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Sunset Tower 

YDS: 5.8 French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- ZA: 15 British: HVS 4c C2

Type:  Trad, Aid, 2 pitches, 210', Grade II
Original:  YDS: 5.8 French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- ZA: 15 British: HVS 4c C2 [details]
FA: Mike Baker, Leslie Henderson 11/95
Page Views: 1,821
Submitted By: Ben Kiessel on Jan 21, 2012

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (6)
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BETA PHOTO: Nice big tricam placement on the first pitch.

RAIN, WET ROCK and RAPTOR CLOSURES: The sandstone around Moab is fragile and is very easily damaged when it is wet. Also please ask and be aware of Raptor Closures in areas such as CAT WALL and RESERVOIR WALL in Indian Creek MORE INFO >>>


Pitch 1: Climb a shallow corner to a beding seam, move left two feet and continue up the crack. Move left to another crack when the one your in peters out. Continue up past a drilled pin to an awesome bolted belay. 100' C2.

Pitch 2: Climb the crack until you reach a drilled pin and step right to a corner. Climb the corner for about 10 feet to another awesome bolted belay. 5.8 C2 100'.

Descent: One 70 meter rope will get you down in two rappels.


Located on the North side of Hwy 313 a mile or two west of Hwy 191. Look for a finger crack ground to summit on a face. Park on the road and hike about ten minutes to the base.


Double or triple set from small to #3 camalot, Hybrid aliens, Tricams, stoppers, one 70 meter.

Photos of Sunset Tower Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: First pitch anchor. Bag o' rocks.
BETA PHOTO: First pitch anchor. Bag o' rocks.
Rock Climbing Photo: The route is just right of the center of the face.
BETA PHOTO: The route is just right of the center of the face.
Rock Climbing Photo: Sunset as seen from a western approach. Unless you...
Sunset as seen from a western approach. Unless you...
Rock Climbing Photo: Looking up the steep 2nd pitch.
Looking up the steep 2nd pitch.
Rock Climbing Photo: Follow the Splitter.
Follow the Splitter.

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By Ben Kiessel
Jan 21, 2012

A 60 meter rope might work, but I'm not sure.
By Bret Ruckman
Jan 23, 2012

On April 20, 2001, Marco Cornacchione was able to free climb Sunset Tower. After working the first pitch on several days, spread out over perhaps a year, he was able to put his project "to rest". He "French freed" the first pitch, then top-roped it, then pulled the rope and led it clean, placing all gear on lead in perfect style. If I recall, it had a thin bit at the crack switch which was the technical crux, and required some critical face holds. Above that section was a perfect off-fingers splitter all the way to the belay, the endurance crux of the route. The lead took him 4 times longer than his top-rope ascent, and he was carrying a fairly hefty rack. It pushed him absolutely to his limit, but somehow he rose to the daunting challenge. I would definitely rate this pitch 5.13 a or b. With the first pitch under his belt, the pressure was on to lead the second pitch free. On a previous attempt of the second pitch, he had rested on a piece, but on this special day he led it without falls, and even looked solid on the dicey final moves, where it was very thin and sandy. This second pitch was probably 5.12b. Sunset Tower is an amazing splitter for most of two pitches, with a short approach, south-facing aspect, and close to Moab.
By Ben Folsom
Jan 24, 2012

That is great to know. I always thought that would be an amazing free climb. Cheers to Marco!
By Skyler Penrod
Aug 15, 2012

Anyone have a photo?
By A. Roberts
From: Boulder, CO
May 2, 2013
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c C1+

This is a great, straight forward, clean aid route (for most of us anyway). It's located about a mile down on the right from 191, at the end of the rock band, just before the alcove where "Class Act" is located. The belay's are in great shape, but the top of the 1st pitch is small and sloping. My calves were burning for the rest of my trip from standing in the aiders.
By Jeff Widen
Jan 28, 2015

Soloed this a few days ago - awesome, steep route!!!! I'd recommend a triple set as described, with 4 each of .5 and .75 Camalot size to reduce leapfrogging. A 60m will work on the rap from the summit, but NOT on the bottom rap, unless you're willing to downclimb 10-15 feet of steep rock.
By Jay 1975
From: Bonedale,CO
Apr 7, 2015

I saw chalk on it in 01' and also thought it would obviously go as a 13 line. Can't wait to try it!
By John C
From: Moab
Jul 8, 2015

60m rope juuuust makes it on the second rap with rope stretch. I tied a knot in one end on the pull strand, then jumped down 1 foot to the ground. As for rack—tricams, stoppers and hybrid aliens are pretty unnecessary. If I were to do it again: 3-4 each .3-.75 C4's, 2 red C3's, 1 green C3, 2 #2 C4's, 5 quickdraws.

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