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Routes in Grey Towers

The Rattler - Cobblers Bench T 5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c
Bighorn Beatdown - Big Grey Pinnacle T 5.12 7b+ 27 VIII+ 26 E6 6b
East Buttress - Super Grey Pinnacle T 5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b
For Shits And Giggles - MOG Tower T 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b A3
Hobnailers Crack - Cobblers Bench T 5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
Love Line - Lost Pink Tower T 5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b
Make a Merkin Great Again - MOG Tower T 5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
Menage a Trois - Lost Pink Tower T 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
Peregrine Pillar - Big Grey Pinnacle T 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
Sting of the Scorpion - Cobblers Bench T 5.11- 6c 22 VIII+ 22 E3 5c
Weary Leader, The T 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b R
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Type: Trad, Alpine, 1200 ft, 8 pitches, Grade IV
FA: Tony Lewis & Richard Shore 4/23-24/2016 GU
Page Views: 1,691 total · 67/month
Shared By: Richard Shore on Apr 25, 2016
Admins: Aron Quiter, Euan Cameron, AWinters, M. Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Salamanizer suchoski, Justin Johnsen, Vicki Schwantes

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Description [Edit]

Hidden from sight in a narrow gully behind the Cobblers Bench, the Super Grey Pinnacle is the largest monolithic tower on the Wheeler Crest. The first ascent of this formation was made over a 2-day period in marginal weather conditions, which included a rain-and-snow storm during the summit push. The route features superb slab and knobby face climbing, dirty cracks, and airy dike traverses. This climb ranks amongst the best I’ve done in the massif, and in my partners obscure grading system – 5 acorns.

Approach as for the Mayfield Canyon Towers, but go around the right side of Bedrock Tower and then up and left (south) into the gully behind. Scramble up into the gully on the right side of the Cobblers Bench formation. Alternatively, continue north up canyon from Bedrock tower and cut back left onto a bench atop the orange rock band leading to a notch at the base of the tower. Allow 3+ hours.

P1) From the toe of the buttress, climb a right-facing corner and move left above a huge bush, then head out the left end of a roof to a block belay on a big ledge. There is a rap station here on a tree. 5.8 50M.

P2) Fantastic face climbing past 6 bolts and one or two gear placements up and right to a hanging belay from gear in a right-leaning flake/crack. 5.10 40M.

P3) Pull two overlapping roofs on amazing knobs and pass a bolt on a slab, then cruise up easy featured face to a 2 bolt-belay on a massive horizontal dike. 5.9 40M.

P4) Head up and left past a bolt, then make a long unprotected traverse left to a right facing corner system. Climb the cracks to a bolted belay next to an enormous detached orange block on a ledge. 5.8R 40M.

P5) 3 bolts protect the crux face above the belay, then gain the long right-facing corner system (big cam useful to start). Step left to a gear belay on blocks after the crack peters out. 5.10+ 50M.

P6) Continue up the right-facing corner system above passing an intermediate rap station on a tree. Near the end of the corner, traverse right on a big white dike to a gear belay at the base of a major left-facing corner. 5.8R 50M.

P7) Climb the long left-facing corner/flare past a couple nasty bushes to a large platform. Belay comfortably from gear or awkwardly use the bolted rap station on the face up and left. 5.9 50M.

P8) Scramble up and left towards a short slab and cracks leading to the summit. 5.5 30M.

Descent: 30M rappel from a block near the summit to 2 bolt-anchor at top of P7. 60M rappel from bolts to a tree mid P6. 60M rappel to bolted anchor atop P4. 60M rappel into gully between Super Grey and Cobblers Bench. Scramble and downclimb loose blocks and/or early season snow in the gully to a final 50M rappel from a tree atop P1.

Protection [Edit]

2x cams tiny to 3", single 4" and a 5" or 6" piece. 2 x 60M ropes.
Tony Lewis  
 
Richard's name should be first on the FA line. He lead most of the pitches including the last three when it started to snow. It should be noted that this was done ground up, stance drilled/gear placements with no hooks or gimmicks with no falls or hangs. Apr 25, 2016
Moser  
I heard Richard mumbling in his sleep, while lying on my floor. .." I hope Tony didn't see me step on the bolt... and I wonder if he new I had a talon hook in my pocket"

See the truth always comes out! Apr 26, 2016
Moser  


Tony Lewis chiseling holds on the big project! Apr 26, 2016
LOL! I think someone is upset he couldn't come along.. Apr 26, 2016
Moser  


While Richard was mumbling on the floor and you where chiseling I snuck out and put up super duper grey 5.15rx paralleling. Ground up! Apr 26, 2016
Moser  

So. This is really how it went down... They just didn't want to say I held the team together Apr 26, 2016
The climb reaches an amazing position up high on the crest. Climbing on second pitch is really good. Otherwise, climbing is 2 stars at best. Seems like rock on the face is quite good, but decomposing and fairly low quality in the systems and cracks. I would recommend the climb to those seeking an adventure, but not for those looking for high quality climbing.
Well done to Tony and Richard for piecing together a cool line up a wild face. Feb 6, 2018
Nice work, Brandon! I think your recommendation applies to most any climb on the Wheeler Crest in general. People seeking adventure find it in excess here, and people seeking “quality” end up returning to Pine Creek :)

Go do the second on The Rattler and report back. Feb 6, 2018
Tony Lewis  
 
The "good" climbing due to rock quality is interesting. This isn't a defense of the rock quality except to say that Pine Creek and the Crest are two very different things. I find personally the rock in it's unaltered state to be of equal or better then any on the Front Range. If one were to bring the tools of alteration like in Pine Creek (i.e.electricity, wire brushes, crow bars, leaf blowers established and maintained trails etc.) to the Crest. you'd have Pine Creek quality or better. So far, the Crest has been largely climbed in what was traditionally known as "free climbing", mostly free of the aid unless stated. True, some sport routes were put up in the past before the "wilderness" designation and some have sneaked in since, but the large percentage of new climbing has been in the traditional sense of climbing with what the human body and spirit can bring to unadulterated rock. And in the spirit of adventure. Today's majority of climbers have a very different set of critria (safety, emphasis on physicality, easy access and contrivance through modern technology and tactics) then what the majority of climbers practiced when the Crest was first climbed. I am not judging this as I like a fun sport climb as much as the next person. Just trying to point out the obvious differences. It's Walnuts to Ferrari's. Hopefully both games can co-exist but the majority dictates. The Crest is easily defined Wilderness unlike Pine Creek. I'm no policeman but I hope climbers will leave the ecletricity at home when heading to the Crest and will climb in as natural a way as possible in an amazingly close-by natural setting. Feb 10, 2018

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