Avg: 3.3 from 131 votes
|Type:||Ice, 600 ft (182 m), 4 pitches, Grade II|
|FA:||Ted Wilson & Rick Reese 1960|
|Page Views:||15,765 total · 87/month|
|Shared By:||Allen Sanderson on Oct 29, 2006 · Updates|
|Admins:||Andrew Gram, Nathan Fisher, Perin Blanchard, GRK, DCrane|
June 1st, 2017:The Salt Lake Climbers Alliance (SLCA), the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church), and Access Fund announce the signing of an unprecedented lease for 140 acres in Little Cottonwood Canyon (LCC). The parcel, known as the Gate Buttress, is about one mile up LCC canyon and has been popular with generations of climbers because of its world-class granite.
The agreement secures legitimate access to approximately 588 routes and 138 boulder problems at the Gate Buttress for rock climbers, who will be active stewards of the property. The recreational lease is the result of several years of negotiations between LDS Church leaders and the local climbing community.
Access Note: The climbs on the Church Buttress above the vault as well as the Glen boulders that have been traditionally closed will remain closed.
Please help us steward this area and leave no trace.
The climb is typically done in four pitches. The first pitch climbs a short moderate step (approximately 50') to the large boulder on the right side with a chain belay. From here wander up the snow slope until you reach the base of the ice at the start of the second pitch, a low angle (45-50 degree) 100 foot ramp that leads to the balcony. At the top there is a bolted belay on the left side and a rap anchor on the balcony proper.
The third pitch is known as the bulge and can be climbed on the far left (easiest), center (most common), or right side (infrequent). After approximately 160 feet there is a bolted belay on the left side. (Reaching it may require the belayer to simul climb up to the start of the ice). After approximately 120 feet there is also a belay on the right side. Reaching it can be tricky and is not recommended for the new ice climber. Using this belay will require that another belay be used also on the far right side at the top of the ramp that is below the last curtain.
If using the belay on the left the final pitch can be done from here. The last curtain can be climbed on the left or right. Each have their own mini cruxes. Originally one climbed up the curtain to a short pillar on the left side. With the change in the creek (circa 2000) the pillar is bigger but still requires a bit of careful climbing. From the top of the pillar continue up where one can belay from the trees. Climbing the right side will require one to climb up the curtain, step to the right and the continue up to the top where one can belay from the trees.
There is also a vertical 20 foot curtain that often forms below the step on the right side. Climbing it can be good fun. However, it is best to let it fully touch down before climbing it.
While it is possible to rappel the route, it is not advisable because of the number of other climbers that may be below. Instead, walk up the snow/creek approximate 100' to a level area where a well beaten path will cross the creek (climber's right) and traverse over into the next gully. Descend until well into the trees and it possible to leave the gully on the up canyon side (skier's right). Continue descending next to a slab which brings one back to the near the base.
In the 90s Alex Lowe climbed the route car-to-car in 19 minutes. Andrew McLean et. al. skied the route (albeit while belayed). After a heavy snow fall it is possible to bum slide the first and second pitch.
Edited Jan 2014 to reflect the current conditions.