Type: Trad, 530 ft, 4 pitches, Grade III
FA: unknown
Page Views: 26,798 total · 152/month
Shared By: Mark Michaels on Aug 21, 2004 with updates from Dumptruck
Admins: Andrew Gram, Nathan Fisher, Perin Blanchard, grk10vq

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146 Opinions

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Pitch 1: Start on the right/west end of the North face, linking small weaknesses to a big ledge at 180+ feet. Build a belay and/or move belay around the corner 50 feet to the right.
Pitch 2: Climb a large left facing corner, staying left below steep roofs....a very smooth slab section is mastered using holds on the right and a long reach. Belay on obvious nice ledge.
Pitch 3: Start by climbing either of two left angling cracks for about 25 feet (fingers on the right, thin hands on the left)....avoid large roof by moving right along a nice shelf/flake (long slings to avoid rope drag!!)....then straight up steeper rock/crack to large shale covered ledge (sling sharp edged boulder for belay).
Pitch 4: Scramble left along the ledge (loose shale!!), and climb 50 feet to summit (sling boulder to belay).

To descend: From the boulders atop the route, scramble south along the shale ridge towards the true summit, and then angle down a nice ramp to the left (east) to a group of pine trees. Three single rope rappels off nice, live pine trees reaches the scree at the base of the northeast face.

Bolted anchors go with a single 70m rope, a 60 will require a loose and exposed albeit short downclimb


I placed lots of cams, from #0 TCU to #2 Camalot, and the occaisional nut. You'll want plenty of long runners, and some very long slings/cordellette for belays (slung flakes). Only some loose rock keeps this from being a 3 star classic!!


Mark Michaels
Draper, UT
Mark Michaels   Draper, UT
I would call the first pitch 5.7, while the 2nd and 3rd pitches are easily 5.8, with the opportunity for 5.9 variations on the North Face.It would nice to have some fixed gear at belays on this route.While all-clean alpine routes are of course preferred in wilderness areas, the slung blocks and flakes used for belays on this route have very sharp edges, and there aren't many solid gear placements to be had!

Gear wise, I took a 3 Camalot, and only used it once, in a belay. Wished I'd had a second #2! Micro cams were essential. Finally, make sure to be off the Sundial before the weather turns bad! We got off just in time!

As a side comment....check out the Northwest face of Superior peak from the Sundial!Hoo daddy, now that's a nice looking wall!!! Aug 26, 2004
Salt Lake City, UT
triznuty   Salt Lake City, UT
The FA's had a good eye on this one. Excellent rock, killer exposure, sweet views and cool temps definitely make this a Wasatch 3 star mountain classic.

Standard rack (micro cams help) with some extra webbing-for belays & raps. Jul 30, 2006
kzoo   michigan
This is a great route! I followed the beta photo with pitches outlined in yellow on this mountain project page. 1st and 2nd pitches (initial pitches up to large ledge) were pretty straight forward for alpine - a slung block about 100ft up off the ground and a piton w/ webbing about 130ft off the ground.

The third pitch (crux) is definitely 5.8 w/ technical slab moves and needs microcams! Unless you are solid at 5.10 slab, don't forget the pro, because it would be a runout. The rock leading up the slab section is loose as hell, but easy w/ few choices for solid placements.

The Fourth pitch, which climbs some finger cracks up and right to an arete, is undoubtedly the best pitch. Probably goes at 5.7+ and eats up gear. If rope drag doesn't get you then run it to the top and find the mess of slings/static rope that are slung around a block.

Descent: you can rap from several trees on the ledge of the east side of sundial peak. If you choice the first tree w/ visible slings - it leads to a ledge approx. 100ft below not trees. There is a boulder about 50ft climbers left with slings that will get you to another tree and finally the ground. Sep 18, 2010
First Winter ascent?

Jim Dockery & Lynn Wheeler late 70's Sep 19, 2010
jason malczyk
General Delivery
jason malczyk   General Delivery
A 60m rope makes it down in two raps from the far rap station. The second rap comes about 5 feet short but is a easy down climb. There is a third rap staion for 50m rope to take three raps. Sep 29, 2010
Tristan Higbee
Ogden, UT
Tristan Higbee   Ogden, UT
Classic. I finally climbed this thing today and loved it. I started the first pitch too far to the left but eventually made it to the big ledge and the normal upper pitches. The rock on the route was a lot better than I thought it would be and the webbing at all rap stations was in good shape.

