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Romanian Rib - Left Side

5.6, Trad, 1000 ft, 5 pitches, Grade III,  Avg: 2.5 from 12 votes
FA: Larry DeAngelo, Karsten Duncan, Raluca Duncan - Oct 2006
Nevada > Southern Nevada > Red Rock > 14-First Creek… > First Creek Slabs
Access Issue: Red Rock RAIN AND WET ROCK: The sandstone is fragile and is very easily damaged when wet. Details


This is a nice route that is generally easy climbing and short cruxes. It's only drawback is crispy holds in a few places. It can be most easily identified by a noticeable dark cresting-wave-like roof on the 3rd pitch. The first 4 pitches are long, clean, and fun. Above the route weaves through a series of aretes and buttresses.

Pitch 1: Climb up the face finding the path of least resistance. 195ft

Pitch 2: Continue up and left up to a roof in a left facing corner. Pull the roof and belay.

Pitch 3: Continue up the crack below the wave-like roof. Traverse right on brown varnished rock to a crack at the right side of the roof. Continue up through the roof and belay in the crack above.

Pitch 4-7: Continue up the crack and face to a tree. From the tree move up and left around a buttress to a crack. Continue up this crack to the top in about 2 more pitches.


This route lies just to the left of the Hotflash gully on a buttress which is bordered on the left by a bushy gully.

Descent: Use the usual First Creek Slabs descent.


Standard rack to 4"

There are no bolts on this route. Lets keep it that way.

Photos [Hide ALL Photos]

The Romanian Wave
[Hide Photo] The Romanian Wave
Wendy coming up the face above the pine tree belay. Andy in the background at the pine tree belay.
[Hide Photo] Wendy coming up the face above the pine tree belay. Andy in the background at the pine tree belay.
Wendy coming up the final arete face.
[Hide Photo] Wendy coming up the final arete face.
Climbing the RIB!!!!
[Hide Photo] Climbing the RIB!!!!
Gigi pulls the roof. Romanian Rib, pitch 3.
[Hide Photo] Gigi pulls the roof. Romanian Rib, pitch 3.
Pitches 1-3.  The wave-like feature on pitch 3 can be seen near the top of the photo.
[Hide Photo] Pitches 1-3. The wave-like feature on pitch 3 can be seen near the top of the photo.

Comments [Hide ALL Comments]

[Hide Comment] A fun route with beautiful views! The first long pitch is super duper great for new trad leaders, or a fun solo for more experienced climbers.

I thought that most of the rock on this route was great; not one hold broke off on me, which says a lot on the overall quality (for a newer Red Rock route, anyway).

We simul-climbed a good portion of this route, as it's fun, mellow climbing.
It would be a super fast way to get to the climbs on the upper walls (First Creek Slabs Ledge) if you are okay with simul-climbing, and decent at route-finding.

Thanks for putting this one up, Larry DeAngelo, and Raluca, and Karsten Duncan; It made my day! Mar 27, 2008
John Hegyes
Las Vegas, NV
[Hide Comment] Multumesc mult. A fost o zi minunata pt. catarat pe munte! Mar 27, 2008
Karl K
Phoenix, AZ
[Hide Comment] I was not impressed by this route. Many better options on the Slabs to either side.... The first three pitches were quite good, but the rock quality, protection, line, and rock all deteriorated dramatically on the next few pitches, detracting from the fun. Mar 20, 2009
William Thiry
Las Vegas
[Hide Comment] A very long, fun, easy route. Mostly solid rock with the occasional pause for careful climbing in areas where the rock is yet to be cleaned. Protection is few and far in between in many places but the climbing is so casual that it's not really an issue. 2 and a half stars. Nov 25, 2014
Will Carney
Tallulah Falls, GA
[Hide Comment] Fun day out in a sparsely visited canyon. Oct 21, 2016
David Carrier
White Salmon, WA
[Hide Comment] Great route for soloing or beginners. Lots of big holds and a perfect hand crack for placing pro most of the way. There's a couple of runout pitches near the top, so beginners should lead the lower pitches.

I had difficulty finding the base of the climb. When you hike in, the trail crosses roughly 100' of very red rock. Big Sky, Lady Luck, and Romanian Rib are above this red slab, and there is a climber's trail heading up to the climbs. Mar 6, 2017
[Hide Comment] We climbed this on a 98F degree day in mid May. Bad Idea. The route was in full sun until about 4pm.
This is NOT a good climb for a hot day at that time of year.

Protection was sparse in some areas - This is probably not a good route for new leaders at the grade unless they are comfortable with run-out climbing.

Use two ropes for the descent

Pitch 1: Followed the line of least resistance up the face to the left of the stair-stepping roofs.
This led me to a ledge perhaps a bit too far to the right, and maybe a bit closer than intended to the original Romanian Rib route.
Pro was a little thin elsewhere on wall, but this ledge had plenty of options for an anchor.

Pitch 2: I went up and left to the roof in the left-facing corner on the left side of the face.
The MP route description says to pull the roof, but I didn't have enough right-sized pro to both protect the roof and also build an anchor in the crack above.
Instead I traversed to the right around the arete maybe ten feet below the roof, and belayed on a sloping ledge with gear in a horizontal crack.
This was a bad idea. The rope drag was really bad. I do not recommend.
The second edition Handren book (which I did not own at the time) says to bypass the roof by going around the corner to the left, up, then back right above the roof.
Be careful of brittle holds on this pitch - Three of the seemingly solid "marbles" broke off when weighted.

Pitch 3: Follow the left crack up to the varnish patch just below the wave roof. Do a horizontal traverse on a narrow varnished ledge to the crack on the right. Climb up this crack thru the roof. A little ways after the roof, the crack narrows down. I traversed left about 15-ish feet to a ledge to belay.

pitch 4(+5?): I Don't remember anything special - Just keep going up to the big ledge before the vegetated crack

The vegetated crack pitch: Go up using the crack and varnished face, weaving around the bushes. It becomes increasingly vegetated. About 30 feet below the big tree above, traverse/scramble left to a big ledge past another big tree.

Two more pitches?: Step left off the ledge onto a lichen-covered face. Keep going up lichen-covered rock.
Eventually escape to a small ledge on the left a little ways before the top of the formation.

Descent: Drop down off the back of the ledge into a narrow vegetated gully. Go up the gully (right) a few feet, then up onto the face behind it.
Traverse left on the face , following cairns left and around until you can drop down off the back into another gully.
Follow cairns down (left) to the "Major Tree" rappel route. The first bolts are below the tree.
Five double rope rappels. The last one is the same as the Rising Moons rappel - bolts are below the tree to skiiers right.
This last rappel often has a puddle at the bottom.
From here, some downclimbing and downscrambling gets you to the ledge between the Romper Room area and the start of Rising Moons Jun 29, 2018