Wall of Early Morning Light, El Capitan A3 5.8


Yosemite Valley, California USA

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May 12, 2017 - 02:45pm

Per the 2004 note from Hans, pitches 1-3, 8 and 12 had sustained damage.

We re-established pitches 1-3. (4 rivets on P8 and 3 rivets on P12 remain to be replaced.)

P1: Replaced chopped HW with one 1 1/2 x 1/4" BH rivet/washer, one 1 1/8 x 1/4" with Banqo SS hanger, three 3/8 x 2" 5-piece SS with Fixe SS hangers. The first drilled pieces, two rivets, are in succession; the 3/8" bolts on the slab above them are interspersed with A2 (two existing rivets) and 5.10. The belay consists of four resident pitons and can be backed up with clean gear.

P2: The two belay bolts with broken hangers were not replaced. Sufficient natural pro is available for this anchor.

P3: The first chopped progress bolt was replaced with a 3/8 x 2" SS with Fixe SS hanger.

Thanks to ST member Banquo for designing, producing and supplying consumable HW and tools for this project. Holes were hand drilled on lead, with the aim to maintain published difficulty ratings.

Our hope is that another party might continue with the higher replacements to make WEML a complete route (sooner than I'll be able to get there). I will share hardware/tools with anyone wanting to take on the work.

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Chris McNamara

SuperTopo staff member
Jun 2, 2009 - 02:53am
Here is a trip report of belaying Tommy Caldwell on his attempt to free climb Mescalito (the free mescalito climbs some pitches of Wall of Early Morning Light) http://www.supertopo.com/climbing/thread.html?topic_id=868495
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Chris McNamara

SuperTopo staff member
May 28, 2009 - 01:00am
sports illustrated article on the dawn wall, 1971


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Chris McNamara

SuperTopo staff member
May 11, 2009 - 02:05pm
pitch 17 is not 5.11c. its 5.11 at the bottom and 5.12c at the top
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Trad climber
berkeley ca
Jul 24, 2007 - 10:22pm
Jim Beyer, chopping??
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Chris McNamara

SuperTopo staff member
Aug 27, 2004 - 08:04pm
(Report by Hans Florine)

We started at 6:29am on Tuesday.

The bolts on the first pitch have been chopped. I free soloed the pitch, not recommended unless you have Bacher or Schneider like prowess on thin granite. The bolts at the second anchor were hammered flat, we tried to pry one up but it broke the hanger.

The first bolt on the 3rd pitch was hammered down, albeit it looked old and beat anyway. The first fixed head in the crack on this pitch appeared to have been hammered on until on one very small dapple of wire was holding it there. Brian and I admit to being paranoid sometimes if warranted, but not in this case, we really think some one left this head there purposely f*#ked up dangling by one metal thread.- meaning it looked like someone hammered the wire until it was down to just the thread.

Although rivets do break occasionally it appeared as though they had been purposely chopped in a few places on the route. Brian and I placed six rivets on the route, but only because that is all we had and we were very imaginative in other spots and got by.

We replaced two rivets on the 3rd pitch bringing it back to doable.

On the 8th pitch going over to Mescalito I ran into rivets with the heads just sitting on their shafts as if someone had cut them off and just lightly glued or mashed the head back on to have it sit there. Here there was four or more rivets removed, I had to pendulum over to Mescalito and climb that pitch leapfrogging and back cleaning for 40 ft.

On the 12th pitch I encountered a place where three rivets in a row appeared to have been chopped. I could not get through it by adding one rivet, I had none. I climbed up Reticent to a belay and then pendulumed BARELY enough to lasso the next rivet in line.

At pitch 13 the route joins New Dawn to the top. From there up there was plenty of hard climbing but we did not encounter anything that seemed to be purposely whacked.

I dropped my helmet from the anchor at pitch 21, presumably all the way to the ground. My name is in it, please return it if found! ( love to send it back to Petzl if it's not in working shape.)

Brain led three times and I led three times, Brian led for about 15 hours and I for 12 hours. Kinda cool - I led 12 pitches and Brian led 15. - we kept to an hour a pitch. We topped out at 9:29:57 am. And stopped the clock where a "normal party" would have walked off.

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El Capitan - Wall of Early Morning Light A3 5.8 - Yosemite Valley, California USA. Click to Enlarge
Wall of Early Morning Light is route number 14.
Photo: Galen Rowell
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