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Casket Quarry (Duluth)

Select Route:
A) The Alpine Route 
B) Crescent S 
C) Turkey Chute S 
D) Bare Hug S 
E) Deer Bait S 
F) Cat's Paw S 
G) Crocodile Tiers S 
H) Strike Three S,TR 
I) The Chimney S,TR 
J) Shaken, Not Stirred S 
K) Extra Dry Vermouth S 
L) Martini S 
M) Ledag'er TR 
N) -unfinished- S 
O) Reefer Madness S 
P) Blind Faith S 
Q) Big Blue - ICE 
R) Big Blue: LEFT Mixed Finish S 
S) Big Blue: CENTER Mixed Finish S 
T) Big Blue: RIGHT Mixed Finish S 
U) Turning To Stone S 
V) Thin and Bear It S,TR 
W) Off-Ramp S 
X) The Ramp 
Rest Day:
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From MP's sister site: MTB Project

Casket Quarry (Duluth)  


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Location: 46.7774, -92.1092 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 20,113
Administrators: Kris Gorny, Chris treggE, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: nodin on Dec 5, 2006
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Description 

Casket Quarry has been frequented by ice climbers for 30+ years. There was some rock development here in the 80’s (4-5 routes) but the incredibly chossy exfoliating rock is less than inspiring so it was pretty much abandoned.

With the rising popularity of Ice and Mixed climbing, more folks started using it as a training ground for other arenas. Top-roping on loose blocks/flakes and vertical kitty litter is great for testing the limits of adhesion and practicing your “I’m-light-as-a-feather” mantra…

Then the crowbars and drills showed up. Mike Dahlberg pioneered the use of RB’s or removable bolts to lead a couple mixed routes but since nobody else owned the uber specialized hardware, they never got repeated. In 2005 Mike and James Loveridge started putting some serious cleaning time in. Countless days were spent hanging from a rope with all sorts of home made “technical trundling” equipment dangling off harnesses. Eventually, if all went well, a route would emerge from underneath the choss.

Now the crag has close to 20 Ice and mixed routes all of which can be lead ground-up with good protection. If this crag were in Colorado there would be 50+ climbers there every weekend! Luckily it’s in Northern Minnesota… Come on up here, tie in and start getting’ on the sharp end! Oh, buy Mike D and J.Lo some beers for all the money they’ve spent on bolts…

Please Note: If you plan on TR’ing a route off the anchors, PLEASE use your own biners/draws to avoid wearing out the expensive hardware prematurely. If there are biners or other clip in replaceable hardware on the anchor, feel free to use them. If they are looking worn and sketchy, just replace with biners of your own. Thanks in advance for being a responsible and thoughtful crag steward!


Getting There 

From the South: Take 35 North to West Duluth then follow PARKING AREA directions below
From Duluth: Follow directions to the PARKING AREA below

PARKING:
Directions to the Loll Designs/Casket Quarry lot:
1. Take the 40th Ave W exit from I-35
2. Head northwest on 40th Ave W toward W 8th St
3. Turn left onto W 8th St
4. Turn right onto N Central Ave
5. Immediately turn left onto Highland St
6. Turn right onto N 59th Ave W (57th is the old parking area - 2 blocks away)
7. Turn right into the gravel parking lot.
8. Park on the far side of the lot, closest to the quarry.

DO NOT park anywhere near the RR tracks as you WILL get towed!
PLEASE DO NOT block or in any way hinder access to the property and houses by the Quarry entrance.

DANGER: Please Note- 

It is HIGHLY dangerous to rock climb these bolted routes in the summer! Even though the routes themselves are cleaned of large debris (mostly...) there are many hanging blocks on either side of the existing lines that could calve off at any time (I’ve seen 2 ton flakes come off without the slightest provocation) PLEASE - do not climb the Mixed routes at Casket unless it’s been below freezing for a week or so. Trust me, it really IS that bad...

Thanks to James Loveridge for submitting the above info.

