Benton Crags

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Messages 1 - 20 of total 44 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
MtnDeb

Mountain climber
Bishop, CA
Topic Author's Original Post - Jun 11, 2013 - 01:46pm PT
Who's the "expert" on pending development in Benton Crags? Some exploration yesterday seemed to show that there is plenty of room for more north of north parking lot. Scrambled/climbed on several formations and found no signs of passage.
Splater

climber
Grey Matter
Jun 11, 2013 - 02:16pm PT
Don't know anything about new routes, but were there any nasty biting bugs there? What is the season for those painful buggers?
The Chief

climber
Climber from the Land Mongols under the Whites
Jun 11, 2013 - 02:19pm PT
You will find that the rock on the North section is choss for the most part. Defoliating on a consistent basis.

Greg Barnes and maybe Ken Yager can sing a better tune.
Mungeclimber

Trad climber
Nothing creative to say
Jun 11, 2013 - 03:26pm PT
Marty Lewis might know who has been active there lately.

Oh yeah, the no-see-ums can be nasty out there.
The Wedge

Boulder climber
Santa Rosa & Bishop, CA
Jun 11, 2013 - 04:40pm PT
May want to ask SP Parker at Sierra Mountain Center. He may have some insight.
MtnDeb

Mountain climber
Bishop, CA
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 11, 2013 - 05:07pm PT
Yep, we got chewed up pretty good!
Thanx guys!
nutjob

Sport climber
Almost to Hollywood, Baby!
Jun 11, 2013 - 05:53pm PT
I went there once with my kids in July or August, fun scrambling around and no problems at all with bugs. It's pretty dry out there. High clearance vehicle recommended, barely made it in the Prius (but I think I took a side path and was on parallel tracks with 3-4 foot bushes in the middle).
Chinchen

climber
Way out there....
Jun 11, 2013 - 07:03pm PT
Choss. ;)
Sewellymon

climber
.....in a single wide......
Jun 11, 2013 - 08:16pm PT
+1 for Benton Crags
Greg Barnes

climber
Jun 11, 2013 - 10:16pm PT
No idea, hiked out to Double Dome in '99 or so (following the '88 eastside guide description), new options either looked way too grainy or a bit too short - and those "bit too short" walls got developed by some folks in 2001 (see Marty's Mammoth guide).

But from there I hiked cross-country from there to the south end, and along the way found a really cool old American Indian hunting blind on a tiny knoll about 100 yards above a spring - perfectly located to be exactly where deer flushed from the spring would stop and look back (thus giving them a point-blank shot).

You could ask at MMS, but that's such a remote spot that there's no "local campfire community" to talk about new routes...
The Chief

climber
Climber from the Land Mongols under the Whites
Jun 11, 2013 - 10:32pm PT
Greg.

Just confirming Double Dome. Been out there several times and played on Neil and Steve's short 3 and 4 bolt lines. They are fun but actually not worth the hike just to get on em. Mark M and then Kris Solem and I spent an entire day or two looking around for possible new area/s around DD. Most if not all were as you stated "grainy" or just plain vertical choss. Very similar to the rock line just north of Mono Lake heading up the grade to Bridgeport. Spoke to Steve G numerous times and he agreed that he and Neil only found DD as the best rock available in that north sector. Disappointing actually. Lots of formations had potential but the rock quality just plain sucked.

Then there is that sector of formations off of 120 heading east down into Benton. Sadly, choss. Dangerous choss with sheets 10 to 15' big ready to explode off on pull.
nutjob

Sport climber
Almost to Hollywood, Baby!
Jun 11, 2013 - 11:29pm PT
I've only roped up on one climb there, and the actual climbing didn't leave a big impression on me. What did leave an impression on me was the unexpected type of rock juxtaposed with different surroundings. It's worth a visit for that and the overall experience, even if you don't get super-inspired by the specific rock or routes.
Chim-Chim

climber
Jun 11, 2013 - 11:34pm PT
I thought it was kinda nice some additional anchors would be helpful. I'd go there again fer shur.
MisterE

Social climber
Jun 11, 2013 - 11:58pm PT
Locals Only looks longer than 3-4 bolts!

From Mountain Project:

http://www.mountainproject.com/v/108058462

http://www.mountainproject.com/v/105838262



The Chief

climber
Climber from the Land Mongols under the Whites
Jun 12, 2013 - 12:56am PT
Locals Only looks longer than 3-4 bolts!

Zero bolts on "LO". All trad.
Greg Barnes

climber
Jun 12, 2013 - 01:33am PT
MisterE, we're only talking about new route potential north of the main crags, there's loads at Benton longer than 50', and some really good rock (and some not-so-great rock, and some really grainy junk rock as well). Some bolted stuff, and a lot of trad pro including on face routes (nuts & small cams in patina, runouts, etc). Locals Only, Crocodile Rock, and Clock Rock get my votes for the best rock.
Scole

Trad climber
Joshua Tree
Jul 4, 2013 - 01:08pm PT
Some of the classics in the main area are worth doing too
Scotty Burke attempting the second ascent of Australopithicus
Scotty Burke attempting the second ascent of Australopithicus
Credit: Scole
Australopithicus
Australopithicus
Credit: Scole
old craghag

Sport climber
Bishop
Jul 4, 2013 - 04:48pm PT
Benton has really good climbs if you know where to find them. Its one of my favorite spots.
phylp

Trad climber
Millbrae, CA
Jul 4, 2013 - 05:23pm PT
I've only roped up on one climb there, and the actual climbing didn't leave a big impression on me.

I've done about 20 different climbs there in different locations. Some were quite nice, some were a bit friable but the best part is that, except for Locals Only, you usually have the cliffs to yourself. I particularly liked the crack/face routes on Crocodile, and the sport routes on Lost Piton. Great views from Lost Piton too.
Scole

Trad climber
Joshua Tree
Aug 21, 2013 - 06:12pm PT
I just re-visited Benton Crags yesterday, and found that my 1983 testpiece "Australopithecus" had been reduced to an over bolted sport climb. I don't know who did it, but it is a well established tradition to not place blots on existing climbs.

The route was lead ground-up, first try on the FA, on gear available in 1983. It was lead in the same style yesterday. I removed the bolt next to two perfect placements at the start, the third bolt on the direct variation start, and all of the bolts on the upper crack and roof yesterday.

If you want your hangars back, feel free to contact me with an explanation of why you retro-bolted my route.
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