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High Wire Crag
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Passing Lane S 
People's Choice S 
Poker Face S,TR 
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People's Choice 

YDS: 5.10d French: 6b+ Ewbanks: 21 UIAA: VII+ ZA: 21 British: E3 5b

   
Type:  Sport, 4 pitches
Consensus:  YDS: 5.10 French: 6b Ewbanks: 20 UIAA: VII- ZA: 19 British: E2 5b [details]
FA: Richard Wright and Anna Brandenburg-Schroeder, Fall 1997.
Page Views: 15,634
Submitted By: Michael Komarnitsky on Mar 1, 2001

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (287)
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Climbing the third pitch, most of the route is vis...
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Description 

A popular climb, and deservedly so. This route starts just after the trail meets up with the rock. Rolofson's guide suggests that it is the far right climb. However, a new bolted line is the far right one (Nickels and Dimes). Just to the left is Road Kill.

Pitch 1: Start up and follow a great, super-positive flake and then over a hump. Hope you wore your edging shoes, cause the crux is blank as hell for hands. Belay at the end of the right-sloping big ramp. 6 bolts.

Pitch 2: Scramble up the easy 5.5 section. You can and probably should link up the first two pitches (we did). Belay at the base of the dihedral. 6 bolts.

Pitch 3. Waste that sucker! This is the most fun I had in a while. Overhanging, steep dihedral with lots of stemming moves and good places to clip. The crux comes out after exiting the dihedral - swing right, up, clip, and finish to the bolts. 8 bolts.

Pitch 4 (optional): Go left and clip 2 more bolts, 5.5 s. 210 ft rap.


Protection 

6 bolts to a 2 bolt anchor, 50'. 6 more bolts to a 2 bolt anchor, 100'. 8 bolts to a 2 bolt anchor, 170'. With a 60m rope, you can JUST reach the 1 belay ledge, which is on top of a nice ramp where you can easily downclimb to the right.



Photos of People's Choice Slideshow Add Photo
3rd Pitch of People's Choice
3rd Pitch of People's Choice
CM following the easy part.
CM following the easy part.
BETA PHOTO
Airy view from the anchors at P3!  This is a great climb for those still getting used to heights.
Airy view from the anchors at P3! This is a great...
It's easy to get out to this ledge on the left ledge, but no, this is not the way. Photo by Paul Rezucha.
It's easy to get out to this ledge on the left led...
dane
dane
Gabe clipping at the P1 crux...good blank fun!
Gabe clipping at the P1 crux...good blank fun!
Brandi climbing into the sun and onto the slab crux of PC.
Brandi climbing into the sun and onto the slab cru...
Wild but easy stemming. Photo by Paul Rezucha.
Wild but easy stemming. Photo by Paul Rezucha.
Me on the third pitch of People's Choice.
Me on the third pitch of People's Choice.
Look Ma, no hands!  Lack of suitable hand holds on P1.
Look Ma, no hands! Lack of suitable hand holds on...
View from the anchor.
View from the anchor.
More wild stemming. Just above this you can swing out to the left which may be considered cheating but seems to be what most people do. Photo by Paul Rezucha.
More wild stemming. Just above this you can swing ...
Ben Mottinger straining up the 5.8 pitch.
Ben Mottinger straining up the 5.8 pitch.
Tyson Mao on the first pitch of People's Choice.
Tyson Mao on the first pitch of People's Choice.
The interesting P1 slab climbing starts right above here
The interesting P1 slab climbing starts right abov...
Chris Carr following the 5.8 section.
Chris Carr following the 5.8 section.
Janis working up the first pitch of People's Choice.
Janis working up the first pitch of People's Choic...
Erik Marr belaying under the 3rd pitch dihedral.
Erik Marr belaying under the 3rd pitch dihedral.
The P1 crux. Photo by Paul Rezucha.
The P1 crux. Photo by Paul Rezucha.
Nice shot of Myke Komarnitskys ass as he leads the crux pitch.
Nice shot of Myke Komarnitskys ass as he leads the...
The thin friction crux of P1
The thin friction crux of P1
Looking down just above the anchor on the ledge at the top of pitch 1.
Looking down just above the anchor on the ledge at...
Hittin the crux on P.1
Hittin the crux on P.1
What a great pitch!
What a great pitch!
Comments on People's Choice Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Dec 3, 2012
By Richard M. Wright
From: Lakewood, CO
Jan 1, 2001
rating: 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b

Comments to Ben- comment. The route to the right of PC is called "Nickles and Dimes", AKA "IQ Test" A hint, using the flake fails the IQ test. Stay left on the face and it just gets thinner and better with a run-out to the last bolt. My guess for a rating is 10ish on the face and maybe 5.8 with the flake. By the way, head left of the dihedral pitch on PC for even more fun, four new routes in all.

