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Northwest Slabs
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Bolted Arete T,S 
Cows are People Too T 
Cows in Space T 
Doctor Cow S 
Paint it Sad T,S 
Ribeye Flake T 
Sky Crack T 
Squid Skid T 
Stiffler's Mom T 
Turbo Pup T,S 
Yellow Dihedral T 

Sky Crack 

YDS: 5.7 French: 5a Ewbanks: 15 UIAA: V+ ZA: 13 British: MVS 4b

   
Type:  Trad, 1 pitch, 230'
Consensus:  YDS: 5.7 French: 5a Ewbanks: 15 UIAA: V+ ZA: 13 British: MVS 4b [details]
FA: Unknown
Page Views: 2,881
Submitted By: Aaron Martinuzzi on Feb 6, 2010

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BETA PHOTO: Sky Crack (in all its glory) ascends the right-ang...

Description 

Sky Crack is an amazing finger- and hand-crack that defines, and ascends, the right margin of the NW Slabs. The climb is easily identified as a clean crack splitting the low-angle slab above the base cairn, and begins in a right-facing, right-leaning dihedral below and the to the left of the crack.

Begin by liebacking around the right side of a white flake leaning against the wall below the base of the dihedral and continue to lieback up the dihedral above. It's probably worth slinging your pro on the end of this section, as the dihedral heads right while the majority of the climb angles slightly left.

At the end of the dihedral, pull through a short roof on bomber fingerlocks to gain a shallow groove that ends at a second overhang. Overcome this second crux and swim up the classic hand and finger crack above until the crack dies out on Cow Pie Ledge.

If you're climbing on a 70m rope, this climb should unquestionably be done in one pitch, since any belay would break up an otherwise continuous line. However, a belay could be had at any point on the pitch, since the crack takes pro for its entire length.

Location 

Sky Crack climbs the right side of the NW Slab of Greyrock, and is plainly obvious as one reaches the cairn at the base of the face.

Protection 

Nuts through #3 BD; plenty of opportunities for passive pro, bring your hexes!

Novice leaders will likely feel more comfortable with doubles since the route is a full rope length.


Photos of Sky Crack Slideshow Add Photo
So much fun. Cruiser fingers & hands.
So much fun. Cruiser fingers & hands.

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By Aaron Martinuzzi
Feb 6, 2010

Of all the moderate lines I've climbed at Greyrock, this is absolutely my favorite thus far. The grade is spot on, the initial lieback solid and fun, the overhangs exciting but secure, and the crack totally stellar.

The opening dihedral has a few hollow flakes (one immense one, actually, though I imagine it'll stick around for a while) and a couple ready-to-exfoliate edges, but this shouldn't deter climbers from this line, as the remaining 85% of the climbing is clean. Finger locks and hand jams can easily be made around the bushes in the initial crack, and it's smooth sailing from there. With a few more ascents, this line will clean right up and stand among the best moderate pitches in Northern Colorado.
By ErikJohnson
From: Fort Colllins
Feb 23, 2010

Nice job on the description, Aaron. I can't wait to get up there and check out the NW area (as soon as some of this snow melts). It looks like some good climbing.
By Aaron Martinuzzi
Feb 23, 2010

Thanks, Erik! It's an enjoyable place, and it melts out pretty quickly since the majority of the good climbing faces South and West.
By Kevin Landolt
From: Fort Collins, Wyoming
Jun 5, 2010

Fun little climb.
By Drew Clements
From: Fort Collins, CO
Oct 13, 2011

Very nice route, but I think 5.7 is a little stiff of a rating. I suppose it is long.
By Travkrack
From: Fort Collins, Colorado
Mar 17, 2013

Awesome route! Definitely one of my favs, the grade is spot on. After you lieback the beginning and pull that first roof, be prepared for some weird pro placements. From the first roof to the second roof, it's a flaring crack. Protect the first roof as best as you can, because I had a hard time finding a good placement for something in between. Might be about a 20 ft runout? Lots of fun and would recommend it to my friends. The hand/finger crack at top is so awesome. Enjoy!