Type: Trad, 900 ft, 9 pitches, Grade II
FA: Eric Wright and Frank Robertson, 2008
Page Views: 1,345 total · 26/month
Shared By: ChrisG George on Sep 8, 2014 with updates from Frank Robertson
Admins: Edward Medina, Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac

You & This Route

9 Opinions

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This mixed gear/sport route is a great outing if you want an intro climb to the Sandias formation and want a nice view of Ouray as you ascend. We climbed the first 6 pitches and stopped due to rain. The 8th pitch as described in Jason Nelson's book seemed more like the beginning of the walk off and not worth it.

Every pitch was well bolted, and fixed anchors for rappel stations were intelligently placed for both ascent and decent. A little bit of all types of climbing is strewn throughout. Short pitches are great for communication. The cruxes were short as well. There is a 5.9 move here and there, nothing greatly committing nor exposed. Just watch out for loose rock at the tops and between pitches. I recommend rapping off as we did...in the rain.


Ascend the left side of the Sandias Wall. It's essentially the ridge line. This is fun route to take someone up, minus the loose rock at the belays that is common. The ledges break up the climbing into super easily manageable pitches. We used the Jason Nelson guide and found it adequate. Just remember to go around the corner to the Grey Matter Wall which faces South. The route is on the right side of this wall. We didn't do the 7th or 8th pitch due to rain. The 7th appeared to be the crux pitch.


Medium stoppers plus a Light rack up to #3 Camalot. A few quickdraws and extendable slings ideal.


Frank Robertson
Ridgway, CO
  5.9 PG13
Frank Robertson   Ridgway, CO
  5.9 PG13
Thanks for posting, Chris. P7 is a blast (my favorite). While P8 is mostly easy, if you do the 10b direct option (which is a little committing but reasonably protected with bolts), P9 is the crux - exciting, airy and really caps the route, even if you choose the 5.9 original finish. Bolted anchors all the way, so you can rap the route on one 60m rope. Mar 9, 2015
Ben Alexander
Cary, NC
Ben Alexander   Cary, NC
The walk-off from the top is very easy. It might be quicker than rapping the route. Just amble north and west and up about 500' until you hit the Old Twin Peaks trail. Jun 6, 2015
Eric Wright
Telluride CO.
Eric Wright   Telluride CO.
We did not post this route, as we wanted to support the sale of Jason Nelson's local guidebook, which continues to be available in Ouray, etc.
It's disturbing to see you have posted a route description about a route you bailed off. You failed to complete the route. You describe the last two pitches as unworthy, though you bailed. Why would anyone post a route description about a climb they did not climb? The route is nine pitches. You only climbed six of those pitches.
You describe the route as a mixed gear/sport route. It's simply a mixed gear route. A 5.9 leader needs a small rack of gear. We left sling material on the anchors originally, and after three years, the animals and the sun had destroyed the nylon. Oct 17, 2015
ChrisG George
ChrisG George   Westminster
Geez, Eric, you seem more spiteful that I didn't send the route than there's useful information. My goal was to provide information on what was there based on what I did. I was forthright and honest about not climbing the last pitch. Did you even see why I didn't finish the route? Perhaps, this was more of a trip report. This is a quality route that is a TRADE route of the area.

You, my friend, have every right to ADD to the VALUE of MP. You ranted. Reread Guideline #3.

I DID PURCHASE a guidebook. Now, perhaps if you see the benefit of not posting the last pitch. Perhaps, if you change the way you see things, I will change. It will get lots of traffic, and guides and visitors will want more information. So, perhaps someone ought to go buy the guidebook to better inform themselves prior to leading off into the woods.

I am not an MP guidebook printer. I BUY guidebooks. In fact, I personally know the publishers of several climbing guides. More so, I know of many crags which will not be posted on MP nor will they be in guidebooks, and I do not share that information online.

Perhaps, you be best served to not read MP.com, since it so upsets you, my dear. Oct 22, 2015
Frank Robertson
Ridgway, CO
  5.9 PG13
Frank Robertson   Ridgway, CO
  5.9 PG13
A #3 Camalot, maybe the #2 Camalot to belay in the crack below and left of P7, a little blue Camalot or yellow Alien, the red Alien and 8 or so quicks are all you need besides kit to clip the two-bolt anchors and a 60m rope. 3-4 hours up and down - a series of aerial boulder problems linked by a ridge with great views. Jun 23, 2016
A #11 BD nut turned sideways at waist level on the weird P2 crux works well enough to keep you from falling off the ledge. This is also the only nut I have placed on the route. Oct 6, 2017
John Hayes II
  5.9 PG13
John Hayes II  
  5.9 PG13
I think this route is really cool, but I don't wanna climb it again very badly. Rope management is annoying for how much climbing you actually yield.

There is good protection, but it isn't very common and often difficult to place. Tricams would place well in more places.

There are a few 5.9 cruxy moves, with plenty of 5.7 climbing. The direct finish (center instead of going right) is considerably harder, maybe 5.10.

The best pitch is the chimney! Jun 19, 2018