By Anonymous Coward
Jan 1, 2001

Ryan "Rhyno" Smith - This climb was the hardest lead that I have ever done. It was an amazing climb, but we didn have enough gear to safely complete it (damnit)! This climb is a ton of fun, but unless you know exactly what your partner is doing, I recommend getting a couple two-way radios to let each other know what the hell you'r e doing- I had a really hard time knowing what my partner was doing and vice versa from the noise of the cars and stream. What a great climb!!!

By Ben Mottinger
Founding Father
Jan 1, 2001

First, to clarify--Myke means that you can just reach the 1st belay ledge w/ a 60m when rapping from the very top. Also--the new route to the right of PCs is only 1 pitch and about 5.9 and includes a large flake to lieback about 1/2 way up. You can still climb this variation, then head over to the second pitch of PCs. Finally, Myke must have had his marshmellow shoes on, because theres not an abscence of holds for the hands at the crux on P1--they are just subtle.

By Chris Carr
Feb 23, 2002

This is the best sport rout I've ever climbed, hands down! Personally, I found the fist 50 feet the most fun, I love slab climbing. It's easy to get short on the gear if you don't come prepared, however, the bolts are close enough that, if you're comfortable, you could get by with only clipping every other one (especially on the 5.8 section). Great climb!

By Leo Paik
Administrator
From: Westminster, Colorado
Mar 5, 2002

10d is a bit generous, if you move L near the top of the dihedral. 10a perhaps for the first section though some ole trad, slab climbers called it 9. Still fun.

By Chris Dawson
From: Denver, CO
Mar 5, 2002

AC-did you do the second (crux/.10d) pitch, or are you talking about the first? Because the second pitch is not a slab.

By ClimbandMine
Jun 6, 2002

People's Choice is definitely one of the best sport routes in Colorado. I dig the first slab pitch - 10a-ish is probably right. Stemming and pulling up the crack in the upper dihedral is a blast too. Only at Sitting Bull Falls and Enchanted Tower in New Mexico have I had this much fun sport climbing!

By L. Hamilton
Aug 9, 2002

Makes one nice long pitch with a 70 meter rope. With a few long runners, and skipping some bolts on the midsection, rope drag is no trouble. One rap on a doubled 70m takes you easily down to the 3rd-class ramp.

By Anonymous Coward
Aug 10, 2002

you do not need a 70m rope to do this climb in 1 pitch. it is 50m long, with 22 bolts if you clip the anchors, less QDs if you skip a few.

By Richard M. Wright
From: Lakewood, CO
Sep 17, 2002
rating: 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b

PC has cold shut anchors at each belay. A run through in the spring of 2002 indicated that they were still in excellent shape. Nonethless, one should check them from time to time.

By Jason Carter
From: Monument, CO
Oct 2, 2002

A fine two pitch route indeed with 3 cruxes! The slab bulge on P1, moving through the middle of the dihedral on P2, and then another slab bulge after exiting the dihedral. Nice job!

However, I must be climbing this wrong along with everyone else (at least based on the chalk evidence) " The crux comes out after exiting the dihedral - swing right, up, clip, and finish to the bolts."

I've always exited the dihedral, moved LEFT, then up over the slabby bulge and then zipped up to the anchors. Does the route go RIGHT after the dihedral? Yikes, very thin, very airy - I'll have to try it!!!

By Jake Wyatt
From: Longmont, CO
Oct 21, 2002

I tried this route today, and was also drawn to the left after exiting the dihedral. I think I too was misled by the line of well-chalked holds. But looking down from the belay, I saw the adequate holds just off to the right. Perhaps the funky pocket near the bulge of the roof would have made a great foothold?

By Anonymous Coward
Dec 17, 2002

The whole route is 5.9+ max if you jog left at the top of the dihedral. You can stem rest through the whole dihedral and the holds are huge. The slab is classic edge balancing slab. It is overprotected so it is good for someone who is stepping into the 5.10 grade.

By DUCKMAN
Jul 22, 2003

The best climb on the High Wire Crag. Through not difficult, it is a good route for beginners to find out how good they really are. The multi-pitch climb will also test their wits of heights. Wear a bright colored shirt as the cars driving up the canyon will see you very easily. A very exposed wall for the road and the sun as well. A very fun route and a must once up on High Wire.

