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P1: (5.7) Layback crack, then face climb right to a large flake then up a tough to a pinnacle. The belay should have at least one bolt.
P2: (5.8) Face climb right and up to a thin crack. Climb the crack to a left facing corner. Layback the corner and belay below blocky overhangs.
P3: (5.7) Short pitch up a wide crack to a tiny ledge blow the crux and belay.
P4: (5.8+) Climb a crack up through an overhanging trough, the crux. Traverse right below a huge overhang on easier terrain to cracks which skirt the overhang on the right. Belay near a large flake.
P 5 & 6: Easy fifth and fourth class to the top. Sign the new register.
Rap: see recent descriptions on other routes which top out.
This is the super northeast arete of North Rabbit Ear (see photo: mountainproject.com/v/106315848 ). One approaches from the west up Rabbit Ears Canyon to the notch between Middle and North Rabbit Ear. Drop packs here as the double rope rap finishes here. Drop down on the east side and traverse under the east face to the arete. It is forth class to the start which is a layback crack left of the large arete.
Full trad rack up to 3 inches.
Looking north from below the saddle
Is this the first pitch?
From: Albuquerque, NM
Jan 11, 2012
Long hike, but well worth it ...
|By Aaron Hobson|
From: Las Cruces, NM
Jan 13, 2012
Thanks for posting this. Can't wait to go out and give it a go.
|By Nathan Fry|
From: El Paso, TX
Aug 26, 2012
I finally had a chance to make the hike into Hand Jive today. I'll add a couple of comments that may be useful to future Hand Jivers:
1) The approach from Topp Hut takes about three hours of nasty bushwacking. I highly recommend giving it a try from Aguirre Springs. From the top of the fourth pitch, it looks feasible to take the Baylor Peak trail to a rocky gully immediately below the NRE NE arete and scramble up the gully to the base of Hand Jive. Closer in terms of distance and probably less breaking brush - the first portion of the approach after crossing over the saddle from the west is filled with thorn bushes!
2) The first pitch is extremely overgrown these days. My partner and I actually discounted the "real" first pitch as not being correct due to the amount of vegetation in the crack. We ended up climbing another "obvious" layback crack to the left of the arete that probably went at about 5.8 and put us far left of the bolted station at the top of the pinnacle. I traversed over with some serious rope drag to get back on route. Bring your gardening tools.
3) The two bolts at the top of the first pitch are the originals - a buttonhead and spinner 1/4". You can't really back them up, so either bring a drill for new bolts or trust in antiquity!
4) The topo is a little confusing, especially on the upper pitches. With good routefinding, you can make it to the top with no problem, but there are some aspects in terms of rock features and distances that never seemed to match up. Be flexible.
5) My rack: singles from #4 Camalot down to black Alien (used every one of them at least once), full range of wired nuts (used about five times, to include anchors). The chimneys will eat up #4 Camalots and would certainly take a #5 in places, although that might be overkill.
I plan to return to Hand Jive via Aguirre Springs and work on a new topo and some variations at the end. More to follow later this fall. In summary, a decent route that, when cleaned up, given a more accurate description, and reached via a shorter approach, definitely has the potential to join the Organ classics. The exposure was really nice in some sections of the third and fourth pitches.