Without A Net
Avg: 3.8 from 8
FA: Charlie Fowler, Sue Wint, April 1991
> Moab Area
> Tusher Canyon
> Monitor and Merrimac Buttes
RAIN, WET ROCK and RAPTOR CLOSURES: The sandstone around Moab is fragile and is very easily damaged when it is wet. Also please ask and be aware of Raptor Closures in areas such as CAT WALL and RESERVOIR WALL in Indian Creek
WET ROCK: Holds rip off and climbs have been and will continue to be permanently damaged due to climbers not respecting this phenomenon. After a heavy storm the rock will remain wet, sometimes for several days. PLEASE DO NOT CLIMB IN MOAB during or after rain.
RAPTOR CLOSURES: Please be aware of seasonal raptor closures at the Cat wall and Reservoir wall. They occur annually from March 31st until August 31st. *Due to the federal hiring freeze in agencies such as the BLM of Monticello, no official closure for 2017 has been issued and the laws which have been put in place in previous years are not being enforced. Please, for the sake of fragile desert ecology, DO NOT CLIMB at stated walls. These raptors return to the same nesting sites every year to raise their nestlings.
This climb is an experience you won't forget. For the most part, this might as well be a solo climb for the lead climber. Protection is nearly non-existant, especially on the 2nd pitch. We did this route in 3 pitches, and on the 3rd pitch, we used a large flake about 30 feet into the chimney to place #4 & 5 friends. The rock is very soft though, and these cams may not have held if we had actually taken a fall. The solitude of this area along with the depth we progressed into this chimney created a separation from the rest of the world that was unbelievable. The chimney is anywhere from 12 to 24 inches wide from the start of the 2nd pitch to the top. It's a chimney lovers dream, or nightmare. The 5.8 rating is acurate, but the fall potential makes this an extremely serious climb. I loved this climb, but I have no intention of ever doing it again. Whithout A Net is located on the east side of Merrimac Butte, on the right side of the paddle wheel, in view as you approach from the northeast on the 4x4 road.
Pitch 1 takes large cams or small bigbros. After that, while actually in the chimney, nothing short of a #4 bigbro will work. Even the #4 will most likely be too short. You will basically be unprotected through most of the chimney. The book "Desert Rock: Wall Street to the San Rafael Swell", shows bolt anchors at each belay; however, I couldn't see them and opted to head further into the chimney on the 2nd pitch to a large flake with a good platform to set my belay. This is supposed to be a 4 pitch climb, but with 60 meter ropes, we did it in 3 pitches. Decend from a rappel anchor on Merrymaker, to the right about 50 feet. The webbing was old and brittle when I was there, and I had to reenforce it, so take extra since this route is not climbed often.
East side of Merrimac Butte.
John Benson looking it over prior to the start. Photo by Stacy Bender: taken 4/2/2001