|West Ridge - part E - top to Xanadu
Joke Crack is located immediately around the corner right from Chockstone, at the upper end of the West Ridge just before Rincon. Climb the slanting, striking splitter in the overhanging left wall of the corner to a small tree and rap anchors (shared with Chockstone). Rap, or belay and then continue on Superstone, up into a tight, R-facing corner past a bolt (5.11a, rated 5.11c in the Eldo book), then continue directly up the corner, moving a tad left, then back right and up the corner (hard move, 5.11c), or avoid this hard move by stepping out of the corner right, then up. Rap anchors up and right (one rope off, and catch a toprope on Ministry of Fear, 5.11c/d X, the thin seam in the steep wall to the right of Joke Crack, that is reached from a hand traverse starting on the left).
The crack is a bit sharp, and provides some technical finger and hand jams. If you use the available wall to the right to stem out on and rest, the route is perhaps 5.11a. Avoiding the right wall is contrived, but a good challenge that jacks the difficulty up to somewhere in the mid-5.11 range.
The blunt arete between Chockstone and Joke Crack has not been climbed free, yet, but provides an interesting toprope flail session.
Standard Eldo rack including medium - large wires, TCUs and cams to 3". Bring RPs if you continue with Superstone.
From: Westminster, CO
Jul 29, 2007
This would be a three-star route IF the wall and the easy crack forming the start of purple haze weren't there. But as it is, it felt very contrived. Without using the "easy" crack and stemming the wall for rest, this felt like a 10, but then again, one must use it to get started...
Sep 28, 2009
Agree w/ Shumin about contrived. It is so sad that one of the prettier cracks in Eldo is in such a tight location. The crux of Joke Crack is not bumping into the wall 3 feet right of it. Unfortunately, the crack leans to the right, so it is pretty hard not to kick the right wall. The gear towards the top gets a little tricky as the crack has a funky flared/poddy geometry, and you have to pull to the left to look into the crack. Also, there is a wedged flake in the very top that is a little disconcerting. Worth doing once though.
|By Dave Holliday|
Apr 13, 2014
This is a fun route even with stemming over to the right wall.