Rock Garden - Grand Canyon Routes

Exploration of Cheops Pyramid, 02 Jun 1982

Notes from H Butchart contact, 09 Nov 1985

The Route

To begin the ascent, first climb to the open plateau (Utah Flats) west of Phantom Ranch. From here there are two approaches available.

The Northwest Ridge

Go on up to the knoll on the ridge northeast of Cheops. From the knoll, go out onto the northern slope and work your way upward to the base of the Redwall cliff, then follow the base of the cliff westward until a broad shelf leads up to the northwest ridge. Follow the shelf up to the spine of the ridge. Turn south and follow this ridge all the way to the summit, keeping to the ridgepoint.

The limestone forms sharply eroded and hazardous edges. About two-thirds toward the top a short traverse onto the north face is required. The shelf is a couple feet wide and leads to a climb to the next level that is only head high and very easy with many large hand and footholds; however, the exposure to several hundred feet of sheer limestone below is quite sobering and would recommend use of a short rope to the cautious.

The next obstacle to look out for is a keyhole in the ridge at three-quarters of the climb. Take care not to climb over the top of this landmark; go around it on the slope to the left. The rest is easy. The highest point is actually the northeast corner. There is a cairn and a register.

The climb from campground to summit was accomplished in 2.5 hours.

The South Horn

According to conversation with Harvey Butchart this route is the easier of the two; he said the northwest ridge was about as tough a climb as he was willing to do alone. I have not tried the horn yet.




Requirements are good physical condition, rockclimbing experience, and some nerve. Technical climbing skills are not required; a rope enhances safety but is not really a necessity.


Not many will try this one. The sense of accomplishment alone is rewarding. The view is exceptional.


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