The Watchtower Climber's Log

Viewing: 1-11 of 11

limpingcrab - Aug 18, 2011 11:59 pm Date Climbed: Jul 8, 2009

Timex Route  Sucess!

Fun. Interesting route to learn how to lead, but a great day! Got off route a bit towards the top thanks to my climbing partner thinking a steep finger lieback looked fun. It was!


tarol - Feb 9, 2006 6:14 pm

Route Climbed: Lakes Trail Date Climbed: July 12, 1999

I first hiked up to the Watchtower in 1999 but went back in 2000 and 2004. It's a great hike and you get some fabulous views looking down into Tokopah Valley and east towards the Tablelands... but don't stop at the Watchtower! I recommend going on to the lakes. You can camp at Emerald and Pear Lakes which are incredibly beautiful!


robojeda - Nov 21, 2005 6:51 pm

Route Climbed: Lakes Trail Date Climbed: Oct 29, 2005  Sucess!

David, Jan and I walked to Watchtower and then lunched at Heather Lake.

Dave Daly

Dave Daly - Nov 15, 2006 12:42 am

Re: Route Climbed: Lakes Trail Date Climbed: Oct 29, 2005

Weak sauce Rob ; ) Heck, with you and should've marched up The Timex Route. Buck up!!

CNC Dave

CNC Dave - Jul 2, 2005 12:25 am

Route Climbed: Pear Lake trail Date Climbed: July,2004  Sucess!

Did this as part of a 10 mile loop. Great for views, fishing, and



Rob - Jan 26, 2004 11:51 pm

Route Climbed: Timex route Date Climbed: Oct. 10, 1999

Interesting route.

Sierrabonehead - Nov 21, 2003 7:21 pm

Route Climbed: Off Pear Lake trail Date Climbed: June 1998  Sucess!

Took the whimpy way. Hey, I was a kid then! Great views of Tokopah Valley. Spent the night, then back to Giant Forest to cater to the tourists Anyone remember Pinewood camp? Buck and Lorena?


asmrz - Nov 20, 2002 2:37 pm

Route Climbed: Tokopah Ice Fall Date Climbed: Almost every winter since 1988

This frozen waterfall is found on your left as you face up the valley of the Watchtower. The Tokopah trail actually leads to the Icefall and the base of The Watchtower. Randonee or Telemark skis are recommended for the approach. Snowshoes will do if the snow is not too deep. Ice usually forms in early December and stays good till mid March. It's very dependent on precipitation, in dry years there is LITTLE if any Ice. Once in a while, you might get knowledgable Ranger at Lodgepole. Some of them can tell you, what the conditions are. This is mostly practice area, although the extreme left hand side, has some serious climbing (WI5). I will include some photos of people having fun on the ice here. For us in California, this is almost as good as it gets. Please note: After a storm, the basin behind the Falls becomes extreemely unstable and at times avalanches right over the falls. Also the Watchtower Gully is very prone to slides after a storm. I have witnessed large slides there. If the slopes look and feel iffy, they most likely are.

Craig Peer

Craig Peer - Sep 23, 2002 2:42 pm

Route Climbed: Galen Rowell Route V, 5.8, A4 Date Climbed: 1983  Sucess!

Tim Winiarski and I climbed this route back in 1983. It had a little of everything - lots of free climbing but some tricky aid too. Fairly clean route also. If I can find my topo I drew I'll post it here eventually. Otherwise, email me at and I'll fax it to you.

Dave Daly

Dave Daly - Aug 14, 2002 12:06 pm

Route Climbed: Timex Route III+, 5.9 Date Climbed: May 1996  Sucess!

Timex definately has a good backcountry feel to it. 2 hour approach, bushwacking through manzanita and the usual vague 1st pitch start. We created a variation to pitch 3 (The Casio Traverse which traverses left over to a LONG sloping ledge with no pro for 60 feet (5.10a R/X)! This ledge continues up and left for a FULL pitch, just below a 3 foot roof. We climbed the roof (5.10) straight up and then up casual ground to the end of the original 3rd pitch. Pitch 4 has to be the highlight. This pitch involves a right, upward slanting finger crack on 5.8 terrain. If anyone has been on 'Airy Interlude' in the Needles, you know what I'm talking about! The rest is a love/hate climb due to the condition of the rock (some chossy, some lichen, some vegetated etc). The last pitch of 4th class vegetated, chossy rock put us just right of the true summit. Unfortunately, there is no summit register on top (yes, we searched for it!). All in all, 'Timex' is a nice climb, not classic, but a good one to put in the history books.

Bob Burd

Bob Burd - Aug 1, 2002 9:33 pm

Route Climbed: Trail Date Climbed: July 29, 2002  Sucess!

Not the manly man's way to the summit to be sure, but a scenic diversion on the way back from Alta Peak via Pear Lake. It's an easy class 1-2 scramble from the trail that goes by the saddle connecting the Tower to the canyon wall, making this the obvious descent route for the more serious climbs. Trip Report

Viewing: 1-11 of 11
Return to 'The Watchtower' main page