I took cams to #3 (with doubles on the .75, 1, and 2 pieces), a set of nuts, and a few micro cams. It was perfect and it's what I'll take when, not if, I do it again. Jun 8, 2012
Bellingham, WA
MoonMountainMan   Bellingham, WA
Got this route yesterday with all of my Utah Outsider buddies. This route still has me smilling. I can't wait to go climb it again and lead the pitches that I didn't get to. My partner and I did the whole thing with a set of C4's and Nuts. Everyone on this page seems to think that micro's are a must have.. not true. I lead the crux slab on the 3rd and it was easily protected with just a standard set of nuts and C4's. Passive Pro all the way. Jun 18, 2012

This climb is gorgeous! Here's my quick beta. We followed the image with yellow pitches drawn from mtnproject, thanks.

1st pitch - several start points, any of them kind of led to the same place. Placement is solid with several options for belay (slings on boulder, tree, p-ton).
2nd pitch - short pitch to large ledge with massive sling set for belay (webbing was in great shape)
3rd pitch - crux pitch up some very scary loose rocks on the first half. Check each rock before placing gear. Second half is a dihedral with small nut placement. I used only nuts on this pitch and it was great. This is also the grave site of my GoPro as it lies in 400 pieces at the bottom of the pitch. RIP.
4th pitch - awesome finger crack climbing with an exposed arête towards the top and large feature climbing. There's a really cool lie-back in the white section of rock during this pitch. Used almost the entire rack to finish a 55m pitch to the top. Top belay is slung with webbing also in great condition.
Descent - thanks to whomever left the rock cairns. They led us right to the belay on the east face. Beware of rock fall during the rappel.
Rack - Set of cams up through #3 with double #1's, #.75's, and #.5's, and two Omega cams. Full set of nuts including doubles or triples for smaller nuts. Aug 24, 2012
Great route! As others have said, just a wee bit nippy on a nice 80 degree fall day in the valley. The amount of mtn goat crap near the rappels was impressive to say the least... route finding on final pitch is interesting, be careful. "Crux" pitch protects with small nuts, and is a one move type deal.. Oct 2, 2012
Eek - high of 60 in the valley today = numb fingers and toes on this climb. Fun route, standard rack, and unlike the description, only 7 hours car to car for us. Oct 6, 2012
Highly recommend this route! Rachel and I climbed this route yesterday part of our link up on the Central Spur (5.10) Central Spur of Dromedary Peak . All the beta above is good and many different ways to go up the first pitch

This route has really good rock and has been clean. Not much rock fall hazard on this route.

Descent: There are cairns leading the towards large dead tree. There is another cairn 50ft past the dead tree. if you walk another 50ft on the talus there is a large alive tree that you can rap off with slings. 3 single rope rappels get you down. We took a 50m rope and made it work but a 60m would be much better. Jun 9, 2013
Hstoecklein Stoecklein
Salt Lake City, UT
Hstoecklein Stoecklein   Salt Lake City, UT
rap stations are all in good shape. a 70m rope can get you down in two raps from the first two stations...skip the third. Sep 7, 2014
I was wondering how long this outing might take. No one mentioned anything in the description or comments. I figured about 10 hours from looking at the terrain and the climbing. It was exactly that and we had a fairly relaxed pace. This included wandering off route, chatting on the summit for a while, taking our time to hydrate and eat, and not being in a hurry. So it could definitely be done in less time. Enjoy (the unscared bolt-free rock). Sep 16, 2014
Joe M
Joe M   SLC, UT
If you want to go light and fast on the gear, I would bring a single set from 0.4 to #2 and a set of nuts. Long slings are essential and make sure you have enough.

All rap stations are still in good shape. Jun 20, 2015
Greyson   SLC, UT
Did this route the other day, took us just under 8 hours from car to car. That being said we were hiking at a fairly sustained fast pace. A great place to be to escape the summer heat. We brought up a single rack from .1 to .5 in Camalots and doubles in .75 to 3, This was plenty of gear. I would try to save a couple large pieces for anchor building. The anchor for the last pitch should definitely be backed up with gear. All the rap stations are in great shape as of 6/21/2016 Jun 22, 2016
Mike Tsuji
Boulder, CO
Mike Tsuji   Boulder, CO
Not sure if I just got spoiled climbing in RMNP but this climb was pretty disappointing. The Third pitch was good, the rest were bad. Jul 10, 2016
Disappointing to say the least. The climbing gets better the higher you get... and then it gets bad again. Jul 14, 2016
David Wieder
Salt Lake, UT
David Wieder   Salt Lake, UT
Some Beta:

