Long Dong Silver
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"Bomber" gear on Long Dong Silver.
When yo see the picture of the dude standing on the wee summit of this pointy spire in Eric's Book, how can you NOT want to climb the thing? One BIG problem is Eric's description of how to get to the climb;..he says drive SOUTH of the highway;..it's actually NORTH of the highway....(small detail..)...SO;...we drove around for HOURS to the south of the highway...gave up..and descided to just TRY driving around NORTH of the highway....we started to see rock strata that looked sort of like what we were looking for... we parked our cars and started to hike around a bit, and soon found Long Dong Silver. We walked around the small spire looking for signs of the route....no pin sacrs..no crack systems....finally we spotted an anchor up near the top, so we just started to nail up the shale. It was scary climbing;..you could pretty much bang a thin piton in anywhere in the horizontal fractured shale...sometimes you would bang in a pin, and sand and dirt would come down 10 or 15 feet to the left or right....meaning large sections of this rock had shifted over/around from the pin placement. Up aways on the climb is a "chicken" bolt..(no hanger)...pheeew!...finally something solid.....then up to the top to the anchor, which isn't on the actual summit, but down aways...you have to scramble up and balance on a tiny stance for the summit photo (hope it aint' a windy day..), and then downclimb to the anchors. This is a very beautiful , unique, and exciting climb. I would rate it "modern" A3....I got scared climbing this formation.
ABout 10 miles west of Hanksville, North of Utah 24. (Not south , as it says in the guide....)..You have to hike a short while to get to the spire;...up a neat canyon, across sand dunes. The landscape is barren and lunar.
Lots of long thin pitons;...K B's and L A's, and some larger cams for placing in "dirt" up higher on the climb. Maybe a few tcu's too.....Mostly piton work.
Maura Hahnenberger approaching Long Dong Silver.
By Ben Folsom
Dec 24, 2011
Spot on description of this route by Todd. It took me a couple trips looking for this thing to realize I should start looking on the North side of the road. It was like 4 or 5 years ago when we were there... Very scary. I will never climb on Mancos(manky) shale again. Beautiful and surreal place to hang out though.