Lone Peak Cirque – Rock Climbing

| August 18, 2008
Lone Peak Cirque in the Wasatch Mountains is Utah’s version of the Grand Teton.  It is a long approach to get there (5,000′ of uphill on loose dirt), it tops out at around 11,300′ and it has some of the best, cleanest granite in all of the state.  As if the multi-hour approach wasn’t hard enough, over the last three to five years, new housing developments have continually wiped out the trailheads, so just finding a way up there has been a challenge.
Heading into Lone Peak Cirque from the Corner Canyon/Draper City approach.
Heading into Lone Peak Cirque from the Corner Canyon/Draper City approach.

I hadn’t been up there this season, and was completely thrilled to see that not only has the City of Draper opened the Corner Canyon road, they have put up burly fences and outlawed motorized vehicles in the area.  Yippy!  In the past, the entire area had been trashed with illegal roads, campfires and tons of litter.  Now it looks much better, and while they were at it, they even cut in a nice new hiking trail.

We hiked up/back in a day, which is fairly common, although camping overnight in the Cirque is a treat as well.  My partner for the day was Dr. Geoff Tabin who moved to Utah about three years ago. Geoff was the third or forth person to complete all Seven Summits and he runs the Himalayan Cataract Project, as well as squeezing in lots of climbing and skiing.

We ended up doing the Center Thumb Route (five pitches, 5.9) as many of the other classic routes had people on them, and the Center Thumb is a beautiful line.

Geoff collecting gear while following the second pitch.
Geoff collecting gear while following the second pitch.

The weather was perfect and we weren’t in a hurry, so the entire car-to-car trip took about twelve hours. 

The Center Thumb route is directly above Geoff's head.  We'll be back!
The Center Thumb route is directly above Geoff’s head. We’ll be back!

Geoff Tabin floating through the crux of the Center Thumb.

The only downside of the entire day was showing up at “The Cotton Bottom” bar and grill fully anticipating a beer & burger…. and finding them closed.  Sigh – Sunday in Utah.  A small price to pay.
Help support StraightChuter.com and get 15% off on the granite magnet Scarpa Thunder Climbing Shoes from Backcountry.com! Click the photo below…

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Category: Trip Reports

About the Author ()

Andrew McLean lives in Park City, Utah and is a gear designer, writer, photographer, ski mountaineer, climber, Mountain Unicycle rider and father of two very loud little girls.

Comments (5)

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  1. Bob says:

    You have a helmet cam, right? That or you’re the sketchiest belay partner ever.

  2. Andrew says:

    I had an assistant film that. :)

  3. Derek says:

    Meh, if you want to be a star, you have to accept the “video belay”.

  4. Andrew says:

    Considering all I had in for an anchor was a #1 Brass nut, the belay was the least of his problems. (<---- kidding)

  5. skriv says:

    From personal experience, (and i’m in the photo that tops this page)McClean’s belays are always top notch.  I think he has 3 hands.

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