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Areas in Lower Tier

A. East Wall 3 / 4 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 7
B. Recessed Slab 1 / 2 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 3
C. Middle and West Walls 5 / 5 / 2 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 10

Description [Suggest Change]

The Lower Tier is larger than it appears from the parking area - the bottom 2/3 of all the walls are hidden in the trees. It is broken into several sections, with an upper face perched above the East Wall and the Recessed Slab on the left side. This upper face allows for a few high-quality 2-pitch routes. Many of the climbs at the Lower Tiers are characterized by low cruxes. In some cases, the crux is just getting off the ground....

The Lower Tier gets direct sun only in the afternoons, but in the summer, the sun can break over the ridge line above at midday and shine directly down the lines of ascent, making it hard to look up at your next holds when youÂ’re climbing or at your partner above you when you're belaying. It is a bit of an annoyance, but the effect only lasts for an hour or so.

The Lower Tier has a narrow strip of terrain that hugs the base of the walls, but after that the ground drops off steeply. Thus, it is not the safest place for bringing small children.

Getting There [Suggest Change]

For Lower Tier, use the lower approach trail. From the lower parking area (on the switchback) described on the main page for the Tiers of Zion:

Cross the road (watch for descending cyclists and longboarders), and find a faint trail that starts next to the guardrail. The main trail turns immediately left (uphill) and follows the crest of the long, blunt ridge toward the front edge of the mountain top. After 500 feet, turn at a cairn on the right. Follow a trail of cairns headed more or less straight for the base of the crags on the other side of the gully filled with talus, willows, and grass. Aim first for some lone juniper trees between you and the crag. From there, follow the trail across the gully.

On the far side of the gully, enter the woods by a juniper, somewhat lower than the base of the rocks. Switchback uphill to the base of the Lower Tier. You will arrive right at the start of Buffalo Soldier on the left side of the Middle Wall. Be cautious - this is exactly where one of the area's rattlesnakes has been seen on several occasions.

Click
The Tiers of Zion from the lower approach trail. for an overview photo.

To reach the top of the two longer climbs on the Lower Tier (top anchors of Zion Train and Don't Rock My Boat), take one of the upper approaches to the sandy patch above the Upper Tier and keep descending along the blunt crest of the ridge to the left (west) of the Fourth Triangle, always dodging any drop-offs or difficulties by going left. At the final broken band of rock, take one of two chimneys through the short vertical band (the one on the left, very close to the edge of the rock band, is the easiest; the other has a large chockstone and a drop). The anchors for both climbs will take some looking to locate, but they are just below the lip. To reach the bottom of the Lower Tier from this summit, go west down one of the grassy gullies; the descent to the east (toward the Upper Tier) is not safe.

20 Total Climbs

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Location: C. Lower Tier Change
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Classic Climbing Routes at Lower Tier

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
 92
Irie
Sport
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
 94
The Burning Bush
Sport
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
 83
Don't Rock My Boat
Sport 2 pitches
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 12
Offwidth Corner
Trad, TR
5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 49
The Belay Brothers Bounce Back
Trad
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 126
Three Little Birds
Sport
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 44
Zion Train
Sport 2 pitches
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
 64
Buffalo Soldier
Sport
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
 47
Old Pirates
Sport
5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a
 15
Small Axe
Sport
5.12 7b+ 27 VIII+ 26 E6 6b
 3
Please Pick Up Your Trash
Trad
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Irie A. E Wall
 92
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b Sport
The Burning Bush A. E Wall
 94
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b Sport
Don't Rock My Boat B. Recessed Slab
 83
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b Sport 2 pitches
Offwidth Corner C. Middle and W Walls
 12
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Trad, TR
The Belay Brothers Bounce Back C. Middle and W Walls
 49
5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Trad
Three Little Birds C. Middle and W Walls
 126
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Sport
Zion Train A. E Wall
 44
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Sport 2 pitches
Buffalo Soldier C. Middle and W Walls
 64
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b Sport
Old Pirates C. Middle and W Walls
 47
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c Sport
Small Axe C. Middle and W Walls
 15
5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a Sport
Please Pick Up Your Trash C. Middle and W Walls
 3
5.12 7b+ 27 VIII+ 26 E6 6b Trad
More Classic Climbs in Lower Tier »

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Photos

plantmandan
Brighton, CO
plantmandan   Brighton, CO
Saw THREE rattlesnakes today. Two were hanging out about 25 feet to the right of where the trail hits the lower tier crag. Another was on the trail about halfway to the parking area as we were fleeing an incoming thunderstorm. Aug 9, 2016
Jonathan Stickel
Golden, CO
Jonathan Stickel   Golden, CO
Is it really necessary to split up Lower Tier into sub-areas? Sep 11, 2017

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