead, it would be much more worth your time to go to eagle lake, or the leap. easier approaches too )))
(edit: sarcasm intended)
Shimanilami

Trad climber
San Jose, CA
Jun 16, 2009 - 03:25pm PT
Sounds awesome. Where is it, exactly?
mongrel

Trad climber
Truckee, CA
Jun 16, 2009 - 07:16pm PT
Nah, it's a total crap area. Not enough bolt anchors halfway up the climb so you can lower off after the piece of crack that suits your taste.
Salamanizer

Trad climber
Vacaville Ca,
Jun 16, 2009 - 07:25pm PT
I agree, there is better climbing in the area... Especially if you like adventurous multi pitch polished slab. As far as pure crack climbing goes, eh! It's alright if you live near by, and worth an occasional trip or two, but I'd rather just head off to the Valley.
Chim-Chim

climber
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 16, 2009 - 07:26pm PT
Whoa, sorry to have ruffled so many feathers.I apoligize for wanting to share, but since it such a choss pile I'm surprised anyone cares about it.
mark miller

Social climber
Reno
Jun 16, 2009 - 07:30pm PT
Woodfords has some great potential , been put-zing around there since the late 70's.
But the real unclaimed last fortitude of awesome Granite is Indian rock. The cracks on the lower third will be as good as anything at the cookie and more sustained.
Once again we are at a cross roads do we tell people about the areas and make everything a Snowshed wall social event or is it best to keep our mouths shut and enjoy it for ourselves. I have other areas that we won't even talk about yet....
klk

Trad climber
cali
Jun 16, 2009 - 07:49pm PT
social event! social event!
Clint Cummins

Trad climber
SF Bay area, CA
Jun 16, 2009 - 09:55pm PT
OK, if you want to "spread the word", I took a little time this afternoon to make a route list from the scanned Ron Anderson guidebook on the supertopo obscurities page.

[updated 6/18 with a few climbs listed on mountainproject.com]
I reordered the (100+) climbs, so they are left-to-right, in clockwise order around the canyon (like the Yosemite guidebook).
The route list, routes by grade, sortable spreadsheet, and link to the PDF guide are at:

http://www.stanford.edu/~clint/wood/

The route list and routes by grade are copied below.

-----------

rev. 6/18/09
Woodfords Canyon rock climbing

This compiliation attempts to put
the routes in a continuous order - a clockwise loop
around the river valley, like the Yosemite guidebook.
The loop starts in the SE with Storm Trooper Buttress,
continues left-to-right along the south side of the river,
then covers the north side of the river, left-to-right.
Sources:
"Climbers Guide to Alternative Cragging - East Tahoe Region",
by Ron Anderson. PDF scanned version downloaded from supertopo.com 4/08.
Stars converted from 5 star to 3 star by subtracting 2 stars from all routes.
rockclimbing.com - describes 2 routes left of One of These Days (RC)
mountainproject.com - several newer routes (MP)


South Side

Storm Trooper Buttress (park near W intersection of 88 and Crystal Springs)

1. Leper Face 5.10a *, knobby face, N face, tie off knobs, 45'
2. Sergeant D 5.9+ *, RFC, W face, pro to 3"
3. Storm Troopers of Death 5.12b ***, right diagonal crack, 5 fps, pro to 2.5"
4. Speak English 5.10a/b TR, RFC to 2x anchor
5. Or Die 5.10a TR, knobby face to same anchor

Strangler Cliffs

6. Nevada/Utah Border 5.9/5.10 **, hands/fingers, W face
7. Strangle Hold 5.12a ***, thin RFC, NW face, pro to 1.5", 80'
8. Hill Side Strangler 5.11b **, thin, NW face, pro to 1.", 80'

Woodcutters Wall (50-60', 450' R of Strangler Cliff, NW face)

9. Left Branch 5.10a **, on L end, pro to 2.75"
10. Right Branch 5.8 *, pro to 2.75"

One of These Days Wall (aka King Diamond, Cloudburst Canyon)

11. un OTD arete 5.12?, __x, 40' L of un OTD face, RC
12. un OTD face 5.11 *, __x, sustained, 20' L of One of These Days, RC
13. One of These Days 5.10c ***, fingers to hand, pro to 3", 164'
14. Glory Hog 5.12a ***, 1x, traverse right under roof, partway up One of These Days, 1x
15. un OTD arete pr., L side of King Diamond p2 corner
16. King Diamond 5.11b **, 2p, 1: thin, 2: huge corner to roof, over R side, pro to 2.5"
17. Pictures of Me 5.10c **, pro to 2"
18. Bush League 5.10a *, pro to 2"
19. Little Miss Manners 5.11d **, thin

