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Brass Wall
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Varnishing Point 

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

Type:  Trad, 2 pitches, 160'
Original:  YDS: 5.8+ French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- ZA: 15 British: HVS 4c [details]
FA: Joe Herbst and Larry Hamilton, March 1976
Page Views: 4,485
Submitted By: Scott Conner on Dec 15, 2001

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BETA PHOTO: brass wall

RAIN AND WET ROCK The sandstone in Red Rocks is fragile and is very easily damaged when it is wet. MORE INFO >>>


The Brass Wall is split by a nice looking 2-pitch crack system with a big ledge halfway up. This is Varnishing Point.

P1: 5.5, ~80' Climb an easy crack with good pro to a large ledge.

P2: 5.8+, ~80' Climb up to an overhang and lieback out left following the crack. Clip a bolt on the face before you climb down and right of an offwidth section to the rap anchors on another small ledge. This pitch is full value but takes great gear.

Descent: Double rope rap.


Pro to 3" works fine.

Photos of Varnishing Point Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Varnishing Point from the rap on No Laughing Matte...
Varnishing Point from the rap on No Laughing Matte...
Rock Climbing Photo: J.C. leading crux pitch two.
J.C. leading crux pitch two.
Rock Climbing Photo: Linking 1&2
Linking 1&2
Rock Climbing Photo: Varnishing Point...or a variation of, Red Rock, NV
Varnishing Point...or a variation of, Red Rock, NV

Comments on Varnishing Point Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Nov 15, 2016
By L. Hamilton
Feb 26, 2004

Historical note: FA March 1976, Joe Herbst and Larry Hamilton. The name was inspired by the 1971 cult movie "Vanishing Point," which had recently been screened in Boulder.
By Randy Carmichael
From: Boulder, CO
Nov 8, 2004
rating: 5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

A #4 Camalot is useful on both the 1st and 2nd pitches.
By Dirty Gri Gri, or is it GiGi?
From: Vegas
Jan 6, 2006
rating: 5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

Although the pitches are short, this is still a fun, worthwhile route to do. We only had gear to a #3, which was fine, but on the initial moves of pitch 1, it would have been nice to be able to sink a #4 cam in above a huge, very suspect looking block, before standing on it. Looks like it'll break off one day. I didn't trust it enough to put my full weight on it, that's for sure!
By M. Morley
From: Sacramento, CA
Jan 1, 2007

Contrary to the Brock (big red) guidebook, pitch 2 is about 90', NOT 150'. Approx 130' total to ground from the top of pitch 2.
By Steve Blevins
From: Central Coast, CA
Mar 28, 2009
rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a

Maybe I missed a hold, but the crux moves are as hard as any 5.9 I've done. I had to really crank into the lieback because the patina is so slick my foot popped off with a comfortable lieback start. I found nearby Topless Twins a comfortable 5.9.
By John Wilder
From: Las Vegas, NV
Mar 31, 2009

steve- there's a key patch of unvarnished rock for that lieback move that keeps it in the 5.8 range- if you missed that, it would probably feel harder.
By Tyler Williams
From: Flagstaff, AZ
Feb 14, 2010
rating: 5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

Linking the two pitches with a 60m rope is no problem if you keep rope drag in mind.

A bit of a one move wonder in terms of difficulty, but still pretty enjoyable.
By Canon
Dec 8, 2012

Does anyone know if you can get off the top of P2 with a 70m rope? We got up the first pitch before realizing that the rap bolts were "on the backside" and we didn't want to risk an epic, or more importantly, a big fat ticket.
By Mike Robinson
From: Boulder, CO
Jan 9, 2015

You can definitely get off of this with a single 70m with rope stretch.
By aschmidt
Jan 10, 2015

To clarify, there is a bolt with quicklink at the top of this climb, but if you climb over the top and step down to a large ledge, there is a two-bolt anchor. From this anchor (the same one used on Go Greyhound, etc.) it is 35m to the ground.
By John Oberbeck
Nov 15, 2016
rating: 5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c PG13

Climbed this route on Sunday.
P1- straightforward 5.6 climbing with a spider crux maybe 8 feet off the deck for the arachnophobes out there.
P2- from the belay ledge, traverse left, then back right up the class III ramp for for the first 6 feet or so. Crux is moving from beneath the left-facing roof right onto the face. The second half of the pitch has dubious places for protection. A #4 c4 is helpful, as are smaller cams. Bring two ropes for the rap.

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