By Drew Allan
From: Denver/Aspen
Sep 25, 2003

Another run up this route has convinced me that the natural line is left of the bolts above the stemming corner on the second (last) pitch. You are clearly pulled by a good crimp and pocket to the left, which in turn makes you put both feet on the big ledge. Then it is just a question on how far left of the next two bolts you go. The farther left toward the diagonal right facing corner you go, the easier the moves. A quick look at Rolofson's guide confirms a dashed line left of the bolts above the ledge. The technical crux is probably the final slab moves on the first pitch.

By micah stocker
Feb 11, 2004
rating: 5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b

This is a great [route], it has [awesome] moves and lots of great exposure. In the book, it is broken down into three pitches, however, I [recommend] doing it all in one pitch. You need a 60m rope and should be confident with climbing 10a slab. I only used 2 bolts before I got to the overhanging dihedrial. I also think this route could be done via trad, and it might call for a boost in the grade. However one chooses to do the route, it is a blast.

By Michael J Yarros
From: Colorado Springs, CO
May 12, 2004
rating: 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b

Fun route. Although communicating with our partner is difficult because of the road/river noise.

By Anonymous Coward
Aug 20, 2004

This was my first climb ever and it was a blast! Starting off was relatively easy, but it got really bare around the middle and there wasn't much for my hands. Fot those who haven't climbed it before, I recommend going to the right to utilize the protruding rock for something to get a hold of. A good instructor, which we had, you don't have to worry about the fear that the rock creates and you can have great success on this fun rock.

By John Kelley
From: Sedona, AZ
Feb 16, 2005

Nice varied route, I found it a little reachy clipping the crux bolt on P3 after exiting the dihedral. All in all, great route with fun climbing and cool exposure.

By alpinista
Aug 8, 2005
rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a

Sorry to burst anyone's bubble, but there is no way this is a 5.10d, or suddenly this summer I've finally hit my goal of climbing 5.10d clean with no warm ups.

However...I [did] move left, not right after the dihedral, and I regret it. So, maybe there's one 5.10d move on an otherwise 5.8+/5.9 route.

Compared to some of the hard 5.9's Ii've climbed in CO, this route is much easier. A comparable 5.10a dihedral is [Hospital Corner] at [Lover's Leap] at [Tahoe] - and that was a legit 5.10a. This was way, way soft (like all grades at the [High Wire Crag]).

That said, it was way, way cool! Great hand jams, the feet are all there, and I felt that it must have been set by someone my height ('5"9). Perhaps reachy for smaller people...the bolts are, well, a bit much. I used all 13 draws and slings I brought on the last pitch - and still missed one.

cheers,alpinista.

By criger
Oct 25, 2005
rating: 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a

A terrific climb. Beautiful rock, natural line... can protect the whole line traditionally (if you begin with the trad line to the right as first pitch). Edging up the bulge on the first pitch is certainly the crux (5.10a). Stemming up the corner on the last pitch is 5.9, and exiting left may reach 5.10. Enjoy this beautiful climb (and quit chalking the hell out of it).

By Casey Bernal
From: Arvada, CO
Aug 21, 2008
rating: 5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a

Darren and I added a bolt to the top of the P3 anchors. It is a 75mm Triplex with a Fixe double ring hanger. This backs up the cold-shuts that need to be replaced. It adds a bit of comfort while rapping or lowering.

By adrenalated
From: Thornton, CO
Aug 26, 2008
rating: 5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b

Casey/Darren:
This is a question borne from naivety, not criticism. Why add a new bolt rather than just replace the two worn coldshuts?
However accomplished, I greatly appreciate your efforts in replacing worn out anchors.

By Casey Bernal
From: Arvada, CO
Aug 27, 2008
rating: 5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a

Jeff - Thanks for your recognition and thanks for asking. The basic reason is: time. In addition, the cold-shut hangers have little wear on them. We just have some trepidation about the non-visible part of the bolt. We thought our effort was most efficient by just adding 1 bombproof bolt to an 8 year old anchor, an anchor that a climbing party would be entirely relying on.

I was quite impressed with the Triplex and would be happy to replace the rest. The main downside to that hanger & bolt combo is that it retails for $22.90 each, though that will be forgotten long before it needs to be replaced. I replaced the P1 anchors 4? years ago and they look good. We just have to find the time, and choose to do the work (as opposed to climbing).

