Friday, April 17, 2015

Red Rock and Zion Trip Report 2015

What: Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area and Zion National Park
Who: Cheang Moore, B-Rad Benny Hardin, Germany Hendrix, and myself
When: April 9-13, 2015
What: Climb "dumb" Rocks
Trip report will include some beta, lots of pics, few vids.
Day 1: Climb Birdland 5.7+, 5 pitch climb
Approach: Enter the Scenic Loop Rd., pay $7 entry fee, drive 10 miles around to Pine Creek Canyon Parking Lot. Load up and the Birdland approach is 1.3 miles to the base of the climb. The trail is both rocky and sandy at times. Rugged trail but no bushwacking involved. We entered the Scenic loop at 6:00 a.m., which is the time they open this time of year (check for times, they vary depending on time of year). It took about 15-20 minutes to get to parking lot. The approach to the base of the wall took us about half an hour or so. After racking up, the first climber was on the wall by 7:30am. We were all off the route and and rapped off by 2-2:30p.m. Back at the car by 3:15 p.m.
You can identify the route by finding the bushy ledges. It climbs the crack system up through three pitches, face climbs the 4th pitch and finishes on a sweet finger crack on pitch 5. The topo of the route is above. If you look (or click on picture) hard enough in picture above, you can find parties of climbers at different belay stations...give you a good scale of wall. There is one bolt on pitch three protecting the traverse into the crack. Important to have several runners for this route...as this route wanders and traverses after pitch 3.
We were a party of four, but climbed as a group of three. Climbers three and four climbed simultaneously. This is definitely a slower way to multipitch climb...but we were in it to hang out and enjoy each other while climbing. Enjoy the pics...
So after pitch three...we just kinda stopped taking pics. Sorry...after climbing Birdland, we head over to Calico Basin...
and climbed a couple routes. There are several routes on this huge boulder. routes from 5.8 through 5.12+. There is a red rock classic 11b/c on the arĂȘte I wish I would have done. maybe next time. (Brad blends in with rock in picture above).
Day 2: Climb Physical Graffit 5.6 and Big Bad Wolf 5.9...Drink Beer  5.Wonderful
The approach is mellow compared to everything in Red Rock. Park at the Red Spring Parking, and you don't have to enter the loop and save $7 bucks. The approach to the base is 1/2 mile. You hike past Cannibal Crag and hike West up the slabs towards the route. This area is beautiful with cool looking rock everywhere...
Physical Graffiti is a fun 5.6 cruiser. At least the first pitch. The second pitch is a long 180' crack climb that takes gear all the way to the top...minus the last 10 or 15 feet on easy 5.0 terrain. Person leading the second pitch needs to be ready to plug anywhere from 15-20 pieces, depending on how comfortable they feel on this grade and climb.
When you top out, you will anchor off and climb 10-15' unprotected on 5.0 terrain and head south on class 3/4 ramp until you see cairns. Be careful, there is loose rock up there...

Big Bad Wolf is the 5.9 to the left of Physical Graffiti. Although, I thought the beginning of the 3rd pitch slabs were the crux...that sketched me out. Jeremy and I went up this quickly, swapping leads. We chose to rap off since there was no party below us.

After two days of climbing...we headed over to the "Old Strip" off of Fremont in Vegas to enjoy the brews and views...

Had a few drinks at Bangers Brewery in Vegas...
and enjoyed the lights. Next Stop...Zion National Park.

Day 3: Hike Angel's Landing and explore the Narrows...
Angel's Landing...
Sean coming up Walter's Wiggles...
Great White Throne in the background...Brad was the only one to summit. Sean, Jeremy, and I stayed right here...where you see this last picture taken. There were many people on the trail already and I quite frankly didn't want to get frustrated being "stuck" behind people. I was ok with this decision.
We jumped on the shuttle from Angel's and headed straight to Narrows. We got on the trail and took a detour to eat lunch.
The narrows has to be the best hike in America. So far it's my favorite. There is so much...it's my third time up this creek and I feel like it's new everytime. This time around, we to Orderville Canyon and went up creek for 1/4 a mile. It's a spectacular slot canyon. There will be a day when I hike all the 16 miles down the Virgin River...from top to bottom. One day.
Sean, after doing the Landing and Narrows. What a wuss...

After taking a nap...he bounced back and joined in on an hour of bouldering in arguably the most scenic bouldering spot in America...
I mean...seriously...that's our bouldering session! How bad ass is this?
Oh yeah...our campsite views!
Day 4: Hike in Kolob Canyon's South Fork of Taylor Creek...go get on Namaste 5.12a.
Dos Mitras 5.11b
Dos Mitras
 Namaste 5.12a
Sweet place to recover...full body back and knee bar...If you plan it right, you can find sweet no hands rest...
These walls are anywhere from 45-55 degrees...for 120-140' long. The name of the game is power endurance! Routes are bolted to the top. All you need is about 12-14 draws. Be careful, there are some runouts with potential decking.
Some 10b/c slab...forget about it. No thank you. Give me the overhanging stuff. Jeremy enjoys these routes. I think he is crazy. There are a handful of slab routes on the opposite side of the canyon. Again...some of these routes are crazy run out.
Day 5: We climbed at the Panty Wall. Great outing. We climbed several routes...ranging from 5.8s to 12a. My favorite climb on the wall is Panty Raid 5.10a trad route that goes up a beautiful plated varnish. Takes big stoppers and small cams. We climbed for half a day on this wall...we were flying out this same day.
This was an incredible trip. With incredible guys. I had a blast...from connecting the pitches on Birdland through Zion and the random smoky rundown Casino...this was a great trip. The weather was good, the beers even better, and the views perfect. Thanks to the guys for joining me...and can't wait for another Red Rock trip!!!

This is a very short video recap...I hope this works: http://www.magisto.com/video/N1QaY0MQAmEvUE1pYw

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