Type: Trad, 100 ft
FA: Rich Perch, John Bragg, Doug Snively, and Anne Tarver, 1978
Page Views: 72,407 total · 341/month
Shared By: Anonymous Coward on Oct 13, 2001
Admins: slim, Andrew Gram, Nathan Fisher, Perin Blanchard, grk10vq

You & This Route

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Access Issue: Raptor Nesting Climbing Avoidance Areas Details
Access Issue: RAIN, WET ROCK and RAPTOR CLOSURES: The sandstone around Moab is fragile and is very easily damaged when it is wet. Also please ask and be aware of Raptor Closures in areas such as CAT WALL and RESERVOIR WALL in Indian Creek Details


Route starts at the top of the trail from the parking lot to Supercrack Buttress. Follows the obvious chalked hand crack in a corner through a large overhang. Lieback up the corner to the roof. Jam out the roof with perfect hands (crux) to a great rest at the end (#3 Camalot). Finish up the corner to a bolt anchor at 95 feet. It really is incredible! Get there early because lines will form on the weekends.


Cams from 2-2.5". Heavy on 2.5" (#2 Camalot)


I agree with Ben, for the average-sized (w/r/t hands!) the jams through the overhang are ridiculously bomber. 9/10, and really freakin cool. Nov 28, 2001
Getting onto the initial pillar, about 20', can be difficult unless you jam it. I liebacked with a green FCU at 8' and pumped out, unable to get in a piece in higher, about a foot below the pillar top. Use a #2 camalot to get on top of the pillar and recover it if you feel the need once you're on top. The landing area only has one rock, but it has a knob on it. A spotter kept my groundfall (with the pulled green FCU) from becoming a broken leg. Nov 29, 2001
Anonymous Coward
Anonymous Coward  
I've only been to IC once in my life and that was last spring break (2001), but let me just say that being over here in Germany for the semester and not even being able to climb (Northern Germany is nothing but flat flat flat..) Looking and thinking about IC is just giving me a hard on the size of Texas. I'm already starting to train again just to get my muscles in some kind of shape to hit it hard again this spring break!!!!!! Dec 9, 2001
Charles Vernon
mind & body in Colorado, he…
Charles Vernon   mind & body in Colorado, he…
It's common to see this rated 5.10c and Supercrack 5.10. I really can't understand that. I have perfectly average sized hands, and Supercrack (both the technical start, and the crack itself) feels like it's in a different league of difficulty altogether. I can't bring myself to think of IHC as any harder than 9+, whereas I'd call Supercrack solid 10+. Perfect hands (even with an overhang, it has no-hands rests both before and after the crux) should be easier than sustained wide hands with no rests.

But maybe, if you have excellent wide hands technique, Supercrack could feel even easier I suppose. Now I'm just confusing myself. Feb 20, 2002
Bryson Slothower
Portland, OR
Bryson Slothower   Portland, OR
whatever you want to rate it this is an excellent route that should not be missed. If you feel comfortable leading just about any other route in I.C. then you will enjoy this one and it will keep you coming back for years to come.

It is best to have your second follow this route as you belay from above or you risk pushing your cams into the crack with your rope if you top rope it. Feb 26, 2002
George Bell
Boulder, CO
George Bell   Boulder, CO
Agreed, simply lowering off can suck cams way into the crack near the crux. When we did this, my brand new #2 Camalot was pulled so far in I could barely touch the stem. Fortunately 10 minutes fishing for the trigger with a cleaning tool got it out. Apr 4, 2002
Great route and the 1st I climbed at IC. Might be that I have weird-sized hands or something, but I found this to be considerably harder than Supercrack. May 28, 2002
Tony B
Around Boulder, CO
Tony B   Around Boulder, CO
Those are not hands Eric, they are paws. I am surprised you can type with those meat-hooks.

Supercrack was loose for me and good for you. I.H.C was good for me and tight for you.

