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Mineral Slab 

YDS: 5.2 French: 3 Ewbanks: 8 UIAA: II ZA: 8 British: D 2c

   
Type:  Trad, 1800', Grade II
Original:  YDS: 5.2 French: 3 Ewbanks: 8 UIAA: II ZA: 8 British: D 2c [details]
FA: ???
Season: dry rock
Page Views: 1,338
Submitted By: Brian in SLC on Jun 8, 2009

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BETA PHOTO: Typical terrain on the Mineral Slab. Well feature...

Description 

Approach: Follow the paved trail and instead of taking the trail up Mill B South (towards Lake Blanch) stay straight and cross the creek, then hike up steep bank to an apparent old road. Or, take the Mill B South trail and cross the creek, then immediately look for a less-traveled trail taking off to the left on a flat bench (at a switchback). Take the old trail which is apparently an old road. Follow road and then game/social trails through the woods to the east, eventually reaching the west-facing wall which forms the west side of the Mineral Slab. Follow this down to the bottom of the slab, very near to the creek (Big Cottonwood Creek). Start up and route find the path of least resistance (or most resistance, if that’s your game). Staying near the west edge provided steeper and more interesting climbing (and the views were better).

Very similar to the West Slabs on Mount Olympus, only maybe a bit easier. Some of the slab can be walked up and some has steeper sections with fun climbing on usually solid, incut holds.

The slab gains about 1000 feet of vertical before it levels off and goes fairly low angle, continuing for a ways providing over 2000 feet of climbing/scrambling. Typically well featured climbing, although a bit smooth in places with some route finding required to keep the climbing easy.

Great views over towards Moss Ledges as well as Mill B South/Broad’s Fork too.

Near to where the ridge bends over to lower angle, there’s a couple ways to get down, involving some higher angle down climbing. Take care. Also, the further up the ridge one travels, the options to bail off the ridge become much more apparent. There’s also a break in the slab lower down, and, it seems possible to traverse off in several locations should weather and/or conditions change for the worse.

From the top, follow the west side of the base of the slab downhill using switch backing social/game trails. Goes fairly fast and easy. Not that brushy. At the transition of the ridge from steep enough to ski, to, almost level, there’s a bit of a wide bench that follows the base of the ridge on the west wide (this bench is bordered by a cliff band below it to the west). Open country for awhile, then into semi open forest. Eventually, the Mill B South trail will be gained for the easy romp back to the parking lot.

Location 

The Mineral Slab is located just up canyon from the "Mineral Slab Avalanche Area" sign in Big Cottonwood Canyon. Mineral Slab is viewable directly across from the Moss Ledges Picnic Area. The approach, however, is from the Mill B South/Lake Blanch trailhead.

Protection 

If using a rope, take a standard rack of gear including a set of stoppers, micro cams up through a #3 Camalot (or equivalent). There will be some run outs depending on the line chosen.

No fixed anchors or gear.


Photos of Mineral Slab Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Looking down the Mineral Slab to the creek and roa...
BETA PHOTO: Looking down the Mineral Slab to the creek and roa...

Comments on Mineral Slab Add Comment
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By Joseph Lascurain
From: Cincinnati
Sep 23, 2012

Couldn't find a partner this afternoon and decided to check this climb out. The approach (at least the one I took) was horrible. Loose game trails and bushwacking, not fun. I probably didn't choose the best route. I would add that the slabs don't start that close the creek. Its at least a few hundred feet up the hill. I took a trail that lead me near the stream after wandering for a while and then had to bushwack further up a gully to the base of the slabs.

The climbing is alright. I agree sticking to the west arete is a good way to go for at least the first half or so of the route. It doesn't seem much harder but it adds some nice exposure. Some sections of the climb have some really nice movement, but is not really steep enough to present a challenge. When the west arete becomes block 4th class I moved back to the face for some decent climbing.

The descent was way better than the approach, but there are some loose sections so take care. Overall I don't think the approach makes this climb worth doing. Great views from the summit though.

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