By Tzilla Rapdrilla
Aug 27, 2008

Casey & Darren,

Thanks for fixing the anchor. I too had noticed the wear and tear recently. I had pursued ASCA about getting some hardware for projects like this one, but they never responded. I guess you have to be in some sort of "in crowd" or something. The popularity of the routes in this area will necessitate future maintenance I'm sure.

TZ

By adrenalated
From: Thornton, CO
Aug 31, 2008
rating: 5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b

Climbers that were forced to bail off People's Choice today because of rain, please email me. I have pictures for you.

By Jon Zucco
From: Denver, CO
Oct 25, 2008
rating: 5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b

Very nice.

By JK1
From: Lakewood, CO
Nov 5, 2008

I had to leave a draw half way up the third pitch of People's Choice. If anyone happens to be up that way and retrieves it, there would be a beer reward for you. I greatly appreciate it. I was climbing on Monday Nov. 3rd in the afternoon.

By jhump
Dec 6, 2008
rating: 5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b

One of my favorite pitches in the canyon- if linked all into 1 pitch. Maybe 180 feet? The rope is long enough, why stop? Bring many draws and long runners. It may require skipping some bolts or backcleaning on the easy low angle mid-section to save draws and cut down on drag- not as hard as it sounds. For soloists with a Grigri or MiniTraxion, it makes a great afterwork climb where you can get 1000+ feet of good climbing in short order. If intimidated by the slab crux on the left, the climb can be easily done from the 5.7 bolted slab/flake to the right. This linkup makes the entire climb a great 5.9. Even after 30 or more laps on this climb, it still never fails to satisfy.

Edit: Forgot one more way to enjoy this climb: TRAD. Do the right hand flake variation to get some gear low (the slab crux without bolts is probably x rated). Get a few pieces on the easy slab above and then pack the dihedral with bomber nuts. Very reasonable protection on a good, long pitch.

By J. Fox
From: Black Hawk, CO
May 7, 2009

This was a fun climb which I did w/Mark C. on 5/7/09. We began up the first pitch on Nickels & Dimes though. P3 is tricky! I lost my hat on it and it blew down to the top of the tunnel. I was able to retrieve it thanks to the spotting work from the lovely girl at the base who then gave me a strawberry! Thanks again!

By Tony T.
From: Denver, CO
Aug 23, 2009

Great climb! I took the biggest and highest whipper on this route about a week ago. I took it on the third pitch getting out of the dihedral.

Two things...verbal communication is almost impossible on the third pitch. Bring a two-way radio or a loud person.

Second, today it was about 92F, and the rock was burning hot to the touch. We had to abandon our revisit to the route. After about 4pm the shade finally hit it and it cooled off.

By Jesse Reeves
From: Broomfield, CO
Sep 4, 2009
rating: 5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b

P1: Great starting flake to slanted lieback to the slab crux. You just got to trust your feet. One of the best climbs at HW, it's got it all.

By Buff Johnson
Oct 25, 2009

Triple C must-do route for fun

By Andrew Bradberry
From: Golden, CO
Mar 7, 2010

There's a huge block (maybe 150 lbs) in the middle of the dihedral pitch that has been making noise. The last two times I've been on PC this block will make a 'creaking' noise that's very obvious. I doubt it would go, but it's still pretty spooky. I think it's in between the 2nd and 3rd bolt. You can avoid it by face climbing to the left.

By Geoff U
From: Highlands Ranch, CO
Apr 5, 2010
rating: 5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b

Great route... can do as single pitch with bolt elimination at P2 and slings.

By Sam Feuerborn
From: Durango, CO
Aug 23, 2010

Did it the other day as single pitch, skipped 6 bolts and brought 3 extend able draws and put those near the beginning of P3 and it was great, a few more longer draws would have been nice but drag was totally manageable. Give it a go, it's lots of fun.

By Dan Holz
From: Denver, CO
Jun 2, 2011
rating: 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a

Feels like it goes at about 5.10a'ish, though it can feel a bit airy on the last pitch. Be sure you work out some rope signals with your partner before heading up the dihedral. You are out of sight and ear shot when you reach the anchor.

Casey & Darren - thanks for beefing up the anchor!

By keith story
From: Boulder, CO
Jun 14, 2012
rating: 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b

FYI, P3 has an awkward clip after you pass the dihedral. Stay strong or swing large.

By TuRETZ
From: Denver, co
Dec 3, 2012
rating: 5.10c/d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b

Fun route! Run it together as one long pitch with some extendable draws (5 ish) and a 70m. There are a 2 or 3 spinners up top that could use replacing as well as 2 of the 3 anchor bolts are a bit old. Great find of a route. Definitely will come back for this again!