Nearby Mountain Bike Rides
Bartlett Wash Slickrock
A vast, freeform slickrock playground full of drops, bowls, chutes and half-pipes. Near Moab, UT
From MP's sister site: MTB
BETA PHOTO: Aerial view of Castleton Tower, the Rectory, and t...
The Moab area in the eastern section of Utah is amazlingly rich with bountiful opportunities for the rock climber who can appreciate the stark beauty of soft sandstone in a desert environment. There is more than a lifetime of climbing here!
Moab is a small community, located along US 191 at the intersection with SR 128 (River Rd) south of I-70, which has become popular with the climbing and mountain biking communities of late. Its elevation at 4025' make spring and fall make for the most pleasant times for visitors. It is generally quite dry here; however, wandering along the River Road after a large rainfall can provide spectacular waterfall viewing.
Here, you can find climbs ranging from 1 pitch sport climbs up to 600' desert spires to multi-day adventures on the 900' The Titan to 1200' ridge/aid climbs like Everyman's Endless Edge. Desert spires can be hauntingly beautiful like Moses, Zeus, and Aphrodite in Taylor Canyon. Of course, there is the world-class desert crack climbing of Indian Creek. There miles and miles of cliffs along the River Road. You will find an wide range of subtle variations in rock type: the splitter-crack-forming Windgate, the ultra-soft Entrada, the gorgeous Navajo, the oddly solid-yet crumbly Cutler, the interesting mid-layers of Chinle, Kayenta, and more. You must be cautious treading on desert rock for longer-than-you-think after any significant precipitation. Most folks will find the Windgate to be most inviting here.
You climbing armamentarium will likely include beefier ropes, helmets, plenty of cams, a healthy supply of tape, and likely some anti-inflammatories for afterwards. Most adventure climbs will require at least a double set of cams. New climbs may require investigation of the pro & cons of desert anchors like drilled angle pins vs. expansion bolts vs. glue-in bolts. You will likely find your gear shedding red sandstone dust for days after your visits. New climbs in the National Parks may require particular creativity for new anchors. Some adventure climbs will require high-clearance 4WD type vehicle to allow access.
You can climb truly roadside all the way to real adventure climbing. Weather can vary from extremes of debilitating heat to mud-trapping rain storms to frosty climes. Pay particular attention to quick-moving lightning storms, since these are probably a climber's biggest threat here.
Be particularly careful with the delicate cryptogametic soils in the area which are key in providing soil stability and microbiotic communities in what looks like mud.
There are some areas with strict regulations, particularly in the National Parks like Canyonlands N.P. and Arches N.P. So, check in advance. In particular, be extremely respectful of any petroglyphs or pictographs you find.
Nonetheless, come find your personal gems here....
There are a variety of options here which range from primitive bivies, to BLM camping for pay or not, to National Park camping, to motels or hotels in Moab, to fancy resort/ranch accomodations along the River Road or Castle Valley, to bed & breakfasts in Moab.
There have been a decent assortment of rock guidebooks to the area. E. Bjornstad's Desert Rock, Desert Rock I, Desert Rock II, Desert Rock IV, F. Knapp's Classic Desert Climbs, M. Comacchione's 200 Select Classic Indian Creek guidebook, Sharp End's Indian Creek Climbs, & S. Green's Rock Climbing Utah can provide starting points for your adventures.
For ice climbers, consider, D. Black's Ice Climbing Utah by Falcon Press.
Rest day activities
If you must rest, you can select from options like rafting, mountain-biking, hiking, petroglyph viewing, wine tasting at the Castle River wineries, flying, fishing, canyoneering, and general tourist activities here. Moab provides a central point for a wealth of non-climbing adventures.
Note, that the Access Fund in conjuction with dedicated local climbers have been particularly pivotal in the area in preserving access to these local & national treasures. Immense thanks to those involved!
Browse More Classics in Moab Area
Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Moab Area:
Latest Regional Forum Messages
Featured Route For Moab Area
: Moab Area
: ... : Wall Street
Climb the low angle dihedral start of Bad Moki Roof but head right under the big roof along positive holds in the horizontal crack, clipping the fixed draws, rather then up the leftward thin hand crack of BMR. Most of the holds are good but feet are non-existent so some horizontal positioning is required to prevent campusing the route. Really fun. Crux comes right at the end. ...[more] Browse More Classics in UT
Preparing for battle; Kyle Copeland, D...
Got cams? Photo; Todd Gordon Collecti...
Photo by Todd Gordon.
Photo by: Dave Fiorucci
The very talented Katie Brown climbing
for a R & ...
Greg bouldering at Big Bend
Looking out over Moab and the Colorado River from ...
leaving Kor Ingals in the morning
NW Moab tower map.
Bouldering above Moab, photo: Bob Horan
Driving to Castleton. Gorgeous.
Zack on The Skeptic
Zack on The Skeptic.
awesome flyby over Moab (i think) on Delta 708, 9....
Filling Up at City Market
Cliff Powers rapping into the Medieval Chamber.
Good times on the White Rim...
red, red, wine at the red cliff's lodge
|By Ben Kiessel|
Dec 19, 2007
Hell yes it's recommended! Climb any South face you want.
|By Andrew Gram|
From: Salt Lake City, UT
Dec 19, 2007
Yeah, chase the sun. I've put away the rack and skiied in the La Salles in January, and i've climbed Castleton in a sweater. You just never know.
Good routes are most anything sunny at Indian Creek or Wall Street and Kor-Ingalls on Castleton. v Most long routes will be cold.
|By Indian Creek 2112|
Oct 15, 2009
I am an avid climber and love Indian creek so much I decided to by a hotel Inn at the Canyons, Monticello, Utah so I could be closer. I offer all climbers a 25% on rooms if you just mention you are a climber. My name is jared, owner of inn at the canyons and if you stay I can reccomend some amazing climbs that only locals know about. Hope to see you here. Reservations 435 587-2458
|By Joel Hickok|
Mar 19, 2012
Don't know how I feel about the advertising here, even if it does benefit some climbers. Oh well.
|By Chalk Norris|
From: Brighton, CO
May 14, 2012
Hey 2112 I will be coming down soon like 2 weeks and was looking for a hotel. I am super excited that you are climbing friendly. Ignore buddy (joel Hicock) I really appreciate the fact that you advertised here.
Jun 22, 2012
this is a shot in the dark but i was swimming and climbing along the colorado the weekend of 15th and left a pair of 5.10 moccasins size 9.5 at the lone boulder along potash rd next to the indian writing sign :( if someone happened to find them and then look on this site that would be amazing !
thanks and i guess ill throw a reward in :)
|By Drew Hallett|
Mar 8, 2013
i was wondering where the best place to climb pure sport routes in moab is? sadly i dont have trad gear but i want to climb while im there.
|By paul bucher|
From: moab, utah
Apr 3, 2013
check out Utopia for some non gear intense routes