Northwest Buttress, Tenaya Peak 5.5

 
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Tuolumne Meadows, California USA

  • Currently 4.0/5
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Summary of All Ratings

SuperTopo Rating:   
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  • 5
 (4.0)
Average Customer Rating:   
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  • 5
 (4.1)
Your Rating:     (none)
Rating Distribution
31 Total Ratings
5 star: 26%  (8)
4 star: 58%  (18)
3 star: 16%  (5)
2 star: 0%  (0)
1 star: 0%  (0)
dmayers311

Trad climber
Mammoth Lakes, CA
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   Jun 20, 2014 - 07:42pm
Soloed this today after psyching myself up to do it the past few tipsy nights. One thing I found missing from all the beta from the people that had soloed the route was how hard those people actually climb. I lead up to 5.9 or so in Tuolumne, and I did not feel sketched out on the route, although there are definitely no falls allowed on most of the route if soloing. Lots of options on where to climb, and the easiest topout moves around to the left near the top, and then back right to finish the last 60 feet or so. Lots of slab, lots of fun.
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matty

Trad climber
under the sea
Jun 14, 2014 - 06:53am
 
Did it yesterday. Only a few very small easily avoidable snow patches. Mumm mummmm good. Don't bother bringing a topo, waste of time as there are so many easy options. Just go and climb.
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chick_on_ice

Trad climber
Jul 1, 2013 - 11:41am
 
Soloed this yesterday. Easy, fun climbing. Thought I was on pitch 6 when I actually reached the summit---goes by fast! Bring bug spray unless you're a slab peddling machine and can outrun the mosquitoes.
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mountainlion

Trad climber
California
Oct 9, 2012 - 02:54am
 
This was my first multipitch route and the second time I had ever climbed! Absolutely amazing! I like everything about the climb and the setting above the lake is super cool!
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traverpen1

Social climber
Fresno, Ca
Oct 9, 2012 - 01:54am
 
It's a fun climb, but it was really easy. Thought the guide book over did it on the rack. Our # 3 BD got used a couple of times and our # 4 got used once but weren't necessary. I've got mixed emotions on doubles from .6"-2". On one hand we only swapped gear twice and on the other it was a lot to carry. We soloed the first third, roping up in the midst of a long slabby section. If we had climbing shoes on we probably would have soloed more. We simul climbed the rest. The whole time we were never sure if we were on route, so we moved up via the path of least resistance. everything looked generally easy and solid. As a second there was one section of lichen finger crack (prob could have been avoided but fun) I was glad to have a belay for, and two others where a hip belay was comforting. I think we made two belay anchors on the climb. We are not great, fast, extremely fit or highly experienced alpine climbers (this was our second time simul climbing), and our climb time was 2.5 hrs. My notes were put on climbing shoes earlier and #3&4 BD were over kill.
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phylp

Trad climber
Upland, CA
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   Aug 16, 2012 - 07:58pm
Yay! I finally got to do this route after having it on "the list" for years. Hubby and I simulclimbed the whole thing with a 8.2 60 meter tied in in the middle - that worked great and was quite fast. I'll definately do this one again. The views from the top are awesome.
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Lucero

Trad climber
san jose
Jul 23, 2012 - 12:02am
 
We did our first solo climb yesterday on Tenaya Peak. Its easier than Cathedral Peak, and there were a couple here and there 5.6 and 5.7 take your time until you feel good moves (not pitches). If you want to rope up for the 14 pitches be open to soloing some of the 5.2 to 5.4 pitches. Its more enjoyable that way or you will be making a long day of climbing for too easy to rope up pitches. Although, if you are looking for a climb to learn how to place trad and multipitch, this is the climb for you.
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Vitaliy M.

Mountain climber
San Francisco
Jul 3, 2012 - 02:51am
 
I do not really solo much, but soloed it a few days ago, taking the crack in nutjob's video the other day. Really cool finish to a nice clean climb. Some people said it was 5.8 in the topo, I thought it was easier..for this route following some topo would be a drag. Just follow the line you like..
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steele

Trad climber
CA
Jun 21, 2012 - 03:58pm
 
Nutjob and Khan, looking at gigapan of Tenaya Peak, this is directly below the true summit. Maybe a .7-9 hand crack for 40' below/right of the main summit block--below that a 50' diagonal trough/handcrack left, maybe .6 or a finger/hand crack coming in from the right, maybe .8. This line would be to the right of the last bushes 200' below the summit or at the right edge of the dark gray rock band? Looks like a handcrack on top of a triangular pedestal. Thanks for the beta, BTW!
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nutjob

Sport climber
Almost to Hollywood, Baby!
Jun 21, 2012 - 03:25pm
 
le_bruce has soloed this a bunch, and he and I did it last summer or two. That final steep bomber crack is like angels trumpeting your glorious finale! Probably the coolest solo moves I've ever done- I'm not a habitual soloer.