High Energy Wall

20. un HE a pr., RF arch, 1x
21. Duracell 5.11b *, 2p, chimney to thin crack, pro to 3", 160'
22. Lightning Dream 5.12d ***, 9x, arete, 85'
23. un HE b pr., 5.13a
24. Power Surge 5.11c/d, 2p, 45 degree roof crack, watch rope drag
25. Amped 5.12b **, overhanging finger crack, direct start to Proton
26. Proton 5.11b **, 2p, RFC, p2 80' to fp anchors
27. Neutron 5.10a ***, 2p, RFC, p2 80' to shared fp anchors
28. un HE c 5.9/5.10 *, 2p, 1: thin crack/flake, 2: double cracks


North Side

Henry's Unit Boulder (20' high, 100' W of Apron, about 12 problems)

The Apron - West Face

29. Apron WF left 5.8, dirty slot
30. Apron WF flared crack a 5.9+
31. Apron WF flared crack b 5.9+
32. Apron West Wall Route 5.11b *, 3x, 2 #2 TCUs, tieoff sling, to tree, 75'

The Apron - South Face

33. Jammin Me 5.11c/d *, striking crack, pro to 2"
34. old aid pr., 4x
35. Don't Let Me Down 5.7 A3, LFC, may have gone free
36. Apron SF corner 5.7, RFC
37. Freezer Box 5.9, chimney
38. Apron SF flake 5.10b/c *, thin flake, 65'

Cracker Cliff (600' L of Apron)

39. CC a pr.
40. CC b pr.
41. CJ-Eight 5.8 *, flake, pro to 2"
42. Watti-Yatti 5.10b **, 7x
43. Five Reliable Sisters 5.10a/b *
44. Piss Fir Willies 5.7 A2, pro to 1"

Orange Wall (above Apron and Cracker Cliff)

45. un Orange 5.11+, 2p, through obvious roof in center of face

White's Wall (40 min. approach)

46. Chuck's Chimney 5.9 R, 2p, LFC, flared slot/ow, pro to 4"
47. Children of the Sun 5.10b X, 2p, 1: runout 5.10+ slab, 2: RFC ow slot, pro to 4"

In the 70s

48. In the 70s 5.8/5.9, 50' fist crack, pro to 3.5"

The Fortress (30+ minute approach)

Fortress - Books (E face)

49. Fortress hand crack 5.8 **, pro to 3"
50. Fortress book 5.7 *, pro to 3"
51. Cat Scratch Fever 5.10a **, pro to 3"

52. Pillar Roof 5.11+, 2p

Donnie G (first formation reached on standard approach, 30-45 minutes, 90' below Second Alcove)

53. Arrowhead 5.11a, granite "stalactite" hanging 25' off the ground, MP
54. Whisker Biscuit 5.9 *, 15' R of Arrowhead, pillar, roof crack, upper crack, 80', MP

Fortress - Second Alcove (W face)

55. Walking Jack 5.10c *, 40' R of Whisker Biscuit, faces E, wide fist crux, pro to 3.5", 80', MP
56. I Be Jammin 5.10a **, right side, left diagonal crack to LFC, pro to 3"

Fortress - First Alcove (E face)

57. First Alcove - No Name 5.10b/c, obvious 30' LFC, R of black streak, pro to 3"

High Caliber Corridor (R from Whisker Biscuit, above 40' pine tree)

58. Un-Named 5.11a, corner crack, MP
59. Mr. Personality 5.12a *, _x arete, just R of Un-Named, optional 2" cam at start, MP

Fortress - Liebacks (S face)

60. Carabiner Crack 5.10b/c ***, left leaning crack to RFC, pro to 2.5", 3 fps
61. Sole Burner 5.10a **, 2p, 2: faces E
62. The Other Lieback 5.9 R, LFC, pro to 2.5", 75' R of Sole Burner
63. The Perfect Lieback 5.8 ***, LFC, pro to 2.5"

Fortress - Winter Prime (E face)

64. Winter Prime 5.11+ TR **, LFC, partly S facing?
65. Boulder than you Think 5.9+ *, pro to 2"
66. Pillar Face 5.10a TR, 80'
67. T-Crack 5.9 *, 2p, 1x, pro to 1"

Fortress - Sun Wall (S face, 100' R of Winter Prime area)

68. Sun Wall Left 5.10c **
69. Sun Wall Middle 5.10b *
70. Sun Wall Right 5.9+ *, LFC

71. First Crux 5.9+ *, RFC to LFC, E face, pro to 2.5"

Fortress - Red Pillar (E face, up and R of Liebacks, Sun Wall)

