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Reefer Madness 

YDS: 5.11a French: 6c Ewbanks: 22 UIAA: VII+ ZA: 22 British: E3 5c

Type:  Sport, 1 pitch
Consensus:  YDS: 5.11a French: 6c Ewbanks: 22 UIAA: VII+ ZA: 22 British: E3 5c [details]
FA: Alan Nelson, 1998.
Page Views: 11,426
Submitted By: Ramin Jamshidi on Jan 1, 2001

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (316)
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Just before the crux....

Temporary closures near Fiscal Cliff: May-July 2014 MORE INFO >>>


Start at the giant eyebolt and head up to sweet, fairly sustained crimpy climbing. Some teeny holds, but you earn a nice rest in the middle of the hard stuff. A really fantasic 11a, but if you want to work even harder, the second pitch ("Porn Queen") is rated 11c/d.


7 bolts to a 2 bolt anchor with lowering rings.

Photos of Reefer Madness Slideshow Add Photo
Kevin heading up Reefer Madness.
Kevin heading up Reefer Madness.
A sequence shot of free solo of Reefer Madness by Matt Lloyd.
A sequence shot of free solo of Reefer Madness by ...
Brandon Conaway on Reefer Madness.
Brandon Conaway on Reefer Madness.
Sam on Reefer Madness.
BETA PHOTO: Sam on Reefer Madness.
Brandon Conaway on Reefer Madness.
Brandon Conaway on Reefer Madness.
Reefer Madness.
Reefer Madness.
Nearing the top-out.
Nearing the top-out.
Brandon Conaway on Reefer Madness.
Brandon Conaway on Reefer Madness.
Michelle on Reefer Madness.
Michelle on Reefer Madness.

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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Jul 27, 2014
By Jesse Ryan
Jan 1, 2001

R.M. extension, Porn Queen has decent moves but be prepared to be climbing bird poop. Also, reaching the last bolt before the chains is a dicey for those under 6' and a #0 TCU protects a fall onto the ledge and beyond.
By Anonymous Coward
Jan 1, 2001

I wouldn't discourage people under six feet from trying this route. I'm 5'9" not a hot climber by any means and the last section, though definitely out of character for the area (slopy and balancy) was not a sandbag, and I found it doable.
By Jeff Lockyer
From: Canmore, AB
Sep 29, 2001

A great route, I give it three stars. I think it may be a little bit harder from someone that is shorter than say 5', the crux sidepulls may be very hard to get to and be very balancy, will no doubt be harder than 11a. Next time out, ten digit dialing, looks superb... Cheers
By Steve Kelly
Oct 23, 2002

Great route, tons of fun all the way to the chains. Great holds and interesting moves. Definitely harder for someone shorter than around 5'10". My partner had a hell of a time pushing through the crux sidepulls and is about 5'9" with a fairly average reach. The section right before the ledge in the middle is also somewhat reachy. I'll definitely be coming back for more.
By Anonymous Coward
Jun 11, 2003

Fun route. Definitely not 11. The hardest move is no harder than mid 10 and there are plenty of very good rests before and after which should make the overall rating mid 10. Fun climbing with lots of bolts.
By Richard M. Wright
From: Lakewood, CO
Jun 11, 2003

Thanks AC - I was hoping someone would put this line in its place. I was thinking 5.8 for side pulls on marginal feet and maybe 5.7 for long reach at the end that burls out to the slopers at the finish. So, 5.8 plus 5.7, looks like 5.6 overall. What do you suppose that Alan was thinking? My Grandma could do it, and she has been dead for 45 years.
By Casey Bernal
From: Arvada, CO
Jun 12, 2003
rating: 5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b

I did not mean to offend anyone. I was not trying to put anyone down. Route grades should be consistant. I think it would be a bad idea to do this climb and go to another area and think the grade would be the same in difficulty for another route. CCC is notoriously over rated especially compared to other nearby areas (Eldorado canyon, (part of) Boulder canyon, South Platte, Lumpy, RMNP). This is my own opinion on the difficulty of the route, you can give yours (it is harder than 5.6). It is a fun climb.

