Elevation: 5,104 ft
GPS: 39.078, -110.665 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 402,000 total · 1,747/month
Shared By: Brian Milhaupt on Oct 19, 2002
Admins: Andrew Gram, Nathan Fisher, Perin Blanchard, GRK, DCrane

Description

The San Rafael Swell is a large anticline that is split in two by I-70.  The areas and routes under this description are all north of I-70.

Much of the documented climbing north of the interstate is concentrated within a few miles of the BLM campground at the junction of Cottonwood Wash Road and the Mexican Mountain Road. This campground has tables and a toilet and charges $3/person/night. There are many free camping opportunities along both of these roads and within a quick drive/bikeride of the toilet. There is no fresh water, and firewood is non-existent. The largest concentration of routes is on the Dylan Wall two miles east of the campground on the north side of the river. The Mexican Mountain Road (to the Dylan Wall) is easily passable by two-wheel drive vehicles unless the road has been washed out.

Eric Bjornstad's Desert Rock (Wall Street to the San Rafael Swell) offers a selection of climbs and an impressive history and geology lesson that should not be missed. While this area does not offer an extensive amount of established routes in comparison to places like Indian Creek, it has a sense of gradeur and seclusion that makes it every bit as enjoyable.

Getting There

30 miles west of the interstate exit for Green River, take exit 131. Make two rights, and follow I-70 back east for a few miles then north for 20 miles to the San Rafael River and the campgrounds. This road was in excellent shape for two-wheel drive traffic (10/02). The road continues north up Buckhorn Wash, or once across the bridge the Mexican Mountain Road (signed) goes east along the river.

216 Total Climbs

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Location: San Rafael Swell - North Change
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Classic Climbing Routes at San Rafael Swell - North

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 84
Unknown Handcrack
Trad
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 142
Private Pizza
Trad
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a C1
 35
Haagenschlong
Trad, Aid 3 pitches
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 52
Scenic Byway
Trad 4 pitches
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
 53
Blowin' in the Wind
Trad
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
 62
Cheek Full of Redman
Trad
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b A1
 49
James Tower AKA The Lightblub
Trad, Aid 3 pitches
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
 56
Anchors From Hell
Trad
5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b
 79
Old Bushmills
Trad
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b
 34
Lite Not Solid
Trad
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
 26
Short Stack
Trad
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
 40
Planet Waves
Trad
5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c
 35
Taco Terror
Trad
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a
 67
Idiot Wind
Trad
5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a
 24
Tippin The Bottle
Trad 3 pitches
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Unknown Handcrack Buckhorn Wash > Lower Buckhorn > Private Pizza Wall
 84
5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Trad
Private Pizza Buckhorn Wash > Lower Buckhorn > Private Pizza Wall
 142
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Trad
Haagenschlong Buckhorn Wash > Lower Buckhorn > Haagenschlong Tower
 35
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a C1 Trad, Aid 3 pitches
Scenic Byway Buckhorn Wash > Upper Buckhorn > Scenic Byway Wall
 52
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Trad 4 pitches
Blowin' in the Wind Buckhorn Wash > Lower Buckhorn > Dylan Wall
 53
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Trad
Cheek Full of Redman Buckhorn Wash > Lower Buckhorn > Private Pizza Wall
 62
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b Trad
James Tower AKA The Lightblub Buckhorn Wash > Lower Buckhorn > Red Corner
 49
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b A1 Trad, Aid 3 pitches
Anchors From Hell Buckhorn Wash > Lower Buckhorn > Pine Canyon
 56
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b Trad
Old Bushmills Buckhorn Wash > Lower Buckhorn > Pine Canyon
 79
5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b Trad
Lite Not Solid Buckhorn Wash > Lower Buckhorn > Pine Canyon
 34
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b Trad
Short Stack Buckhorn Wash > Lower Buckhorn > Chocolate Wall
 26
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c Trad
Planet Waves Buckhorn Wash > Lower Buckhorn > Dylan Wall
 40
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c Trad
Taco Terror Buckhorn Wash > Lower Buckhorn > Pine Canyon
 35
5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c Trad
Idiot Wind Buckhorn Wash > Lower Buckhorn > Dylan Wall
 67
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a Trad
Tippin The Bottle Bottleneck Peak
 24
5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a Trad 3 pitches
More Classic Climbs in San Rafael Swell - North »

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