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Broken Rock
Routes Sorted
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Crack Up T 
Eulogy T 
Fit for Life S 
Momentum Operator T 
Muad'Dib S 
Out to Pasture aka Momentus Fist Trainer T 
South Beach T,S 
White Trash T,S 

Crack Up 

YDS: 5.9+ French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: E1 5a

Type:  Trad, 1 pitch, 60'
Consensus:  YDS: 5.9+ French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: E1 5a [details]
FA: D. Chelton, B. Culp, 1973
Page Views: 1,921
Submitted By: Tony B on May 21, 2003

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (13)
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Dana, making it look easy, as usual.

Seasonal Raptor Closure - Lifted MORE INFO >>>


Like Momentum Operator, this route would be more popular if it were: A) cleaner or B) on Castle Rock, just 50 meters away.

Approach Broken Rock by parking at Castle Rock and going to the Country Club Crack area. Walk across the little bridge to Broken Rock, and go then 50 feet up the hill to the right. You will see an obvious pair of super-steep twin cracks that reach a bomb-bay chimney and then another hand crack with a a 2-bolt anchor above (Momentum Operator, 5.11a). Perhaps 10 meters further up the hill is a severely left-leaning, undercling flake/dihedral with a wide-hands crack running under it for its length of 40' until it goes vertical. This route, called 'Crack Up' is fairly obvious. What is less obvious is just how much guano you will encounter along the way--if you are easily offended by guano, don't bother climbing this line. After a few ascents of it, lead and follow, my rope had a faint guano odor. My second took a lot of hangs and got the rope pulled up into the crack, so a solid team might not have such a bad problem.

Climb the obvious cracks with wide hands and thin fists jams, protecting the solid rock with cams for a ways. There are a few stiff moves, but good rests via stems come frequently. There are more rests on good hands for those with no micro-biotic concerns, but I preferred to ignore the crap-covered holds. After about 50' of climbing, the line hits a ledge and presents several options. You can place a directional and traverse left past bushes to the anchors on Momentum Operator to belay and rap, or you can continue upward on some cracks, or scramble uphill to a downclimb by going hard right. There are several good belay anchors for any option. The rock is great and solid, the climb could get 2 stars if it were not for the poo on it.


A standard rack including double cams in the 2"-3.5" range.

Photos of Crack Up Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Crack Up and White Trash.  Crack Up climbs the ove...
BETA PHOTO: Crack Up and White Trash. Crack Up climbs the ove...
Rock Climbing Photo: Jenny Schillinger follows 'Crack Up (5.9+)' at Bro...
Jenny Schillinger follows 'Crack Up (5.9+)' at Bro...
Rock Climbing Photo: Lew getting it done.
Lew getting it done.

Comments on Crack Up Add Comment
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By matthew sawyer
May 29, 2003

Tried this once some years ago when I was a fairly solid 5.9 leader and got spanked. Extra #3 Camalots/#3.5 Friends.
By Ben Mottinger
Founding Father
Jul 16, 2005
rating: 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a

Pretty good route with shade. Seemed a little stiff for 5.9--pretty wide down low.
By tooTALLtim
From: Boulder, CO
Jun 18, 2009

I have average guy size hands, and only had to throw one fist in for the whole route.

I give this three stars for: steepness, even nature, great jams, and I found it dirty only down low.
By Jay Eggleston
From: Denver
Apr 6, 2015
rating: 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a

There is only one area with guano on this at the moment, and it is avoidable. This climb is hard for 5.9, but most 9+ climbs do feel pretty difficult.
By Rich Farnham
Jun 15, 2015

Pretty physical for 5.9...I guess maybe "Castle Rock 5.9" (think The Black Crack). I think folks with small hands will find this to be significantly harder. I thought it was a decent pitch if you're looking for something different to do in the area.

At the top, there are now nearby anchors on White Trash, so you don't have to choose one of the options Tony describes.

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