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Plumb Line Crag
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Plumb Line 

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

   
Type:  Trad, 1 pitch, 40'
Consensus:  YDS: 5.9+ French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: E1 5a [details]
FA: Steve Matous, summer 1975, solo
Page Views: 6,532
Submitted By: Brian Weinstein on Aug 8, 2005

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (74)
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Ryan Jarret cruising up the Plumb Line.

Dirt roads reopened as of June 2014 MORE INFO >>>

Description 

This is the namesake route for the crag. This is a short but sweet, picture perfect splitter that's a little overhanging. Rappel at the top.

Protection 

Hand size gear.


Photos of Plumb Line Slideshow Add Photo
Plumb line with the imposing Big Pink to the left.
Plumb line with the imposing Big Pink to the left.
Plumb Line's lower terrace.
BETA PHOTO: Plumb Line's lower terrace.
T. Bo bouldering out Plumb Line.
T. Bo bouldering out Plumb Line.

Comments on Plumb Line Add Comment
Show which comments
By richard magill
May 21, 2006
rating: 5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b

Really nice route - continuous and pumpy! Overhangs gently and offers pretty much nothing besides the crack for hands or feet. Great jams and takes great gear.

I felt this was harder than the first pitch of Friday the 13th, comparable in difficulty to Cupcake. So I think 10b would be more in line with standard Vedauwoo ratings.

I liked it so much I did it 4 times in a row.
By Brian Scoggins
From: Eugene, OR
Jun 3, 2007
rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a

Felt easier than the Cupcake. You don't need anything bigger than a #3 Camalot, or anything smaller than a #1 Camalot (although you could place a #0.75 at the very top, it's in a jam that makes the top out easier). Doubles in those sizes is severe overkill, too.
By Steve Matous
Aug 1, 2008

First Ascent free solo by Steve Matous summer 1975, with Scott Heywoood then following with a rope. We used to spend a lot of time wandering around and climbing what ever looked good but the information often only was known to the Laramie climbers or others we knew.
By Stich
From: Colorado Springs, Colorado
Aug 10, 2008
rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a

Funny reading your comment, Richard. I felt this was significantly easier than Friday the 13th. It's because my wrists fit this climb like a glove, where as on F13 they don't quite fit right and are generally too big, until the fist part near the chains. Cupcake is much harder.
By Kyle Anderson
From: Westminster, CO
Aug 23, 2009
rating: 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b

Awesome crack, but pretty stout. I thought that this was as difficult as Incredible Hand Crack in IC, although much shorter. Definitely felt like solid 5.10 to me, so I guess that makes it a typical 9+...
By Christina kalb
From: Boulder, CO
Aug 23, 2009

I think crack ratings are very dependent on hand size. I too thought it was a bit harder than 5.9+.
By Brian Scoggins
From: Eugene, OR
Aug 23, 2009
rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a

I know a lot of people for whom #1 camalots are perfect hands, and they all found this one a little bit stiffer than the 5.9 grade would suggest. However, in keeping with the grades in the area, this route is definitely 5.9. Maybe plus or minus, depending on who you ask, but still 5.9. I won't deny that in other areas, it might be graded whole number grades harder or easier, but in comparison to other Vedauwoo 5.9s that lack an offwidth crux, Plumb Line should feel to be middle-of-the-road 5.9.
By Justin Edl
Aug 23, 2009

For one I would second Scoggins' statement that this is stiff for 5.9 when compared to contemporary standards, and especially so if you have small hands. I however disagree that this is middle of the road for 5.9 at Vedauwoo, and not just hand cracks. Probably not the hardest, but definitely at the top end of the grade for this area. The only one that really comes to mind as being harder is Climb and Punishment, but only because it is longer and therefore has an endurance component. There are 5.8s here that have moves as hard as this one though, the beginning of the "second pitch" for Cats Cradle being a fine example.
By slim
Administrator
Aug 24, 2009
rating: 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a

Some people say 'Duel' is harder. Plumb Line is pretty typical for 5.9 granite crack.
By Kyle Anderson
From: Westminster, CO
Aug 24, 2009
rating: 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b

Yeah, Brian, I hear ya. I definitely had a little bit of "grade shock" when I first came here. No comparing a Shelf Road 5.9 with a Voo 5.9, that is for sure. I am looking forward to getting worked over by more climbs in Vedauwoo soon!!