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North America, United States, Utah, Main Fisher Tower: The Titan

Main Fisher Tower: The Titan. Layton Kor, George Hurley, and I made the first ascent of the Tower in May. On May 5-6 we climbed halfway to the summit, stringing the tower as we climbed. We returned and completed the climb on May 12-13. The Titan has not been surveyed, but comparison with human figures in photographs indicates an approximate average height of 900 feet on three sides. A saddle on the north side gives access to the route, which has about 650 vertical feet of technical climbing. The rock is Moenkopi sandstone which has a disturbing rounded rotten appearance, sometimes covered with a crust of baked mud. The rock underneath the crust is fairly good and takes pitons and bolts well. We were surprised to find a crack system on most of the route. The route begins with a 300-foot direct-aid pitch up a vertical buttress to the base of the Finger of Fate, a gendarme which overhangs the route on all sides. This obstacle is surmounted by a very exposed direct-aid traverse to the right and a fissure through the overhang. The next pitch leads to the Duck Walk, a friction traverse on an arĂȘte. We bivouacked on a good platform about 30 feet above here. High winds and a drop in temperature gave us a poor night. We reached the summit with two direct-aid leads above the bivouac platform. The summit is a large broken cap of hard sandstone which overhangs the tower on all sides. Some of the rappels are very exposed and require stirrup transfers. The climb is dangerous, but the risk is not unreasonable for climbers with experience on grade-five climbs involving extensive direct aid.

Huntley Ingalls