Rock Garden

The Battleship — Originally named The Battleship Iowa, the red sandstone butte on the ridge immediately west of Bright Angel Trail. This is a non-technical scramble and a fairly safe, but not easy, ascent of a dramatic crack system up the middle of the main tower on the east side. Various features of interest above and below the top slab at the south end. A nice view directly down on Indian Garden from the north and east rim. Round-trip time estimate from 2-Mile Corner is 4.5 hours.

Routes and Info — 2-Mile Corner is the far west switchback bend below 1.5 Mile resthouse. From here, step off the trail and pass below a big boulder to follow some cairns and occasional sign of travel approximately level to reach the saddle of the Battleship. The track gets more distinct approaching the saddle and from here is properly cairned and mostly obvious except for one rocky section going up, and the track ends at the base of a short climb. Up left and over a boulder to a broad shelf, then back right into a very narrow deep crevice ramp with several minor chockstones and a chimney climb up past a major vertical jumble — the most difficult spot. Use 25 foot of cord to pull up a pack for safer climbing. Well up the cliff now, a couple more cautious moves up to another broad shelf going south to turn back yet again into another secure crevice ramp and then a narrow passage behind a slab. Close to the top, track south some distance along this upper shelf and then up through the boulders to a final scramble onto the top.

2003 November - Solo climb of The Battleship after the George Steck event.


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