72. RP Chimney 5.6
73. un RP a 5.10c *, thin LFC, approach via ledges
74. un RP b 5.10c *, pro to 2.5"
75. The Red Pillar 5.9 **, LF arch to LFC, pro to 3", 100'

Fortress - Main Alcove (E face, above Sun Wall, Red Pillar)

76. Dano Bolt 5.11a **, on inside wall, fingers to fist, lightning bolt, 100'
77. Penial Pillar 5.10a *, on pillar, pro to 2.5"
78. Way the Hell up There 5.11c **, on pillar, pr to 4", starts on overhanging flake
79. Fortress MA un 5.10a *, 2p, starts just R of pillar
80. Up to Nuthin' 5.9, 3p, 1: 5.7 corner, 2: 5.9 flared crack, 3: 5.8 ow, 2 fps
81. Toprope Wall a 5.9 TR, short grey wall, 60-70'
82. Toprope Wall b 5.10d TR
83. Toprope Wall c 5.11+ TR, curving chimney and crack, has small dead tree

Far East (traverse E/R from base of Donnie G to gully)

84. Pump Factory 5.11b **, fingers to fist, on 40' boulder, uphill/E/R of TR wall, on L side of gully, MP
85. Carhartt Crack 5.9 R *, chimney w/ cracks, rap in to Work Wall from R side of gully, MP

Bertha's Boulder (40-45', roadside)

86. Bertha's ow 5.10c *, on W face, pro to 5"
87. Bertha's jam 5.8 *, jam crack above fence, pro to 3"
88. Bertha's face 5.12+ *, 1x, E face
89. Bertha's back side 5.6

Epoxy Wall (above Bertha's Boulder, old fixed ladder approach, glued on holds)

90. Epoxy L side 5.9+, LFC, can use to set up topropes
91. Epoxy a 5.11a/b *, 4x
92. Epoxy b 5.11c/d *, 4x
93. Epoxy c 5.11d/5.12a *, 5x
94. Epoxy d 5.12a/b *, 5x

Overbooked

95. Over Booked 5.9 *, obvious roof with corners above Mama Cat, 1x, pro to 2.5", 100'

Mama Cat Boulder (15' boulder, 150' from 88, park at green gate)

96. MC WF a B1, boulder problem
97. MC WF b B1, boulder problem
98. MC SF a 5.12, face
99. MC SF b 5.11c, L side of arete, 1x on top
100. MC EF a 5.10d, mantle midway
101. MC EF b 5.11b, 1x on top
102. MC EF c 5.10b, to same 1x
103. MC EF d 5.10
104. MC back side 5.6

Suicide Falls

105. Suicide Falls Left 5.9, 4p, 1: broken 100', 2: 5.8 R face, 3: corner to chim., 4: 5.9 ow, 350'
106. The Flying Block 5.10 R, 4p, 100' R of waterfall, 1: broken 5.5 120', 2: 5.10 R face, 3: R then back L, 4: 5.7 jam to bulge, 450'
107. Beulah the Pumper 5.7 R, 4p, 300' R of waterfall, 375'
-----------


List of Routes by Grade


72. RP Chimney 5.6
89. Bertha's back side 5.6
104. MC back side 5.6

35. Don't Let Me Down 5.7 A3
36. Apron SF corner 5.7
44. Piss Fir Willies 5.7 A2
50. Fortress book 5.7 *
107. Beulah the Pumper 5.7 R

10. Right Branch 5.8 *
29. Apron WF left 5.8
41. CJ-Eight 5.8 *
49. Fortress hand crack 5.8 **
63. The Perfect Lieback 5.8 ***
87. Bertha's jam 5.8 *

48. In the 70s 5.8/5.9

37. Freezer Box 5.9
46. Chuck's Chimney 5.9 R
54. Whisker Biscuit 5.9 *
62. The Other Lieback 5.9 R
67. T-Crack 5.9 *
75. The Red Pillar 5.9 **
80. Up to Nuthin' 5.9
81. Toprope Wall a 5.9 TR
85. Carhartt Crack 5.9 R *
95. Over Booked 5.9 *
105. Suicide Falls Left 5.9

2. Sergeant D 5.9+ *
30. Apron WF flared crack a 5.9+
31. Apron WF flared crack b 5.9+
65. Boulder than you Think 5.9+ *
70. Sun Wall Right 5.9+ *
71. First Crux 5.9+ *
90. Epoxy L side 5.9+

1. Leper Face 5.10a *
5. Or Die 5.10a TR
6. Nevada/Utah Border 5.9/5.10 **
9. Left Branch 5.10a **
18. Bush League 5.10a *
27. Neutron 5.10a ***
28. un HE c 5.9/5.10 *
51. Cat Scratch Fever 5.10a **
56. I Be Jammin 5.10a **
61. Sole Burner 5.10a **
66. Pillar Face 5.10a TR
77. Penial Pillar 5.10a *
79. Fortress MA un 5.10a *

