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Elevation: 5,614 ft
GPS: 40.0125, -105.308
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Shared By: Michael Komarnitsky on Dec 31, 2000
Admins: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac, Tyler KC
Warning Access Issue: Seasonal Closures 2024 - Bitty Buttress, Blob (Eagle Rock & Security Risk now open!) DetailsDrop down

Description Suggest change

The four blocky towers known as the Elephant Buttresses lie just to the right of the Dome. They are numbered one through four from left to right. Almost all the routes are trad; no sport routes here. Some routes have old fixed pins; not many have bolts. An irrigation water pipe runs along the base of these crags.

Be careful of poison ivy; this area has it in abundance!

Some of the classic routes include: Tough Situation (9+) and Classic Finger Crack (9) on the Second Buttress; Standard Route (7+), Left Wing (10), and FM (11) on the Third Buttress, and Northwest Face (8) on the Fourth Buttress.

Getting There Suggest change

Approach as for the Dome. Park in a small pullout on the right 0.5 miles up the canyon, or in a large parking area on the left. Cross the bridge over the creek and turn right. Follow the new climber's access trail up to the aqueduct. Turn right and walk along a trail to the water pipe; watch out for poison ivy! Continue along the water pipe to the crag you want to climb. The pipe ends at a water tunnel between the Third and Fourth Buttress.

Descents

Suggest change
There are several ways to descend from the top of these crags:

  • The easiest walk-off is to head left (north) toward the Dome, and descend a trail down to the aqueduct just left of the First Buttress.
  • You can scramble down between the Second and Third Buttress to a tree atop Pine Tree Route, and rappel 90' back to the water pipe.
  • If the water level is low enough, you can descend to a tunnel between the Third and Fourth Buttress, and walk through the tunnel back to the water pipe. Be prepared for darkness and wet legs/feet!
  • You can downclimb the steep, 4th-class gully between the Second and Third Buttress; tricky in spots and not recommended for novices.

50 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at Elephant Buttresses

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b
 75
Flash Dihedral (Knapp Version)
Trad, TR
5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
 240
Standard Route
Trad 2 pitches
5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
 12
Standard Left Start
Trad 2 pitches
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 177
Northwest Face
Trad
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 19
Standard Variation
Trad 2 pitches
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 187
Classic Finger Crack
Trad
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 46
Mojo Rising
Trad 2 pitches
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 56
Monster Woman
Trad 2 pitches
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 122
Tough Situation
Trad
5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b
 7
Tough Rising Finger
Trad
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
 75
Left Wing
Trad, TR
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b PG13
 26
Wingtip
Trad, TR
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b
 25
What's Up?
Trad 2 pitches
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a
 46
FM
Trad
5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b
 5
Avalon Rising
Trad, TR
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Flash Dihedral (Knapp Version) First Buttress
 75
5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b Trad, TR
Standard Route Third Buttress
 240
5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b Trad 2 pitches
Standard Left Start Third Buttress
 12
5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b Trad 2 pitches
Northwest Face Fourth Buttress
 177
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Trad
Standard Variation Third Buttress
 19
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Trad 2 pitches
Classic Finger Crack Second Buttress
 187
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Trad
Mojo Rising Third Buttress
 46
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Trad 2 pitches
Monster Woman Third Buttress
 56
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Trad 2 pitches
Tough Situation Second Buttress
 122
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Trad
Tough Rising Finger Second Buttress
 7
5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b Trad
Left Wing Third Buttress
 75
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b Trad, TR
Wingtip Third Buttress
 26
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b PG13 Trad, TR
What's Up? Third Buttress
 25
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b Trad 2 pitches
FM Third Buttress
 46
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a Trad
Avalon Rising Second Buttress
 5
5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b Trad, TR
More Classic Climbs in Elephant Buttresses »

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