Jun 3, 2002
Ben Mottinger

Ben Mottinger    

I think the short pumpy section is enough to warrant a 10, but with all the rests, it's definitely easier than most 10s around here. The hands were great for my size (average to small). Oct 7, 2002
The crack is getting wider. It gets done more than my belayers sister. Anyway I think the rating is historical. It is unbelievably locker now but probably not so when this crack was more virgin. Once it becomes Incredible Fist Stack Crack it probably will have shorter lines. Nov 2, 2002
IHC is definitely .9 And the worst part is that its because of excessive traffic. I climbed it first only like seven years ago and couldn't get my hands into the crack. I remember there was one part to SQUEEZE a #2 Camalot in at the lip of the crux; I think people manking gear around in that pre crux manic attack have increased the wear. It's a shame people don't redistribute the wear a bit. climb some other cracks and definitely try not to top rope the whole team up the thing. Have some respect. I wonder if most people even realize the all that white rock is from wear, ditto on Supercrack, fingers,

chad davis May 9, 2003
I don't mourn the wear on IHC. I mourn the ridiculous hoards of climbers who flock to Supercrack Buttress. I still can't figure out why everyone stays on this one cliff, when Indian creek has countless cliffs of excellent quality, with short approaches. Go do some FA's for Pete's sake! There are a million IHC's and Supercrack's at the Creek, and many haven't even been climbed. May 10, 2003
Anonymous Coward
Anonymous Coward  
The picture of Ben climbing w/o shoes is fantastic. May I suggest climbing w/o pants? This affords a great cock jam rest before the roof!! Sep 6, 2004
C Miller
C Miller   CA  
Stellar climb with nary a variance in size the whole way. This crack was made for #2 Camalots. I recall placing about 9 of that particular cam and sewing it up - super fun route. Exactly 100' to the anchors. Jan 25, 2006
Andy Laakmann
Bend, OR
Andy Laakmann   Bend, OR  
For what it is worth, I've confirmed the crack is getting bigger!

4 years ago I could NOT get in a metolius fat cam (forgot the size) below the crux 'roof'.

This year, same cam fit PERFECT.

It'll be the IFC in about 10 years. Jan 25, 2006
electric lady land
d-know   electric lady land
this route takes a 5.10+ amount of juice for me to get up it.
10- and 9+ is more like generic crack.
Jan 26, 2006
Reachy. Jun 8, 2006
m-earle   USA
if you place gear under the overhang, use long runners to avoid rope being sucked into crack. Oct 30, 2006
Vandalia, Appalachia
camhead   Vandalia, Appalachia
it would be nice if everyone would take a voluntary "three climb maximum" vow on this (as well as Supercrack, and maybe Coyne and Fingers in a Lightsocket). I have.

That said, it is nice that this climb, the buttress, and its short approach keep attracting the majority of Indian Creek visitors. Helps save the rest of the canyon. Feb 21, 2007
evan   seattle
if cookie monster ate only #2 camalots- he would be very happy on incredible hand crack. Jun 20, 2007
Fort Collins, CO
morkel   Fort Collins, CO
Number three Friends NOW fit this crack perfectly, it has also become easier with 'man hands'. Mar 22, 2008
Oh my god. This climb is sooo much fun. I want to mate with the Incredible Handcrack and make baby IHCs that will hopefully resemble the original.
The wear and tear of climbers is taking its toll on this route so get on it soon.

In the Kalymnos guidebook under the entry for the route Trela it quotes a spanish climber as saying "Oh my god, how could I have existed without having done this climb". IHC might be considered the crack climbers equivalent.

Ok, maybe I am exagerating it a little bit, but this climb is really fun.

