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Tommy Knocker--Tomfoolery

5.10+, Trad, 260 ft, 3 pitches, Grade II,  Avg: 2 from 2 votes
FA: Trevor Bowman and Emily Reinsel 1/24/15
Utah > Moab Area > Valley of the G… > Tom-Tom Tower Area
Access Issue: RAIN, WET ROCK and RAPTOR CLOSURES: The sandstone around Moab is fragile and is very easily damaged when it is wet. Also please ask and be aware of Raptor Closures in areas such as CAT WALL and RESERVOIR WALL in Indian Creek Details


A quality (for the VOG) line that tackles the center of the south face and provides a free option on this nice tower with better rock and climbing that the original route (IMO). It was established OS and ground-up, with no bolts placed, for the FFA of the tower and the 7th overall ascent (if the register is accurate) in 15 years.

P1--Start in the center of the south face, up a moderate fist crack in a 15' step of blocky rock (the only loose band encountered) to a ledge below an obvious right-facing dihedral. Stem between twin finger/thin hand cracks to a loose shelf and launch into the corner proper. It starts fat fingers, and quickly widens to thin hands as it arcs steeply before entering a wide pod. The pod was home to a bunch of choss that was trundled, but it is surely still a bit grungy. Exit the pod with steep, burly thin hands to a large belay ledge. A predominantly clean pitch with great, varied crack climbing. Set a gear belay on the wall above the ledge with finger-hand sized gear. 5.10, 100'

P2--Tackle the striking hand to chimney system splitting the face above the large ledge. Start up a shallow, right-facing dihedral with thin hands and fingers to a stance and an awkward fist crack above into the upper chimney. This corner holds good rock, but is unfortunately very silty as the chimney above funnels dirt down it. The chimney starts a bit silty, but quickly gets much cleaner. Pass a shelf and some large chockstones (take care, the upper one wiggles disconcertingly but we couldn't free it) and squeeze up the narrowing chimney with fortuitous edges on the right arete to facilitate progress through this strenuous bit. The chimney pinches down into the crux OW that curves left and offers burly arm-barring and thigh jamming to the belay ledge. A physical, blue-collar pitch! Belay off of .75-#3 sized gear. 5.10+, 115'

P3--You could finish up the final pitch of the OG South Face route, which rises directly above the belay. We found this finish crunchy and unpleasantly awkward when we did it on our ascent of the South Face route, so instead we squeezed through a narrow slot/window piercing the tower at this belay and climbed the analog (north side) crack to the OG finish. This starts with a leaning fist crack up to a beached whale maneuver to surmount a block (a bit of a thrutch). Surmount a small bulge with a good handcrack leading to a final easy chimney to the summit. We felt this offered a much more enjoyable summit pitch with pretty good rock. 5.9+, 45'


Middle of the south face in obvious corner to crack system. Rap off the OG South Face route with three single rope (60m should work, 70m better) raps from chains.


(1X).3 (2X).4, .5 (3X).75 (2X)1,2,6 (1X)3,4,5 BD C4 sizes

Photos [Hide ALL Photos]

Emily finishes the crux OW of P2.
[Hide Photo] Emily finishes the crux OW of P2.
Emily on Pitch 1.
[Hide Photo] Emily on Pitch 1.
Tommy Knocker with belays marked.
[Hide Photo] Tommy Knocker with belays marked.
The final pitch.
[Hide Photo] The final pitch.
Pitch 2.
[Hide Photo] Pitch 2.
The first pitch.
[Hide Photo] The first pitch.

Comments [Hide ALL Comments]

[Hide Comment] Thoughtful and well written! Makes you want to get out to VOG again! Thanks for your work. Jan 29, 2015
Trevor Bowman
Flagstaff, AZ
[Hide Comment] Thanks Roy, we've had a great time out there recently. Hope you check it out if you make it back, it's worthwhile for the area. Jan 30, 2015