First climbed here in 1983 and sporadically over the years. Used to make crazy occassional afternoon trips here after getting off work in Auburn. Climbed a few of the "classics."
this was my first day at Lovers Leap and first time leading multi-pitch trad. i led 3 pitches of Bear's Reach (5.7 with the 5.8 variation ending), then followed a 4-pitch adventure climb; the first two pitches followed East Wall (5.6) to the great ledge, then 1 pitch traversing Ham Sandwich/Horn Blower 5.8/5.9 (or possibly traversed off route), a slab 20 ft across with great dikes for feet but no hands to a hanging belay halfway up the last pitch of Bear’s Reach, then finished the pitch as the sun went down. i'm spoiled forever. =)
This is the best place for beginner and intermediate climbing that you could possibly ask for. Some gentle routes for beginners in leading and trad, beautifully solid granite with awesome holds and friction, almost non-existant approaches, and a great camp site. If you are thinking about going to Yosemite, you should definately consider this area as an alternative.
I drove by the Leap so many times when making the trek from San Jose to Tahoe but never had a chance to climb it until this year. The rock quality was awesome and the views tremendous. Hopefully I can go back again and try some harder routes.
Mary and I went for a 3-day weekend. We stayed at the campground, which was absolutely brilliant. We climbed a bunch of really good routes:
June 16, 2007 - Surrealistic Pillar (5.7, 3 pitches) to Corrugation Corner (5.7, 3 pitches) - A really fun day, finishing to the top of the cliff and then the short walk to the summit. The huge horizontal sills are amazing features and Corrugation Corner was a great climb, although we got stuck behind a party of 4 (with one leader) which delayed things considerably.
June 17, 2007 - The Groove (5.8, 2 pitches) to Traveller Buttress (P1) (5.8, 1 pitch) - Really fun climbing on the Groove, then on to the start of Traveller Buttress. After waiting for a party of 3, we climbed P1, which was fantastic. I started up P2, but realized pretty quickly that I have no idea how to climb offwidths. Bailed from a fixed TCU and went to Lake Tahoe for the afternoon.
June 18, 2007 - The Line (5.9, 3 pitches) - A great way to end the trip. One of the best climbs I've done anywhere and good for validation after the rejection on Traveller Buttress. We were first on the route and topped out at around 1PM, then headed back to SFO for dinner with Mary's brother and the red-eye back to NY.
September 12, 2009 - Bear's Reach (5.7, 3 pitches), Haystack (5.8, 3 pitches) - After a month of work with very few days off, I finally had a long weekend. So Mary and I headed back to Lover's Leap and climbed these classics on the first day of the trip. We got right on Bear's Reach without any waiting and had a fantastic time. Haystack was open when we got back to the ground, although we caught up to a party of 3 at the first belay which slowed things up a bit. Back in camp before the thunder started.
June 13, 2010 - East Crack (5.8, 3 pitches), Psychedelic Tree (5.9, 3 pitches) - Mary and I made a quick day trip to the Leap. We stopped off in Sacramento the night before to watch the UFC fights and then continued to one of the campgrounds 15 minutes before Strawberry. We started on East Crack, which went really quickly, but had two nice crux bulges on P2. After some lunch, we headed up Psychedelic Tree, which was fantastic...better than The Line in my opinion.
October 20, 2010 -- Scimitar (5.9, 3 pitches), Bookmark (5.8, 3 pitches) -- Mary and I went to the Leap again and pretty much had the place to ourselves. We had our pick of campsites, got up late and did these two great climbs. Scimitar is an awesome route, maybe my favorite so far, and Bookmark was excellent. We had a nice campfire and then did Hogwild (5.7, 1 pitch) in the morning before driving to Sacramento to meet up with an old friend.
Climbed this many times on many routes, many more to come...it it's your first time try Surrealistic Pillar to Corrugation Corner, descend, up Bear's Reach. By then you will understand why Royal Robbins opened a climbing school here.
Courtesy of Scotty Morron. Twice.
Sept 2002: Deception (5.6) - 4 pitches. Route aptly named. Very reach-y moves on last pitch (I'm short...)
Sept 2002: East Wall (5.6).
Partners: Steve Reynolds, Steve Reames.
Hot showers available for $5.00 at the Strawberry lodge, a quick walk up the road from the campground. Perfect weather. Great, free campground.
Followed Etsuko and Misha on Deception - their first time at the Leap, and my first time on the Hogsback. It was ... deceiving, but fun :)
Route Climbed: Pop Bottle, Haystack (1st pitch only)
Date Climbed: 22-Oct-2006
Climbed in the afternoon with Holly Wilkerson. Led the first pitch of Pop Bottle again. Holly led second pitch. After the walkoff led the 5.6 first pitch of Haystack, then traversed over to the Pop Bottle belay ledge and walked off as the sun set. Hexes and tricams useful.
Note: belayed from ledge below East Corner - with a 60m rope you can set a traverse piece near the Haystack belay and carefully make the easy but exposed fifth class move across ...
