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 ADVANCED
The Cirque of the Climbables (aka The Tombstone)
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For Desert Rats Only 

YDS: 5.11 French: 6c+ Ewbanks: 23 UIAA: VIII- ZA: 23 British: E4 5c R

   
Type:  Trad, 5 pitches, 600', Grade III
Consensus:  YDS: 5.11 French: 6c+ Ewbanks: 23 UIAA: VIII- ZA: 23 British: E4 5c [details]
FA: Jim Dunn et al. 1994
Page Views: 1,724
Submitted By: andrew kulmatiski on Oct 15, 2006

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Description 

a.k.a. Stairway to heaven. a.k.a. Jimmy's Chimney

An epic will ensue. The first pitch can be climbed on the left or right side of a bulge in the cliff. We climbed the right side b/c you approach that side first on the trail, but i would recommend climbing the left side. We rapped the left side and the rock looked better. Either way the first pitch is 5.9 to easy 5.10 and not the reason you are there. The second pitch follows the left side of the bulge up a great left facing corner (5.10) with a finger crack that fades away. Make an exciting exit move from the corner to the face on the right. Finish the pitch on some fun face climbing (also 5.10). Two pins for pro along the way (small stuff needed for the corner). I believe we linked this and the next easy pitch (5.7) to a small alcove below the beckoning chimney. Let the work begin. From here you look up into a bombay chimney. You can get gear in the first 50' but after that it's 100' of (5.11) squirming. It took me 3 hours to lead the the 150' chimney pitch - I think i cried a little. After the chimney there is a short (50') layback crack to the anchors (5.10).

Location 

An obvious line up the right side of the third tombstone. 3 long double-rope rappels will get you down.
The route follows the left side of the obvious shadows on the third tombstone (right of photo Id# 105922426). Start in the shadow at the bottom trending right across the face to the base of the large shadow/chimney in the upper half of the cliff.

Protection 

you can get a few pieces in the first 50-60' of the 4th pitch after that there are drilled angles every 10-20' of difficult chimneying.


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By andrew kulmatiski
From: logan, ut
Feb 10, 2009

so has anyone else done this route? Its a great outing and the easiest free route up the cirque.
By roundhead
Mar 4, 2010

isnt the offwidth a gem. i not only wimpered but threw up as well. jimmy dunn drilled those pins on lead in stance. wrap your mind around that. i had a hard time unclipping them when i followed him up it. he would get knee bars, lean out with drill and hammer in hand, bang the drill for about a minute, then throw a chicken wing in for a rest. it went like that for hours. "leave your purse at home" is easier, and protects a bit easier.
By Greg Cameron
Apr 21, 2014

What a nice adventure climb on Navajo sandstone Ö and with an amazing summit. The infamous chimney pitch is 5.10+ IMO. Thereís nothing too technical, and you can get lots of rests, but upward progress (mainly tight chicken wings with heel-toe jams) is always effortful. It's also fairly well-protected with the drilled-in angles for the harder sections (however, it's probably 5.9 R/X getting to the first drilled angle). On the crux pitch, don't bring anything but a few small-medium-sized wire stoppers and a couple of smaller cams for the first 40 feet, and then some runners for the 5 drilled angles. I brought a #5, two #4s, and two #3s (just in case) and could not place any of them.
Iíd still give this climb a 5.11 rating for the 2nd pitch. The final bit of face climbing to pass the two fixed pieces on this pitch seemed much harder than anything else on the climb, although you can easily cheat and step on the drilled angles. The last pitch is no gimme either, 5.10 or 5.10+ depending on your finger size (bigger is easier).
Itís pretty clear that this climb does not see a lot of traffic. Be prepared for some loose sections, particularly on the 3rd (easiest) pitch.
By Jay Anderson
Apr 21, 2014

We climbed this yesterday, Greg Cameron, Laurent (surname unknown) and myself.
Lots if bad rock and scary climbing as described previously. The crux pith however is stellar! 5 star! Our consensus was 5.10c, it's that pesky squeeze to offwidth size where you're always on the verge of slipping,a grunt,but not very hard technically. The cleanest pitch on the route, to boot!

The guidebook (desert rock III)says it's 420' long so we did it on 420, cough!