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Long Dong Silver Area
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Long Dong Silver 

YDS: 5.9 French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: HVS 5a A3

Type:  Trad, Aid, 1 pitch, 100'
Original:  YDS: 5.9 French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: HVS 5a A3 [details]
FA: Matt Moore, Josh Blumental, Feb., 1993
Page Views: 5,437
Submitted By: toddgordon Gordon on May 22, 2007

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Maura Hahnenberger approaching Long Dong Silver.


When yo see the picture of the dude standing on the wee summit of this pointy spire in Eric's Book, how can you NOT want to climb the thing? One BIG problem is Eric's description of how to get to the climb;..he says drive SOUTH of the highway;'s actually NORTH of the highway....(small detail..)...SO;...we drove around for HOURS to the south of the highway...gave up..and descided to just TRY driving around NORTH of the highway....we started to see rock strata that looked sort of like what we were looking for... we parked our cars and started to hike around a bit, and soon found Long Dong Silver. We walked around the small spire looking for signs of the pin crack systems....finally we spotted an anchor up near the top, so we just started to nail up the shale. It was scary climbing; could pretty much bang a thin piton in anywhere in the horizontal fractured shale...sometimes you would bang in a pin, and sand and dirt would come down 10 or 15 feet to the left or right....meaning large sections of this rock had shifted over/around from the pin placement. Up aways on the climb is a "chicken" bolt..(no hanger)...pheeew!...finally something solid.....then up to the top to the anchor, which isn't on the actual summit, but down have to scramble up and balance on a tiny stance for the summit photo (hope it aint' a windy day..), and then downclimb to the anchors. This is a very beautiful , unique, and exciting climb. I would rate it "modern" A3....I got scared climbing this formation.


ABout 10 miles west of Hanksville, North of Utah 24. (Not south , as it says in the guide....)..You have to hike a short while to get to the spire;...up a neat canyon, across sand dunes. The landscape is barren and lunar.


Lots of long thin pitons;...K B's and L A's, and some larger cams for placing in "dirt" up higher on the climb. Maybe a few tcu's too.....Mostly piton work.

Photos of Long Dong Silver Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: "Bomber" gear on Long Dong Silver.
"Bomber" gear on Long Dong Silver.
Rock Climbing Photo: Best dirt pile ever!
Best dirt pile ever!

Comments on Long Dong Silver Add Comment
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By Ben Folsom
Dec 24, 2011

Spot on description of this route by Todd. It took me a couple trips looking for this thing to realize I should start looking on the North side of the road. It was like 4 or 5 years ago when we were there... Very scary. I will never climb on Mancos(manky) shale again. Beautiful and surreal place to hang out though.
By jakobi
From: moab, utah
Sep 25, 2015

The triple expansion-bolt summit anchor has been sloughed off of Long Dong, we found it in the dirt a ways away from the tower. The next party out there will want to bring a bolt kit but more likely a bunch of webbing to sling the top of the tower for an anchor.
By Cole Bradburn
From: Salt Lake City, UT
Oct 4, 2016

OCT 1 2016

Cole Bradburn, Collin Wogenstahl, and Kory Kowallis.

Had an awesome day climbing this tower. Three stars for being the craziest pieces of choss I have ever climbed! Crazy gear and crazy mud. As you hammer on pins the other side of the tower continuously falls off... To top it all off a big storm came in as we were cleaning the route. Turning the whole tower and surrounding area into thick, nasty mud. The next party to go do this thing should bring more webbing for slinging the top. We put new stuff up there but with the Mancos Shale being black and salty the webbing is sure to go bad quickly.

Toucans, Tomahawks, Peckers, spectre, Pika crud hook and a handful of smaller angles. Maybe a few cams... (We used one down low and one to get onto the top once you pass the anchor) One 70m gets you up and down.

(The whole tower is kind like an expando flake. Most pieces would become loose as you placed the piece above it. Angles especially made the thing expand.)

Rock Climbing Photo: A lot of the seams are horizontal
A lot of the seams are horizontal

Rock Climbing Photo: Solid

Rock Climbing Photo: Awesome day!
Awesome day!
By James Garrett
Oct 7, 2016

Strong work Cole! ...I was too scared and creeped out:)!
By Nate Sydnor
From: Moab
Dec 6, 2016

Seems like this beautiful natural land form may kill someone one day. Is climbing it not just a slow motion version of what those Boy Scouts did up the road in Goblin Valley? The intention behind everything is different, of course, but couldn't a similar result occur, given enough ascents? Could a case be made for leaving it alone since it's so fragile? Seems like climbing it is a form of excavating/destroying the tower.
By Jobless FoofMcGavin
Dec 6, 2016

Woohoo! Nice work boys.

Nate seems like people are making the same argument about climbing on Moonlight Buttress. It's gone from 13B to 12B because people are climbing it and changing the rock. Maybe we should only climb in sustainable places like climbing gyms?
By Woogie
Dec 7, 2016
rating: 5.0 2- 4 I 6 MM 1c A1-

Hi Nate,
It important to ask these questions to ensure that our activities remain low impact and sustainable so thank you. Our impact to the area and the tower was very low, I can assure that.

I am a bit disappointed with the comparison to the actions of the boy scout leader in Goblin Valley, Nate. We in no way shape or form care about anyone's safety like the boy scout leaders in that video did. They were worried the hoodoo might fall over and hurt someone. We were aware about people pulling gear on Long Dong and getting hurt but in our best judgement we decided not to knock the tower over even though it is dangerous. It's the desert, towers are dangerous even the well traveled ones. Buyer beware.

Bottom line is our ascent was in no way impactful, it was scary, the tower is one of the coolest I have ever done in the desert, and I encourage anyone who has the guts and skill to go and try it.
By Nate Sydnor
From: Moab
Dec 18, 2016

Unfortunately Jobless, you have missed the mark yet again with your smart-ass, knee-jerk reaction.

The discussion about Moonlight is actually directly related to the subject at hand; i.e. - how does AID climbing adversely affect the routes we climb, particularly on soft sandstone.


Thank you for having the presence of mind to make a level-headed response. Although I disagree that your ascent, and it's publication on social media outlets, had no impact, I can appreciate that you have been civil. Also, the safety excuse was just some bullshit sarcasm the Boyscout morons made up. In the video you can obviously see that they are knocking it over because it's a fun experience for them.

"As you hammer on pins the other side of the tower continuously falls off..."

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