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Page Type: Route

Location: Arizona, United States, North America

Lat/Lon: 31.72400°N / 110.938°W

Object Title: Rocktology

Route Type: Technical backcountry rock climb

Time Required: A long day

Rock Difficulty: 5.10a (YDS)

Difficulty: 5.10+

Route Quality: 
 - 1 Votes


Page By: bighigaz

Created/Edited: Nov 16, 2002 / Feb 16, 2006

Object ID: 157350

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(Taken from Back Country Rock Climbing in Southern Arizona, by Bob Kerry)

This challenging route ascends the north face of Elephant Head. Park in a one-car pull-out on the left, 50' after a cattle guard; if you passed by the bike trail on the left you went 200' too far. Walk east, or perpendicular, to the road to gain a wash that turns into a wooded gully; you pass over the bike trail. Once in the fully, parallel it staying on the eastside hill. Weave through the ocotillo and cross over a barbed wire fence. The wooded gully turns into a drainage gully through rock slabs. Arter passing through the slabs, bushwack up and slightly to the left. There is a large gully between the Shark Fin and the first large rock outcrop to its left: do not take this. Instead walk east around the rock outcrop and head up the gully left of the outcrop to the base of the Elephant. Rocktology starts down and right between the Shark Fin and the main wall. Allow one hour.

Route Description

(Bob Kerry)--(1)Chimney between the tower and main wall to a right-facing corner; (2)Dihedral up to a small roof. Classic move around roof leads up to a two-bolt hanging belay (90', 5.10b); (3) From the belay crank left over roof and work up and left to a bolt. From the bolt move left and then work up and slightly right using pockets and gashes for pro (5.9+) until you reach a large hole/alcove. From alcove move up and right for 10', then straight up using pocket and small cracks for pro (5.10) until possible to traverse right onto left-leaning ramp that leads to a two-bolt belay next to another large hole/alcove (145', 5.10). [Variation: At the first hole/alcove (80'' up), a crack shoots straight out of the top for 20'. At the end of the crack traverse right and slightly up to gain the left leaning ramp (5.10). This is the route of the first ascentionists.] (4) Climb up and right to a bolt on the face. Step right of the bolt and climb the face trending up and right past grapefruit-sized hole until you gain a thin crack/groove in face. Follow the groove up, paralleling the chossy crack system on the left. Easy face climbing up and then to the right leads to a bolt. From the bolt traverse right to gain the black water streak and follow the streak up until possible to traverse right under a roof. Clip the bolt at the lip of the roof and pull over (5.10+). Thought-provoking face climbing takes you up and right to a small bush and bolt for a belay (160', crux pithc); (5) Traverse left over rotten bulge then past a gully. Place a three-inch cam in a hole on the left face of the gully and step down to a diminishing left-leaning ledge that takes you to a two-bolt belay below a small bulge (45', 5.9-); (6) Layback around bulge on right and climb blocky face straight above to a 4" jam crack leading to a ledge with pampas grass and a busy. Smooth face moves lead past three bolts on the buttress. After the 3rd bolt (may not have hanger) move left into a scoop and work up right sid of the scoop for a couple of moves until possible to pull back right onto the buttress. Easier face climbing to a two-bolt belay (145', 5.10).
Descent: Rap the rout in double-rope rappels from belays six, five, three and two. Do not leave "poot" slings. [Mike Nelson and Jim Scott, 1997]

Essential Gear

(Bob Kerry)--Rack: Double cams from three-inch to TCU's, aliens and tri-cams useful, one set of nuts. A four-inch Camalot can be used on pitch two but is not necessary. A wire brush for lichen.

Miscellaneous Info

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