Edit: Here's a video of that crack:
http://www.supertopo.com/tr/2010-08-or-therebouts-Tenaya-Peak-video/t10827n.html
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steele

Trad climber
CA
Jun 21, 2012 - 02:27pm
 
I'll be climbing this in August and understand you can free solo all/most of it. My question is this: I see a diagonal 2" crack to maybe a 1-2" crack up a summit block to the middle/right, maybe 50-100' long. Anybody done this and know the rating?
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uhhuh

Social climber
nevada
Jun 19, 2012 - 12:11am
 
If you are worried about snow on this route...Tioga Road opened in the first week of May...you should wait at least three weeks. Check that wait three years...No wait...Wait for three years after you have stopped pulling plastic and have spent some time outside, otherwise I am sure you will be in deadly peril by leaving your car!
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rfshore

Trad climber
Cali-centric
Jun 13, 2012 - 09:24am
 
Snow was a non-issue when my GF and I did the route last Wednesday 6/6. A few small patches on ledges here and there, but no slab-alanche danger or water runoff.

Very little 5th class climbing on this line, but fun nonetheless. We brought a 30m rope for simul-climbing, and it almost didn't come out of the bag. Soloed P1-P12 and simuled the last 200' or so. The rock is highly featured and there are literally dozens of ways to go. In my opinion, the topo is worthless on a climb like this.
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danip

Boulder climber
Albany, CA
Jun 13, 2012 - 01:52am
 
thinking about climbing the NW buttress this weekend.
Is there still snow there?

Is it better to wait a couple of weeks?

Thanks

Dani
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squishy

Mountain climber
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   Sep 20, 2011 - 03:08pm
a vid I made a few years ago of the route,

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ef2c1DUrCeo

have free solo'd it since, one of my favorites..
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Danholio

Trad climber
San Francisco, CA
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   Sep 19, 2011 - 11:13pm
Climbed the route on Saturday, Sept 17, 2011 on a cloudless, windless day with perfect temps. To illustrate how crowded this route can be, there was not a single pitch that was unoccupied when we started (around 11am). Pretty much a non-stop train of climbers from base to summit. To illustrate the plethora of passing opportunities on this route, my partner ("jvSF") and I simul climbed the entire route and safely passed 11 climbers along the way. So... do not let perfect conditions and the crowds good weather can bring stop you from doing this Tuo classic.
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moosedrool

climber
lost, far away from Poland
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   Aug 28, 2011 - 05:36pm
Climbed it with my daughter on Aug. 14. The climb was a lot of fun. We roped up for the last 7 (still very easy) pitches. We opted for the "long descend" to avoid the "ledge descend". It was a good choice. It took us 1.5 hours to get back to the car, but we were not in a hurry. It should take about one hour if you follow our track using GPS, or a compass. It is an easy hike. I am posting our descend trail as a JPEG file. I wish I could attach a GPS downloadable file. Does anybody know how and where to post them?
photo not found
Missing photo ID#215025
photo not found
Missing photo ID#215026
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monolith

climber
SF bay area
Jul 24, 2011 - 09:18pm
 
I hiked the backside today and saw two soloers do the route staying on rock, coming close to the large snowfield, and the second upper smaller one was not a problem. Regular descent still has a band of snow, I'd just walk down the west ridge slabs and thrash the final 200 yards to the Tanaya Lake trail.
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schaffner

Trad climber
Jul 13, 2011 - 03:20pm
 
Anybody has been up there recently? I was wondering about the wetness/snow conditions on the route.

We were planning on doing a TP/Cathedral Peak linkup this weekend.

Update: This is the route on 7/17:
Credit: schaffner
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rhyang

climber
SJC
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   Sep 7, 2010 - 10:33am
Soloed this yesterday morning, took the rightmost "loose 4th class" variation. Beautiful clean granite for the most part. There was a pretty descent use trail on the approach.

The descent wasn't much fun though -- next time maybe I'll try just heading down the ridge to the trail.
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Stevee B

Trad climber
Oakland, CA
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   Oct 12, 2009 - 01:06pm
Did this route Saturday, snow patch on the 5.2 face of pitch 12 made things exciting - the encasement of the two belay pins in ice at the top of the pitch made things fun too. The warning about snow on the route is legit, caveat emptor! But we had the route to ourselves and the weather was fantastic.
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backcountry

Trad climber
Tahoe City, CA
Aug 12, 2009 - 04:05am
 
Just found this forum and realize I'll be checking it for help and motivation often!

