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ACL Arete

5.10+, Trad, 1500 ft, 19 pitches, Grade IV,  Avg: 3.1 from 10 votes
FA: Tyler Philips, Robbie Colbert and friends
Utah > Zion NP > Bridge Mountain
Access Issue: Seasonal Raptor Closures ***** RAIN AND WET ROCK ***** The sandstone in Zion is fragile and is very easily damaged when it is wet. Holds rip off and climbs have been and will continue to be permanently damaged due to climbers not respecting this phenomenon. After a heavy storm the rock will remain wet, sometimes for several days. PLEASE DO NOT CLIMB IN ZION during or after rain. A good rule of thumb is that if the ground near your climb is at all damp (and not powdery dry sand), then do not climb. There are many alternatives (limestone, granite, basalt, and plastic) nearby. Seasonal Raptor Closures Details


ACL Arete is a good route that climbs the right side of Bridge Mountain. As a long 5.10 route in Zion, this is safe with generally excellent rock and a couple of great pitches. The full route is 19 pitches, but many parties stop after P10.

P1 28m 5.10+: Awesome entrance moves through an overhang into a featured finger crack. Two bolts. Bolted belay.

P2+P3 45m 5.9-: Start up the bushy corner then move left following bolts to fixed belay.

P4 30m 5.10+: Excellent rock, fun moves and an airy position make this a great pitch. Fully bolt protected with a fixed belay. There is an alternate bolted pitch to the right with blue hangers.

P5 25m 5.10+: Follow the corner to the first bolt then angle left to the large pod / chimney looming above. The crux protects well with gear.

P6 30m 5.8: Climb the featured chimney to the choss stuffed gully and either belay at the intermediate anchor out right or just clip it to keep the rope from running over the rubble and finish the pitch following the bolt line.

P7 28m 5.10-: Follow bolts up the face to a fixed belay.

P8 30m 5.10-: Climb the featured face with pro in the corner to the line of bolts up the face. Easily linked into P9.

P9 15m 5.9: Clip the bolts up the crispy face. Otherwise follow the crack system up and right.

P10 22m 5.9: Move right of the arete and climb the crack with a couple of bolts.

I did not climb the upper 9 pitches, so have nothing to contribute regarding them.


A single set from fingers to #3 camalot with a couple extra in the .5-#2 camalot range. Stoppers are useful. A bunch of slings and draws. One 60 m rope.

Photos [Hide ALL Photos]

Emily Reinsel moves onto the arete of P10.
[Hide Photo] Emily Reinsel moves onto the arete of P10.
Vlad leading pitch 1
[Hide Photo] Vlad leading pitch 1
Direct start to the ACL Arete.
[Hide Photo] Direct start to the ACL Arete.
Pitch 1
[Hide Photo] Pitch 1
Emily Reinsel on P9.
[Hide Photo] Emily Reinsel on P9.
Emily Reinsel surmounts the roof on P5.
[Hide Photo] Emily Reinsel surmounts the roof on P5.
Emily on the approach to ACL Arete, which is just left of the skyline ridge in the foreground.
[Hide Photo] Emily on the approach to ACL Arete, which is just left of the skyline ridge in the foreground.

Comments [Hide ALL Comments]

Trevor Bowman
Flagstaff, AZ
[Hide Comment] This is a fun, long route in the 5.10 range that is very user friendly. The FA party engineered the line to take the most appealing climbing up this ridge, and the result is a safe, well-protected long route with a few good pitches and a lot of decent climbing. A strong party can climb this quickly, given the abundant fixed gear, minimal rack, and single rope needed. Pitches 1,4, and 5 were the most memorable. Oct 5, 2015
[Hide Comment] Between ACL surgeries, life logistics, and the equipping this took 6 years for us to complete for Robbie and I.

Mostly accurate route description. I think there is one bush on P2, and some you have to rappel through up high, for like 20 feet. As always, just because you are looking at chains, you don't have to stop. Keep rolling son if your so put off by short pitches.

There is an alternate P1. The Handicapped Ramp is around the corner to the left. A few bolts to the same belay. 5.7+

Also there is a bomber 2 bolt anchor on top of P10, you gotta surmount the ledge and walk back 25 feet.

Many pitches are linkable. The top half is Zion Alpine Adventure. Bring two ropes for that. From P10 go up into the cleft, hang a hard right at the big sandy ledge near P12 and jog right again and go up the major gully system. Have fun. Oct 7, 2015
Seth Hogan
Frisco, Co
[Hide Comment] Very worthwhile route, don't let the grade intimidate you. Very well protected crux with a clean fall. Maybe worth doing it with a 70m for the raps. Dec 3, 2016
Ryan Locati
[Hide Comment] Basic info for the top half would be appreciated. Any bivy ledges? Descent? Looks like a great route Feb 11, 2019