November 02, 2009


Ava and I just got back from a long and great weekend in the Lake Tahoe vicinity. We flew into Oakland on Wednesday night, spent a day with her parents (who were awesome!) in Berkeley, and drove to Truckee on Friday morning.

We spent the rest of the day climbing at Donner Pass on a couple of wonderful granite crack routes (Insidious Crack and Jellyroll Arch), both two pitches long. We didn't have a camera, so the pictures here are all courtesy of Mountain Project.

Jellyroll Arch (Insidious Crack is just to the right of the start of this climb)

The following day we drive to Lover's Leap, which turns out to be an incredible 400 foot almost perfectly vertical wall of granite with frequent horizontal dikes. We first tried to climb Corrugated Corner, which had several parties lined up waiting at the bottom. Next, we tried to get on Haystack and encountered the same issue. Option C was to climb East Crack, which ended up being quite a dandy climb indeed. The first two pitches were long and consisted of sustained 5.7/5.8 climbing with an occasional small roof. The final pitch (5.4) began where multiple routes converged and was a complete cluster with about 4 separate climbing parties waiting for a single crack. If it wasn't for this final pitch, this would have been one of my favorite routes ever!

Some random dude on East Crack at Lover's Leap (courtesy of Mountain Project)

After this we drove to Incline Village and met up with Louis, Jasmine, and a bunch of their friends from Santa Cruz for some Halloween shenanigans. Games were played and wine was drank into the wee hours of the morning. Thanks a bunch to the Frauers as well as Don and Pam for a great time!

On Sunday we all went back to Donner Summit and climbed on some more granite (Composure, Rapid Transit, and Molar Concentration on the Snowshed Wall). It was super fun hanging out with Lou and Jas again and climbing in a new area!

General Climbing Impressions/Opinions:
  • The rock around Lake Tahoe is pretty damn awesome!
  • Lover's Leap is the most spectacular area we found in this vicinity with many 3 and 4 pitch moderate climbs.
  • The guide book for the area, Rock Climbing Lake Tahoe by Mike Carville, is almost worthless. With a few exceptions, all it provides is the route name and grade. For trivial details such as route length, route quality, protection beta, and descent beta, I suggest researching these routes online.
Sunday evening we drove back to Berkeley before flying to Seattle early Monday morning. I can't wait to climb more in the Sierra!

1 comment:

Ian said...

dammit! I was right there at the same time! I had a few days of work in Placerville then.