I would do this route again and bring a few friends who are new to climbing. They are sure to get hooked from a day like this.

Here's some pics and talk to add to the pile of Tenya Peak from a July 09 climb.
http://www.thebackcountry.net/bb/viewtopic.php?t=1596
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Chris McNamara

SuperTopo staff member
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   Aug 11, 2009 - 12:32am
I just got this beta on Tenaya Peak -

Just one party's opinion, but we thought the 30 minute approach to Tenaya Peak was low. More like 45 minutes, I think. Also, while going up I was asking people about the descent, and all 3 parties I asked said they were going the longer way, which is not emphasized in your guide. We went your guide's way, and it was rough. Ended up going too low on the ridge, then too high, etc, and took awhile to get back where we started. I think maybe the alternate way (which ends up along the
lake) should be given more attention, maybe saying that many parties
choose to go this way.
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Andrew F

Trad climber
Sunnyvale, CA
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   Jun 23, 2009 - 03:11pm
Did this route 6/18/09. There were still two big snow patches on the route, but they were easy to climb around without getting on any wet rock. The ledge descent looked very sloppy and full of snow. We followed the alternate descent down the ridge until we could cut right to bushwhack down to the trail around Tenaya Lake. Beautiful hike, but slather yourself in DEET first.

Don't bother bringing a topo, trying to stick to it would just slow you down. Pick a line that looks good and go for it. Everything is fun, and you would be hard pressed to find anything harder than 5.6, except near the very top. We found a cool variation by staying very far left, and ended up right next to the drop off into the amphitheater on the left for about 3 pitches with some cool exposure. Mostly 4th with one short 5.6 section.
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cencalclimber

climber
May 21, 2009 - 05:35pm
 
Has anyone climbed this route this season? I'm wondering if the snow has melted enough to climb it...
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Fletcher

Boulder climber
A very quiet place
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   Sep 26, 2008 - 04:50pm
Hey Toreador... what you are describing sounds like a typical alpine climb. Bewildering route-finding is part of the fun! :-)

Still an all time fun favorite!
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Toreador

Trad climber
York, UK
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   Sep 25, 2008 - 10:50am
We did this route on 14 Sept and had the same experience as Brian9 a couple of years back. There were 8 independent teams on the route (it was a weekend) and none of us found the start using the Supertopo description. Most of us ended up starting somewhere around the end of pitch 1 or 2, but one team arrived at the bottom of pitch 6 believing they'd just scrambled up the waterchute mentioned below the start!

The Supertopo pitch descriptions seemed OK from pitches 2 to 6, and then again on the last 2, but in between nothing matched so we were presumably all off route. There were certainly rather more class 3/4 and fewer climbing pitches than expected.

We also opted for the longer walk out, and were rather surprised that the promised 'major trail' didn't appear until we were right by the lake! The books was right that it was a beautiful option though.
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Chris McNamara

SuperTopo staff member
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   Sep 2, 2008 - 12:33am
Check out the Gigapan of Tenaya Peak at
http://share.gigapan.org/viewGigapan.php?id=7059
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Aging Trad

Trad climber
Austin, TX
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   Jul 25, 2008 - 06:53pm
Did this on 7/22/08. Terrific outing in an incomparable setting. We'd tried a few days earlier, but got rained off. Did three rotations of simul-climbing to get to the base of pitch 8. Did the rest a pitch at a time. A fun way to spend a day on the rock. Summit views are incredible!

With a bad knee and a bad ankle between us, we chose to opt for the "major hiking trail" descent. Ended up losing sight of the lake, Stately Pleasure, and pretty much anything we recognized. Thirty minutes or so of thrashing ensued before we crested a saddle and bushwhacked down to the main lake trail.
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AM

climber
DLFA
Jul 7, 2008 - 07:48pm
 
Tons of fun. Snow/run-off was no problem. Soloed the first 7 "pitches" and simuled the second 7. Approach: 1hr, Climb: 2.5 hrs, Descent: 3hrs
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Chris McNamara

SuperTopo staff member
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   Jun 11, 2008 - 09:32pm
drove by this route on July 6 2008. looks like it is now free from major snow patches but there might be some wet spots here and there

Some great photos and discussion of the route here:

http://www.supertopo.com/climbing/thread.html?topic_id=620389
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summerprophet

Mountain climber
Cali Via Canada
Jun 29, 2007 - 12:52pm
 
Climbed the route 06/24/07.
One of the most majestic routes I have ever done. The long sweeping buttress is incredibly easy and goes by fast. This is one of the few alpine routes where route finding is not really an issue.

That being said, I really recommend simul-climbing the route. It will be far more enjoyable than pitching it out. The climbing as rarely harder than 5.4 and the difficult sections are well protected.