4. Speak English 5.10a/b TR
43. Five Reliable Sisters 5.10a/b *

42. Watti-Yatti 5.10b **
47. Children of the Sun 5.10b X
69. Sun Wall Middle 5.10b *
102. MC EF c 5.10b

38. Apron SF flake 5.10b/c *
57. First Alcove - No Name 5.10b/c
60. Carabiner Crack 5.10b/c ***
103. MC EF d 5.10
106. The Flying Block 5.10 R

13. One of These Days 5.10c ***
17. Pictures of Me 5.10c **
55. Walking Jack 5.10c *
68. Sun Wall Left 5.10c **
73. un RP a 5.10c *
74. un RP b 5.10c *
86. Bertha's ow 5.10c *

82. Toprope Wall b 5.10d TR
100. MC EF a 5.10d

53. Arrowhead 5.11a
58. Un-Named 5.11a
76. Dano Bolt 5.11a **

91. Epoxy a 5.11a/b *

8. Hill Side Strangler 5.11b **
16. King Diamond 5.11b **
21. Duracell 5.11b *
26. Proton 5.11b **
32. Apron West Wall Route 5.11b *
84. Pump Factory 5.11b **
101. MC EF b 5.11b

12. un OTD face 5.11 *

78. Way the Hell up There 5.11c **
99. MC SF b 5.11c

24. Power Surge 5.11c/d
33. Jammin Me 5.11c/d *
92. Epoxy b 5.11c/d *

19. Little Miss Manners 5.11d **
45. un Orange 5.11+
52. Pillar Roof 5.11+
64. Winter Prime 5.11+ TR **
83. Toprope Wall c 5.11+ TR

93. Epoxy c 5.11d/5.12a *

7. Strangle Hold 5.12a ***
14. Glory Hog 5.12a ***
59. Mr. Personality 5.12a *

94. Epoxy d 5.12a/b *

3. Storm Troopers of Death 5.12b ***
25. Amped 5.12b **

11. un OTD arete 5.12?
98. MC SF a 5.12

22. Lightning Dream 5.12d ***
88. Bertha's face 5.12+ *

44. Piss Fir Willies 5.7 A2

35. Don't Let Me Down 5.7 A3
sasha Cohen

Trad climber
South Lake Tahoe CA
Jun 17, 2009 - 12:45am PT
wow so much response! If anyone thinks they know all the routes at woodfords canyon because of old information they are in for a big surprise because so many new routes have been put up in the last year. It is a beautiful area and the approaches to the climbing areas are part of the experience and keep you in good climbing shape. A guide book would be so awsome so all the new info could be shared. You would think that there would be such a positive response to the person who spent thousands of dollars and countless hours putting up these routes, and for someone to assume that the guide book was done for a buck just doesn't know the author or what he's all about. I just hope the guide book gets published so everyone now and in the future can enjoy and preserve this beautiful climbing meca.
climb on!!!
Clint Cummins

Trad climber
SF Bay area, CA
Jun 17, 2009 - 04:02am PT
Sasha,

Is it necessary to know all the routes in Woodfords Canyon to check out some of the 5.10 cracks which Chim-Chim likes?
[to be fair, this was probably not what you meant. And I realize this list is not a substitute for a real guide, but it may be useful in the meantime]

I found the PDF guide was slightly confusing, so I made the above route list.
It suggests to me that on a first visit, One of These Days Wall, High Energy Wall, or The Fortress might be worth checking out.
Maybe if I was not so much of a guidebook fanatic, I could have figured that out without typing in all that stuff! :-)
Chim-Chim

climber
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 17, 2009 - 10:19am PT
Clint thanks for posting the woodfords beta minus the other material from the old guide. You're right it is confusing. We're going up to High Energy Wall on Thursday... you should come. A 5.12- dihedral that "Taylor" and I worked on is an open project but no-one has led it. The start although only 5.11- it is unprotected. After some discusion with some fellow locals we decided to place two protection bolts.
Chim-Chim

climber
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 17, 2009 - 10:26am PT
Heh Mark thanks for the reminder about Indian Rock. I've never been there, but my buddy Bruce and others were there a few years ago and establish a route or two. I heard it was great.., keep up the good work. D.K.
taylor

Social climber
the local crag
Jun 17, 2009 - 01:49pm PT
its about time someone does that dihedral on lead, its been sitting there clean for almost two years it seams like. if i remember right there is an arete to the left that no one has ever even tried, really nice orange and white rock.
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