Climbing Season



Weather station 4.1 miles from here

24 Total Routes

['4 Stars',3],['3 Stars',14],['2 Stars',5],['1 Star',2],['Bomb',0]
['<=5.6',0],['5.7',0],['5.8',0],['5.9',0],['5.10',0],['5.11',0],['5.12',0],['5.13',0],['>=5.14',0],['',0],['<=V1',0],['V2-3',0],['V4-5',0],['V6-7',0],['V8-9',0],['V10-11',0],['V12-13',0],['>=V14',0]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Casket Quarry (Duluth):
K) Extra Dry Vermouth   M9-     Sport, Mixed, 1 pitch, 85'   
J) Shaken, Not Stirred   M8+     Sport, Mixed, 1 pitch, 85'   
X) The Ramp   WI3     Ice, 100'   
D) Bare Hug   M8+     Sport, Mixed, 1 pitch, 65'   
A) The Alpine Route   WI3     Ice, 75'   
M) Ledag'er   M8     TR, Mixed, 1 pitch, 80'   
V) Thin and Bear It   M6     Sport, TR, Mixed, 1 pitch, 55'   
H) Strike Three   M6     Sport, TR, Mixed, 1 pitch, 75'   
L) Martini   M6-7     Sport, Mixed, 1 pitch, 80'   
E) Deer Bait   M7-     Sport, Mixed, 1 pitch, 65'   
Q) Big Blue - ICE   WI4-5     Ice, 1 pitch, 70'   
B) Crescent   M8-     Sport, Mixed, 1 pitch, 55'   
I) The Chimney   WI5 M5     Sport, TR, Mixed, Ice, 1 pitch, 90'   
Browse More Classics in Casket Quarry (Duluth)

Featured Route For Casket Quarry (Duluth)
The Chimney, Shaken, Not Stirred, Extra Dry Vermou...

K) Extra Dry Vermouth M9-  MN : Casket Quarry (Duluth)
This amazing route ascends the most improbable looking and continuously steep chunk of rock at the quarry. It is often bone dry but sometimes there is a smear at the slab at the bottom and the upper overhanging crack system is often choked with ice. Start under the left side of the huge hanging “Martini glass” shaped flake and climb straight up slab on small edges and delicate one tooth holds (in some years there is an ice smear to the left). Climb up and over the far left edge of the Martini ...[more]   Browse More Classics in MN

Photos of Casket Quarry (Duluth) Slideshow Add Photo
rock bridge
rock bridge
Crag Overview #1 - Crescent to Martini (Feb '08)
BETA PHOTO: Crag Overview #1 - Crescent to Martini (Feb '08)
Ice starting to form.  Picture taken at about 3:00...
BETA PHOTO: Ice starting to form. Picture taken at about 3:00...
Crag Overview #2
BETA PHOTO: Crag Overview #2
Waterfall Spring 2012
Waterfall Spring 2012
Conditions as of Dec. 15th, 2009. The pillar has g...
BETA PHOTO: Conditions as of Dec. 15th, 2009. The pillar has g...
Crag Overview #1 Crescent to Martini
BETA PHOTO: Crag Overview #1 Crescent to Martini
Off Ramp left, the Ramp right. Jan. 5 2010.
BETA PHOTO: Off Ramp left, the Ramp right. Jan. 5 2010.
waterfall
waterfall
the Quarry
BETA PHOTO: the Quarry
hawk
hawk
not sure the name of this sweet route
BETA PHOTO: not sure the name of this sweet route
Reflections Spring 2012
Reflections Spring 2012
some mixed routes at the Quarry
some mixed routes at the Quarry

Comments on Casket Quarry (Duluth) Add Comment
Show which comments
Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Feb 14, 2012
By Paul Dieterle
From: Pasadena, CA
Aug 21, 2009
How's this crag around thanksgiving as far as ice goes? Would most routes be exclusively drytooling or would they be mixed?
By Garrett Soper
From: Duluth, Minnesota
Sep 19, 2009
Good question...
Answer?
By Frank Furter
Oct 30, 2009
It will all depend on when the temps drop. Right now we have been getting alot of rain so the streams are flowing and the groundwater level is high. So a couple weeks of below freezing temperatures leading into Thanksgiving and we should have some ice forming up. But a safe bet would be mostly drytooling.
By Sam Daley
From: Minneapolis, Minnesota
Jul 5, 2010
Any info on the routes as sport leads?
By Lucas Kramer
From: Duluth, MN
Nov 30, 2011
Update to parking at Casket Quarry:

Please no longer park at the old 57th Ave West entry. There is a much safer and better gravel parking lot just opposite the old entry located off 59th Ave West. This lot is adjacent to the Loll Designs HQ building.

From Duluth, continue approximately 2 blocks past Medina on 8th to Central, turn right then immediately left onto Highland. Turn right on 59th Ave W, park in the lot on the right.

From the cities, take the Central Ave exit, turn left onto Highland, right on 59th Ave W and park.

The walk in is shorter, flatter, you will not be towed (no train tracks) and we will not block any driveways.

If you have questions, please contact me. Lucas Kramer 218-726-6257
By Mark Mahaney
From: St. Paul, Minnesota
Feb 13, 2012
Be much appreciated if anyone in the Casket area could post a Condition Report, I would surely show my gratitude with a case of beer, belay, etc. Thanks MP!
By Kris Gorny
Administrator
Feb 13, 2012
Climbed there yesterday. Dry as a bone. But still a lot of fun. I'd avoid climbing Martini. The Martini glass-shaped flake sounds and feels like it could go.
By Mark Mahaney
From: St. Paul, Minnesota
Feb 14, 2012
Thank you Kris! Much appreciation.