Weather was excellent for this time of year, and relatively warm, though breezy up high.
Date Climbed: June 17-18, 2006
Climbed with Mike.
Saturday morning led a 5.6 on the Hogwild wall (can't remember the name, but it's in the Supertopo guide), then followed Mike on a 5.7 and TR'd a 5.8-5.9 nearby. In the afternoon we climbed Corrugation Corner (I led the first pitch, Mike led the last two). The crux pitch was pretty scary stuff for a 5.7.
Sunday I led the first pitch of Pop Bottle (5.6 with a couple of 5.7 moves) in my approach shoes, then turned the second over to Mike. We then climbed East Wall in the afternoon (I led the first pitch - Supertopo rates it 5.7).
Weather was clear and basically perfect both days, not too cold at night, and while hot in the afternoon cooled by good breezes. No mosquitoes or rattlers out while we were there.
Route climbed: Scimitar
Date climbed: 28-August-2005
Seconded this fun 5.9 route in 2.5 pitches, climbing with K. Chaltikian. As usual, he made it look easy, while I struggled and hung trying to pull the roof moves. Warm, clear weather with nice breezes.
Route Climbed: Various
Date Climbed: 7-June-2005
Climbed with JD. Arrived the day after a light spring snow (maybe about a half inch which quickly melted). Chilly and breezy, but warmed up fast once the sun hit the walls around 11or so (just had to deal with numb fingers for an hour).
Seconded Surrealistic Pillar (5.7) and The Groove (5.7). Belayed Jim up Tombstone Terror (5.10c), then did some TR flailing on Surrealistic Pillar Direct (5.10a), an interesting hand crack.
Surprising number of folks in the campground, all with stories of the previous day's wind, rain, and snow.
Route Climbed: Bear's Reach, East Crack
Date Climbed: 27-May-2005
Fun day climbing with Johnhl94563 and Gail J. No snow left on the descent trail, but saw a couple of rattlesnakes. Weather was shady and breezy in the morning, but hot and sun-baked by afternoon. 3 pitches each with a 60m rope. Loved it.
Did two trips during summer 2006, climbed The Line, Corrugation Corner, Bear's Reach, etc. It's a very small area and quite crowded but I'm spoiled from the emptyness of Canada. Get up early and don't plan on doing two popular routes in one day unless you want to wait for hours.
The last time I climbed at lover's leap was in Sept 04. On Saturday it was cold and windy, so we climbed at Hogswild. On Sunday we went to climb Knapsack Crack and it started to snow, so we bailed.
Probably my favorite place to climb.
On this second go-around, led the first pitch and followed the second behind SMM. Significantly easier than the first time.
This was one of my favorite places to climb. In the '80s my partner and I climbed Fantasia, The Line, Bookmark, Traveler Buttress, Scimitar, Hospital Corner (beautiful), Dead Tree Direct, Surrealistic Pillar direct and non-direct, and The Groove.
In the '90s we climbed Pop Bottle several times, Haystack two times, Corrugation Corner, Surrealistic Pillar and The Groove. My girlfriend lead the crux pitch of Haystack as her second lead ever. She was also three months pregnant. I was freaking out about her safety, but she was determined. She was a natural.
Finally had the chance to climb California granite for the first time. Had a great weekend of climbing with Jim, Steven and Ryan.
Unknown crack on Hogwild, it was supposed to be a warm up but turned out to be dirty uninspiring climbing.
Corrugation Corner, great route, got a taste of dikes and wild exposure, awesome 2nd pitch, scary short traverse on 3rd pitch.
Haystack Crack, after a long wait jumped on it but still got stuck behind a party, pulling the handhold at the left corner of the roof was cool, finished at dark.
Travelers Buttress, all around climbing, beatiful flakes on first pitch, sucked on the OW crack had to prusik it up, incredible exposure on 3rd pitch, fun dike finish on 4th pitch.
Great rock, weather and company, I wish it wasn't so far.
Awesome weekend of mountain biking and rock climbing with Haydar and my brother Steve. At Lovers Leap we met and climbed with Ryan, a climber from Palo Alto.
Sat: Biked the classic Flume Trail and Tahoe Rim Trail.
Sun: Corrugation Corner - amazing route. Fun crack climbing, amazing arete exposure, and dike hiking. One of the best!
Haystack - raced up this one as the sun set. Crowded but fun route.
Mon: Traveler's Buttress - a real test of my skill level but fantastic climbing. Hung on gear on the two crux moves (the 5.8 on pitch 1 and the 5.9 offwidth) but the rest of the climb was simply amazing. I have no idea how it happened to be 6pm when we were on the summit, but the drive home included a bivy near the CA/OR border and a "late arrival" at work!
Not much to say about this route.
Only one hard move, the rest is cake. There was a rattle snake waiting at the top for me, almost took a whipper.
I climbed this route several times. It is a blast. The exposed arete is killer.
climbed several years before I was part of summit post. Great climb, wish I could do it Osman style.