Monday, October 5, 2009

Five Weeks in Red Rock: A Photo Essay

Late last Spring, AAI Guide Alasdair Turner spent five weeks in Red Rock Canyon, climbing and guiding. Aside from working as a guide, Alasdair is a phenomenal photographer. He turned in the following report just after he finished his stint in the Southwest. More of his photos may be found at

We are now taking registrations for climbing in both Red Rock Canyon and Joshua Tree National Park. Please call our office at 360-671-1505 for more information.

I just got back to Seattle after spending five weeks in Red Rocks. One might ask what a person does for five weeks in Red Rocks. Well, I spent last night compiling a list....

It all started with the Red Rocks Rendezvous.

Then moved onto some multipitch stuff like Levitation 29 (5.11c, V).
Photo by Blake Herrington

Cloud Tower (5.12a, IV)
Photo by Blake Herrington

Other routes included the likes of Birdland (5.7+, III), Dark Shadows (5.8, IV),
Unimpeachable Groping (5.10c, IV)

Cat in the Hat (5.6+, III)

Wholesome Fullback (5.10b, II) Frogland (5.8, III), Our Father (5.10d, II), Next Century (5.10d, II+)

Photos from a Storm in Red Rock

I climbed dozens of sport routes. Here are two AAI guides -- Viren Purmal and Mary Harlan -- climbing a sport line.

In addition I spend a day hiking up Mt. Wilson the easy way, which -- I must say -- was one of the most enjoyable days of the trip...that is if I forget about the tick that was snacking on my hip later in the day.

Another day included a hike up one of the canyons with some friends.

And of course at least one obligatory trip to the strip.

And as always the drive to and from Red Rocks is never complete without the experience of driving through Nevada’s Great Basin. This year I was lucky enough to experience it with a foot of fresh snow, and in a rain storm. Both rare occurrences.

If you have not been to the Red Rocks of Southern Nevada, then you're missing out! It's one of the best places to climb in North America.

--Alasdair Turner

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