Recomended Rack for Simul-climbing (30m of rope and 2 pieces of gear between climbers) 1 each Camalots 0.5 - 3, 1 each Stoppers #9,10,11.

The descent requires serious observation from the parking lot. Plan out the descent prior to leaving the road. When in doubt stay high.
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Jonathan Willy

climber
Bishop, CA
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   Jun 3, 2007 - 01:18am
did the route today, snow is really not an issue, mosquitos are. Very fun, the 5.8 crack finish is good hands and offers a great seat for the belay hanging out over the meadow. We felt comfortable doing the first 7/8 pitches in our approach shoes, but when you actually get to the start of the vertical climbing above the 2nd bench you may want your climbing shoes as your on a fine patina with a good finger crack.
Enjoy.
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10b4me

climber
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   Dec 18, 2006 - 12:39am
I climbed this route in 2002(see my post), and didn't speak to highly of it. In retrospect, it was one of the best routes for the grade that I've done.
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Duke-

Trad climber
SF, aka: Dirkastan
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   Dec 13, 2006 - 11:39pm
DK and I did this as our first route together and it did not disappoint. We soloed up half of it and then I casted off for the top. When the rope came taught, DK simuled. I was so lost in the lovely climb that I was startled when I heard "Holy sh#t, we are really up here man!" With a piece of pro or two a pitch, we strung out the remainder with not a piece to spare. PURRRRRFECTTTTT! You feel like you are on a ramp to heaven. Perhaps my fondest climbing memory.
-D
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brian9

Trad climber
black isle scotland
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   Sep 23, 2006 - 12:12pm
An excellent route that we thoroughly enjoyed as our first on a 3 week holiday to the the sierra. Most of the climbing is very easy (lower class 5 or below, UK vdiff to severe on slabs).

We chose the longer descent which we enjoyed with a bit of bushwacking down to tenaya lake (maybe 2-3 hrs up and 1.5 hrs down).
Great views and great rock!

I have to say though that I found the supertopo no use at all in tracing the route.We eventually put it away and just kept climbing up one of the many lines.

We simply climbed upwards keeping close to the left crest especially on the upper part.

I spoke to 2 other parties that day and neither could find the route from the supertopo diagram.

We had a similar experience on Cathedral peak with parties spread all over the lower buttress with supertopo as reference and not obviously on any of the 3 lines suggested.

We tried the right hand varient and couldn't equate the supertopo with the actual rock face. How about some good old additional text referencing the buttress ie 'start 50ft right of the toe of the buttress beside the obvious bush.... etc'.

brian
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Floyd Hayes

Trad climber
Hidden Valley Lake, CA
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   Sep 8, 2006 - 03:50pm
My 14-year-old son and I climbed it rather uneventfully in early August. I think the first few boulder moves just right of the crack above the belay ledge on pitch 14 are 5.8 (but are much easier if you move to the right), and are harder than the upper "5.8" crack. Having descended the ledges--which I didn't like--last year, I decided to take the longer alternative. SuperTopo states "keep hiking down the ridge until you reach a major hiking trail, then follow this back to the right." However, we searched in vain for the trail and wound up descending all the way down the ridge to a stream. It looked like we were many miles from the highway and we didn't know what the terrain would be like. After trekking cross-country toward the northwest toward Mt. Hoffmann, we skirted the south flank of a small dome and eventually arrived at the trail along the south shore of Lake Tenaya. We were in radio contact with my wife and she met us at the Sunrise trail head just south of the lake. Fortunately the cross-country trek was relatively clear of brush and easy walking. It took us only 2 hours to descend from the summit, but we took our time and could have done it much faster. I see that "Em" below had a similar experience.
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Crodog

Social climber
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   Sep 6, 2005 - 06:00pm
Climbed route on 9/4/05 with my son. Just as we were moving over to the beginning of the route a large rock fall started from the top. We sheltered behind a ledge. A lot of material went over us. After it was over there were impact strikes were we had been standing. There were also impact strikes most of the way up the climb. Keep an eye out for places to shelter in case of rock fall.
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Tuck

Trad climber
Santa Cruz, CA
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   Aug 23, 2005 - 10:47pm
My wife and I did the climb on Saturday, the 20th of August. Although we were the first ones on the buttress, we were the last ones off because we did not simul climb or solo the first 4 or 5 pitches. Having roped up on all the pitches, the route took us 7 hours. Difficulty ratings are accurate on Supertopo. The summit was beautiful and worthy of celebration.
The problems came on the descent. I agree with others that the yellow liken outcropping is a good accurate indicator of where to leave the ledge, but please note that the way down is nothing but loose rock and soil combined with indistinct route finding, often leading to slab drop-offs. We had to backtrack and reclimb various times. After such a great climb it was a bummer to have to battle with the descent. Many expletives flew from our mouths. We had studied the descent thoroughly from the car, but it didn't seem to help. The descent took us 3 hours... So, we highly recommend the longer ridge descent.
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Floyd Hayes

