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Climbing in Joshua Tree

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Climbing in Joshua Tree

Postby Hotoven » Tue Sep 14, 2010 3:13 pm

Over my fall break for school, my girlfriend and I are going out to Blythe CA to visit her grandfather who is in very poor health. We are only staying for three days and plan to be with her grandfather for two of those days and go to Joshua Tree for one day. I know that's not much time to really experience that place, but I want to know what would be a good climbing area for that one day. I'm not comfortable enough with trad climbing yet, so I'm just interested in top-roping areas and sport climbs (if there is any there). What would be a one stop place to climb there with an array of different rated climbs that's easy to find and get to?

Any book recommendations would be great too. I plan to go back someday and really spend a lot more time there so I won't mind buying a guide book. I just don't know where to start, there must be 10 different guide books to that place. I will be in Blythe Oct. 10th 11th and 12th. Which day I will be climbing I don't know yet.
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Postby tonyo » Tue Sep 14, 2010 3:38 pm

Stop at Nomad before going into the park. If I remember correctly, you can even rent guide books there. Nomad is staffed with very knowledgeable people that can steer you in the right direction. The guidebook, IMHO, is Randy Vogel's Rock Climbing Joshua Tree.

There's not a whole lot of sport climbing in JT, to my knowledge, but there are lots of places that are top-rope friendly, and others that have some bolts but that would require some gear placement also. My recommendations:

-The Atlantis Wall: moderate up to around mid 5.10
-Short Wall in the Indian Cove area: real crowded and short (hence the name). On second thought, I don't recommend this.
-Indian Palisades Corridor and the Feudal Wall, both in the Indian Cove area, offer some pretty good moderates. Several of the Indian Palisades routes have bolts.
-Trashcan rock: more short climbs, can be crowded on weekends
-Echo Rock: some of these climbs have bolts, but they can be few and far between. Not particularly TR kind of place, although there are some possibilities.

I'm sure others who are more familiar with JT will offer better advice. Lots of other areas come to mind and I'm reminded of the fact that there are thousands of established climbs and lots of areas that can fit your requirements. My list is a start. If I had one day and just wanted to tick a bunch of climbs I think I would choose Indian Cove, climbing in the Palisades Corridor and the Feudal Wall.
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Postby jspeigl » Wed Sep 15, 2010 1:07 am

The Thin Wall is a good bet. There are some anchors on top, but also its easy to sling boulders for TRs if you don't have gear.

http://www.summitpost.org/mountain/rock/501710/thin-wall.html
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Postby Deb » Wed Sep 15, 2010 1:17 am

I second Randy Vogel's Rocking Climbing Joshua Tree. Tons of routes thru-out the park listed and whether they are bolted, TR, or gear up to what size.
BTW, you're hitting that place up on a DAMN busy weekend. Josh season begins in 2 weeks. Good luck!
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Postby SpiderSavage » Wed Sep 15, 2010 2:14 am

Keep in mind that the main places people rock climb in JT are about 2-1/2 - 3 hrs drive from Blythe. It's closer to drive in from LA.

So if you have a few hours and you want some good short moderate route perhaps a couple of hard ones, the Quail Springs picnic area is the place. AKA Trashcan Rock. Probably the most climbed over rocks in the park and for good reason.

Here is a complete guide to that area:
http://mountainproject.com/v/california ... /105720807
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One Day!

Postby darinchadwick » Wed Sep 15, 2010 12:31 pm

If time is short, just go to Cryptic or SW Corner on Headstone. It's sport and it makes a great memory if it's your first time at Josh. If you're heading out to Blythe after, stop for some quick topropes in Belle Tank Campground and your day is done. Another great TR potential is hiking up Echo Rock for some of the bolted anchors. That way you get a great taste of .10 holdless friction climbing that Josh is famous for. Just find a couple bolts, and throw down the rope, you have to belay from the top!!!

Again, these are my recommendations based on your information on where you are coming from, what you're looking for etc. All these places are super easy to find, have NO approach and will get in the most fun for your much needed day off. I'd recommend Trashcan rock too, but it's crowded, and if you're climbing from Blythe, it's the furthest away. Depending on how you are driving, Indian Cove might be smart.
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Postby Hotoven » Thu Sep 16, 2010 2:07 am

Wow thank you all so much for your help and suggestions. I will be sure to post photos of my day trip there and let you know how it turned out. Thanks again!
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Re: One Day!

Postby Guyzo » Thu Sep 16, 2010 3:13 pm

darinchadwick wrote:If time is short, just go to Cryptic or SW Corner on Headstone. It's sport and it makes a great memory if it's your first time at Josh. If you're heading out to Blythe after, stop for some quick topropes in Belle Tank Campground and your day is done. Another great TR potential is hiking up Echo Rock for some of the bolted anchors. That way you get a great taste of .10 holdless friction climbing that Josh is famous for. Just find a couple bolts, and throw down the rope, you have to belay from the top!!!

Again, these are my recommendations based on your information on where you are coming from, what you're looking for etc. All these places are super easy to find, have NO approach and will get in the most fun for your much needed day off. I'd recommend Trashcan rock too, but it's crowded, and if you're climbing from Blythe, it's the furthest away. Depending on how you are driving, Indian Cove might be smart.




So this is what it's come down to..... how to find the GD bolted TopRope anchors placed all over the Monument on top of Long Established Trad Climbs. Sad really sad.

My .02 to you.......

Go and LEAD the eye......

Go and Lead the Upper Right Ski track

Go and Lead the Bong.....

on and on and on.

You might as well break the ice on that weak top roping shit and go climbing.

late GK :wink:
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Re: One Day!

Postby kevin trieu » Thu Sep 16, 2010 4:17 pm

Guyzo wrote:
My .02 to you.......

Go and LEAD the eye......

late GK :wink:


SCARIEST 5.2 EVER!
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Postby Hotoven » Thu Sep 16, 2010 6:44 pm

Guyzo, once you lend me all your gear I'll lead the heck out of the place! :wink:

how are the ratings out there? I feel confident free soloing 5.6 here where I live. (Which is heavily climbed and very popular). But I hear some places out west are super stiff when it comes to ratings. I don't want to jump on and free solo a 5.6 to set up anchors at the top to find it to be a 5.8 my standard.

I'm guessing your all thinking just grow a pair, but I have only been climbing since April.
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Postby fatdad » Thu Sep 16, 2010 8:51 pm

Guyzo's right. There are so many good moderate climbs out there you don't need to hustle for all the retro anchors atop trad climbs that are typically led.

Other good ones: Fote Hog (5.6), Double Dip (5.6), Tiptoe (5.7, all bolted, just need anchors for the top), Right On (5.5). Too many to name really.

I think the ratings are pretty dead on, but there are many who grumble that they seem stiff compared to other places. If you've climbed alot in Arizona, you'll do fine. If you're thinking in terms of sport ratings, adjust down accordingly.
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Postby Denjem » Fri Sep 17, 2010 4:54 pm

You might want to shop for that guide online as opposed to supporting a local shop. See gear forum, subject boots.
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Postby Hotoven » Sat Sep 18, 2010 4:21 am

Denjem wrote:You might want to shop for that guide online as opposed to supporting a local shop. See gear forum, subject boots.


I have a local friend who has a few guide books hes going to let me borrow. Nice try though! :D
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