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Cactus Flower 

YDS: 5.10+ French: 6b+ Ewbanks: 21 UIAA: VII+ ZA: 20 British: E3 5b

Type:  Trad, 3 pitches, 300'
Original:  YDS: 5.10+ French: 6b+ Ewbanks: 21 UIAA: VII+ ZA: 20 British: E3 5b [details]
FA: Ed Webster & Mark Rolofson, 1979
Page Views: 1,508
Submitted By: e Dixon on Oct 3, 2008

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (19)
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Photo by Dana Felthauser Kevan...

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 MORE INFO >>>


This three pitch splitter is easily viewed from the road. It is a great route for those who like things a little wider.

P1 - Climb a flake crack up about 20 feet to reach the start of the splitter. Continue up hands, which quickly become cups, and then fists to a fixed anchor. (5.10, 110')

P2 - Continue up with more fists and offwidth past a drilled angle to a wide slot. Work into the slot and up to a fixed anchor. (5.10, 110')

P3 - Hands, fists, and offwidth will take you to a slightly sandy finish and a small ledge just below the rim. There is a "fixed" anchor here that could use some updating. (5.10+, 90')

Descent - We rappelled the route with a single 70m. Not sure if a 60m would do it or not.


Cactus Flower section of the walls. Right of the large chimney system and left of a large leaning pillar.


C4 Camalots (1) #.5 - #1, (3) #2 - #4, (1) #5 & #6

Photos of Cactus Flower Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Pitch 1
Pitch 1
Rock Climbing Photo: Sarah and Tom on the rad second pitch of Cactus Fl...
Sarah and Tom on the rad second pitch of Cactus Fl...
Rock Climbing Photo: the route follows the shade line in the middle of ...
BETA PHOTO: the route follows the shade line in the middle of ...

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By bsmoot
Oct 3, 2008

I'm thinking the F.A. was Ed Webster and Mark Rolofson around 1979
By sam123456789
Nov 26, 2010

The last pitch rap anchor would really benefit from a replacement if anyone is headed up you might want to bring a bolt kit. 11-10-2010. Enjoy- this route is such a great classic!
By Alison Conrad
Oct 17, 2012

In addition to above mentioned gear rack, I would make these changes. A extra .5 cam is nice for the 1st and 3rd pitch. Also four 3.5's were nice and only take two #4 cams (old size). The crack was mostly 3-3.5 size.
The pitch ratings seemed to be p1 5.10, p2 5.10+ for last move in pod, and p3 5.11-. Rock quality deteriorates near the top. Has a desert tower feel. What an awesome climb! Get ready to get your fist crack on.
By Dana Prosser
From: Boulder
Oct 19, 2012

The big cams (#5, #6 camalots) are only needed on P.2- leave them at the top of p.2 and collect them on rap to avoid carrying those boat anchors to the top.....
By WadeM
From: Golden, Co
Nov 4, 2013

No need for 6 on the last pitch, but make sure you two .5s on the last pitch.

The first 2.5 pitches are amazing!!!!! The last 15 feet are choss, becareful, but well worth the effort.
By Ryan Kempf
From: Boulder, CO
Nov 4, 2013
rating: 5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b

Perfect rack= (2) .5's, (1) #1 (3) #3's (3) #4's and (1) #5 or #6 (either will protect getting in and out of the pod). Crux of the route was the last move for me.
By Bill Lundeen
From: Lee Vining, CA
Sep 30, 2016

Yeah, baby...good stuff here! Slightly wide and awesome. Excellent struggle getting into the p2 finish, which protects well with a 5 or 6. How about that final anchor? It was bad in 2013 or 14 when I did it. Been replaced yet?
By Mark Rolofson
Jul 19, 2017
rating: 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b

First ascent was actually on May 31, 1978, before either of us had Friends. We rated it 5.10. The gear was Hexes & stoppers. The biggest gear we had was two #11 Hexes. It was very scary climbing desert cracks without camming devices. Ed had already established the first pitch on a previous date, but rappelled off after drilling the two pin anchor. So the day we made the first ascent, I led the first pitch & Ed led the upper two pitches.

The first half of the second pitch was protected by big Hexes that were pretty rattling & didn't inspire confidence. From a good stance, Ed drilled a pin & down climbed to retrieve many Hexes, before continuing upward. I do remember a great #8-9? Hex placement, at the crux of pitch 2, where the crack goes from hands to offwidth. I remember liebacking before being able to enter the offwidth. We thought this was the crux of the route.

Great route. Must be lots of fun with a bunch of cams. It doesn't seem like you would really need a 5"-6" cam. I still think I might bring a #8 (9?) Hex to protect the crux of pitch 2. That was the only really bomber nut that I remember. I have no doubt that the climb deserves its 5.10+ rating.

It was an amazing time to be climbing in Indian Creek. We were the only climbers in the whole area. "Super Crack" had already been established, but there were very few routes in the entire area. We found true desert solitude. Climbing was a lonely adventure, meant for the few & not the many. The leader was best advised not to fall.

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