Climbed the route today in 3 pitches, with a full double rack of cams, nuts, and a 70m rope. Started the first pitch where a small tree is growing out of the wall - went almost straight up through an obvious horizontal crack that can be seen on the approach - finishing at the slung block on the large ledge. Unroped and moved belay around the corner. Most of the 2nd pitch is 5 easy - the "crux slab" is easily protectable with small cams and is basically just a couple face climbing moves - it is not loose and not slab climbing. Finished pitch two on the second ledge above the slab, right at the base of the finger crack. Pitch 3 is excellent - splitter cracks most of the way up. Take the finger crack to the "flake" traverse, to the 2nd set of nice horizontal cracks easily visible from the belay - but at some point cut right/do not follow this crack all the way up/until it dead ends. Look for the photo labeled Pitch 4 on the Eleventh Hour - it has big blocks in a dihedral - for a reference. This will take you straight to the top.

I didn't use any of the tat ridden belay stations on the way up, aside from the one on the large ledge at the end of my first pitch, they look super jank. Rap stations were in good shape.

I think the last pitch of outside corner is more difficult, or of equal difficulty, to anything on this route.

What an amazing location! And good climbing.

P.S. look for raspberries. Aug 28, 2016
Duy Le
Salt Lake City, UT
Duy Le   Salt Lake City, UT

Yesterday I was climbing behind a party of 4 people with two 70 meter ropes. One leader, and three followers. The leader asked me and my friends climbing behind after them whether or not it would be cool to bolt anchors at the start of the second pitch because he did not like the way the slings wrapped the rock slung belay station. We told him no, and that the climbing community may not approve of bolts on this particular route. He proceeded to bolt anyway with his power drill that he led with and also cut all of the slings. He also bolted two rappel stations and the 2nd station will not reach the ground without 2 ropes. The current tree slung belay stations says that a 60m rope will get you down, but if someone did not read the beta, they may be misled and try to rappel down the new bolted belay stations with a 60m rope.

I wanted to post this as a warning to anyone planning to climb this route about the new bolts. Also, I wanted to see if any local alliances or coalitions approved of this bolting? Maybe I am mistaken when I say that this should not have happened. Aug 6, 2017
Whoa. Please tell me this is a troll.

Edit to say: Wilderness if I'm not mistaken, so no power drills. Aug 6, 2017
The local ethics are that, with very few exceptions, you don't add bolts to existing trad routes. Eleventh Hour has been climbed without bolts for over 70 years! If any route should stay in it's natural state, it's this one. Aug 6, 2017
The Sundial is within Twin Peaks Wilderness, so power drills are illegal. This story is strange. Who the hell takes a power drill up to the Eleventh Hour unless they have already decided to put in some bolts. The guy asks you if you think it is ok to bolt anchors, you tell him no, and he goes ahead and does it anyway? What a dick. One person doing all the leading with three following? Sounds to me like someone doing some unauthorized "guiding" in the national forest without a permit, again illegal. Did you by chance get a picture of the jerk? The behavior pattern seems familiar. Aug 7, 2017
Duy Le
Salt Lake City, UT
Duy Le   Salt Lake City, UT
I wasn't able to get a photo of the leader. He was a couple pitches ahead of me and left the base before I could talk to him. I hauled ass down hill after packing up my camp trying to catch him but couldn't. I didn't take a photo of his following 3 climbers but I believe they are innocent and very inexperienced and I felt like the real culprit was the leader. I thought it was really weird that he asked in the first place...seems like if you hiked in a power drill and led with it that you were trigger happy... Aug 7, 2017
Salt Lake City
greggrylls   Salt Lake City
Up there yesterday, there were indeed bolts 8 feet left of my gear anchor. I've got a photo I can post once I'm on a computer. The bolts even are equalized with cord so you can just clip your device in! How convenient! This needs to go, we didn't have the equipment to remove and patch responsibly. I only saw bolts on the first belay.

Edit: 2 star climb 4 star location. 3 stars. Aug 20, 2017
climb 2 smile
Draper, UT
climb 2 smile   Draper, UT
I will contribute money to a community fund to properly remove the new bolts and patch the rock to return the route back to the wilderness. Aug 26, 2017
Tom Thomas
Tom Thomas   Pittsburgh
This is a must do climb if you are in the area.. Super fun. Sep 10, 2017
Trevor Thompson
Ogden, UT
Trevor Thompson   Ogden, UT
Some dude was bragging about the trad route he bolted at either reservoir or dam wall In Storm Mountain too. Mid 40s maybe. He doesn't post on MP because people are "mean". Feb 8, 2018
5/30/18 Left a #2 BD C4 (Yellow) right at the top out in a horizontal crack down low to the right. If you happen to snag it you can reach me at 801-867-5417. Will reward with beer and or food. Thank you! May 30, 2018
Mark Kadlec
Salt Lake City, UT
  5.8 PG13
Mark Kadlec   Salt Lake City, UT
  5.8 PG13
I added blue slings with rap rings at the top of the rappel since I couldn't find anything to use. Can be used with a single rope to rappel to the next station on the ledge below. Great route! Jun 4, 2018
BJB   Texas
A bit of a detailed breakdown of the route:

