Sign Up  |   Log In:Login with Facebook
REI Community
Virgin River Gorge

Select Area...
Blasphemy Wall 
Mentor Cave 
Planet Earth Wall 
Sun Cave 
Warm-up Wall 

Virgin River Gorge Rock Climbing 

Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Location: 36.91368, -113.84038 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 56,291
Administrators: Greg Opland, James DeRoussel, JJ Schlick, Hendrixson, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Josh Janes on Nov 15, 2007
You & This Area
Best climbs for YOU in this area
Your opinion of this PAGE:    [2 people like this page.]
Eliot on High flames Drifter


There are two camps when it comes to the VRG: Those who scoff at the idea of ever climbing there and the die-hard few who swear it is the best climbing in the country. The truth is the VRG has some of the worst scenery of any climbing area, but some of the best rock. If you can get past not being able to hear yourself think (or your partner for that matter), ugly road cuts, graffiti, and sometimes inhospitable temperature extremes, you will be rewarded with difficult, sustained lines, fantastic movement, and plenty of hard climbing.

Grades pretty much start at 5.12 here, and the best lines are in the hard 12 and up range. Climbing exists on both the sunny, north side of the gorge (Sun Cave, Sun Wall, and Fossil Cave) and the shady south side (Mentor Cave, Planet Earth Wall, Blasphemy Wall). Bring draws and a 60 or 70m rope. Generally, climbing season is from October to April. Summer months are hot.

Getting There 

From the North: Take I-15 South from Saint George. After mile marker 14 cross a bridge over the Virgin River. Park immediately after this at a pullout on the right by an immense embankment/dirt mound. From the South, continue past the VRG to exit 18, turn around and follow above directions. There is camping amongst the used syringes and condoms in a gravel pit just north of the highway at exit 18.

Climbing Season

Weather station 5.0 miles from here

37 Total Climbing Routes

['4 Stars',7],['3 Stars',9],['2 Stars',9],['1 Star',8],['Bomb',0]

Classic Climbing Routes in Virgin River Gorge

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Virgin River Gorge:
Brutus   5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c     Sport, 60'   Mentor Cave
Bloody Mary   5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 80'   Blasphemy Wall
Don't Believe the Hype   5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Sport, 60'   Planet Earth Wall
Forever Man   5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b     Sport, 1 pitch, 120'   Sun Cave
Mentor   5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   Mentor Cave
Joe Six Pack   5.13a 7c+ 29 IX+ 29 E6 6c     Sport, 1 pitch, 90'   Planet Earth Wall
Dark Boy   5.13b 8a 29 IX+ 30 E7 6c     Sport, 1 pitch, 120'   Blasphemy Wall
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Virgin River Gorge

Featured Route For Virgin River Gorge
Rock Climbing Photo: coming down after a burn

Mentor 5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b  AZ : Northern Arizona : ... : Mentor Cave
Super classic! If you can stand the road noise and the guys breaking into your car, this is the route you want to be doing while you are here. Climbs out the Mentor cave (just right of the Blasphemy wall) on great pockets, edges, sidepulls... the whole kitchen sink. Very Steep!Somewhere toward the middle you even get a leg thread to cop a rest. Once you pull out of the cave onto the headwall, you lose sight of your belayer - and the road noise ensures you can't communicate verbally. Just a he...[more]   Browse More Classics in AZ

Photos of Virgin River Gorge Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: VRG. Photo by Blitzo.
VRG. Photo by Blitzo.
Rock Climbing Photo: Parking area as viewed from Mentor Cave.
Parking area as viewed from Mentor Cave.
Rock Climbing Photo: Mike Doyle on Necessary Evil
Mike Doyle on Necessary Evil

Comments on Virgin River Gorge Add Comment
Show which comments
By Spencer Weiler
From: Salt Lake city
Oct 22, 2012
If coming from south, there is a huge dirt road pullout right after mile marker 13 on the right side that you can park at rather than doing the loop around if you prefer.
By skinny legs and all
From: Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania
Feb 14, 2014
It is not recommended to leave any valuables in your car while climbing at the VRG. The meth heads who patrol this highway corridor will smash your window and nick your stuff without haste.

The Definitive
Climbing Resource

Inspiration & Motivation
to Fuel Your Run

Next Generation Mountain
Bike Trail Maps

Backcountry, Sidecountry
& Secret Stashes

Better Data. Better Tools.
Better Hikes!