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Refrigerator Wall, 5.9-5.12b

Refrigerator Wall, 5.9-5.12b

Refrigerator Wall, 5.9-5.12b

Page Type: Mountain/Rock

Location: Nevada, United States, North America

Lat/Lon: 36.14390°N / 115.49352°W

Object Title: Refrigerator Wall, 5.9-5.12b

Activities: Trad Climbing

Season: Spring, Summer, Fall


Page By: Dow Williams

Created/Edited: Apr 29, 2010 / Jan 28, 2013

Object ID: 617533

Hits: 1664 

Page Score: 83.69%  - 17 Votes 

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Unfinished Symphony, 5.11d
Unfinished Symphony, 5.11d

Refrigerator Wall, located in Icebox Canyon on the lower northern flank of Bridge Mountain, is named such for a reason. The impressive wall is on the south side of the canyon, just in from Frigid Air Buttress, and thus faces north. It is one of the cooler temperature climbing opportunities at Red Rocks, NV. Therefore, it is best to plan any of the wall’s objectives from Spring to Fall.
La Cierta Edad, 5.10c

There are 14 published routes on Refrigerator Wall. The most notable of this collection is La Cierta Edad (5.10c) due to its moderate climbing nature and solid varnished rock. La Cierta Edad is yet another Urioste classic at Red Rocks. The rappel of La Cierta Edad runs over perhaps the second most popular route on the wall, Unfinished Symphony (5.11d). However, some of the routes on this wall leave a lot to be desired, i.e. Grape Nuts (5.10c) and Amazing Grace (5.9) are both single pitch routes covering sandy mossy sandstone via bad run out fixed pro (2010). Greased Lightning (5.10a), a 200’ crack system, redeems this left section of Refrigerator Wall offering a solid and inspiring trad lead.

Park at the Icebox Canyon trailhead. Proceed west towards the canyon on the well-marked trail. Stay north (right) of the wash on a well traveled trail as you pass Frigid Air Buttress on the left. Continue until right across from Refrigerator Wall which is well marked by a large pine tree dead center of a recessed area at the base of Refrigerator Wall. Greased Lightning is the left most route, with La Cierta Edad running up a buttress to the right of the pine tree. Unfinished Symphony starts in the gully to the right of said buttress.

Route Description(s)

La Cierta Edad, 5.10c
La Cierta Edad
La Cierta Edad
La Cierta Edad

The Routes are Listed Left to Right as you Face the Wall

  • Greased Lightning- 200’- 5.10a/
  • Observed some fellow Canmore climbers enjoy this discontinuous crack system. Looks to be a good route. Dow

  • Swing Shift- 700’- 5.10c/

  • Grape Nuts- 100’- 5.10c/
  • I was not impressed with how dirty and full of moss the roof was as well as the old fixed pro. I backed off below the roof, moving a piece of existing bail sling one more bolt up the run out slab from where I found it. Dow

  • Amazing Grace- 120’- 5.9/
  • The initial run out sandy slab does not look appealing on bad fixed pro, some of which appears to be missing at this point. Dow

  • Kisses Don’t Lie- 290’- 5.12a-b/

  • Earth Juice- 150’- 5.10d/

  • Break Away- 240’- 5.10d/

  • La Cierta Edad- 560’- 5.10c/
  • Radek's notes exceptional as always. I am in the camp that I thought the short 5.10c move warranted the grade. Unusual for me at Red Rocks to go that direction on grade and I am a fairly decent off width guy, but thought it was a bit wide for the knee, side pull was a bit thin (wore a bit maybe) and the move is right off the belay on top of your partner. It was a grunt move in my opinion then the rest of that pitch was cruiser. Three nice pitches here by RR standards, the fun chimney-roof pull on #2, the stem box on #3 and the cruiser varnished corner on #5. Dow

  • Unfinished Symphony- 550’- 5.11d/
  • The first pitch of Unfinished Symphony is quite chossy and full of brush. The final three pitches however follow the same crack/corner system in solid black varnish and easily make up for the first. Start up the left side of the chimney system via sandy and bushy short corners (5.9). Traverse right, below an overhang, onto a sloping slab. Continue up and right to find a decent crack on better rock. Follow this crack up to a small treed ledge to the right protecting with medium gear for the first belay or you can continue for a few more meters over a well varnished bulge to a fixed belay (bolt and tree-2012). The second pitch (5.8) follows the wide black varnished corner/crack (with multiple face features on the right wall) to a large sandy alcove breaking up the tall corner. The third pitch (5.10a) requires true off-width technique deeper in the corner to a fixed semi hanging belay out right. The forth pitch (5.8) is just more wide stuff with jugs out left to assist and lands you at the base of the overhanging crux pitch. The fifth pitch (5.11d) is made up by a corner within a corner and presents an interesting (chicken wing and/or arm bar) off-width challenge. The first 20’ is quick and easy, then 20’-40’ of cranking on blank walls, then back to pleasant, but steep, 5.9-5.10 climbing. All of this pitch is easily and well protected with gear. The three bolts on this pitch are suspect (2012) and best just relied on if you are aiding the pitch. Dow

  • Music to My Fears- 300’- 5.10c/

  • Weenie Juice- 140’- 5.10a/

  • Quiggle’s Wiggle- 350’- 5.9/

  • Roraima- 700’- 5.11d/

  • Blitzkrieg- 800’- 5.10/

Essential Gear

Most of these routes are trad lines with an assortment of fixed pro here and there. They all will require an assortment of gear as spelled out in Jerry’s Handren’s “Red Rocks, A Climbers Guide”. Descent options and length of ropes necessary vary. I advise double ropes for the La Cierta Edad and Unfinished Symphony rappels. North facing and as shaded as it gets at Red Rocks. Bring the appropriate jacket, despite how warm you feel at the trailhead.

External Links

  • Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area, BLM

  • Red Rock Canyon Interpretive Association

  • DowClimbing.Com

  • Images

    La Cierta Edad, 5.10cLa Cierta Edad, 5.10cLa Cierta Edad, 5.10cLa Cierta Edad, 5.10cLa Cierta Edad, 5.10cLa Cierta Edad, 5.10cLa Cierta Edad, 5.10c
    La Cierta Edad, 5.10cUnfinished Symphony, 5.11d