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Needles and Pins 

YDS: 5.10a French: 6a Ewbanks: 18 UIAA: VI+ ZA: 18 British: E1 5a

Type:  Sport, 1 pitch, 55'
Original:  YDS: 5.10a French: 6a Ewbanks: 18 UIAA: VI+ ZA: 18 British: E1 5a [details]
FA: Nate Postma, 1989
Page Views: 4,236
Submitted By: Ian Harmon on May 22, 2006

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (73)
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BETA PHOTO: Climbers on Needles and Pins. April, 2007.


Probably one of my favorite 10s at Barn Bluff. Needles and Pins is sustained 10a climbing for the majority of the climb. Start below a small overhang. Move right past the overhang, clipping two bolts along the way. Climb a somewhat slabby and run out (by Red Wing standards) section to the next bolt. Continue past this to more vertical rock to the left and gain the anchors.
  • RCM&W #126, p. 140.


This route is the second bolted line left of the large roof, immediately to the left of Dances with Pete. Look for two bolts fairly close to the ground on a slightly overhanging arete.


5 bolts, to a two bolt anchor. Please use your own gear for top roping.

Photos of Needles and Pins Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Kris getting started on Needles and Pins.
Kris getting started on Needles and Pins.
Rock Climbing Photo: Needles and Pins 5.10a
BETA PHOTO: Needles and Pins 5.10a
Rock Climbing Photo: John Groth
John Groth
Rock Climbing Photo: Kelly following on needles and pins nearing the cr...
Kelly following on needles and pins nearing the cr...

Comments on Needles and Pins Add Comment
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By josh wabaunsee
Jul 1, 2007

this is my fav of the 10's at red wing, great moves and flow, and the crux before the chains makes this the perfect redwing route.
By S. Stember
From: St. Paul, MN
Nov 2, 2008

Today I had the pleasure of pulling off a large chunk of rock that was the size of a softball on this pathetic route. Be warned, a critical jug on the way to the third bolt is now missing. Since this line is very featured (chossy) it may not change the grade of the route. On the other hand, it certainly may put it up to 5.10b or harder. The jug was probably helpful in getting to the third bolt, which has ground fall potential, so this already run-out bolt may be harder to clip. Moral of the story, this route really isn't worth your time-just look at the way it was bolted to see what its worth.
By Chris treggE
From: Madison, WI
Nov 3, 2008

Hey Sevve, glad you weren't hurt. I think anyone that climbs at Barn Bluff should absolutely be under no misconception that the rock there is bulletproof. Especially in the spring after the freeze-thaw, but really anytime, holds pull off. Some areas more than others, and the less popular routes more frequently. I can't tell you how many times I was sent flying as a result of a hold coming off at Red Wing in the 5 years I climbed there pretty frequntly. At least a dozen, although never on a popular route like Needles and Pins. Both climber and belayer really should wear a helmet, and know that anything you yard on potentially could let loose. Red Wing is most defintely not a gym, even if it feels like it a lot of the time. Of course you could drive to Rushmore or the Red if you want solid rock, but for a day trip that would be quite a haul... Peace and climb safe. Thanks for the warning and reminder for folks.
By Andrew Krosbakken
Nov 17, 2008

Sevve, I climbing that route on nov. 2 also (was that when you climbed it?) and almost pulled that jug off. I was able to clip that third bolt not using it so its probibly better that it is gone to prevent anyone from really getting hurt.
To anyone wanting to climb this,
Yes that part is a little run out to the third bolt but nothing to insane, your belayer just needs to pay attention. I had troubles going for that five bolt. If you fall before that clip your looking at a 15 to 20 footer. There is a tiny crack though in between the 4th and 5th bolt, I was able to get a side ways nut but my blue tcu was to wide so if you have an alien or something to that with bring it.

Over all a solid climb and a must do if you want a little adventure and a sweet climb.

P.S. The bolts are run out for red wing standards.
By bob bickford
May 18, 2009

I'm sure it's been a decade since I last led this route. It was, and still remains one of my favorites. The only moves I remember were the last sequence to the anchors. The bolts seemed far apart and the clips kinda scary. I just figured that since I haven't led anything for a while plus I've grown older with age and larger with food that these were the reasons it felt harder. After a decade of not climbing at the Bluff, I'm amazed that any of the routes still exist. My friend D.G. once proclaimed that the moves found at Redwing resemble moves found on actual climbs. I've always climbed here with this paradigm in mind and found the climbing enjoyable.

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