Mar 25, 2008
i think I places 7 #2 camalots, and maybe a #1 at the start. Easier than it looks if you have huge man hands (felt cruiser to me).
10a! May 2, 2008
Christina kalb
Boulder, CO
Christina kalb   Boulder, CO
I have small hands, and the crack was shaky hands or off hands for me. I could not get a good jam over the roof at all. I would give this a solid 5.10 rating. Still a great route though May 21, 2008
"Well, if perfect hands is your thing" uttered to us by another climber while we were waiting for the climb. The hands really are perfect and the crack is a bit tapered so it fits a lot of hand sizes. Dec 3, 2008
FA: Rich Perch, John Bragg, Doug Snively, and Anne Tarver, 1978. Dec 5, 2008
Sarah Kate
Seattle, WA
Sarah Kate   Seattle, WA
This route is a raging pain with small hands. Wear long sleeves. May 5, 2009
The new guide suggests 6-7 2.5 Friends....ya they don't work. #2 BD and #3 Friends work really good. After the roof you can get a pretty good #3 BD placement in a small pod. It takes a little looking to see the placement. Oct 2, 2009
Alexander Nees
Grand Junction, CO
Alexander Nees   Grand Junction, CO
For anyone who wants additional evidence of the changes that have occurred on this route from all the traffic...

Back then, the crack was parallel, the edge was crisp, and there weren't any wear marks. No doubt that this climb is getting beat out. Mar 9, 2011
Hoag Hoag
Littleton, CO
Hoag Hoag   Littleton, CO
This is probably the best single pitch route I've ever been on. The crack is sustained perfect hands (for me) and eats gear. Make sure you have a ton of BD #2 cams with you. I think I racked with 7 #2s, 2 #3s, and 1 #1. The #1 can be placed in the thinner part of the crack at the very beginning. It's #2s the rest of the way with exception of one #3 placement at the beginning of the overhang section.

A must-climb. A must-lead. Nov 25, 2011
Matt Hoffmann
Matt Hoffmann   Squamish
Pretty damn incredible. Bomber hands the whole way. 5.fun if your hands are yellow c4 size. There are several great rests (before the roof, after the roof and a bit higher) that make the climb feel super mellow. Use the rests and move efficiently through the roof you shouldn't even feel pumped.

Great route! Apr 20, 2012
Mark P Thomas
Mark P Thomas   Draper
5.10c? Most of this route was tight for my hands, but not .10c tight. I got tired in the roof and hung out on hand & foot jams to rest before continuing up. No way I see myself doing that at the crux on a .10c!

To me the roof seemed easier than the crux move to the pedestal on Super Crack but harder than the main event of Super Crack, which for me was comfortable cupped hands. Apr 30, 2012
Joe Lo
Joe Lo  
First SENND of the year was on January 2, 2013(avg high temp 18)....smoked IHC and all the other classics with NO LINES ahahaha where were you guys??? Jan 14, 2013
Hendo Henderson
Denver, CO
Hendo Henderson   Denver, CO
This climb ended up being a bit easier than I thought! There's lots of rests. One on the pedestal, one right above that. Another rest before the roof. Than like 7 rest spots 4ft above the roof move. Still classic though! 3AM was way more burly in my opinion. I've never gasped so hard for air in my life finishing that route. Apr 16, 2014
Ryan Arnold
Ryan Arnold  
There are spots for #1, #3, and even bigger camalots above the crux, if you're short on #2s. I used six #2s and several of the other sizes. Jun 10, 2015
I was here in 2010 but can't remember if incredible hand crack faces the sun or is in the shade. I expect to be there in early January 2016 so would like some warmth. Anyone know?

J Dec 28, 2015
Matthew Richardson
Durango, CO
Matthew Richardson   Durango, CO
Donnelly canyon across from Super Crack gets sun early, Super Crack doesn't get sun until after noon. Was there about a month ago. Jan 3, 2016
Honestly found this climb wholely underwhelming. The best climbing is over as soon as you start the roof. Jamming up to it was amazing, the roof was OK, everything after that was uninteresting. If only the first 20-30 feet just kept going and going... then it would be incredible. Oct 19, 2016
Jaime M
Jaime M  
I have small hands and found the roof jamming to be pretty tough. It is wider than the start and extremely smooth and flared from so many climbers, and I found it really hard to get a good jam in. Maybe it used to be better - less flared, less smooth, more bomber? Or maybe it's just that a perfect hand crack is in the #1-2 Camalot range for me and the roof was a bit wider than that. Mar 23, 2017