The Potholes Area is made up of three areas: Ramsay's Pinnacle, Doorway Rocks (including Devil's Doorway, Major Mass, and Minor Mass), and Red Rocks. Doorway Rocks is one of the largest formations on the bluffs surrounding Devil's Lake, but in spite of this it isn't as popular as other formations at the park.
The well known Devil's Doorway sits atop Doorway Rocks and attracts many day hikers, though this shouldn't be of concern to climbers since the Doorway's immediate vicinity contains only a few of the climbs found at this group of rocks.
There are two smaller areas on either side of the Doorway Rocks that are worth a visit. To the west sits Ramsay's Pinnacle, a grouping of shorter climbs easily accessed from the Devil's Doorway Trail. To the east you'll find Red Rocks, a collection of rocks that straddle the Potholes Trail.
To get to the rocks in the Potholes Area, park at the South Shore parking lot and follow the paved trail north over the railroad tracks to the junction of the Grottos Trail and the Balanced Rock Trail.
At this junction, take a right and walk along the Grotto's Trail at the bottom of the bluff. After about 10 minutes of easy walking, turn left on the Potholes Trail, and head up the bluff on the rock steps. The Potholes Trail winds its way up through the talus slope to the top of the bluff, meeting the Devil's Doorway Trail near the top.
Just before the top of the Potholes Trail, you will find it hard to miss the Red Rocks. The trail squeezes through a two foot wide fissure that separates two 20 foot tall blocks. This is Red Rocks.
To access Minor Mass, cut across the talus field to the left before passing through the Red Rocks formation.
Continue around the bottom of the cliff to Major Mass or follow the Potholes Trail to the top and turn left on the Devil's Doorway Trail to access the upper level of Major Mass.
To reach Ramsay's Pinnacle, follow the Devil's Doorway Trail past the Doorway Rocks. Ramsay's Pinnacle is about 150 west of the Doorway Rocks.
The Jolly Roger is a fun climb with a great crack system. Start the climb by surmounting a 5 foot slab. Once on top of the slab climb the flat face with a series of cracks in it. The bottom of the face has a slight overhang, but it becomes vertical and then less than vertical as you climb higher. Use some fist jams and finger moves to get up this crack. The crux is near the middle of the climb in a smooth blank niche that requires a less-than-sure foot smear.To get to the top of the Jolly R...[more]Browse More Classics in WI