BETA PHOTO: Eagle Wall from the lower Painted Bowl with routes...
This beautiful 1000 foot wall with the prominent patina shaped like an eagle flying west is the home of several Urioste classics like Eagle Dance (V 5.10 A1) and Levitation 29 (V 5.11).
Expect a long approach. From the Wilson Pimple head up Oak Creek canyon for about an hour. Then 30 to 45 mins up the North Fork. Finally follow an easy eastwardly leading ramp system to the base of stunning Eagle Wall.
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Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Eagle Wall:
5.10 A1 Trad, Sport, Aid, 11 pitches, 900 feet, Grade V
Featured Route For Eagle Wall
5.10 A1 NV
: Red Rock
: ... : Eagle Wall
This route is really easy to follow as it takes all the obvious weaknesses and follows enough bolts to never get lost. From a shallow dihedral 50 feet east of a 150' pillar the climb goes up through the Eagles neck on the standard 5th pitch. The overhanging bolt ladder on the 8th pitch is a sandbag but the incredible positioning makes for a pleasant aid pitch. The route continues all the way to the top of the wall and that is worth doing. However most people rap 1 or 2 pitches after the bolt la...[more] Browse More Classics in NV
BETA PHOTO: These two trees mark the ramp that rises out of th...
Approaching eagle wall
Typical approach terrain to get to eagle wall.
BETA PHOTO: The descent from Eagle wall
Eagle Wall from the top of Oak Creek Canyon
BETA PHOTO: Head northwest to this red notch, just right of th...
One of several pools on the hike up.
Sunset on top of Eagle Wall
Apr 12, 2004
Approach:The start of the approach ramp is marked by 2 large, healthy pine trees on either end of the creekbed. If you feel like you need a rope, you're probably not on the right ramp.
Descent: Head west on the crest until you reach the end of the sandstone to a red saddle. Drop down to the left and follow the creek back to your packs.
|By Warren Teissier|
May 5, 2004
We recently had the opportunity to trash in and out of Oak Creek Canyon on our way to Eagle Dance. Having done the hike before, we knew that it would not be fun.
Because we were expecting a thrashing and were paying lots of attention to cairns and bypasses for the large boulders, the first part of the canyon (up to the fork junction) went surprisingly well.
Just as we were commenting on how this was really not that bad, we started getting religion, crawling under prickly bushes with a full pack while avoiding the cactus is always humbling. After a while we sighted the two gigantic Ponderosa pines, about 150 yards from us and thought we were there... The last damn 100 yards are pretty bad and made the other two miles feel like a walk in the park.
So in the end we got our thrashing. This approach doesn't seem to get any easier even when ypou know where to go.
|By Nathan Furman|
From: Salt Lake City, Utah
Jan 28, 2007
What a beautiful wall.
We linked Black Orpheus with Eagle Dance. The approach from Orpheus was easy...once you drop into Lower Painted Bowl you can scramble up a 3rd/4th class ramp to the shoulder that divides Eagle Wall from Lower Painted Bowl. It takes less than fifteen minutes from the point you veer off the Orpheus decent route to the base of Eagle Wall.
After rapping Eagle Dance, we decended by going back over to the Black O decent and continued from there. It seems much quicker than having to walk back up canyon from the base of Eagle Wall then walk back down it.
There was very little thrashing to be had.
|By John Wilder|
From: Las Vegas, NV
Mar 14, 2007
Hint for the approach: as you get close to the pine trees, the creek bed gets fairly brush filled- cut left out of it onto some easy slabs and follow this all the way to the pine trees. Step through one bush and you're on the ramp.
