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The Thumb Area

Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
Coyne Crack T 
Down Your Throat With A Hairy Goat! T 
Flake Variation T 
Higher Expectations T 
Indecent Exposure Variation T 
Monkey Lip T 
Nob Job T 
Robbins Crack T 
Robbins' Route T 
S-Crack T 
S-Direct T 
S-Direct, Variation T 
S-Matrix T 
Spring and Fall T 
Spring Fever T 
Standard Thumb, The T 
Summit Pitch, The T 
Thumbing To Bogota T 
Unsorted Routes:

The Thumb Area  

Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Location: 40.5746, -111.7574 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 61,423
Administrators: Andrew Gram, Perin Blanchard, grk10vq, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Vince Romney on May 13, 2004
You & This Area
Best routes for YOU in this area
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BETA PHOTO: Centered in this photo is the Thumb Area.


This buttress is the biggest chunk of rock in the canyon, and the only place in LCC where you can link 10 or 11 pitches of quality crack, slab, and face climbing and choose between ratings from 5.7 to 5.12 to reach the summit. The view from the top of the Thumb is superb and well worth the all day outing. "S-Crack" defines Thumb climbing, and with the "S-Direct" variation proves that the boys (including the Lowes and former mayor Ted) had their S*** together way back in the 60's when they developed this rock.

Getting There 

Park at the Gate Buttress. Then, prepare for a bit of a slog. Follow a series of paths that head left from the Gate Boulders. I've done this a dozen times or more and I don't think I get the same trail twice. Either way, head west until you get to the huge talus field. Head west across, and simultaneously up the talus hill until you reach the base of the Waterfront buttress. This is the steep, dark-stained block above the dense scrub oak forest. From here, traverse west along the base of the buttress (harder than it sounds) until you reach an area where you are tempted to scramble up, out of the trees. Don't do it! Down hike just a bit to continue west and then move back uphill to the base of the buttress, and shortly you'll emerge out of the forest and you'll be on the trail at the base of the Plumbline wall (a great warm-up climb is the Plumbline 5.10a). Stash your packs in this area, as this is where you'll end up on the descent. From here, traverse west and up for about 200 feet and you'll be standing at the base of the Thumb routes.

Climbing Season

Weather station 3.2 miles from here

18 Total Routes

['4 Stars',2],['3 Stars',7],['2 Stars',7],['1 Star',2],['Bomb',0]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for The Thumb Area:
The Summit Pitch   5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a     Trad, 45'   
The Standard Thumb   5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b     Trad, 11 pitches   
S-Direct, Variation   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a R     Trad, 1 pitch, 130'   
S-Direct   5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a R     Trad, 7 pitches, 800'   
Robbins Crack   5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 60'   
Spring Fever   5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b     Trad, 4 pitches, 400'   
Nob Job   5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b X     Trad, 2 pitches, 300'   
Spring and Fall   5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a     Trad, 1 pitch, 45'   
Coyne Crack   5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a     Trad, 70'   
S-Crack   5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Trad, 4 pitches, 350'   
Monkey Lip   5.12d 7c 28 IX 28 E6 6b     Trad, 65'   
Browse More Classics in The Thumb Area

Featured Route For The Thumb Area

S-Direct 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a UT : Wasatch Range : ... : The Thumb Area
Climb S-Crack, or Standard Thumb/Indecent Exposure to Lunch Ledge.S-Direct tackles the immaculate slab left of the Standard Thumb "Trough" pitch. R-rating still deserved despite new bolts in recent years....[more]   Browse More Classics in UT

Photos of The Thumb Area Slideshow Add Photo
The Thumb from Middle Bell Tower.
BETA PHOTO: The Thumb from Middle Bell Tower.
Two parties of climbers on The Thumb.  Nov. 23, 2008.
Two parties of climbers on The Thumb. Nov. 23, 20...
Thumb in the clouds. <br />Photo by Blitzo.
Thumb in the clouds. Photo by Blitzo.
November sunset on The Thumb.
November sunset on The Thumb.
j foote on the slab pitch
j foote on the slab pitch
Here is my crappy update to Lee Jensen's nice topo (Sorry I hijacked your topo Lee). We brought 2 ropes, and everything went pretty smooth. I think it took us about an hour to descend, and we were a party of 3.
BETA PHOTO: Here is my crappy update to Lee Jensen's nice topo...
The general area of the Thumb from across the street and river.
BETA PHOTO: The general area of the Thumb from across the stre...
An update on Greg's photo.  It has two additional rap stations shown for the lower half of The Thumb.
BETA PHOTO: An update on Greg's photo. It has two additional ...
Showing the walk off descent route from the summit. Easy, safe, and fast. Expect 1.5 hours, summit to car, for your first time down.
BETA PHOTO: Showing the walk off descent route from the summit...

Comments on The Thumb Area Add Comment
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By JPFox
From: SLC, UT
May 17, 2010
The approach to The Thumb has improved, following the directions above if you keep an eye out there is a tracked out path along the base of the talus field, (very easy to find on the way out) and as the "trail" heads into the woods around the Waterfront Area there is a pretty obvious trail now, it goes all the way to the base
By goatdavemac
From: Flat Rock, NC
Apr 12, 2013
I was on the Thumb formation last fall, and had to bail....but, looking at the photos of the decent/rap options, is there a route that climbs the right angling crack in the "big roof"?
By Greg G
From: SLC, UT
Apr 13, 2013
mr. goatdavemac - you're speaking of the S-Matrix which has very little beta here. Check the guidebook for more information, and a topo.
By Charlie S
From: Ogden, UT
Apr 29, 2013
It is possible to rap the entire buttress down the main face using double 60m ropes. Some are a stretch, and the first couple of raps are so low angle that you'll be fighting with the rope.