Trad climber
Hidden Valley Lake, CA
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   Aug 15, 2005 - 05:12pm
Climbed it on Saturday the 13th in 3.5 hours. We simulclimbed 13 pitches (stopping to exchange gear 3 times) and belayed the 14th pitch up the 5.8 crack (total of 4 "pitches"). The crack itself felt more like 5.7 but the boulder moves getting off the big ledge seemed a little harder, perhaps 5.8. DON'T MISS OUT ON THE 14TH PITCH UP THE CRACK! It's easier than it looks from below and has bomber protection. The topo wasn't easy to follow. After pitch 7 we climbed some thin cracks (5.6?) left of easier terrain for a few pitches. The SuperTopo descent across the ledges was brutal--we basically aimed toward the largest trees which worked fine, but included a lot of boulder hopping and bushwhacking on steep terrain. DON'T DESCEND VIA THE LEDGES! Other climbers walked farther down the ridge and walked through a short section of forest to the trail beside the lake.
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S_Gilliam

Trad climber
Raleigh
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   Jun 14, 2005 - 12:27pm
I got sick on the way to Temple Crag last summer and ended up in Bishop for a week. Scrambled up this one day near a roped team, 2 really nice guys from Canada. It was a first day on real rock for one of them. So I hung close to them for the first few pitches and, like malabarista, I think we all soloed the crux unknowingly. When they roped up I scrambled on ahead. I'd have to agree that the 5.8 crack finish is stellar, but not 5.8. And the descent, well this is an alpine climb, not cragging. So you'd better take enough water and keep your wits about you.
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Jody

climber
Occupied Territory
Oct 29, 2004 - 10:53pm
 
From Chris's descent beta posted below:

"We also eyed a thin shrubby line that descends diagonally down to the valley floor almost immediatley after getting onto the ledges that would be worth checking out."

That is the line to take...do not stay high. The "diagonal, shrubby line" is easy. Also, if you are lucky there will be some good snow fields on this descent route and a few good glissades will chop some serious time off your descent.

Follow the ridge west for approx. 1/4 mile and look for a notch with about a 10' downclimb. You know it is the right notch because the wall of rock on the right is yellowish. There is often snow at the bottom of the downclimb late in season because it is always shady. I will try to scrounge up some pictures of it. Once at the bottom of the downclimb it was clear sailing if you follow the diagonal shrubby line down the ledges which drop you off at the east shore of the lake.
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smitty

Trad climber
Santa Cruz, Ca
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   Oct 27, 2004 - 07:56pm
This climb was a great day out. The majority of the route felt like it could be simulclimbed without much worry. Especially the first six pitches or so, it would be very laborous to go from belay to belay. There were a couple of sections that caught our attention in a great way. The 4th class traverse off the left of the summit is loose and has the only exposure of the whole climb. Be careful there. The views from the summit are top notch, and the hike down is beautiful. I recommend not going immediatly down the climbers trail around the buttress, but hiking down toward tenaya lake. It didn't take long at all, and was beautiful.
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Chris McNamara

SuperTopo staff member
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   Oct 20, 2004 - 11:13am
I just received this beta for from a supertopo user:

The descent description, down the ledges, could use a little more detail.  We tried to 'be careful' to not end up on dirty slabs, but weren't sure exactly how to 'be careful'.  We ended up trying to just stay high all the way across the ledges and got screwed.  There's lots of deer trails up there, and nothing clearly defined for  a route down.  We ended up wondering, with all the traffic that thing gets, if most folks have found the longer trail to be the more reasonable way to go.  We also eyed a thin shrubby line that descends diagonally down to the valley floor almost immediatley after getting onto the ledges that would be worth checking out.
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clarQue

Trad climber
Mill Valley, CA
Aug 25, 2004 - 09:16pm
 
We linked Tenaya Peak with Matthes Crest for a very long day of climbing. Worth the hike considering we bagged two classic moderates in one day. We tracked our climb/hike with a GPS. You can view our exact route online at MotionBased.

