St. George, Utah, has more sport climbing routes per capita than any city in the US. Located between the infamous trad climbing of Red Rocks, NV, big wall climbing of Zion National Park and crack climbing at Indian Creek, Moab, St. George makes a strong argument for an obvious visit on any climbing trip through southern Utah. At 100,000+ population and growing (Washington County), St. George (2nd largest city in Utah) can no longer claim to be a quaint town. However, it does not take long to reach the outskirts of town and find yourself in isolated and beautiful desert surroundings dodging a rattlesnake or desert tortoise here and there.
St. George is over 2000kms from Canmore, Alberta, over 300 miles from Salt Lake City or Moab, 120 miles from Las Vegas and just 40 miles from Zion National Park.
This page is a collection of the sport and trad rock climbing crags located in and around St. George. Zion National Park obviously has its own page of much larger routes. Some of the areas listed are quite extensive, i.e. Snow Canyon (a 7000+ acre State Park) and Utah Hills. Others are single walls, i.e. Bluff Street Cracks and Prophesy Wall. Listing routes with no first hand experience available is not what this page is about. Rather the listing involves “first hand accounts only” of trad, sport and mixed routes, single and multi pitch, limestone and sandstone. The routes will be listed and maintained via their respective “areas” (i.e. Snow Canyon). The areas will be listed in descending order of West to East. I can assure you that this listing only scratches the surface of what is available in southwestern Utah. Zion National Park itself has endless objectives for climbers and canyoneers alike. I climb full time and have plenty more to experience.
St. George CragsSolstice Wall, 5.7-5.11d
Watch Tower, 5.9-5.10d
Hackberry Wash, 5.4-5.11a
Island in the Sky
Indian Wall, 5.9-5.10c
Sand Dunes Area, 5.5-5.11b
Aftershock Wall, 5.10a-5.11b
Circus Wall, 5.6-5.10b
The Enclosure, 5.8-5.11a
Balkan Dome, 5.8-5.11d
West Canyon, 5.8-5.11b
Baby Rubicon, 5.7-5.11c
Sunrise Buttress, 5.8-11b
Integrity Wall, 5.10-5.12
Dutchman's DrawPhalanx of Will, 5.10b-5.14a
Graveside Matter, 5.6-5.12a
Parowan GapShinobe, 5.8-5.12d
Roller Rink, 5.8-5.10d
Running Scared CragSuess Wall, 5.9-5.10b
High School Wall, 5.10a-5.11c
Red TapeWith most of the climbing in and around St. George, you should avoid climbing for at least 24 hours after any rain. Jazzy Java offers a decent cup, good sack lunches and free internet.
CampingThere are three campgrounds within the city limits of St. George none of which I have experienced. Temple View RV Resort at 975 South Main Street; Settlers RV Park at 1333 East 100 South; St. George Campground at 2100 East Middleton Drive.
Of course my druthers would be to stay at the campground in Snow Canyon State Park. This has to be one of the finest State campgrounds anywhere with direct access to tons of climbing routes. The campground is open all year, no holiday closures. There is a limit on your stay of 5 days. They have 33 total units, 17 of which are reserved for the big boys (RV’s) with utility hookups. The tent sites were $14 in 2005. Drinking water is available on site along with vault toilets and even showers. The running/hiking/equestrian trail system is pretty cool and as long as you don’t run into the occasional Segway group, the whole park is usually very quiet, particularly during winter months.
- Snow Canyon State Park
- Red Cliffs Desert Reserve
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