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Routes in Bastion Towers

Forest Lawn T 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a
Pair a Grins T,S 5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
Type: Trad, 300 ft, 3 pitches
FA: First pitch FA: Mike McEwan and Gary Axen, 1975. Complete ascent: Mike McEwen and Dave Baker, 1976
Page Views: 11,940 total, 86/month
Shared By: brad schierer on Jul 17, 2006
Admins: Greg Opland, Luke Bertelsen, JJ Schlick

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Closed from March 1 to June 30 Details

Description

The first pitch is the classic pitch and gets the stars. It is a classic layback crack in a left facing corner. Pumpy and steep for about 45 feet or so, then the angle lessens. Finish at a two bolt belay. There is a thank God rest just when you need it.
The second pitch is a full rope length up a grungy 5.7 crack. It's okay but not up to the quality of the first. A double rope rap from the top of pitch one will get you to the ground if you don't like the looks of pitch 2. The second pitch ends at tied off chickenheads for a belay (hope you brought your shoulder length slings).
The final pitch is best described as low-angle chickenhead hiking.

Descent: Rap by climbing onto the summit block/nob just to you're right as you top out. Once on top, head down the ramp to a set of metolius rap hangers. make a single rope rap down the ramp/nose to a set of rap anchors (chains). Double rope rap from here will just get you down to the start of the climb. (-Randy Baum)

Addendum: I just wanted to add that this past weekend, I did the Pair-a-Grins variation to this route and it is without a doubt a better way to the top than the standard 2nd pitch. It's a little run-out between bolts (thought-provoking but not unsafe) and the exposure isn't for the faint of heart. All I took for this pitch was quickdraws.

Location

This is at the far left (east) end of the Rockfellow Group as you come in from the east side approach. Look for a nice open book. See route description for descent.

Protection

Finger size pieces (Metolius tri-cams) and a couple of red camalots for the first pitch. standard rack with a handful of shoulder length slings for the second pitch. In general, Stronghold climbers can never carry enough shoulder length slings (10 is a good number). As many have suggested in the comments, a 60m rope is good to have.
There are two ropes currently stuck on the rap off this route - a blue mammut 70m and a green 60m tied together. If anyone brings them down and is kind enough to leave them at the base of the route it would be greatly appreciated! Oct 22, 2017
Justin Headley   Tucson
I got my rope stuck on the rappel off the chain anchors today. Fortunately another party was there to free it. Be careful what you lay the rope over. There's so many chickenheads and plates for the rope to be caught on that it's worth saddlebagging the rope.

Also, 2nd standard pitch beta: I would have been happier if I brought a #4. Most of it is 5.7 or less but the crux I thought was a reachy 5.9 with the last good piece of gear around your feet. Maybe I missed something. Stay in/around the crack until the walls start closing in on you, then move out left to the chickenheads. Jan 7, 2017
Casey Engstrom
Burnaby, BC
 
Casey Engstrom   Burnaby, BC
 
FYI it's easy to walk past the start, as the splitter is not so visible from below. It starts in a ~2m wide slot, before you start crawling over logs in the trail. If you start hiking downhill, you've gone too far. Dec 24, 2015
Jeffrey Hyman
Santa Fe, New Mexico
  5.9
Jeffrey Hyman   Santa Fe, New Mexico
  5.9
Gear: A set of nuts, doubles from 0.3 to 0.5 BD, and singles of 0.75 - 3 BD. Metolious TCU are great too to supplement the BD camalots. Feb 24, 2014
Don't watch that video if you want to learn proper crack climbing technique. That was a major thrash which would not have been necessary with proper technique. Apr 8, 2013
Tim Hadfield
Steamboat Springs, Co
Tim Hadfield   Steamboat Springs, Co
Nice video, Pat... thanks for sharing!
Gets me fired up for an upcoming Cochise trip. Dec 22, 2012
fivefun  
^^^ He is back stepping throughout the entire video! Oct 2, 2012
Pat Mac
Tempe
 
Pat Mac   Tempe
 
Amazing route! Here is a video of my friend climbing it.

vimeo.com/34545009 Jan 6, 2012
randy baum
Minneapolis, MN
  5.9+
randy baum   Minneapolis, MN
  5.9+
can also rap by climbing onto the summit block/nob just to you're right as you top out. once on top, head down the ramp to a set of metolius rap hangers. make a single rope rap down the ramp/nose to a set of rap anchors (chains). double rope rap from here will just get you down to the start of the climb.

you can also double rope rap from the metolius hangers to the first belay of forrest lawn. look out for rope snags, as there are quite a few chickenheads, flakes, nobs, and other pesky obstacles. Oct 16, 2008
David Baltz
Albuquerque, New Mexico
  5.10a
David Baltz   Albuquerque, New Mexico
  5.10a
Pair-o-Grins is the much-preferred finish and is highly recommended, but should have an "R" rating (5.9 easing to 5.6) and requires mental preparedness. I found one bolt in the 100 ft above first few protecting the crux section. A 60m rope would be real nice as I had to stretch my 50m a lot to tie off some chickenheads. We did two raps of the east face in fading light--dropping 10 feet off the end of our 50m ropes into the gully at the bottom. Again, 60m ropes would be real nice. Sep 20, 2008
George Perkins
The Dungeon, NM
George Perkins   The Dungeon, NM
Descent is possible with a single 60m rope. 3 rappels off 2-bolt anchors, going down Pair-a-Grins, then p1 of Forest Lawn. The raps are 28m, watch the rope ends. This returns you right to the base.

(To get to the top of Pair-a-grins from Forest Lawn p2, climb up 10' of 3rd class to your right to the top of the pinnacle)

I thought the 2nd pitch of Forest Lawn was alright and definitely worth doing if you're not up for Pair-a-Grins. Dec 17, 2007
brad schierer
Tucson, AZ
 
brad schierer   Tucson, AZ
 
I didn't use a grey Camalot on the start. Instead I usually step across from the block opposite the wall, and start right in on the business. May 29, 2007
tom selleck  
 
If doing "pair a grins" finish one 60m rope will get you to the anchors at the top of forest lawn...barely with rope stretch, tie knots in the ends of the rope.

Forest Lawn is a burly 5.9 fer sure. Pair a grins was no cruise at 10c either. Two great pitches however...very memorable. Dec 3, 2006