Owl Rock 5.9

 
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Owl Rock


Desert Towers, Utah, USA


Trip Report
Arches NP: Four Tiny Towers
Sunday December 22, 2013 3:49pm
Just thinking about climbing towers gets me excited.

Credit: The Larry

Marie wanted to add some more towers to her list before she left for the winter. I knew of some towers that would be easy to tick in a day, so we headed out to Arches National Park.

Random blobs on the way way to our first tower.

Credit: The Larry

Our first tower on the list was Tonka Tower. This chossy little sandcastle was first climbed by Earl Wiggins, Katy Cassidy and company.

Tonka Tower
Tonka Tower
Credit: The Larry

As we were hiking up, the wind was howling. I realized that I was underdressed with just a storm cotton hoody to keep me warm. I really wanted to bail and go watch football. I knew that was an option that Marie would be opposed to so I didn't say anything.

Marie was psyched to do all the driving so who was I to disappoint her by taking the sharp end. The first pitch is an easy chimney. The second pitch is a steep slab with friable holds protected by drilled warthogs. The last few moves are pretty exciting.

Getting psyched!
Getting psyched!
Credit: The Larry

I've got my storm cotton on.
I've got my storm cotton on.
Credit: The Larry

Credit: The Larry

Marie a few sketchy moves from the top.
Marie a few sketchy moves from the top.
Credit: The Larry

Summit 1
Summit 1
Credit: The Larry

Coming down.
Coming down.
Credit: The Larry

After that we headed over to Owl Rock.

Owl Rock
Owl Rock
Credit: The Larry

This is an Arches Classic. It takes good pro and is really clean.

Fun in the sun.
Fun in the sun.
Credit: The Larry

Marie topping out.
Marie topping out.
Credit: The Larry

Rope?
Rope?
Credit: The Larry

Dos
Dos
Credit: The Larry

Two summits down and no beers. I was feeling out of sorts but I knew that we must press on.

Bullwinkle was our next objective.

Bullwinkle's approach.
Bullwinkle's approach.
Credit: The Larry

I had done this years ago and remembered it being kind of stupid. My memory was right. Really no gear to be had up a 5.6 chimney. Marie just dragged a rope up it and we got summit 3 tagged.

Whatever
Whatever
Credit: The Larry

All smiles.
All smiles.
Credit: The Larry

III
III
Credit: The Larry

Nice view from the summit.

View from the summit if Bullwinkle.
View from the summit if Bullwinkle.
Credit: The Larry

The storm was rolling in but we had one more summit to do, so we hustled over to Off-Balance Rock. 5.6 crack climbing to an 80' unprotected chimney. Fun!

Marie starting out.
Marie starting out.
Credit: The Larry


Big fun.
Big fun.
Credit: The Larry

Who has two thumbs and likes climbing towers?
Who has two thumbs and likes climbing towers?
Credit: The Larry

Go Team!
Go Team!
Credit: The Larry


#4
#4
Credit: The Larry

Heading back to the car just before the storm.

Making it out just in time.
Making it out just in time.
Credit: The Larry

We got our fourth summit done just in time and it felt good. Later that evening a friend of mine posted up on Spacebook that he and his partner just did 10 tiny towers that day. I think they got an earlier start.

We got in 11 towers together this fall and had a blast doing it. Marie's now gone and my beer belly is back. Oh, the cycle of life.

Cheers!

Cheers! Summit beers!
Cheers! Summit beers!
Credit: The Larry

  Trip Report Views: 1,097
The Larry
About the Author
The Larry is a climber from Moab, UT.

Comments
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Toker Villain

Big Wall climber
Toquerville, Utah
  Dec 22, 2013 - 04:14pm PT
How is the Owl holding up now after 35 years?

Have you done the Bulbous Head to the NW of it?
thebravecowboy

climber
hold on tight boys
  Dec 22, 2013 - 04:24pm PT
ahh, the cycle of life, indeed. cheers to what appears to have been a good season Larry!
The Larry

climber
Moab, UT
Author's Reply  Dec 22, 2013 - 04:27pm PT
It's in great shape. Unusually solid and clean for an Arches Route.
RyanD

climber
Squamish
  Dec 22, 2013 - 04:27pm PT
Bam!
Ian Jewell

climber
  Dec 22, 2013 - 04:50pm PT
larry , you have a totally impressive boner wang johnson .
Gagner

climber
Boulder
  Dec 22, 2013 - 05:15pm PT
Hey Larry - happy holidays!!

Tried to free Tonka Tower a few years back and made it about 3/4 of the way up that last pitch -- man, it's pretty sandy! I believe it has been freed before but not sure....
Studly

Trad climber
WA
  Dec 22, 2013 - 06:54pm PT
That's some great photos, and some great looking climbing.
10b4me

climber
  Dec 22, 2013 - 07:11pm PT
nice job. some new towers I will check out the next time I am there.
Ezra Ellis

Trad climber
North wet, and Da souf
  Dec 22, 2013 - 08:10pm PT
Awesome Larry, you are lucky to have that climbing partner and to live in Moab!!!
Thanks!!!!
snowhazed

Trad climber
Oaksterdam, CA
  Dec 23, 2013 - 01:20pm PT
best tower boner ive ever seen
Hankster

Social climber
Golden, CO
  Dec 23, 2013 - 02:02pm PT
Tower Boner indeed! Nice big Larr!!!
Dirka

Trad climber
Hustle City
  Dec 23, 2013 - 04:38pm PT
Bump
PellucidWombat

Mountain climber
Berkeley, CA
  Dec 23, 2013 - 10:34pm PT
W00T!
this just in

climber
north fork
  Dec 23, 2013 - 11:13pm PT
Looks like perfect. Thanks El Larry.
Onewhowalksonrocks

Mountain climber
In the middle of the ocean
  Dec 24, 2013 - 12:49am PT
Looks like you two had a great day. Thanks for sharing.
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Owl Rock - Owl Rock 5.9 - Desert Towers, Utah, USA. Click to Enlarge
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