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Things Of Beauty (aka Interstate I-70 Towers)
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The Sword of Damocles. 


Type:  Trad, Aid, 1 pitch, 70'
Original: C2+ [details]
FA: Paul Ross. 14th June 2000 (second did not follow)
New Route: Yes
Page Views: 4,374
Submitted By: USBRIT Ross on Jan 1, 2008

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (6)
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First ascent. The Sword of Damocles... a real beau...


Classic for the Things of Beauty!! Follow nail heads to the summit block. Pete Takeda thought this summit would be too small to stand on!


This tower is perhaps the most noticable weird thing from I-70. From the Mt. Garfield trailhead, walk east just above the interstate into an open area. Then follow the steep dirt ridge up to the right of the tower. About 20 min walk.


Tie offs. Dust mask....

Photos of The Sword of Damocles. Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Climbing the Sword. Big thanks to Paul Ross for pu...
Climbing the Sword. Big thanks to Paul Ross for pu...
Rock Climbing Photo: A good nail.
A good nail.
Rock Climbing Photo: Looking down at the "belay" from midway ...
Looking down at the "belay" from midway ...
Rock Climbing Photo: Winter.
Rock Climbing Photo: An even better nail.
An even better nail.
Rock Climbing Photo: Another view of The Sword.
BETA PHOTO: Another view of The Sword.
Rock Climbing Photo: The Storey.
BETA PHOTO: The Storey.
Rock Climbing Photo: First ascent.
First ascent.
Rock Climbing Photo: The Solution!
The Solution!

Comments on The Sword of Damocles. Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Sep 4, 2017
By James Morton
From: Grand Junction
Apr 4, 2008

A pragmatic question. I walked up to The Sword and was curious, how does one get off the beast. It looks quite thin to rap without too much stress on the summit block?
From: Keswick Cumbria.UK
Apr 4, 2008

Normal rap from summit anchor.... Just think light.... Would be nice if someone took a hand drill and added a new anchor on the summit block...just a thought. By the way, if you do happen to pull off the summit block, please replace it.... Thanks.
By Jesse Zacher
From: Grand Junction, Co
Jan 1, 2009

Second to last spike is out. I just stuck it lightly back in the hole and skipped it with a bit of top stepping/climbing. Rap anchors are marginal. How many more ascents before this thing plummets? I knocked probably 50 lbs of shit down and assume everyone who has done it has knocked a similar amount off. The neck below the cap rock will get thinner and thinner!
From: Keswick Cumbria.UK
Jan 4, 2009

Knocking down Things of Beauty!!... I don't know.... You young lads are too bloody clumsy.
By Bill Duncan
From: Jamestown, CO
Jul 10, 2009

I've looked at those things for years . . . hats off to Paul.
By Noah McKelvin
From: Colorado Springs
Apr 6, 2012
rating: C2+

Hey Paul,

Brian Crim and I did this a couple days ago. Some uncovering of one of the nails had to be done...mud had covered it. We also placed a nail towards the top...the other one looked to be coming out and not to be trusted.... The bolt at top...BOMBER.... :) Thanks for helping our choss addiction. Excited to check out more. Wait, did I just say I'm excited?
From: Keswick Cumbria.UK
Apr 11, 2012

Warms my heart to see there is still some choss lovers. Keep up the good work. Sorry I missed your I can see it out of my back window.... Well as of April 13 now back in the UK.
By Peter Lewis
From: Bridgton, Maine
Apr 3, 2014

Love the gear list!
By Joe Forrester
From: Palo Alto
Jun 7, 2015

All nails are in place as of 6/6, and the webbing slung around the top has been replaced. Lots of tie-offs and screamers are helpful.
From: Keswick Cumbria.UK
Feb 26, 2017

Have a local report that the top part of the Sword has been lost this February/17. Any more info on this sad loss?
By Jesse Zacher
From: Grand Junction, Co
Mar 7, 2017

Driving by the other day, looked like maybe half the cap rock fell off. Likely where it was split from bolting the anchors. Didn't get a close up look though.
From: Keswick Cumbria.UK
Mar 7, 2017

Thanks for Jesse ...but I doubt a 3" hole would split that block.... I guess it needs a closer look rather than from the road. Cheers
From: Keswick Cumbria.UK
Sep 4, 2017

False alarm, it's still as is.

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