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8. West Wall
Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
Crackalicious T,S 
Hot Pockets S 
Precarious S 
Spit On It ! S 
Where The Wild Things Are S 


YDS: 5.12b French: 7b Ewbanks: 26 UIAA: VIII+ ZA: 26 British: E5 6b

Type:  Trad, Sport, 1 pitch, 50'
Consensus:  YDS: 5.12a French: 7a+ Ewbanks: 25 UIAA: VIII+ ZA: 25 British: E5 6a [details]
FA: FA Jonathan Clark August 2010
Page Views: 1,793
Submitted By: Jon Clark on Dec 6, 2010

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Crackalicious Birdsboro Pa West Wall

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This line follows the obvious crack system through the right facing corner on the left side of the West Wall.

Scramble up to the base of the corner passsing a bolt or two. Consider skipping these or back cleaning to avoid rope drag. Use caution as the rock quality is poor through this section. Jam and layback through a powerful sequence that is capped by a mini roof. Your efforts will be rewarded with a stance after the roof. Stem your way up to the anchors.

While eyeballing this line from a neighboring route, the crack through the crux has widened significantly since I was on this in 2010. Not sure if this is from aggressive cleaning or traffic, but I remember thin locks on razor sharp rock for a couple of moves below the mini roof. The top looks like it has cleaned up quite a bit.


8 bolts, ring anchors

Photos of Crackalicious Slideshow Add Photo
Crackalicious (left), Hot Pockets (right)
BETA PHOTO: Crackalicious (left), Hot Pockets (right)

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By Tyrel Fuller
From: Denver, CO
Dec 6, 2010
rating: 5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a

As good as it gets at the Bird.
By Jon Clark
From: Philadelphia, PA
Apr 30, 2012

As good as it gets at Birdsboro is a bit of a stretch. It's certainly worth climbing, but there are a number of lines here that far exceed this in quality.
By Chris Acosta
Mar 8, 2013
rating: 5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b

I have the FFA on this route forget the bolts that I origanelly put in! I left them in because birdsboro is a sport destination and there out of the way. But this climb is a awesome Trad line with Pg gear!
By Jon Clark
From: Philadelphia, PA
Mar 18, 2013


While you got the first redpoint on gear (which is a commendable effort) you do not have the FFA. I was the first to redpoint and used the bolts for pro. There is only one FFA. There aren't separate FFAs for different protection schemes.
By joeforte
From: palmerton, pa
May 28, 2013
rating: 5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a

I did this on gear back in 2010 at the climb and clean. A foothold broke after the crux and I fell on my onsight attempt. I climbed it clean later that day. It is awkward and potentially more dangerous to use the bolts, since they are behind you and have the potential to flip you if you fall (the bolts put the rope behind your leg, gear in the crack keeps the rope in front of you).
By Chris Acosta
Sep 22, 2014
rating: 5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b

I disagree, if there is an aid route and you lead in on gear you free it. If there is a aid route and it is impossible and you bolt it you free it on the bolts. If there is a bolted route and it is thought to be to tough, dangerous or impossible and you climb it on gear you have free climbed it in a much more pure and ethical style! So once again congrats on the fa on bolts. But Trad will always count as being more free than clipping bolts, plus it's way more badass!!!! So in conclusion I still feel that I have the FFA, agree to disagree......
By Jon Clark
From: Philadelphia, PA
Sep 23, 2014


I'm not interested in a pissing contest. I know you in person and like and respect you. If you want to amicably discuss it in person sometime that would be great. However, I think you are confused on the definition of a first free ascent. It has nothing to do with the style of protection. You bolted the thing afterall. Birdsboro is a sport climbing area not a bastion of old school, hardcore traditional climbing ethics.

As far as style goes, working (i.e. hangdogging) a well protected route on gear on your way to a redpoint is no more "ethical" or "badass" than working the route on the existing bolts. It's been "reduced" to a sport climb at that point anyway. Crackalicious is well protected using the bolts or gear and is in no way runout. If "pure" and "ethical" style was such a concern, why did you choose to bolt it in the first place?

Using your definition of a FFA where so called "improved" style invalidates a previous first free ascent using an "inferior" style, the route still awaits a "true" FFA. This would of couse be onsight, chalkless, barefoot, naked and free solo. If that's the case then there are quite a few lines at Birdsboro as well as thousands more around the country awaiting a FFA.
By joeforte
From: palmerton, pa
Oct 26, 2014
rating: 5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a

I have to agree with Jon, and it's not even worth arguing. It is a FACT. The first free ascent is exactly that. The FIRST free ascent. It doesn't matter if someone climbs it later in a more "badass" style (G trad is badass?). If I start climbing other sport routes on dicey gear does that invalidate the original FFA, and give me the new FFA? No. FFA is FFA, regardless of protection.

Also, when did you climb it on gear Chris? I remember at the 2010 climb and clean, you told me that noone had freed it yet, and I freed it later that day on trad gear. I don't know if Jon did it before me or not, and I could care less. It is totally safe and easy to protect on gear.
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