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The Cuban Missile Tower is found lurking along the vague ridgeline between Big and Little Willow Canyons near 8000 feet. Cuba and Russia would be proud to collaborate on this one. It is a partially unstable mass of teetering rock that will probably tumble in the next major geologic event. The summit mass (Fidelís Cap) is detaching from the lower formation about 20 feet below the summit at an apparent epiphyseal joint.
The Cuban Missile Tower is the first climbable piece of granite found along the vague ridgeline between Big and Little Willow Canyons. There are two approaches. First (preferred but hot), follow the Big Willow Trail approximately 1.5 miles, passing the Avalanche Warning sign in Little Willow, finally reaching the ridge crest where the trail takes a sharp turn east into Big Willow. At this point there is an old trail hidden in the bushes that leads up the ridgeline. Follow this trail for ~1/2-1 mile until it disappears in the brush. Continue up the ridgeline- the obvious Cuban should quickly come into view. Or secondarily, continue on the Big Willow trail past the ridge crest into Big Willow for another mile. Before the trail cuts back north, crossing the stream, strike out south through occasionally steep and dense brush to gain the common ridgeline. Either way, expect brush and 2-3 hours of approach time.
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Climb the quality but runout slabs up the formation immediately south of the Cuban. To find it, hike up and around south and east perhaps 100 feet from the Cuban, to the base of a nice slab. Slab your way east with the sun at your back with the climbing easing after ~60 feet. The slabbing isnít particularly hard, but thereís no pro for at least the first 40 feet. I thought the climbing would be easier, and once in, drilling was a more difficult option than just running it out. Belay at a sl...[more] Browse More Classics in UT
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