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Rock Climbing the San Francisco Bay, 1st edition, 2002
by Tresa Black; A Falcon Guide, 227 pages: $25

Overview: This guide covers a variety of climbing areas ranging from Table Mountain to the east, Mt St. Helena & Fort Ross to the northwest and Castle Rock State park to the South. The guide covers only the primary climbing sites in some areas but does so with exquisite detail. The topo's, route photo's, descriptions, driving directions & trail maps are very good. I particularly enjoyed the extra's provided in this guide. These included, dog friendliness of the area, local coffee shops & breweries, geological makeup, climbing seasons, first ascent history, route name and rating changes and, what I thought was particularly classy was noting other climbing guides to regions covering specific areas in more detail. Very Cool. Finally, a great guide for the North and East Bays!

Reviewers Opinion: The Book is not only a good guide but is fun and informational. The Author covers the East & North Bay areas better than any guide on the market. The Author is upfront when she says it covers only the primary climbing rocks in some areas - such as Castle Rock. Though she doesn't cover all routes she does a great job of detailing the classic climbs in these locations. Like other guides, such as Bay Area Rock, this guide tries to cover a very large area. Unlike the other guide, it does so in an effective manner. I'm not usually a fan of Falcon guide books, having returned several in the past, but this is one I'll be keeping. Check this one out before buying the other alternatives. It's worth the extra couple bucks!

Recommendation to the Author: Overall not much to recommend. Nothing major anyway but below are a few suggestions for future additions.

  • Leave out areas outside the region which are covered in greater detail by other guides, such as Table mountain.
  • GPS locations to trailheads and the base of rock formations.
  • More detailed information on TR anchoring requirements at specific locations which require unusual setups, such as the right side of Goat rock, Dismal Abysmal on Indian Rock or some of the Boy Scout rock routes at Mt. Diablo (very long webbing).
  • Pictures of rock damage caused by poor TR setups might help illustrate the problem of incorrect setups at places like Mt. Diablo State park. This may help educate climbers to some of the reasons why climbers are not looked upon favorably at our state parks. If you'd like examples feel free to email us and we'll send them to you.

Rating - 4.5 Stars **** recommended purchase.

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