Hemingway Buttress is one of the longest formations in Joshua Tree National Park. This formation embodies a large variety of routes the most popular of which are located on the left and middle sections of it. The right side of Hemingway Buttress, however, has its own share of routes. In contrast to the rest of this buttress, the right side is made of pinnacle looking formations. The right pinnacle, the subject of this page, is located just to the left of the descent gully for the routes you find on the main part of the buttress. The descent for the right side formations are done by rappelling from the bolt anchors on a ledge on top of Head Over Heals route.
The most noticeable feature on this formation is a dizzying overhang not far from the ground. Thankfully, there are cracks and handholds making it possible for one to climb the route. In 1979 this feature did not get past the Joshua Tree pioneer, Herb Laeger, when he made the first ascent of this route making it the first route to be climbed on this part of the buttress. He named the route "Head Over Heals" and rated it at 10a. Even to this day, more than thirty years later, this route remains the most popular and intriguing climb on this part of the buttress. During the subsequent few years, several other routes as well as a few variations to the original Head Over Heals were established. On a day when the middle part of Hemingway Buttress is crowded with climbers waiting for their turn, it pays to pay a visit to to the right side.
Select routes of Hemingway Buttress, Right Side
|A||The Old Man And The Poodle, 5.8, standard rack|
|B||For Whom The Poodle Tolls, 5.9, standard rack|
|C||A farewell To Poodles, 5.9, standard rack|
|D||Head Over Heals, 10a, Standard Rack|
From the west enterance to Joshua Tree National Park, drive about eight miles to a large paved parking area with a bathroom. This parking is about two miles past Quail Springs parking, and it has its own sign, “Hemimngway” indicating that you have arrived. Looking toward the west you will see the elongated Hemingway Buttress at a few minutes walking distance.
There are at least two trails heading out toward different nearby formations and an Access Fund trail leading toward the main Hemingway Buttress. Head for the right side of the main buttress. You will find two pinnacle looking formations. The right one, just to the left of a prominent gully, is the subject of this page.
Camping, Noise considerations, Environmental concerns, fees
Please tread lightly. The Access Fund has gone to great lengths posting trail marker for approaches to many of the more popular crags. Do your best to stay on these trails, and where you are forced to use a different path, choose the ones that rain can mend in time. Drainages make for good trails where there are no established trails.
Avoid stepping on native and fragile plants, and do not feed the coyotes. Coyotes are very much used to people and often hang around picnic areas and camp grounds in hopes of getting a hand out. It’s better to let them live their natural life.
Joshua Tree Camping
When you are camping with friends and sitting around the fire, it is easy to forget that there are other people trying to sleep in the nearby campsites. It is important to put yourself in their shoes. Keep the noise and music to a minimum and certainly not too much past 10 p.m. Your neighbors will smile at you in the morning instead of giving you dirty looks.