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Wash Off Tan 

YDS: 5.10 French: 6b Ewbanks: 20 UIAA: VII- ZA: 19 British: E2 5b

Type:  Trad, 2 pitches, 120'
Original:  YDS: 5.10 French: 6b Ewbanks: 20 UIAA: VII- ZA: 19 British: E2 5b [details]
FA: Trevor Bowman and Emily Reinsel 11/9/14
New Route: Yes
Page Views: 284
Submitted By: Trevor Bowman on Feb 24, 2015

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Yours truly, with an acquired wash off tan layer, ...


The left-hand of the twin cracks systems piercing the west face of the Lookout Tower. Like its neighbor (Rockchuck) this short line provides a diverse tour of crack sizes, with some face maneuvering down low for good measure.

P1-Start up a right-facing corner with a crux bulge at about 20' that is passed via face holds and stemming to a stance. Continue up the clean, left-leaning corner/ramp with fingers widening to .75 Camalot sized. The final 10' is a wider crack, but choked with some loose rock still; it's pretty easy to stem past this and mitigate the looseness. End on a good ledge with a chain/cold shut combo anchor. (5.10-, 50')

P2-Traverse left on the ledge from the anchor and thrutch over an OW bulge (fortuitous face holds on the left wall help with this) in a shallow left-facing corner and up easier OW above as the crack widens. Just when you get into wide mode, a mini-roof with a tight handcrack must be overcome. Above this, a final handcrack step leads to a good ledge just below the summit. Build a belay with anything from fingers to fists. (5.10, 70')

This line was done ground-up, and could use some more cleaning. I spent a 1/2 hr or so removing most of the obvious plates and bits from the 1st pitch after the ascent, but I plan to return soon for a more thorough cleaning. I will post up once this is complete, but keep a heads up if you venture out here before then.


The Lookout Tower sits on a bench a few hundred feet above and northeast of the Fay Canyon Trail. Hike the trail for about 10 minutes or so, split off on a side drainage that heads right (northeast) toward the nose of the ridge line that forms the right (east) wall of the canyon. Bushwhack up the nose of this ridge to the bench and over easily to the base of the tower. If you're careful with routefinding and take a little time to suss it out, this is a relatively hassle-free Sedona approach with minimal shrub wallowing required. The total approach time is 20 minutes or a bit more. This sounds vague I know, but if you study the position of the Tower from the parking lot, the best path to it is more or less the direct route up the ridge that faces the highway. Refer to the Google Earth image in the photos for more insight.

The route is the left-hand crack line on the west face of Lookout Tower.

Rap off with a single 70m from the top, or two raps with a single 60m using the anchors on the 1st pitch.


(1x) .3,.4,.5,3,4 (2x).75,2,5,6 BD C4 sizes. Chain anchors on the summit. Chain/shut on the 1st pitch.

Photos of Wash Off Tan Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: A Google Earth image with a rough markup of the ap...
BETA PHOTO: A Google Earth image with a rough markup of the ap...
Rock Climbing Photo: The west face of the Lookout Tower with the routes...
BETA PHOTO: The west face of the Lookout Tower with the routes...

Comments on Wash Off Tan Add Comment
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By Derek Field
From: Flagstaff, AZ
Apr 25, 2017
rating: 5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a

Very good route! Crux is served right away: not the best rock quality, but plenty of holds to work with. Easier but spookier if you swing out left. Beyond this, just a long stretch of outstanding crack climbing through many interesting sandstone layers. Great option for a desert tower outing.

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