Peaks Climbed: Transview Mountain, "The Sphinx", "Ramp Peak", Shunesburg Mountain & "Shunes Hollow Peak"

Peak Heights: 6,321' / 5,872' / 5,960' / 5,960' / 5,720'

Route: Out & Back Traverse

Difficulty: Class 5.2

Location: Zion National Park, Utah

Trailhead: Shunes Hollow

Mileage & Gain: 13 mi & 5,600 ft RT

Date Climbed: November 23, 2018

This quintet of peaks is situated in the remote southeast corner of the park in an area that sees almost no visitors. Massive Parunaweep Canyon separates the Shunesburg massif from the Watchman massif and the plethora of small peaks that line the south side of UT-9.

Getting to Shunes Hollow requires four wheeling through 10+ miles of deep sand (which is what had scared me off up until now!). My 4runner did well, but the last mile was narrower and the brush inflicted some pinstriping. Unless you really don't care about that sort of thing, I suggest simply walking the last mile. Fortunately my exterior was far from pristine to begin with.

I was shocked at how interesting and high quality this outing was. In retrospect, I'm not sure why. This IS Zion after all. Even though all of these peaks are quite close together the terrain is complex and it seems like it takes an eternity to work your way from one to the next. It was one long and continuous puzzle. Routefinding east to west was much more difficult than west to east because of the geometry of the landscape. Bagging all five of them made for a long, tough, 100% off trail day.

Ramp Peak may have been my favorite of the bunch, it's narrow and aesthetic summit ridge leading to jaw-dropping views over Parunaweep Canyon. I suppose CP named it so for the large ramp that yields easy access to the summit ridge from the east, but I think such a cool peak deserves a much grander label.

Shunesburg Mountain was the toughest of the five, and the only one with some spice. Below the summit was a short stretch of easy but steep and exposed fifth class climbing that got your attention.

Shunes Hollow Peak had a lot of characer too, especially for being such a little guy. It had taken so much work to get all the way out there and the route had been so convoluted that on the summit I had the overwhelming feeling that very few people had actually set foot there. The views from the top, which include a unique and seldom seen perspective of The Watchman massif, are totally awesome. Thinking about what is required to get back to your car from here, however, is not.

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