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Jedi

Trad climber
Upland, CA
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   Jul 26, 2004 - 02:56pm
Climbed the route last Saturday with a friend. The approach took us 20 minutes. We found animal trails all the way to the base with a bit of bush wacking. The route starts just right of a small water fall on a 10' tall left angling crack. Followed the Supertopo beta the whole way. The view from the summit is one of the best I've seen. I would do it again with a sierra map to know what all the peaks around were. The descent is cruiser, but you can get off track fast.
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malabarista

Trad climber
Upland, CA
Jul 16, 2004 - 11:11pm
 
This is a really fun route. We weren't sure where it started, by the time we realized we were already on the route, we had already soloed (in hiking boots) the first seven pitches. The 5.8 handcrack finish is more like 5.6, a nice finish to the climb. The time to approach the route is more like 45 min -1 hr, not 1/2 hr. With three people, we climbed the route in about 4 hrs, and that felt slow.
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Jon

climber
Oct 24, 2003 - 07:49pm
 
Long descent!
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Chris McNamara

SuperTopo staff member
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   Aug 25, 2003 - 11:08am
The American Safe Climbing Assn. may have replaced anchor bolts on this climb. To find out visit the ASCA Replacement Page

The ASCA is a non-profit organization dedicated to replacing unsafe anchors. To learn about helping the ASCA click here


DONATE NOW
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WC

Trad climber
Flagstaff, AZ
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   Aug 21, 2003 - 10:04pm

We did this climb shortly after arriving in the meadows. I was surprised at how much climbing there was... My breathing was the limiting factor on this one. As stated below, there are about a million different ways a person could climb this thing. We are certainly not high on courage, but soloed the first 700' in sneakers before stopping on a big ledge to boot up. We ended up belaying seven pitches up high on the route.

Definitly follow the ST beta on getting down. We got a little lost and had to go out of our way to get down.
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billygoat

climber
Pees on beard to seek mates.
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   Jul 26, 2003 - 01:20am
Most everybody seems on the right track. I'll second what Andinistaloco (7/20/03) says. But for you beginners wondering... Or, for those thinking of taking up the guppies... The approach to this route is fairly undefined. There are also many ways to come down. This is not a climb for the inexperienced. (I onsight freesoloed w/ guppie girlfriend in tow--7/2/03). Also, much love to supertopos, but leave the "guide" book at home. Croft would have better instructions for this one. I wonder when somebody will get killed on this thing? Good luck getting home.
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Andinistaloco

Mountain climber
Flagstaff, AZ
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   Jul 20, 2003 - 02:51pm
Just did this one... really fun climb. Easy moves, incredible exposure, great rock.... Although there were at least two other parties up there, and this on a weekday. If you need to pass someone on this route it isn't hard, though... there are many different ways to go. The snow that you can see from the road isn't on the crux of the route at this time - you can walk around it in fact.
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jmlangford

Novice climber
Flagstaff, AZ
Jan 9, 2003 - 11:12pm
 
Nothing to add on the route itself, however, the descent route people are taking seems rather laborious. About a quarter mile west of the summit(after hiking across the sandy backside of the peak) look for a depression in the ridgeline and angle for it. There should be a faint path heading towards it. Go to the edge and chimney down 10-15 feet and follow the chute down from there. On the right side as you are going down the wall is covered with gorgeous yellow lichen, that is an indicator that you are in the right chute. Of course, if it gets steep and dissapears from view, you're in the wrong one. From there it is a straight shot down to the parking lot with a little bushwacking near the stream. Summit to car in about 1:15 on the descent. Early season it looks like there could be rockfall in the chute as I saw debris on the snowfield. Pretty safe descent route and much more direct than going all the way to the ledges on the south side.
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paul b and wane f

Intermediate climber
Flagstaff, AZ
Dec 6, 2002 - 03:23pm
 
give me a break this thing is a straight solo for anybody with any experrience at all. otherwise someones first gear lead. we climbed in oct, less than one years experrience for wane and he soloed it in tennis shoes, no problemo, car to car in 4 hours.i guess its all about time now.as far as the cat being out of the bag, its a big bag anyway, this is an excellent place for novice climbers to be. we can keep an eye on them easier and perhaps this will reduce some traffic on cathedrial peak. always stay safe and have fun.
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Charlie

Novice climber
Flagstaff, AZ
Aug 24, 2002 - 07:35pm
 
We did the route on 8/21; there was one other party and a soloist on the route; spectacular, clear, weather. My partner and I had never been on such a long route nor had we ever simul climbed before. This is a great route for learning to simul climb - it is safe and low angle, easily protected at any point if the need is felt. By the end of the route we felt very comfortable with simul climbing and ran out huge sections of the climb. The rock is great as was said above. The views - especially of the lake - are wonderful. We missed the 4th class walk off left - I think we climbed too high - but found a short (5.5/6?)way through to the summit from the large ledge just below the summit just right of the 5.8 crack depicted on the SuperTopo (we climbed up to a short undercling traverse left to a mantle then went back right and straight up and through to the summit, a 3 and 3.5 cam protected). The route down through the boulder field and across the forested ledges above the slabs back to the start was a little scary; you don't want to go too low too soon. There are all kinds of trails though the ledges which most of the time peter out only to pick up again. It's a fun route. It looks intimidating facing the buttress head on but the true (low) angle of the route can be seen from the parking area at Hermaphrodite Flake on Stately Pleasure Dome. I would recommend the route for the reasons stated above. Take good care on the descent.
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Mike & Lisa

