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Faultline Variation 

YDS: 5.9 French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: HVS 5a

Type:  Trad, 1 pitch, 60'
Original:  YDS: 5.9 French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: HVS 5a [details]
FA: Les Ellsion and Ken Speirs, 1983
Page Views: 112
Submitted By: Arie on Sep 16, 2007

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (8)
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Getting to the faultly business...


This climb is a great way to beat the crowds chumming around Extreme Unction and is an excellent exit to a day in Ferguson. Climb any of the lower tier routes on the lower watchtower (Extreme Unction to Beef Jerky) or scramble up from the west via the Watchtower toprope trail. A narrow wooded ledge provides ample room to get started (basic gear belay is a good idea).

Follow a quality crack (hands to fist) off the ledge using jams and jugs to the confluence with Bucklands Var. and slug right. Avoid the standard Ferguson guano pile and head for the obvious vertical cleft. The cleft starts out steep (crux), as a variable crack with many positive holds, but ends as tormenting body squeeze (much love)- potentially requiring the removal of all extraneous gear and clothing... or it may be possible to climb the outside of the chimney.

Top out and enjoy the grey view of the SLC blight. A good mix-up to the Ferguson standards. Save some gas from your 13th lap on Unction... the steep section is a surprising pump.


Faultline is located on the 'Watchtower Proper', the tower-like peninsula of rock out-jutting above the lower Watchtower area. Begin at the obvious crack on the ledge above Garden of Eden. Walk off to the west (poor trail) is the most viable descent option.


Standard rack. At least one larger cam was useful (#4 camalot) but you could get by without. Upper and lower belays are gear- mid sizes.

Photos of Faultline Variation Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: The Watchtower Proper.  The yellow arrow is the fi...
BETA PHOTO: The Watchtower Proper. The yellow arrow is the fi...

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By Boissal
From: Small Lake, UT
May 13, 2013
rating: 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a

This is a candidate for hardest 5.9 in Ferguson. The steep section where the crack pinches is intimidating and forces you into a funky layback move. Once you dive back in the crack, expect your helmet to get stuck in the chimney as mentioned above. Pop back out on the face to the left and mantle or squeeeeeeeeeeeeze!
The #4 and doubles from #3 down to .75 would be nice if you do it in one pitch.

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