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North America, United States, Utah, Climbs on the Colorado Plateau in Arizona and Utah

Climbs on the Colorado Plateau in Arizona and Utah. In early 1991, Bill Hatcher, Barry Ward and I climbed The Teapot (III, 5.8), an interesting 350-foot formation near Jacob’s Ladder on the Navajo Reservation. In June, I made the first solo ascent of Standing Rock by the original Kor route in eight hours’ climbing time. In October Karen Lysett and I found a short spire to ascend, Mr. Potato Head (I, 5.9), located on a dirt road 6.6 miles southwest of Natural Bridges National Monument on Route 276. Also in October, Xaver Bongard, Melissa Wruck and I climbed The Sitting Hen (II, 5.8) in the Valley of the Gods. In November, Jimmy Dunn, Betsy McKirkick and I made the first ascent of The Bear (IV, 5.10, A2) in Monument Valley. This spectacular route on the 650-foot tower climbs through a window near the top of the formation, 70 feet high and 50 feet wide, to the other side of the formation and then on to the summit. There are pitches both of loose and solid free-climbing and pitches of moderate aid on relatively good rock. The tower had previously been attempted by at least three other parties.

John Middendorf