Intermediate climber
Flagstaff, AZ
Aug 11, 2002 - 09:44pm
 
Clean rock, easy, not a lot of variety. It seemed a little dull. Three of us simul-climbed about 10 pitches of it, and then one of us wanted a belay about 5 pitches from the top. We could have simul-climbed the entire route. The crack at the top is very short, and maybe a 5.8. The view from the ultimate summit is expansive. The lake is like a beautiful jewel from there. (We should have taken our swimming suits for after the descent.) You can see everything from the summit. We made it from car to summit in under 5 hours, and down in 2.
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Eric

Intermediate climber
Flagstaff, AZ
Jul 29, 2002 - 03:50pm
 
I did this route with 5.10b4me (see his comments above) and second his comments. We definitely were expecting the route to be a bit more challenging. As others have noted, there are many variations you can do, so I'm sure there are 5.5-ish pitches. If you want to do the standard route, make sure you stay on the edge on the left (second half of route).

For the descent, we walked down the slabs west of the standard descent described in the SuperTopo then bushwacked through the forest till we hit the trail on the south side of Tenaya Lake. I think this is preferable to the standard descent if you're looking to keep moving steadily.

While overall I give this route three stars (it's a nice route), I give the views a solid five stars.
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(J)ason

Novice climber
Flagstaff, AZ
Jul 29, 2002 - 01:19pm
 
opps pressed return too fast...

BTW the 4th class route we climbed is to the right of the red line on the picture Supertopo showes on this beta page. Instead we climbed a strait line to the highest blocks on the peak and walked right up with the rope coiled on our backs. SO FUN!
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ason

Novice climber
Flagstaff, AZ
Jul 29, 2002 - 01:15pm
 
I did this climb recently too. Excellent. I brought my harness, rope and a full set of hexes and stoppers, but I (and my 2 partners) never roped up. We went directly up the middle headed right towards the peak and IT IS CLASS 4 ALL THE WAY! I don't recommend free soloing to anyone, but I'll never bring gear on this route again, it was incredibly fun to climb it unroped!

We could have easily roped up and climbed some 5th class variations but we chose not to.
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darren

Advanced climber
Flagstaff, AZ
Jul 29, 2002 - 12:39pm
 
This is a great route. I was alone on the route except for a couple a few hundred feet below me. At one point I heard the woman say, "I really need to get into therapy." I thought the route was pretty easy, most of it felt like 4th class to me, with a few moves of easier 5th in the last 200 feet or so. The exposure really kicks in at the top. I havn't seen the SuperTopo but the easiest route at the top would wrap far climber's left of the actual summit. For a more aesthetic finish jog to the right about one pitch after the fixed pins and head under the overhanging 'diving board' type things. As I climbed I watched the crowds form over on Stately Pleasure. When I pulled into the parking lot at about 7:30am there was a party leading the first pitch of South Crack, I watched them lag, they were still on the route when I returned to my car. ha.
Fabulous climb, incredible views, high adventure factor, fun climbing. Don't try to outsmart the obvious descent down the forested thing across the face. Trust me.
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5.10b4me

Advanced climber
Flagstaff, AZ
Jul 29, 2002 - 11:22am
 
Climbed this route on July 27th. A little disappointed in that we thought it would be a little more challenging. We never found anything harder than 5.3/5.4. Weren't sure we were on route until we came across the two pins on pitch 11.
Although nuts worked fine, would recommend bringing cams(Aliens) smaller than .5.
Rock quality was for the most part good.
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Paul Belskis

Advanced climber
Flagstaff, AZ
Jul 3, 2002 - 01:59pm
 
Sounds like the cat is surely out of the bag now. Myself and Matt Baker did the route back in 1996 and nobody we knew wanted to bother with it, to easy etc. But it is truely a classic experience. We didn't rope up till the summit cap, I went a little too far right, staying left is definitely easier. For those that are fast enough or soloing try Tenya, Cathedral peaks and Matthes Crest linkup, the views are awesome and by that point you climbed a sh#t load of pitches and hiked some of the best country on Earth.
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Michele