Edit: For those who dont quite get where that so-called secret approach is up to the eagle wall is- it's the descent for Black Orpheus- this approach takes you up onto the slabs just after the canyon forks, then up the shoulder directly below Ringtail. For those who aren't in shape, this approach takes about 90 minutes as opposed to the 2+ hrs of the std approach.
|By Anthony Anagnostou|
Mar 11, 2009
forget everything you heard about a long approach. you can be at the base of the eagle wall in an hour from oak creek parking if you hustle and take the direct approach.
walk into oak creek, under the solar slabs, and stay high on good trails, occasionally braided, and OUT OF THE DRAINAGE until you are forced in just as the canyon pinches down.
then follow the drainage upstream until you are in full view of the black arch wall on your right. ahead of you is the fork where other slower approachers go.
you- the wily climber, will take the big slab immediately after (left of) the black arch wall. its a low angle slab, started with some varnished plates (4th class or maybe 5.0 for 35', then low angle) then split with a big featured crack system (3rd class) all the way up and out of sight, in the direction of the hidden eagle wall.
approach this slab not from directly below, but from to the left or right. may require pushing a few bushes around, depending on where you go.
follow the crack up the middle of the slab, then where it gets exposed exit right into the mellow gully for a few yards, then routefind up ledges heading towards the painted bowls. maybe a spot of 4th class. no 5th here. this soon spits you out next to the IBM boulder, and you can look down at the poor saps still laboring up the standard approaches.
it is blazing fast, and i cant figure out why more folks dont go this way. the new handren guide has a good aerial photo that maps it out, in case you want to see the sneak preview.
|By George Bell|
From: Boulder, CO
Mar 11, 2009
Thanks for the fast approach beta, Anthony! Is this also the fastest way down (i.e. can it be downclimbed quickly)? If so, it would speed up the Black Orpheus descent, etc.
Also, can one get further up canyon from the base of the Eagle Wall? If so, this would also speed up the approach for Coltrane and Catwalk.
|By Anthony Anagnostou|
Jun 16, 2009
well, i dont know. ive never gone down it, and the idea isnt too appealing to me. thats partly because i enjoy weaving down the orpheus descent.
its also partly because i dont treasure the idea of downclimbing the little steep 4th class section at the very bottom, but then ive always gone up that in shoes and a pack, and im no hero. it would probably be a little harder (or feel a little harder) to go down it without ever have gone up it, but it could probably be sussed out on the way down by looking over the edge just past the IBM boulder.
i think for the most efficient descent off the painted bowls i would rap the black arch wall. orpheus will rap with a single rope easily into the lower painted bowl, iirc, and the black arch wall also was a straightfoward rap, although it has been a while there.
as for approaching the next rock upcanyon from the base of eagle wall, im again- not sure. ive never walked up to the eagle wall along the base (always coming in from the slabs from the IBM boulder) so i dont know how easily it connects to the upper canyon. i know it goes, but i dont know how useful it is.
From: Sacramento, CA
Jun 17, 2009
Maybe not as good as the Handren Guide photo but here is one I took of the area from across the Canyon.
The approach crack as mentioned in above posts tops out near the bushes in the bottom left-hand side of the pic.
| || |Black Orpheus and the Eagle Wall
Submitted By: Karsten on Nov 19, 2006
From: Eldorado Springs, CO
Jan 19, 2011
Great beta, Andy. John W and I used it in Nov to approach Mt Beast and I plan to use it again this weekend.
|By Spencer Weiler|
From: SLC, UT
Feb 22, 2012
My group and I, the wily climbers, used the "fast approach" to eagle wall last weekend, which we thoroughly enjoyed. A couple notes:
-You can see the bottom of the approach slab as you enter oak creek. Keep an eye out, it isn't hard to find. Stay out of the wash for as long as you can.
-We may have missed the best way to initially get on the slabs, but the first 30 feet of the huge crack system on the slabs is easily 5.6/5.7 of hand crack with jugs, not 5.0. It splits 2 roofs and was easy enough but just a heads up. Following the crack system up that initial slab was a bit steeper, so we stepped right. Just take whatever way looks best.
-After the initial slab it may seem overwhelming as the ledges appear non 3rd classy. But miraclously the ledges all weave together with only a few scrambles. A few crux cairns. Once you hit IBM boulder its over. easy routefinding up the final slabs.
-Its fast, but not 1 hour fast. It took us 2 hours first time. Guess if you get it dialed maybe. Beautiful views, and no schwacking!
-The walkoff descent of eagle wall is amazing. I thought it was one of the most scenic, neat descents I've ever done. Lots of rainbow colored slabs with blue water flowing into green pools, and great views of eagle wall. Highly recommend it over stuck ropes. It took us 2.5 hours summit to car.