Casey Bernalc a s e y b e r n a l @ h o t m a i l . c o m
By Richard M. Wright
From: Lakewood, CO
Jun 12, 2003

The notion of the "Gold Standard" has been batted around on this site several times, and I think that everyone agrees that refernce to a Gold Standard is a good way to come to agreement on a grade. For Reefer Madness, one could pick the crux of Superslab (easier but harder to protect), or P1 of Animal Magnetism (bit harder) to bracket RM. That places it between 10C and 11C. How about Evangeline, seems a bit harder, so not 11b. Sea of Dreams? - bit harder, so harder than 10d. Suparete? - similar in difficulty and continuity. I think he got it right on the nose.
By Chip Phillips
From: Broomfield, CO
Jun 12, 2003

Are there routes around here graded 10c or 10d that seem harder? ... Definitely are there routes around here graded 10c or 10d that seem easier? ... Definitely are there routes around here graded 11b or 11c that seem easier? ... Definitely are there routes around here graded 11b or 11c that seem harder? ... Definitely.

My point? Grades as we all know are not an absolute ... does a route or problem really have to "seem harder" to us than every route we've done of a lower grade or "seem easier" than every route or problem we've done of a higher grade before we are willing to settle on a grade or willing to leave a grade alone that's not completely out of whack? Every route if different for every person and to paraphrase a quote from John Gill, "every ascent is different" ... even for the same person.

Secondly, we also know that people's ideas of grades become skewed by the areas they climb at regularly. Unfortunately, ratings at different places here in CO are all over the place and often times make no sense at all (there are places in the US that grades make total sense, but that's another topic). Yeah, a lot of routes of the same grade in Eldo and Lumpy will seem hard when compared with a lot of routes in CCC (BTW ... comparing traditional ratings with sport ratings is a bad idea anyway as it is an entirely different ballgame even if you preplace and inspect all your gear first). Anyway, does that make Eldo & Lumpy right and CCC wrong???

After climbing all over the country, I've come to the conclusion that the truth is somewhere in between, but its definitely not worth using anymore cb.com bandwidth over.

That said, I think I'll stop ... peace.
By Edward Jenner
Aug 15, 2003

Comparing to another climb near by; it is definitely harder than Hot Stuff.
By Shane Zentner
From: Colorado
Jun 25, 2004

The grade felt right to me. Realizing that the grades in the canyon can be sometimes soft, Reefer Madness felt right on. I'm a short, skinny little bastard who is not much of a sport climber so take my comment with a grain of salt. I'm comparing this to other 5.11s at Wall of the Nineties.
By Jeremy
From: Boulder, CO
Aug 3, 2004
rating: 5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c

Man, you guys are taking the wind right out of my sails. This was my first 11 onsight and I loved it! I was really pumped at the end even with the good rests. May be a light 11a but much harder than any 10d I've done.
By Michael Amato
Jul 22, 2005

If you can reach the sidepull on the lower move (I can and I'm 5'-9"), you may take for granted a very tough move to get to that hold for a shorter person. Same goes for the top.
By Lon Black
Jul 24, 2005

Superb line. The thinner section around the fourth bolt (?) was the crux for me. The route includes nice thin climbing then somewhat rounded laybacks in a crack system finishing with sloping holds to top out.
By Luke Evans
Sep 6, 2005
rating: 5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c

Such a Great Route! The Rock is Amazing. Crisp Edges, Slopers, Jugs........Awesome. The Undercling at the huge ledge after the CRuX seemed to have been broken but it doesn't really make a difference!
By Nate Weitzel
Jul 5, 2007

Added some lowering hooks to the anchors of this one. Left the old chains in place in case people don't like the new hooks.
By Aeon Aki
Jun 18, 2008

Perhaps it was the blazing sun mixed with greasy holds, the contrived nature of the climbing, the choss I had to navigate my way through, or the grid-bolted face I was looking up at, but this route left much to be desired. If this is the best rock in Clear Creek Canyon, I think I've seen enough. Bomb!
By Phil Persson
From: Denver, Colorado
Aug 24, 2008

Great route...crux for me was almost more the final move topping out on tenuous slopers than the lower balancy sidepull move. Definitely sequency this kicked my ass the first time, but looking forward to going back.
By Jon Zucco
From: Denver, CO
Jun 8, 2009
rating: 5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b

