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Top Gun 

YDS: 5.11 French: 6c+ Ewbanks: 23 UIAA: VIII- ZA: 23 British: E4 5c

Type:  Trad, 1 pitch, 75'
Original:  YDS: 5.11 French: 6c+ Ewbanks: 23 UIAA: VIII- ZA: 23 British: E4 5c [details]
FA: Nelson Lunsford, Dana Prosser
Page Views: 301
Submitted By: Dana Prosser on Jul 6, 2016

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Top gun

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 >>>


I feel the need, the need for speed...
Top gun ascends a steep right facing corner that protects with #3, then #2 camalots. Continue with hands trough a wavy V-slot, and finally a shallow corner that starts out #1 and pinches down to fingers. A fun surprise awaits you before getting to the anchors! This is a really fun route, that will clean up even more with a little traffic. Iceman says- go climb it!


Located just left of "Rock Out With Your Glock Out"


.4 to #3 with extra #1's & #2's. A #5 can be placed (instead of a hand sized piece behind a flake) for extra security, but not necessary.

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By Sam Feuerborn
Oct 26, 2016

Just curious what the thought is with placing pins on a new route for the anchor?
By Nelson Lunsford
Nov 8, 2016

Hi Sam. Legitimate question since you have probably never seen a pin like that. Those are soft iron Army ring angle pitons. I’m not sure when they were last made, but they are no longer available? I first became aware of them climbing in the Garden of the Gods years ago. We were charged with fixing and up grading climbing hardware there. Many of the routes were put up with these types of pins. It became obvious pretty quick how hard these types of pins were to pull out of the sandstone and that replacing them with steel pitons was not a good idea. I talked to some of the old timers about it and they described how soft iron pitons contort and change shape slightly as they are pounded into the rock. I have been setting routes on Wingate sandstone for decades. I started out using chrome-molly steal baby angles. They work fine, but because they are hard steal, you can hit them with a hammer in 2 directions 90 degrees offset thus cutting the soft sandstone and pull them out pretty easy. I tried 3/8” and ½” inch wedge bolt anchors and quickly found that the 3/8” were not setting very well after tightening to full expansion. In the last year climbing out in the desert, I have found many 3/8” bolts loose and some completely pulled out of the rock. I think that this size bolt should not be used. The ½” by 5 inch long wedge anchors work much better. Anyway, I found several hundred of the Army soft iron pitons on ebay, still packed in the original boxes and completely covered in cosmoline. They are 7” inches long and resistant to rusting because of the cosmoline. I have been using this type of anchor now for about 8 years and I like them and trust them.
By Jesse Zacher
From: Grand Junction, Co
Nov 12, 2016

It is a shame you came across several hundred of these pitons. I feel you are behind the times with acceptable bolting practices. I'm sure some one will just pull these and place a better anchor.

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