Approach: This took us about 3 hours from the car to get to the base of the route. I've gotten lost in areas all across the country and this was probably the most straightforward approach I've seen. We more followed the signs to Lake Blanche from the Mills B parking lot. Once you get to the lake, the Sundial is right in front of you at a distance. We went around the lake on the left, did a little fourth class scrambling up some rocks near the stream, then talus scrambled to the base of the route. Aim generally for the arete on the right side of the Sundial as you scramble up.

We also didn't carry that much water because the stream is nearby during the first and last 1/4 of the hikes, so we each took a one liter bottle and just filled it up from the stream with a filter.

Gear: We took a standard rack + C3s. We had doubles in C3 0, 2 and .75, 1 and 2. We had about 10 slings of various lengths and 5 draws. We did the route in three pitches using a 70m. 1 and 3 were very long, so this was barely enough gear.

Pitch 1: The pitch starts in front of a large white pine tree. At the time of writing, there is a large cairn near the start, but that is about 20-40 feet to the climbers right of the start. Long pitch (about 180 ft). Follows the weaknesses and cracks on the face up to a big ledge. The pitch gets a bit steep. This pitch was a bit disconcerting to me. Maybe I was just getting back into the groove of placing gear on quartize which is always a little tricky, but I thought this pitch was a bit precarious. There were spots to place gear, but it was a bit spaced out because it's such a long pitch. Some of the placements were also a little tricky and nuts are useful. While there are cracks in the face, the pitch feels more like a face climb. I used the cracks mostly for placing gear and then used the face holds for the actual climbing.

Presently, there is a two bolt anchor on the big ledge. Belay the second up from here, then untie and walk about 50ft to your right where you will find a large horn/flake that you can sling and belay the second pitch.

Pitch 2: About 50 feet. Pitch two is a big, obvious left facing corner. The pitch is fairly cruiser, following good hand holds in the corner and on the face until you get to a big, smooth face near the end of the pitch. The end of the pitch contains the technical and psychological crux of the route, a reachy face move on holds that are not as positive as you would like them to be.

Belay at a good crack.

Pitch 3: About 180 feet. Some people break this up into two pitches. Using a 70m rope, I linked it into one. From the belay, follow up one of two cracks generally to the right. Eventually you get to a flake rail type of feature that you follow to the right. At the end of the flake rail, you'll get to steeper rock with cracks and (if I remember) a lieback. If you plan on linking these pitches, you should have all the gear before this point on long slings or rope drag will be huge. There's a ledge that you can belay from here, but I kept pushing up through cracks that take good hands and liebacks until reaching large ledge with shale.

From there you can sling any number of horns/flakes and bring the second up from there.

Descent: From the shale covered ledge, head towards the true summit until you spot a cairn on climbers left. Note that the webbing on the dead tree is gone. Near the carin, you'll see a live tree with a blue loop of webbing with rap rings that Mark described. As a note, this rappel may become an issue. The rappelling traffic is eroding the dirt and exposing/breaking the tree roots. This rappel will eventually need to be moved, and you should double check it before using it. Rap down from there to another tree with blue webbing on the rappeler's left. From here you can barely rapp to the ground with a 70m rope. If you have a shorter rope, there is one more tree with webbing on the way down. Jun 4, 2018
The bolts up at the large ledge in the climb are still there, I used them. I couldn't find the ones on the descent. Jun 11, 2018
Salt Lake City, UT
Dumptruck   Salt Lake City, UT
The p1 belay bolts and the rap bolt stations that require a 70m rope on the descent have Tony C's name engraved on them, so that seems to solve that mystery. The belay bolts seem somewhat out of character with an alpine route, but to be fair it's sort of a tricky belay to find a good gear anchor in that exact spot, though moving left and right yields reasonable options. The rap stations on the other hand, while mandating a 70m rope and going down sort of a loose nasty gully are probably a lot greener than continuing to kill the trees than remain on the ledge as prior rap setups have done and continue to do. Some caution is probably reasonable on the rap anchors as well since the rings are the thin throw away variety and they should be expected to wear rapidly. One of the bolts on the second rap station is under driven as well. Sep 1, 2018