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This fun route goes up the crack and flake system through the obvious chimney on the far left side of the mountain.
Scramble up to the first set of anchors, then head straight up through the chimney, over a small roof and past some bolts to the first belay. The second pitch continues up a well bolted face, over another roof and finishes under the large overhang.
Fun moves on the first pitch through the notch make this a definite classic for the grade.
From the base of El Cajon, head all the way over the left side. The chimney on the first pitch is easy to see. The first pitch starts from a grassy ledge about 20 feet up from the bottom (3rd class).
P1 - climb past two bolts to right side of a big low angle flake. Gear (cams .5"-2.5") protects the next section up to over the roof. Three more bolts until the anchor.
P2 - Lots of bolts protect this face. Small gear can be used before pulling over the final roof (.75"-1.25").
Rap down from the top (two rappels).
BETA PHOTO: Bright Eyes 5.6
Fins129 clipping the last piece before pulling int...
Chimney is fairly wide at P1 of Bright Eyes
BETA PHOTO: Steve follows the traverse into the chimney (start...
Jun 4, 2007
rating: 5.6 4c 14 V S 4b
Just a warning....my 60m rope didn't make it completely to the bottom belay ledge. I had to get off rappel and scramble down 10-15 feet or so.
Other than that this was an awesome first multipitch climb for me.
|By Billy Bylund|
Dec 18, 2010
Fun beginners climb, does require some pro going through the chimny. The first pitch is probably 33 meters, and the last one is ~25, so I think it is feasible to climb both pitches on a lead, then do two raps down. Like the other climber mentioned, you end up scrambling a few feet at the bottom w/ a 60M rope.
From: Davidson, NC
Dec 30, 2011
One two-rope rappel with 60 meter ropes. Clean rope pull.
|By Raquel ROCKY Robles|
From: Encinitas, CA
May 25, 2012
I think I did this about 8 months ago. It was a fun lead. A couple bolts a the start of the 1st pitch. The chimney area was a fun section to place gears. Fun route!
From: San Diego, Ca
Oct 26, 2012
IF YOU LEAD THE ARCH VARIATION, WARNING ABOUT ROPE DRAG:
If you are not thoughtful about placements, you may experience heinous rope drag, as I did. In fact, the biner on my last piece of pro under the arch got wedged into the crack with the rope: made it to the first bolt after the chimney, but could not go on. Ended up setting a belay at the top of the chimney, but had to do an improv rap down to the arch again to get the rope unstuck.
I see two options for mitigating the rope drag (the crack under the arch as it turns the corner up into the chimney is almost exactly rope-sized)
1) After setting the last piece under the arch, lengthen it with a 48in alpine draw and bring the rope OVER the corner of the arch. Then, set your next piece in crack on the left side of the chimney with a 24in alpine draw. This is what I ended up doing to belay my 2nd. It worked well.
2) After the arch, place a piece of pro (will have to be a BD #3 cam, I think--or similar size--or a large hex) in the small crack/left facing corner that leads up to the chimney. Place this piece BELOW the level of the arch, so that when you pull it prevents the rope from being dragged up into the arch's corner crack.
|By Jason Kim|
From: San Diego, CA
Feb 26, 2013
rating: 5.6 4c 14 V S 4b
My first multi-pitch. It's really a perfect intro to this sort of thing. Easy, low-angle start, a few thoughtful moves as you enter and exit the chimney on good gear. The second pitch feels easier than the first.
The first time I climbed this, we rapped on 2 ropes and they got twisted on the pull, became stuck, and I had to ascend to clear things up. It was a gumby cluster, if there ever was one. I would have rapped off the end of my rope, but a backup knot appeared in my hand. A learning experience, for sure.
I have since climbed the variation that traverses in from below the roof, and it is great fun. There is a bit of loose rock, but there are some decent rest stances and it isn't quite as sustained as it appears. I had read Jeff's comment and decided to belay from a gear anchor at the base of the chimney, and then we linked the chimney through to the top of the second pitch, which worked well. This alleviates the issue of rope drag, protects the second during the traverse section, and allows for a fun opportunity to build a gear anchor in a fairly exposed spot.
Don't bother with 2 ropes for the rappel. One 60 meter rope will drop you off at a safe stance, and then it's just a few easy moves to the base.
Oct 16, 2013
The anchors were lowered and a 75' final pitch has been added, same grade, same gear.