BETA PHOTO: Photo/topo for Surprise Rock, Joshua Tree NP
Just before reaching the Freak Brothers Dome you'll pass by this wonderfully tall sun-soaked, west-facing rock. It is host to a very nice bolted sport route and a fine crack climb as well. It is clear that this face has not seen tremendous activity, and because of that there are some crumbly bits of rock one must be cautious of. Trembling Toes
(5.9) is a 120' bolted route with 9 bolts to a chain anchor. To the right of this, despite the name, is the enjoyable crack of Dirty Surprise
(5.9). The rap anchor above Trembling Toes can be used for both routes as a decent. An easy and enjoyable stop while sifting along the Wonderland Valley Trail!
Simply park at the Uncle Willie's Health Food Store lot and hike in along the Wonderland Valley Trail until it opens up with the Astro Domes to the west, and Surprise rock will be directly to the east of the valley, with the obvious Freak Brothers Dome just past it along the trail.
Weather station 8.1 miles from here
5 Total Routes
['4 Stars',0],['3 Stars',0],['2 Stars',1],['1 Star',2],['Bomb',1]
Featured Route For Surprise Rock
Dirty Surprise 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a CA
: Joshua Tree National Park
: ... : Surprise Rock
This route heads up the obvious long crack system on the right side of Surprise Rock. Don't let the name disuade you from climbing this route. Other than a few loose flakes at the bottom, the route is quite clean and long. A few hard moves near the bottom lead to fairly straightforward climbing in the middle of the pitch. However, near the top, where the crack disappears, the climbing is both well protected and challenging. ...[more] Browse More Classics in CA
Local Information for Surprise Rock
Latest Regional Forum Messages
Surprise Rock, Joshua Tree NP
BETA PHOTO: Surprise Rock as seen from the Wonderland Wash
Suprise Rock. Photo by Blitzo.
Feb 7, 2005
Good enough route, odd line at the top. Seems like the FA struggled to make it difficult at the top. Rather than follow the path of least resistence ( either through the iffy rock, or left and continue left on the shoulder ), they tended left and then split the difference.