Yellow Wall, 5.9-5.12a

Page Type Page Type: Mountain/Rock
Location Lat/Lon: 42.04860°N / 113.72625°W
Activities Activities: Trad Climbing, Sport Climbing
Seasons Season: Spring, Summer, Fall
Additional Information Elevation: 6400 ft / 1951 m
Sign the Climber's Log


Yellow Wall, 5.9
Yellow Wall, 5.9

Yellow Wall is host to several of the finer routes in the City of Rocks area: Yellow Wall (namesake and in my opinion the best moderate climb in all of the City of Rocks), 5.9; Patina Turner, 5.11b; King of Suede, 5.10c. This wall is aptly named as its east facing rock displays a lot of yellow stratification. This tower like feature is among a collection of quiet climbing objectives north of the Twin Sisters. On our first visit to the area in 2012, on a Saturday in June, we had the entire area, including the approach trail, to ourselves. The SLC gym rats, which can crowd the easy access City routes, would be hard pressed to hike this far in the sun for climbing (30 minutes).
Yellow Wall, 5.9

As before mentioned, Yellow Wall is really more of a tower structure than a wall, with two distinct walls on it, east and west. The east wall offers a magical area in which to belay during the summer, a slick rock alcove heavily shaded from the sun in the afternoon. Yellow Wall, the route, is an obvious hand and finger line up the center of the right end of the wall. King of Suede offers a fun finger crack overhang up twin cracks on the left side of the wall. Patina Turner takes off right from the Yellow Wall route via bolts.

Park at the Twin Sisters campground area, #1-#4. Look for a gate to the northwest. Climb the gate and follow the ranch road along the western edge of the granite outcroppings. After passing through a second cattle gate, angle right towards the granite. A significant wall that shows up in the immediate horizon is Weather Wall. Just to the right of Weather Wall is a smaller feature which offers a decent moderate two pitch crack climb, Twin Cracks, 5.9. Yellow Wall is just to the left of Weather Wall.

Route Description(s)

Yellow Wall

Routes Listed Left to Right as you face the Wall

  • King of Suede- 5.10c/
  • Start up the wide crack along a short pillar on the left side of the wall. Above the pillar the crack varies between hands and fingers. The crux is the finger crack running up the twin crack overhang. A 5.9 variation busts out left just below the overhang on less desirable rock and finishes on easy slab to a fixed station. The direct finish rewards you with a nice hand crack after the overhang pull. All trad pitch and well protected. Dow

  • The Wages of Sin- 5.11b/

  • Yellow Wall- 5.9/
  • Best 5.9 at the City. A 60m rope barely makes it from a gear station if you want to set TR. To rappel, scramble down climbers left to a fixed station at the top of King of Suede. Plenty of stemming and jamming really makes this moderate a joy. The rock is incredible and is located in a magical setting. Place gear at will. I enjoyed double rope technique since the route does meander a bit. The bolted line that runs up and right is Patina Turner. Yellow Wall is an all trad pitch. Dow

  • Patina Turner- 5.11b/

  • Queen of Shade- 5.9/
  • (adjoining wall)

    Routes Listed Left to Right as you face the Wall

  • Wired Russets- 5.9/
  • This is the best pitch to combine (for the grade) with the Yellow Wall route on this tower. A fully bolted sport climb (now) that is juggy and steep the whole way. A thoughtful pitch on stellar rock to a fixed anchor. Good morning shade in June beyond noon. Dow

  • Pragmatic Decision- 5.11a/

  • Camp Cupcake- 5.12a/

  • Procrastination- 5.10a/
  • A horrible route. Not 5.10a, nor sustained. Climb up the chossy arete to a crack that ends by traversing right over the arete and then back left up face holds. Then easy ground to the base of a wider crack finish that is relatively easy. To descend, down climb to the west and on down trending right until you locate the rap for Wired Russets. Not worth roping up for. Dow

    External Links

  • City of Rocks National Reserve
  • Castle Rocks State Park
  • Rock City, the place for beers

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