Type: Trad, TR
FA: Roger Weigand, Paul Stettner Jr., 1962
Page Views: 12,188 total · 56/month
Shared By: Tom Anderson-Brown on Jun 15, 2001
Admins: Burton Lindquist, Doug Hemken, James Schroeder, chris tregge

You & This Route

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Roger's Roof is a well known climb at Horse Rampart. When approaching Horse Rampart from Birthday Rocks, Roger's Roof is located near the left corner of the formation about 50 feet past the top-rope access "gully". To climb this beauty, start to the left of the alcove at the base of the wall. Follow the wedge-shaped rib up to the hand crack in the roof. When you get to the roof, reach above it and jam your palm (you will bleed) into the crack while keeping your feet high on the face below the roof. When your hand is sufficiently jammed, swing your left foot above the roof and propel yourself onto the face above. Follow the crack to the top.


To lead, take a standard rack.
I happened to be in Madison for a math meeting last weekend and ventured up to Devils Lake with a few other old geezers (Pete Cleveland, Olle & Sue Swartling, Al Czecholinski, Dave Erickson, John Rowe), as well as a youngster (Alex) who could climb hard stuff effortlessly. I thought it would be neat to lead the roof 40 years after the first ascent. It went fine, though I was a bit slow figuring out where to place gear on the thin stuff below the roof. The roof was still pretty hard for a guy who has never done a chinup, but three tries (no falls) sufficed. I am sitting in my office now looking fondly at the nascent scab on the back of my left hand. Incidentally, on the first ascent Paul Stettner Jr. led the thin part up to the roof and then lowered off from a home-made RURP placed above the roof. I had a bong on my rack and was therefore able to lead the roof safely. Paul certainly led the scariest part. Oct 15, 2002
I'm curious about the 'place palm at the top of the crack' and bleed beta? I climbed this last month and used a fist jam lower down in the crack to surmount the roof. Also possible, though a little harder, to layback over the roof using foot holds off to the right. Jul 21, 2004
Ishmail   Utah
The stick your hand in crack & bleed beta is not true unless your jams slip – then it might be possible to tear some skin – depends on slippage. The roof has a perfect ring lock that will allow you to reach a little higher for that perfect hand jam and then reach for the second perfect hand jam, put toe in crack (easier than using the face me-thinks) and surmount the roof, cruiser to the top. Fun, great lead! Aug 1, 2007
Paul Huebner
Portage, WI
Paul Huebner   Portage, WI
What I remember from this climb is the bone in my left hand hurt for 2 weeks afterwards. No bleeding though. Key seemed to be to get your right foot out on the rock face just above the lip of the roof. Once you stand up it's just a real pretty jam crack to the top. Aug 12, 2007
John W. Knoernschild
  5.8+ PG13
John W. Knoernschild   Wisconsin
  5.8+ PG13
This climb is a great lead. The pro up to the roof probably would not hold a fall. When you get to the roof, the pro is bomber.

My buddy Chris climbed this for his second climb ever. He did great on it. Falling the first time, but on the second try he got it. After that we all decided to climb the horse in bare feet. Chris liked that so much that he wanted to try Roger's again in bare feet. He sent it no problem. He said it felt better than in his shoes. Jul 27, 2008
Doug Hemken
Madison, WI
Doug Hemken   Madison, WI  
According to the 1970 guidebook, this route was briefly known as "Butchery." Sep 4, 2008
Andy Hansen
Longmont, CO
Andy Hansen   Longmont, CO
Crappy gear below the roof minus the fixed pin. A nut in the horizontal down low with a long sling helps calm your mental edge. A single .75 BD cam held up greatly on the 2 giant whips I took getting over the roof. This is one of my fondest leads thus far. Beautiful jams- just go get after it on this one! Also, the climb maintains interest after the crux which is uncharacteristic for a lot of DL climbs. May 23, 2010
  5.8+ PG13
  5.8+ PG13
Ow, my fuckin' arm hurts after that bullshit. Really good climb in a bad way. Jun 10, 2010
Paul Campbell
Waukesha, WI
Paul Campbell   Waukesha, WI
Wow Rhoads first time on this climb!?

It doesn't hurt that bad you baby! Jun 11, 2010
  5.8+ PG13
  5.8+ PG13
I think I backed down off the roof 4 or 5 times before just accepting the pain and pulling over.

I've done things before breakfast that would kill you Paul. Jun 11, 2010
Madison, WI
Remo   Madison, WI
Ah that jam is painful! Super fun though. Everyone should try this climb and get sandbagged. Sep 15, 2010
Tom Mulholland
#1 Cheese Producing State!
Tom Mulholland   #1 Cheese Producing State!
Didn't really think it was painful, but then again, it was 90 degrees today. So it was probably too greasy for good jams. Either way, I skipped the awful feet out left by just compressing and getting a foot on the crack above the roof. Fun lead. Protected well. May 31, 2011
Another bloody wicked route on DL quartzite. Pro' is pretty thin on lower rib section. The jam leaves a nice dent in the back of your left hand for the rest of the day, unless you slip and rip it open for some classic blood smears. Aug 13, 2011
Ted Kryzer
Rochester, MN
Ted Kryzer   Rochester, MN
I dont really remember it being painful but i do remember it being slimy... Gear at the bottom was so so but once you hit the roof you can almost build an anchor in the crack under the roof. Aug 16, 2011
I managed to get a 00 metolius stuck that I placed to backup the old piton. Somehow, two of the trigger wires became severed, but if anyone gets it out I would love to have it back.

Thanks. Jun 26, 2016
NegativeK   Nevada
"Did you bring your crack gloves?" "No; things are usually smooth enough to not bother." "You want mine?"

Ended up with both hands in the crack, both feet 6-12" inches below, and scrapes on my hands from the weekend.

The Metolius cam is still fixed, by the way. Apr 10, 2017
Joel Allen
La Crosse, WI
Joel Allen   La Crosse, WI
I didn't find the jams on this to be painful. Maybe it's my hand size? Apr 10, 2017
Anna Swanson
Fond du Lac, WI
Anna Swanson   Fond du Lac, WI
I LOVE IT! Its a great climb! No reasonable pro until you get to the roof and there a big rock at the foot that would probably hurt to fall on. For me, the perfect jam to get over the roof was just a little higher up than I'd like, but its there, and I had to do a pretty big reach for it. Once I got that jam I was able to smear on the face and finish it off. Not sure if this is really helpful beta, haha!
Like a lot of DL climbs, I recommend TR first so you can get acquainted with it. Enjoy! Oct 12, 2018