Moro Rock

Morgan Brown

Canadian Rockies
Sequoia/Kings Canyon
2000 Trips
2001 Trips
Alta Peak
Big Arroyo
Big Arroyo (pt. 2)
Little Baldy
Moro Rock
2002 Trips

Books that Morgan

Southern Sierra Rock Climbing, Sequoia/Kings Canyon - The only SeKi climbing guidebook available on Amazon. Good reviews, but limited availability.

The High Sierra: Peaks, Passes, and Trails - by R.J. Secor. Unquestionably the bible of California backcountry adventure. Reliable and exhaustive, which is no small feat, given the scale of the "Range of Light".

Selected Photos...

Belay Station

Morgan climbing

Kim rapping

Summary Image Gallery Trip Map
  • Date: October 29, 2001
  • Route: "Stair Trek" (YDS 5.5)
  • Summary: One pitch with two bolts on the main 40' wall. 80-degree face with no hands, small feet. Cannot rappel with a single rope.

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Other Trip Reports...
From a distance, Moro Rock looks like a whale surfacing through the hazy depths of Kaweah Canyon. It is a narrow granite exfoliation dome, dropping away 2000 feet on all sides into the oaks of the canyon. The blasted stairs and metal railing harken back to a more...interventionalist time in the National Park Service's history. President Bush climbed the 1/4 mile, 300' path to the Rock's summit when he visited in 2001. Robert led Kim and me up this neat little route on a nice October morning.

Some of the routes on Moro are not as huge as the rock itself. 5.5 Stair Trek is one such climb. It's a single-pitch, partially-bolted climb on a smooth 70+ degree face. At the end, you are visible to the throngs climbing the stairs up to the summit. Best of all, because they cannot see the bottom, the tourists think that you've just climbed a big wall! To reach the base of the climb, start up the stairs of Moro Rock. Very close to the parking lot (200 feet), the stairway comes quite close to the ground below. Climb over the railing here and follow a nasty climbers' trail until the ground flattens a bit, with a sheer wall in front of you. A large tree blocks your path. Stair Trek starts before the tree.

The best belay station is on top of a 10-foot-high flake. From here, climb around 5 feet and place protection in the medium (1-2") crack. From here, make a very exposed, very balancey 10' traverse to the first bolt. The run-out between the first and second bolts is pretty big, say 20'. Between the two, you have basically no hands, other than the odd small chickenhead, and only the most subtle of feet. On vertical rock, this is 5.10 climbing. Here, a smear easily keeps you pasted to the rock. Trust those feet! Robert thinks this would be better rated a 5.7, and I agree.

After the second bolt, you reach a broad slab which leads up to the stairs. You can set up an anchor on a big crack from a crossing band of rocks, or up higher on a flat spot. Best alternative may just be to climb to the stairs and belay your follower from the trail. This route is not the best for a top-rope. Go to my topo if none of this makes sense.

© 2005 , Stanford Exploration Project
Department of Geophysics
Stanford University

Modified: 11/18/05, 13:53:02 PST , by morgan
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