Novice climber
Flagstaff, AZ
Jul 1, 2002 - 07:29pm
 
Did the route this past Sat (6/29). There is a slight trickle of water (on the 3rd or 4th pitch on the far left??) that does not interfere with the route at all. I think we skipped the wet start slabs entirely and just went up an easy ramp to where a lone boulder was sitting on a big ledge. Lots of fun once we got beyond the "mosquito" line. Those suckers were swarming the entire first half of the route and we got eaten alive on the hike down (went west down the ridge avoiding any resemblance of death slabs or cliff bands...) This walk off is really mellow give or take the constant mosquito swatting. We also did not find the trail until we were at the lake. Also, without simul-climbing, we did the route as 9.5 pitches on a 60 meter rope. For staying on route, I think the best beta we had was when in doubt, stay left for the easiest way up.
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Brent

Intermediate climber
Flagstaff, AZ
Jun 27, 2002 - 07:51pm
 
The slabs are still a bit wet, but passable. no snow on the route (or water once you pass the approach). A great mellow solo route if you can't find a partner. And the views are as awsome as any other in the area.
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Rob

Intermediate climber
Flagstaff, AZ
Jun 10, 2002 - 02:37pm
 
Em,
Tresidder is back behind (East) of Tenaya peak. Best seen from Cathedral or Mathes area.
Rob
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Em

Intermediate climber
Flagstaff, AZ
Sep 7, 2001 - 03:53pm
 
Just read Justin Black's comments. Yup, the cat's out of the bag and I think this will become a VERY popular route. I was in one of the other 4 teams on the route Labor Day weekend. We were never quite sure where the topo route started; the features shown on the topo did not correlate to what we saw; we finally gave up and just picked a line just to the right of where the other teams were climbing that looked like it would go, and fortunately it did. It would have taken us more time to try to re-orient to the topo than to just go for it.. One prominent feature near the base of the route but not shown on the topo is a huge rectangular boulder about 2 pitches above the main ledge. We fourth-classed the section about 100 yds left of the big boulder and roped up about even with it. Adding this boulder, and some of the other features right and left of the main route, to the Supertopo might help future teams get oriented.

Regarding the summit, and the descent: The view is awesome! A 360 degree view of the High Country. I really wished I had brought a camera, and a topo map to identify the peaks far into the distance north and south. We descended the easy way, down the West ridge, but we had almost reached the road before we intersected the Sunrise trail. Again, a USGS topo map (and altimeter) would have helped. According to the USGS map (I looked it up later), the Sunrise trail is pretty far west of the shortest descent route doiwn the ridge. We wasted a lot of time looking for the trail and wondering if we had gone too far, but the hiking was very easy down slabs and open forest. Also, because of trees and the curve of the ridge we could not see the lake until we were almost upon it.

I would revise the descent instructions to say something like "hike down and right on the west ridge over easy, open terrain (moving left if you come to steep sections) until you either see Tenaya Lake or intersect the Sunrise trail."

Also, both USGS maps I have call this Tresidder Peak, not Tenaya Peak. Am I COMPLETELY lost????

clueless in marin
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Justin Black

Mountain climber
Bishop, CA
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   Sep 3, 2001 - 01:13pm
This route supplies a great day of casual climbing. We soloed the first three pitches (the 5.0 and 4th class slabs are easy and not really exposed, so it hardly seems worth protecting if you are comfortable with your footwork). After roping up, we simul-climbed three pitches, and then traded leads for 7 pitches to the summit. This route goes surprisingly fast, with speed dependent primarily on how many belays you set up (rather than soloing or simul-climbing), and how comfortable one is with running it out on easy terrain... the actual climbing goes quite fast. Note: I think the cat is out of the bag on this climb, but all is not lost. There is tons of room on this route for multiple parties (there were 4 other two person parties on the route with us, but it WAS Labor Day weekend), with numerous variations that apear to go at roughly the same grade. Even if you get off route, the hardest climbing is probably 5.8

The decent is without doubt the toughest part of this climb. I followed the Supertopo instructions down to the main forested ledge system that traverses down and left (as you face Tenaya Peak from the lake). When you make the right turn onto the ledge system, you first boulder hop through a talus field and then follow deer trails through the trees across a rather steep slope above faces and steep slabs. The urge is to loose elevetion quickly, but this will only leave you at the top of the slabs. Traverse across the slope, decending gently. Once you reach the slabby apron across the east end of Tenaya Peak (above the beach at the east end of the lake) follow the edge of the slabs down to a great rocky decent gully (this may be full of water in early season).
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Tenaya Peak - Northwest Buttress 5.5 - Tuolumne Meadows, California USA. Click to Enlarge
Photo: Greg Barnes
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It's climber slang for information or tips on a route as in, "what's the beta on that route?" As a service to fellow climbers we ask SuperTopo guidebook users to post tips and updates to this website if they have relevant information to share after a climb.