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El Cap Base Routes - Guidebook?
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By DrewF
Mar 13, 2013

I'm heading out with a couple friends in April and we're looking to climb on some of the base routes of El Cap. Can anyone give beta on a guidebook for some of these routes? All I can seem to find is the Supertopo "Freeclimbs" book. Which is nice, but really only has super classics and routes that I assume will be insane busy most days. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks everyone.


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By 20 kN
From Hawaii
Mar 14, 2013

DrewF wrote:
I'm heading out with a couple friends in April and we're looking to climb on some of the base routes of El Cap. Can anyone give beta on a guidebook for some of these routes? All I can seem to find is the Supertopo "Freeclimbs" book. Which is nice, but really only has super classics and routes that I assume will be insane busy most days. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks everyone.

Aid or free? I dont know of many free pitches at the base of El Cap. If you are looking to do some free climbing craging, El Cap is not really the best place. Look up the Cookie Cliffs. There are many fantastic free climbs there.


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By Robbie Brown
From Flagstaff, AZ
Mar 14, 2013
Jumping across the mace gap with a PBR

Moby Dick 5.10a fingers to fists. Great climb!


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By alix morris
From Berkeley, CA
Mar 14, 2013
The Red Dihedral, Incredible Hulk

Hardly Pinnacle is one of my favorite routes in the park! And if you're up for it...dun dun dun...AHAB


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By Kirk B.
From Boise, ID
Mar 14, 2013
belay slaving on some route I forgot the name of way right of Bloody Fingers.

AS far as guides go, I use the Meyers/Reid Guide('87), but it's been out of print for a long time. Maybe one of your friends has a copy?


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By MJMobes
From The land of steady habits
Mar 14, 2013
modern man

Robbie Brown wrote:
Moby Dick 5.10a fingers to fists. Great climb!


Sacherer Cracker 10a, mega classic as well

watch out for flaming bags of poop!


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By randy88fj62
Mar 14, 2013
Thunderbolt Peak in the Palisades

For a nice beginning aid route try; el cap tree route.


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By Greg G
From SLC, UT
Mar 14, 2013
The route in it's entirety.

supertopo freeclimbs has pretty much all the routes that are at the base. just use that and do stuff that ppl aren't on. the only other climbs you'll find that aren't in that guide are fixed head ladders, and other aid nonsense.


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By Bryan G
From San Jose
Mar 14, 2013
Puffy jackets and Happy Boulders

What you want is this
books.google.com/books/about/Yosemite_Climbs.html?id=DZrIW7z>>>

Except it went out of print about a year ago and prices for a used copy on Amazon and most sites are just silly. So the Supertopo as your only option unless you can find a friend or someone at the base who has a copy of the Reid guide.

Also peruse the El Capitan Base Routes page, and if there's anything that catches your eye that's not in the Supertopo, you can print out the beta for it.

If you want to avoid crowds, hike up to the West Buttress area. Peter Pan, Peter Left, and the first couple pitches of the West Butt are three of the best "base climbs".


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By Salamanizer
Administrator
From Vacaville Ca.
Mar 18, 2013

What the hell are you people talking about? The base of El Cap is a great place for some cragging and there's tons of routes. I'm betting most of you giving advice have never even been there.

Dont get the Supertopo, it's a select guide and doesn't have hardly anything. What you want is the Reid (Yosemite Free Climbs) Guide.
It's got over 50 routes listed along the base of El Cap where as the Supertopo has maybe 20. Tons of stuff along the base and it's a popular cragging area because of it. If you're looking for something a bit more secluded and shady. Try the Shultz Ridge area right next door. Again, refer to the Reid Guide and skip the Supertopo for this area as well as most other areas in the park.

Enjoy...


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By DrewF
Mar 19, 2013

Thanks for the info Salamanizer and Bryan. I lucked out and found a Reid guide online at a small bookstore near Portland, OR. Took me a day or two of decent googling to find one at a decent price. Wonder why they wouldn't publish another run of them? I couldn't believe when I saw Amazon price was 125 or something for a new one, HAH. Anyway thanks again.


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By Fat Dad
From Los Angeles, CA
Mar 19, 2013

I'd suggest that the 20 routes listed in Supertopo vs. the 50 in the Reid guide are popular for good reason. Not every route at the base of the Captain is good or safe or accessible. Some of them are pretty obscure and in some cases (Armgeddon for example) have bad bolts. Sacherer Cracker, Moby Dick, La Cosita, Pine Line, Little John and a few other are pretty good, but there's a whole of obscure there as well.


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By Salamanizer
Administrator
From Vacaville Ca.
Mar 21, 2013

Who said anything about accessible and safe? Accessible means often crowded and safe is determined by an individuals own perceptions and ability.

...And I've climbed Armageddon. It's bolts are bomber and felt safe enough to me.


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By Fat Dad
From Los Angeles, CA
Mar 22, 2013

Clearly the OP is free to determine what he considers safe or accessible. But accessible does not always equal crowded nor does the Reid guide always give a good indication of whether the route is heads up or not. Just trying not to sandbag the OP is all.

BTW, I did not know that the bolts on Armageddon were replaced. The ones put in by the first ascentionist were bad enough when someone leaned on one to rest (not me!), it pulled out and he took a big whipper.


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By vincent L.
Mar 22, 2013
First day of school

Has anyone done 'Simulcrime' on El Cap base ?

I think Supertopo mentions it , something like a full pitch of 5.9 slab with like three bolts ? Sounds like fun .


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By EricBis
Mar 22, 2013

would love to see this get a second ascent:

www.mountainproject.com/v/california/yosemite_national_park/>>>

Amazing rock at the base.

Party Mix (10b) directly to TRON's right is an enjoyable little route, widely spaced bolts but positive climbing.

The High Arc is the left-facing corner to the right of Party Mix, and is a solid 11d lieback. Super fun with a spicey first twenty feet.

The three of these are in an area called Negative Pinnacle to the right of the sickle raps.


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