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The Schwa Area
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(Beautiful Bastard) T 
Schwa, The T 

The Schwa 

YDS: 5.10d French: 6b+ Ewbanks: 21 UIAA: VII+ ZA: 21 British: E3 5b

Type:  Trad, 2 pitches, 190'
Consensus:  YDS: 5.10d French: 6b+ Ewbanks: 21 UIAA: VII+ ZA: 21 British: E3 5b [details]
FA: Joe Herbst, 1977
Page Views: 2,609
Submitted By: Jason D. Martin on Dec 12, 2006

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (6)
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Rico leading The Schwa.

RAIN AND WET ROCK The sandstone in Red Rocks is fragile and is very easily damaged when it is wet. MORE INFO >>>


The Schwa is one of the few members of Red Rock Canyon's exclusive splitter crack club. This club includes the likes of The Fox, Atman, Yin Yang, Red Zinger, and Chrysler Crack amongst a few others.

The Schwa itself feels a lot like The Fox. The second pitch of the route starts with hands and just gets bigger as you go.

The best way to climb this route is to break it into two pitches. There are a few ways to approach the main crack. The left side is somewhat difficult, whereas the right side is somewhat brushy. The best way up is up to you.

The second pitch is the main event. Climb up the central crack as it goes from tight jams to hand-stacks. There is a diving board ledge in the middle of the second pitch where you can shake-out and relax before committing to the forty-foot off-width you'll climb to obtain the top.

Two sixty-meter ropes will get you to the ground.


This is the central feature of the Schwa Area. Look for the diving board to the left of a widening crack.


A normal Red Rock rack with at least two #3s and two #4s.

Photos of The Schwa Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Rico getting ready to slam a fat cam in the perfec...
Rico getting ready to slam a fat cam in the perfec...
Rock Climbing Photo: Rico topping out of The Schwa.
Rico topping out of The Schwa.

Comments on The Schwa Add Comment
Show which comments
By Russ
Dec 28, 2006

Fun climbing with you out there, let's get after it again sometime!
By Brandontru
From: Nevada
Mar 12, 2010
rating: 5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b

Didn't get to lead it. Though still the best fists Ever encountered in red rock. It just gets better and better.
By Jon O'Brien
From: Nevada
Oct 18, 2010

"feels a lot like the fox" ?! guess i'll have to try it myself! LOL... a fist crack that feels like a varying sized, right-facing corner sounds counter-intuitive,
you think it is as BURLY as the fox?
By John Wilder
From: Las Vegas, NV
Oct 21, 2010
rating: 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b

jon- the Schwa is probably less physical than the fox from the beginning of the second pitch to the ledge rest, but the upper offwidth is WAY burlier than whats on the fox. Its straight in #6 camalot at the crux and is pretty physical before and after as well. I'd call the Fox 10c, this is 10d, its probably .11b if you do the direct start and link the whole thing into one big 70m pitch.
By Weston L
From: Summerlin, NV
Jul 25, 2013
rating: 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b

Thin hands at bottom of P2 are crux (.5 and .75 camalots) - cruisy tight fists up higher, and good fists in the flare up 2 moves that you could offwidth if so desired, but really just a fist crack. 5.9 fists with 10d thin hands.

Leave the big gear at home and just bring as many #4's as you can. I only placed the big stuff I brought because I didn't have enough 4's (only had 2...walked 'em after the plank, yarrrr)...the "straight in #6" is barely that. #4's in the back...

Absolutely stellar line! Might need to get a rogue hoe and build a proper trail up to this thing.
By Cunning Linguist
Jul 25, 2013

I know some rogue hoes who post here on the REG, son. They fear the wide, whereas others saddle up and ride...

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