This place is desolate and dangerous WYO desert with very few amenities nearby, and zero assistance should you find your pretty-little-self in a bind.
The people are ornery and the land is mean. I don't recommend coming here at all. If the rednecks, miners, roughnecks vagabonds or land doesn't get ya, some dehydrated whacked-out windblown sunbeaten climber just might. . . . Sweetwater Rocks and adjacent areas require LOW-profiles and LOTS of respect and consideration. Keep all fences/gates as you found them. Do not build fires. Adhere to all posted signs. Do not drive off of existing paths (roads). Do not let your dog run around (chances are great that it'll be shot, bitten, trampled or fed upon). Do not take anything from this land. . . and do not leave anything. Good BLM quads are essential (make sure they're up to date). Granite Mtns (Sweetwater) area closures are adjustable and are done so via ranchers and BLM officiales. Great tracts of this area are privately owned; meaning that they are always closed. For example: Lankin Dome BLM as of last year was closed 04-30 thru 06-31 for public AND private lands; between 03-01 thru 04-31 it was closed on private land. So, sometimes private easements are opened, and sometimes they aren't. . . same with public lands; oh, and mining claims too! Pay particular attention to any signage and postings.
This information is a public crowdsourcing effort between the Access Fund,
and Mountain Project. You should confirm closures, restrictions, and/or related dates.
A WAYYY out-of-the-way crag with easy (1 min.) walkup access from a high-clearance vehicle. Excellent low-angle to steeper slabbing in a mountain oasis in the high desert.
High clearance mandatory, 4 WD nice. Take the Agate Flats road exit N about 5 mi past Split Rocks. Then take a GOOD topo or BLM map. The "roads" shown in Lander Rock are not much better than wagon ruts across the prairie. Deep sand in places, narrow, and lots of sagebrush.
Facing the Moonstone Slab, behind the cabin, there is an obvious bolt route following the deepest, bright white, water runnel at the left edge of the face. It's further left than anything listed in Lander Rocks. Don't be deceived by angle of the slab. This is not a "sport route" and requires 2 double rope rap's to descend. Look for a very high first bolt, next to the runnel, and slab up to it, 2 more bolts will get you to an anchor station, maybe 5.4. It's an optical illusion, but from here, you...[more]Browse More Classics in WY
Over the last 2 years, Ed DeLong and I have put up several more low angle face/friction climbs here, mostly 60m pitches with Fixx 3/8" bolts and Fixx rappel ring anchors, up to 10b. There are about 20 routes on this stone now. There is a topo at Wild Iris in Lander to sort it all out.
camerones: I'm a little sorry too when I look at the amount of money we invested in drills and bolts, but, hey, that's the cost of existence. There's still room for more lines out there. We focused on the water runnels mainly, because they needed so little cleaning, but outside the runnels, with some brushing and whatnot, that's where the hard stuff is, at least I think so. It looks pretty intimidating anyway. Check it out and let me know how hard you think those routes are. Ed and I are really terrible at rating stuff so all that stuff might be a easier than we think.
bob - I think you need to change all of the climbs to show "sport", rather than "trad" in the title/info. I'll head in late spring for my Granite's fix, and should have time to check out some of your new slabbies.
The ones that Ed and I put up together were put up in the lead, with no previewing on rappel. Used a Bosch and when the stances were too thin, either put a Leeper hook on any edge present or hand drilled a shallow hole and perched on a pointed Leeper hook to haul the bag and get the bolt in. So, I suppose that quals as trad, not in the Tom Higgins mode but we thought, if we're gonna put these up, don't make it a horror show, you know, big bolts that are solid and not miles apart.
Bob. I have been wanting to climb at sweetwater for some time and plan on doing it this year. Question. Are the horror stories obout the locals true or can I climb there with my wife and camp in safety? Also, it would be nice if you posted a photo with route locations. Allen
The locals aren't really that bad, we project that image to keep people away while we scarf up all the routes. They are real sensitive about closing gates so if you go through any gates that are closed, close them behind you. Also, the Lankin Gap and Moonstone areas are closed to public access until about the end of May, the BLM grazing lease thing is from mid-april to about June something. It's really stupid, but that's the game we have to play here. You can go into Lankin dome from the west approach off Agate Flat Road and Nolan Pocket and be fine with the ranchers. Be real careful about rattlesnakes, they should be coming out now. Going into Moonstone and Lankin Gap can get real tricky driving if it rains. We've had a lot of rain here in the last two weeks and I'm not sure how the road is even into Nolan Pocket. I go out there with my wife and daughter all the time and feel fine about it, but I am 6'4", 180 lbs and not real touchy-feely. I would be sure to take warm clothes because of the unpredictabtility of Wyo weather. The Lander climbing book by Greg Collins has a good overview of the area and a map of the roads, so that's probably the best info....can get it at Wild Iris in Lander.
I should also say that if you do get hassled by some rancher about access, just be polite and listen. It's serious for them out there: it's their living and they could care less about lectures on land use policy. Basically they pay fees to use the land out there (to BLM) and climbers don't. Guess what talks when BLM reviews land use policy? So we try not to rile the ranchers so we can continue to have access.
Bob, thanks for the info. My wife and I are very conscious about being sensitive to the land owners so no problem there. I do have the guide bood you mention, just curious about your new routes. Nice ploy scaring off us route squatters with the scary talk. Thats ok though, I have done the same thing in my back yard. Look forward to climbing there and maybe running into you. cheers, Allen. PS- I do have a secret place in Wy myself that I plan to put some routes on.
nice job on the new routes bob, I loved this area when I lived in wyo, used to live in lander so we would climb here all the time, back in 2003 a buddy and myself did two lines, one on the back side of the moon stone and one on lankins backside as well both 5.10 friction with pins in seams and minimal bolts. Its a great area and perfect if you want to get some solitude away from sinks canyon....keep up the psyche!!!!