REI Community
Shadow Buttress

Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
Absorption T 
All Around Routine S 
Long Shadow S 
Made in the Shade S 
Nose Shadow  S 
Shadow of Doubt T,S 
Unsorted Routes:

Shadow Buttress Rock Climbing 

Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Elevation: 4,800'
Location: 38.9922, -113.3894 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 4,648
Administrators: Andrew Gram, Perin Blanchard, grk10vq, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Ryan Brough on Apr 11, 2007
Sorry, weather is currently unavailable.
You & This Area
Best climbs for YOU in this area
Your opinion of this PAGE:    [1 person likes this page.]


The largest and tallest section of the Ibex cliff band, the Shadow Buttress is an impressive sight to behold. Its name was probably taken from the shadow that it casts across its northern flanks. An enormous dihedral splits through the center of the buttress, and a gigantic grey roof looms above the boulders below. The rock quality here is sporadic, and may clean up with increased traffic. However, traffic does not exist at Ibex.

Getting There 

Park at the highball boulder problems at the edge of the hardpan. Hike straight up to the base of the cliff for about two minutes.

Climbing Season

For the Ibex area.

Weather station 20.1 miles from here

6 Total Climbing Routes

['4 Stars',2],['3 Stars',3],['2 Stars',1],['1 Star',0],['Bomb',0]

Classic Climbing Routes in Shadow Buttress

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Shadow Buttress:
Absorption   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Trad, 2 pitches, 300'   
Long Shadow   5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b A0     Sport, Aid, 5 pitches, 400'   
Nose Shadow    5.12c 7b+ 27 IX- 27 E6 6b     Sport, 4 pitches, 300'   
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Shadow Buttress

Featured Route For Shadow Buttress
Rock Climbing Photo: Looking down the first pitch from the belay ledge.

Absorption 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a  Utah : West Desert : ... : Shadow Buttress
Appropriately named, Absorption starts sucking you in before you have raced across the hardpan. An easy approach lures you to its base. The rock quality is superb on the first pitch, as long as you don't venture into the salt crystals and mud deposits that reside on the left side of the dihedral. Although solid in many places, the occasional chunk of mud will dislodge when pulled on. Easy climbing builds your confidence and warms you up. Finger cracks and face moves take you higher up, wher...[more]   Browse More Classics in Utah

Photos of Shadow Buttress Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: On the 2nd of 4 pitches of the middle route up Sha...
On the 2nd of 4 pitches of the middle route up Sha...
Rock Climbing Photo: I told you it was impressive... Absorption climbs ...
BETA PHOTO: I told you it was impressive... Absorption climbs ...
Rock Climbing Photo: June, 1999 On the first pitch of the original rout...
June, 1999 On the first pitch of the original rout...
Rock Climbing Photo: Looking to get sucked in?
Looking to get sucked in?

Comments on Shadow Buttress Add Comment
Show which comments
By Bad Sock Puppet
Apr 28, 2009
I went bouldering at Ibex several times before realizing that there were any sport routes up the buttress. After getting a little beta, we went up the middle of the buttress which works through four pitches of well protected rock. The second pitch makes the whole effort worth it by far. Although the rock is chossy in a few places (if you're going to pull something off it'll be the first pitch), overall the climb is very sustained and deceivingly hard. There are plenty of belay stations, many at good locations, and the exposure is phenomenal. Take at least 25 draws. The buttress can be rapped down with two 60m double rope rappels.

P1: (5.11+/-) depending on if you go middle right or middle left

P2: (5.12+) most of this pitch is actually much easier, however the last 20ft gets increasingly harder right before you pull out of the roof.

P3: (5.12) this pitch is the longest of the four and will create some drag. I was glad to get my shoes off after leading this one. If you're trying to reach the cave/ledge, then continue just past the obvious belay station and then traverse right for 30 Ft. There are chains on the edge.

P4: (5.11) the shortest and easiest of the 4 pitches, although by this time you're quite tired. The top is closer than it looks, but don't get anxious and pass the chains since they're not right on top. Great View!
By James Garrett
May 9, 2009
Hi Puppet,
Nice send, the route you climbed and included photos of is called Desert King, 4 pitches, FA by Tim Toula who graded it 5.13a, but it had only been free climbed once before. Not sure about the 30 ft. (DK continues to the top straight up?) rightward traverse, sounds like you left DK and finished via Nose Shadow, the original route on the wall? Good job! Thanks for your comments
By Bad Sock Puppet
May 23, 2009
Thanks James I'm glad someone here knows and can clarify more about the buttress. I hope I didn't confuse anyone with my original beta. I made the traverse after the 3rd pitch over to the cave to see what there was. All I could find was a set of chains and one bolt; however there is a chance I just didn't see the original line. I then traversed back to DK and finished straight up.

It seems like you know a lot, perhaps you can shed light on the many other routes up the buttress. I'm honestly not sure what the ratings should be since I fell a few times, but if it's a 13a than that might explain things.

Mountain Project

The Definitive Climbing Resource

MTB Project

Next Generation MTB Trail Maps

Powder Project

Backcountry Ski Maps & Secret Stashes
FREE Stickers · Gyms · People · RSS · School of Rock · Contact · About