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When hiking into Icebox pay attention to the north side of the canyon. You will pass several small caves and roofs before reaching varnished rock. Keep going - Spring Break lies slightly west of the Magellanic Cloud/Cold September Corner area on a rectangular face of dark rock immediately left of a huge right facing corner capped by chossy roofs. There is a ledge atop this face with a communal anchor at a large horizintal break where the rock becomes less neat and more cruddy.
Spring Break ascends the center of the rectangular face following a thin crack system and horizontals.
P1, .11+: A little grunt off of the deck will get you to an inviting horizontal crack/jug where you can assess exactly how far you might fall in the very near future. Before this, get a spot or place some gear for there is a distinct possibility of a tree trunk enema. Proceed, following the thin vertical crack through the first roof, cramming gear wherever possible. More gear, more climbing lead you to a second roof, after which is a very much appreciated horizontal, rest and relaxation included. More climbing, more gear (trend to the right, back toward the middle of the face and straight up at the last thin crack), deep breath, clip anchors, rap with a rope, sit in the sun, have a snack or a drink of water. A nap is also acceptable.
This can easily be TR'd by leading Mister Masters (9+) around the corner to the east.
Technical, balancy, sustained, intriguing and all around enjoyable climbing on this one.
Figuring out the protection definitely enhances the experience of this climb. A standard rack with a few extra medium to small cams will do. TCU's are also helpful.
|By John Wilder|
From: Las Vegas, NV
Mar 19, 2007
rating: 5.11+ 7a 24 VIII E4 6a
a solid lead for anyone touching the grade- easy to work until you feel ready. that said, don't be afraid of this route- the bulk of the route is protected by #0.5 to #1 C4s (bring two of each), with a few small (but very good) pieces of gear to supplement. One obvious #2 down low will finish off the rack nicely.
On lead, you do have to get your feet above gear in a couple of places, but the gear is nuclear and the falls are safe.
On TR, this route is a challenge, but not insane....decent rests come between cruxes, and the holds are all pretty good. great climb!
Feb 27, 2009
rating: 5.11d 7a 24 VIII E5 6a
I think this climb is 11d on lead, because you can't really rush trough it. The pro is very solid, but strenuous to place, no doubt.
Having a good endurance and taking his time with pro is KEY.
|By Will Butler|
From: Boulder, CO
Nov 28, 2009
Fantastic route, one of the best single pitches I've been on at Red Rocks. Spring Break, as well as Tarantula and Gotham City, would be very hard to send first go without rehearsing the moves on TR. Spectacular piece of stone.
Apr 19, 2010
The rock on this one is amazing. Paul put this thing up as an onsight first ascent on an iffy weather day when he couldn't convince some of the crew to get off their duffs. On returning from the canyons, the phone call was made:
"So, you guys come home soaked with your tails between your legs?"
Paul: "No-just put up the best crack in the canyon!"
Cool to know that these guys were as giddy FAing a route like this as I was to stumble upon it decades later. Very worthy climb. You can place a good amount of gear on this thing if you're willing to look for it, but it's all time on the pump clock, so move swiftly.
CONDITION REPORT: As of today, the 2 old scheisty stud bolts at the anchor have been chopped, patched, and replaced with new stainless half-inchers equipped with Mussy hooks courtesy Mr. Van Betten. Bolts were donated by the ASCA. The giant "SM" chain has been left in place as getting it chopped would require power tools and/or a nuclear device. Using the old chain in combination with the new hardware should allow some flexibility in TRing the routes on this face, and not mean that anyone wanting to climb Mister Masters is hosed if there's a Spring Break Toprope-athon happening, as is common. Though the Mussies are fine for lowering, please respect the hardware by toproping off of your own quickdraws. There IS a sandy base underneath the climbs, your rope DOES have sand in it, and TRing through the fixed gear WILL wear it out more quickly. As always, donate every year to the ASCA so that we can continue to replace amazing routes like Spring Break and have safe options to get down.
Nov 3, 2011
PS In addition to the hardware replacement, those familiar with the route will be glad to see that the "ankle-killer" stump that is frequently landed on by people falling off of the low crux has been removed. No tools required, just used caveman skills and bashed it with a rock the size of a 5gal water jug till I could yank the pieces out. The new, flatter landing should be a bit safer.
|By David Stowe|
May 7, 2012
Great route. Did this on TR after leading Mister Misters. Great rock, fun challenging moves and sustained till the end although the top is easier than the first bit of climbing but by then your are a bit tired. Will definitely have to give this one a go on lead next time I am in Red Rocks as the gear looked very good, just sustained to place. Not sure what roofs are referred to in the description as this is essentially a steep face route that follows a thin crack. Being a gunks climber I always think of a roof as something that must be climbed out and over. Either way really great single pitch climb.