Type: Trad, 200 ft, 2 pitches
FA: Tom Gilje & Julie Gilje - 1993
Page Views: 3,912 total · 21/month
Shared By: Josh Janes on Nov 17, 2003
Admins: slim, Andrew Gram, Nathan Fisher, Perin Blanchard, grk10vq

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Access Issue: 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 Details


Dolofright: a two pitch face climb up the blunt arete along the right side of Dolomite Spire as seen from the road.

Begin from a comfortable ledge on the notch between Lighthouse Tower and Dolomite Spire (see approach directions for Dolomite).

P1: Hard right off the deck. Climb up and right along an overhanging bulge (protected by three pins) using incut crimps, clip a bolt, and step left along a horizontal to the arete. If you found these moves difficult, get ready. Continue up the face and arete past two more bolts to a good stance immediately below the crux: a really awesome (but reach-dependent?) sequence using two side pulls and (seemingly) no feet. Clip a fourth bolt, perform a difficult mantle, and then run it out a ways along the arete on scary gear (two yellow Aliens in a flaring slot) and scary holds to more bolts and a great belay ledge. Many sections of 5.11 on this pitch.

P2: Climb up off the belay over ledgey terrain and dicey holds 25' to a bolt. Repeat this for 3 more bolts (hardest/scariest move comes about ten feet above the fourth bolt) to an anchor on the summit. Mostly 5.10-. Descent: From a second anchor on the far side of the tower you can get down in one clean rap with double 60m ropes and 10' of downclimbing. You can also stop at the high notch between Dolomite and Big Bend Butte if your ropes are shorter.

Dolofright is an incredible route, especially when you consider that Tom Gilje bolted this thing on lead, but Fred Knapp must have been on Crack when he said that it was the best Wingate face climbing he'd ever done. There are many great, difficult sequences, but they are constantly interrupted by terrifying sections of climbing on flexing holds. Falls are not necessarily clean on this climb, and I felt that both pitches are deserving of an R rating. That said, the position (especially on the lower crux pitch) is awesome and the summit is great, but this is definately a route for true desert rats.


One or possibly two yellow Aliens (or equivalent), one or possibly two #1 Camalots, and a dozen draws/slings. RPs may help psychologically.


Josh Janes

Josh Janes    
My partner, a Moab local, suggested that Dolofright had probably only seen a half-dozen ascents at the time and will probably improve as the loose holds are stripped off - I just pity the person who does it. Nov 21, 2003
Dolofright is a certified desert classic and has seen many dozens of ascents, if not more. Crux pitch is kind of spicey, but definitely not 'VS' (which I assume means X-rated). Dec 1, 2003
i talked to tom on the days he was bolting thisthing. he was out of his mind with fear and its attraction. he would comment on the fact that some of the holds were expanding and took a strange glee knowing it was going to bite some one in the ass. he had a concern about a possible fall on one of the pitches. a tyrolean was set up from light house to the top of dolomite tower on the day of its fa. Nov 26, 2005
Josh Janes

Josh Janes    
This past fall I went back and climbed Dolofright a second time - almost two years after I posted it here. It was just as terrifying as the first time only I was fortunate enough not to fall this go round.

The one thing I did appreciate more this time is the quality of climbing - the moves (first pitch at least) are sustained and cerebral. The first pitch probably has at least 4 5.11 cruxes (some of which are safe and some of which aren't). I found a #1 Camalot to be essential, and the yellow alien (and a 0.3 micro camalot) provided some psychological pro.

Next time I will only bring wires, 2 #1 Camalots, a 0.3 Camalot, and quickdraws for this route. Nov 27, 2005
Sam Lightner, Jr.
Lander, WY
Sam Lightner, Jr.   Lander, WY
Its early in the season, but I feel confident in calling Dolofright 12-.
Over the years I'm sure a few of those things have broken off and rounded
over. As per the R, a lot of routes get one... this route deserves it. Mar 6, 2007
moab, utah
jakobi   moab, utah
One of the best routes in the desert. Dec 15, 2010
Geoff Unger
Moab, UT
  5.11d R
Geoff Unger   Moab, UT
  5.11d R
I would like to preface this by saying that I have been climbing for a lot of years in the desert and am no stranger to runouts and questionable rock.

In the summit register Dan Osman says something like:
'Dolofright, more bolts, more cleaning, ok moves, second ascent'

I would guess that the Dolofright has seen one hundred ascents or so since it was put up in the 90s(the summit register would tell a different story). I found that the rock was a little bit friable, but most of the holds were fairly solid. I had also heard about this flake that you had to pull hard on, on the second pitch. After a lot of ascents of this tower I would think the thing is pretty solid if all those people have pulled on it before.

That being said, think about Gilje up there bolting on lead and loving every minute of it.

Although this route is serious and has a reputation(that is why I avoided it for years), I would say that it is one of the best desert face routes that I have done. There is heads-up climbing in a few spots on the first pitch and then easier, but also heads-up climbing on the second pitch. If you are equal to the 11+ grade and you have some experience on sandstone there is no reason that you should avoid this route.

A true desert classic! Dec 16, 2010