NYC Bouldering Guide

Rat Rock East Face
Preface, Access and Natural History
History, Ethics, Ratings, Disclaimer and Acknowledgements
Rat Rock/North Face
Rat Rock/North Face 2
Rat Rock East Face
Rat Rock/East Face 2
Cat Rock
Cat Rock 2
Chess Rock
Ramble Rock
Bethesda Boulder
Naturalist Boulder
Vista Rock
Vista Rock 2
Riverside Park
Great Hill Cliffs
Worthless Boulder
Roadside Boulder
Fort Tryon Park
Inwood Park

Making the long reach to the handrail on THE FLAKE V1.

11.  The Flake  V1  ***
Start:  At the tallest, steepest section of the eastern face, find an obvious, large right-facing flake that archs up right.
Go:  Move up the flake until you can reach out left and gain the long hand rail.  Move left and down along the rail until decent holds allow you to climb straight up.  (Traditionally done with a heel hook.)
A true classic.  Originally rated 5.9
Variation:  Flake/Crystal follows the flake up and right and to the top via a somewhat hidden crystal hold.  V1
12.  Testpiece   V5  ***
Start:  On small, crystal holds immediately to the left of The Flake.
Go:  Crimp up a vertical line of small face holds to a shallow, thin horizontal crack (requires left hand on the "tooth" hold) then straight up from there (avoiding the rail) to a hold where the rail ends.  Mantle directly onto the upper slab section via a small two-finger crystal.
The original Rat Rock testpiece ... reimagined with eliminates and more direct powerful moves.  For many years the hardest problem in the park.  Crimpy and powerful.  Hard moves lead to an exciting finish.  Take care to avoid the low foot bulge out right and any part of the hand rail.
*One or more of the low crystal holds have broken smaller, removing the nice flat edges they used to provide.  Because of that, starting the problem is a little more awkward, but does not impact the grade. 
Variation:  The original, easier version.  Use the obvious bulge out right for the right foot to help make the initial moves to the small horizontal crack and then any where on the hand rail for the left hand.  The same hand rail is then used for a left-foot heel hook to make the mantle.  V3 
13.   Rat Patrol  V4   **
Start:  Immediately left of Testpiece on low crystal holds.
Go:  Climb up, using two of the small face holds on the lower part of Testpiece for the right hand.  From the low crystals, reach up with left hand to the small right-facing sidepull (gaston), then find the right balance to reach out right to grab the "tooth" hold.  Set feet, then make the big move to the rail.  Finish directly finding good holds in the large crystally rock above.
Not as sustained as Testpiece, but the moves are almost as good. 
***Since the low crystal holds were broken, the start of this problem has gotten a little harder.  One of the broken crystal holds was a key foot hold for the big move to the rail and the lack of the original edge has made this move a bit harder as well.
14.  Tweaky Shit  V3  * 
Start:  Immediately left of Rat Patrol.  2-3 feet left of The Flake.  The left-hand gaston on the sidepull of Rat Patrol becomes a straight on right-hand sidepull on this problem. 
Go:   Crank up on the tweaky opposing sidepulls and grab the horizontal rail above.  Continue to top.
Right-hand sidepull broke first in 1987 making the problem a little harder.  The hold broke even bigger the next year but was epoxied back on by Yuki after consulting with other local climbers.
Variation:  Tweaky Sit V4   Begin with a sit start at a low right-hand undercling, using a separate "island" of rock for your feet.  Make some difficult moves on small holds to gain the opposing sidepulls.  ***It is possible to eliminate the rock "island" for the feet bumping the grade up a bit. 
15.  Ratraverse   V2
Start:  On the low bulge right of the flake (used as a major foothold on The Flake problem).  Small hand holds are found on the top and side of the bulge.
Go:  Move left to the large flake, then up slightly.  Traverse left across the middle of the face until you find yourself in the middle of the Tweaky Shit crux.  Gain the rail above and hand traverse the rail to where it ends at a very small right facing corner.  Power up the flakes at the corner to the top.
Trick foot placement at crux.



16.  Bottom Line  V8   *
Start:  Same as Ratraverse -- on the small hand holds found on the low bulge right of the large flake.
Go:  Move left to the flake and stay low, traversing along the small face holds at the bottom ofTestpiece and Rat Patrol.  Continue to a left-slanting, larger hold.  Move left onto very thin holds and then straight up to the horizontal rail.  From the rail, finish with a big move straight up to a hidden edge near the top.
Originally conceived as a variation to Ratraverse, this problem was developed with the input of many climbers.  A breakthrough climb for Rat Rock, it was later reported to have been worked out several years prior by Kevin Bein, although this has never been confirmed.
Shortly after the first two ascents at the time, a key hold at the crux broke.  It is not know whether the problem has been climbed since then.
Variation:  Yuki's Problem starts near the end of the low traverse, moves up toward the dynamic finish of Bottom Line, but eliminates the rail (using dished out holds just beneath its edge) and reaches the top statically via tiny holds.  V8


Getting set up for the crux move on Rat Patrol V4.

©  Copyright Nicolas Falacci 2003