Rock Garden Valley Lower Wall, 5.5-5.10b

Rock Garden Valley Lower Wall, 5.5-5.10b

Page Type Page Type: Mountain/Rock
Location Lat/Lon: 34.02181°N / 116.17817°W
Activities Activities: Trad Climbing, Sport Climbing
Seasons Season: Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter
Sign the Climber's Log


Bolivian Freeze Job, 5.9
Dow leading Bolivian Freeze Job, 5.9
Barn Door Right, 5.10a*
Dow leading Barn Door Right, 5.10a*

Rock Garden Valley’s main wall is one of the better concentrated collection of 5.8-5.9 trad climbs in Joshua Tree and therefore attracts a decent amount of folks. The Lower Wall however receives less traffic but offers decent climbing at the same grade as the main wall on good rock albeit the routes are shorter. This wall receives some morning sun when the main wall might be in the shade.

Barn Door Right, 5.10a*, is my favorite of the group with some lay back and side pull movement. The others offer nothing worth specifically mentioning. There is a fixed rap atop the wall over the route Amber Waves of Grain.

Drive down Lost Horse Road and park on the left at approximately .3 miles. Rock Garden Valley Wall is across from Freeway Wall.  Hike in the wash heading southeast for the upper north facing wall in Rock Garden. Scramble up the boulder choked gully and Rock Garden Valley Lower wall will be the first climbing wall on your right. Swiss Cheese Wall which is easy to identify due to its large huecos, divides Rock Garden Valley’s lower wall from the main wall. All three have a northern tilt, Rock Garden Valley Lower is northeast facing and therefore receives decent morning sun depending on the time of year.

Routes Listed Right to Left as you Face the Wall

Chile Willie- 35'-5.8/

Chasin' the Grain- 35'-5.10b/

Bolivian Freeze Job- 40’-5.9/ Shares a fixed anchor with Amber Waves. All gear, but more 5.7 than 5.9 by Jtree standards. Says “thin” in the guide but the crack is well featured the whole way. Dow

Amber Waves of Grain- 40’-5.9*/ A thoughtful sport climb for the grade. Significantly more challenging than Bolivian, but not difficult for the grade by Jtree standards. Fully bolted despite Miramontes guide calling it mixed. Dow

Born in a Barn- 45’-5.10b/ Not near as challenging as neighboring 5.10b’s, What’s Hannen (sic) and Why Does it Hurt When I Pee (on Swiss Cheese Wall). Three bolts with maybe one piece of gear. Rap Amber. Dow

Barn Door Right- 50’-5.10a*/ My favorite route on this short wall and the most unique. Layback up the left side via a series of side pulls. Fun moves most of the way, deserving of its star in the guide. 3 bolts and one piece of gear. If you are short, you might want to place an additional piece. Can build a gear anchor if you want to top rope it. Rap Amber. Dow

Barn Dance- 50’-5.10a*/ Shares the Barn Door Right start. After your foot is at the first bolts, traverse left into the next crack over. Lessor grade from there up a hand crack, mixed. Rap Amber. Dow

Blue Sky, Black Death- 65’-5.5/ A solo candidate otherwise not worth doing. I down climbed to the left of Mr. Michael Goes to Washington. Dow

Mr. Michael Goes to Washington- 65’-5.8*/ Worth doing, all trad and way out left by itself. Move up and right then traverse back left on good gear in a horizontal and up the obvious hand crack from there. Pro from the start to reach the traverse is maybe not conducive to someone leading at their limit. It is there, just not as plain as more popular routes in this area. Rap Amber. Dow



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