I could've sworn it was 10+ before I checked the guidebook, but I guess it could be the infinite amount of ledges/rests between the business. Haha, what a clean line though. Seems like a great warm up for Ten Digit.
By slim
Aug 24, 2009
rating: 5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b

A decent route, but I was a bit disappointed by the slabby, ledgy nature of the climbing, and how short it was. Grade seemed way off, although some of my shorter climbing partners disagree.
By Luke Childers
Nov 11, 2009

Great climbing on good stone, but I was expecting more...it had a big reputation built up around it & I found it fell short of my expectations. However, this is still a great line and worth climbing again and again!!!
By Deathkills
From: North Denver CO
May 4, 2010

Why would you give a route you thought fell short 4 stars???
By M Lindfors
From: Highlands Ranch
May 16, 2010

My son onsighted and thought the grade was good. I guess if you are really short 5'1" or so, you can use intermediates to get to the top.
By Heyted
Jun 11, 2010

I climbed this, this morning, great climb, fits the grade. All you turds who want to downgrade it should either be climbing harder or haven't climbed enough grades to compare. It is clean and the crux has a great move that is pretty technical, it's just a short thriller.
By dan scales
From: Denver, CO
Apr 13, 2011
rating: 5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c

Fun climb. A climber's 11. Techy crux that took a couple goes to figure out and good rests throughout. Not burly or pumpy, but you've got to be a skilled climber to send (no muscling up steep jugs..cough...Wall of Justice...cough).
By Harald Harb
From: Dumont
Aug 5, 2011

This is a fine climb, fun, with a techy crux, but not a Rifle level 5.11, it maybe a Clear Creek 5.11, but there are huge standard differences between Rifle and Clear Creek. If you want to be a 5.12 climber, stick with Clear Creek, because you will not send a Rifle 5.12 with Clear Creek experience. Rifle is about three letter grades more difficult.

This is not to put down CC, I love climbing here, but just bringing some reality to the ratings.
By Keith H. North
From: Englewood, CO
Aug 7, 2011
rating: 5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c

Reality: within the canyon, the ratings are consistent.
Reality: compared to the most sandbagged crag in the country (give or take), the grades are soft.
By slim
Aug 8, 2011
rating: 5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b

It seems like comparing apples and lawn furniture. Too different to really make a realistic comparison.
By Dwight Jugornot
From: Arvada, Co.
Oct 3, 2011
rating: 5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c

Loved the thin moves. Kinda like "Walking With A Ghost" at Canal Zone, but much easier. Great route to practice body position and foot edging.
By nate post
Oct 9, 2012

I just climbed in Rifle last weekend, so this felt like a 5.10, but as was said before, that's like comparing oranges to lawn chairs. I thought it felt 5.11a for CCC. Fun, short climb probably a great one if you're looking for your first 5.11 lead. It kinda felt like a gym climb with plenty a bolts, and the holds in your face obvious.
By Darren Mabe
From: Flagstaff, AZ
Oct 10, 2012
rating: 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b

Nice, Nate! Looks like you need to step it up and do Ten Digit, a Rifle 11+!
By nate post
Oct 11, 2012

I can't wait to get back and try Curvaceous, Wet Dream, and Ten Digit. In that order, it sounds kinda dirty. It was the first time for my wife and I climbing at wall of the '90s. She hates waiting and watching me claw, curse, fall, scream, and cry my way up 5.12s or Rifle 5.11s, so I might have to go back to try those with a different belay partner. Thanks for the great guidebook!
By Darren Mabe
From: Flagstaff, AZ
Oct 11, 2012
rating: 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b

Good plan. Wall of the '90s is stacked. Also throw Schwing Salute in that mix, not too much harder than RM.
By Robert Daniel.
From: Denver, Colorado
Nov 17, 2013

FYI there is a big ole pile of sheeit to the left of the anchors.
By climberboy228
May 26, 2014

Almost got the onsight...misread the mid-route crux and got into trouble...but I loved the route! Also used the route to set a top rope on the famous Ten Digit Dialing to the left.
By Lauren D. Hollingsworth
From: Colorado Springs, CO
Jul 27, 2014
rating: 5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c

At 5'5" I'll take .11b. Undercling off the rest block to clip, then moving up by crimping the left foothold to get into the angled crack= .11b. Couldn't reach the juggy looking thing that taller people were clipping from at that bolt. Great climb!