(SHORT REPORTS)
2006,
2015

Climbing at SMITH ROCK

Category: Oregon

Rock Type: Welded Tuff & Basalt
Elev: ~3000 ft
Picturesque Smith Rock. The cliffs in the photo are volcanic welded tuff.
Lower Gorge, which has some climbs on columnar basalt.

I've only climbed at Smith Rock a few times: a couple of quick weekend trips early on in my climbing career and once for a day when passing by. This page features some "short reports" from some of the climbs I’ve done at Smith Rock, which includes Monkey Face (one of the best-known features at Smith) and Zion (THE multipitch route at Smith). Most of the following trip reports do not give a wide photo selection like other trip reports on my website.



CLIMBS (Chronological order):

Route: PIONEER ROUTE (5.7 A0, 3 pitches, 250')  Monkey Face
Trip Report #: 1821

Monkey Face formation. The Pioneer Route is the easiest way up – it involves a bit of easy gear climbing to the notch, and then a bolt ladder to the "mouth" on the left side, and then comes out onto the handhold-ridden face from there.
First time up Monkey Face:
Date: April 16, 2006 
Partners: Jason, Trevor, Erika
Brief trip report: In April, 3 friends and I packed into a small truck and drove the 8 hours down to Smith Rock in Oregon to escape the rain of BC. We spent 4 days climbing there. I cannot remember all that we climbed, but on our second day there, we climbed Monkey Face, which is a giant tower of rock. We climbed the easiest route up, which begins with a pitch of 5.6 gear, then a pitch of aid climbing (there were about 25 closely-spaced bolts up a sheer wall that we clipped quickdraws into and pulled on since we did not own ascenders and other aid gear), and then the route finishes with a super-airy bolted 5.7 pitch that involves stepping out of a cave to face a 200 foot drop to the ground.

Second time up Monkey Face:
Date: May 20, 2006 
Partners: Jason, Trevor, Joleen
Brief trip report: When I returned to Smith Rock in May, we again climbed Monkey Face, and this time I led the second two pitches, since the first time I had led only the first pitch. The weather was a bit warmer for us on the May climb (in April it had snowed while we were climbing!) but we got stuck behind a slow group of 6 that took a couple of hours to aid up the second pitch. But we spent the time exchanging climbing stories, so it wasn't so bad.
Below are some photos from the climb.

Below are some photos from the climb.

Photos:
1.    
2.    
3.    
Photo descriptions:
1. Looking down while leading the bolt ladder.
2. In the cave at the top of the bolt ladder before the final pitch.
3. The hanging double rope rappel.


Route: 5 GALLON BUCKETS  (5.8, 1 pitch, 60')  Morning Glory Wall
Trip Report #: (no TR)

Jason belaying me on 5 Gallon Buckets.
Date: April 15, 2006
Partners: Jason, Trevor, Erika
(no trip report)


Route: KARATE CRACK  (5.10a, 1 pitch, 60')  The Dihedrals
Trip Report #: (no TR)

Me on Karate Crack. One of my first crack climbs.
Date: May 22, 2006
Partners: Jason, Trevor, Joleen
(no trip report)


Route: ZION  (5.10b, 4 pitches, 350')  Morning Glory Wall
Trip Report #: 208

Zion pretty much ascends a crack system at the sun-shade line.

Date: Sept 13, 2015 
Partner: John Plotz
Brief trip report: This is THE multipitch route at Smith. So, naturally, when I met up with my friend John for a day at Smith (I was driving home from Red Rocks), this route was top on my list. (Thanks John for climbing it for a 6th time!).

Below are some photos from the climb.

Photos:
1.    
2.    
3.    
4.    
5.    
6.    
7.    
8.    
Photo descriptions:
1. John leading off Pitch 1 (~5.7). We took a mostly 5.7 line up juggy buckets. The athletic unprotected first move was the crux of the route for us (seemed a bit harder than 5.7).
2. Pitch 2 (10b). I led this pitch. This pitch is the crux of the climb and pretty sustained. I found the gear to be a bit tricky since the crack opened up in the back and I was used to granite and sandstone cracks at the time, but this was a good bit of climbing.
3. John leading off Pitch 3 (5.9).
4. Pitch 4 (5.9). Juggy flake climbing. 
This was my favorite pitch on the route. 
5-8. Slackliners. These guys impress me. 


Route: MASTER LOONEY  (5.11a, 1 pitch, 80')  Lower Gorge
Trip Report #(no TR)

Looking up Master Looney. The roof is hard!
Date: Sept 13, 2015 
Partner: John Plotz
(no trip report)