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Hot Dog

5.11b, Sport,  Avg: 3 from 240 votes
FA: Alan Nelson, 1999
Colorado > Golden > Clear Creek Canyon > Dog House
Access Issue: Seasonal Raptor Closures & Rockfall Mitigation Project - Completed Details


This route was initially given a 12a rating, but the general consensus seems to be more in the range of 11b. This is a fun route that ascends the left side of the overhang with an interesting hand traverse into a killer crack for a few feet. Overall, this is an enjoyable route with good protection and fun moves.


10 bolts, 2 bolt anchor. Note, there are 2 additional 2 bolt anchors above.

Photos [Hide ALL Photos]

Ethan past the crux.
[Hide Photo] Ethan past the crux.
James Bealer on the excellent and cruxy hand traverse.

Benjamin Mackall Photography.


[Hide Photo] James Bealer on the excellent and cruxy hand traverse. Benjamin Mackall Photography. @mackallphoto
Awesome crux sequence on Hot Dog!
[Hide Photo] Awesome crux sequence on Hot Dog!
Post crux.
[Hide Photo] Post crux.
A free solo of this Dog House classic by Matt Lloyd.
[Hide Photo] A free solo of this Dog House classic by Matt Lloyd.
Just past the crux of Hot Dog.
[Hide Photo] Just past the crux of Hot Dog.
View of the crux on Hot Dog.
[Hide Photo] View of the crux on Hot Dog.
[Hide Photo] Mid-clip.
Fun sequence.
[Hide Photo] Fun sequence.
Approaching the crux.
[Hide Photo] Approaching the crux.
Dog House.
[Hide Photo] Dog House.
Going for the heel hook.
[Hide Photo] Going for the heel hook.

Comments [Hide ALL Comments]

Nate Weitzel
[Hide Comment] This route ascends the left side of the overhang, if you are facing the wall, not the right side as I wrote earlier. Jan 1, 2001
Nate Weitzel
[Hide Comment] Having not done Road Rash roof, I can't comment on that comparison. However, the feet are solid and the hands are really much better than they look. This crux section is definitely easier than Officer Friendly (11c) at the Wall of Justice and also easier than the other 11c/d routes on the Wall of Justice. There is a 12a on Anarchy Wall that is similar, Power Trip; however, the holds are less positive on Power Trip and so it seems harder. Aug 2, 2001
[Hide Comment] 5.11c ? Oct 1, 2001
[Hide Comment] Ahh. More arguments about grades. My pal Luke and I just did this one, and I'm in agreement with the 11b as it stands. In fact, I'm not sure there's a single 5.11 move on the route - but it's pretty sustained for a ways. Note that I'm one of those young, sassy idiots who sandbags for fun, and that I'm a nice 6 feet tall, which is good for the somewhat reachy traverse. YMMV. Nov 24, 2001
[Hide Comment] It would be nice if we could do away with the Anonymous Coward bit. People become anonymously rude for no discernible reason. Whoever this loser is, he apparently doesn't realize that Alan Nelson is the single most significant driver behind Clear Creek climbing. I guarantee he has put up twice as many routes in that canyon as anyone else, and if you have a Clear Creek ticklist, most of the classics are Alan's as well.

With regard to strength, has the anonymous coward pulled off Anarchitect, or Chaos? How about leading Bachar-Yerian? Shut up you moron. Feb 5, 2002
[Hide Comment] Oopps! I guess including your name is prerequisite to being a jerk around here. Hope this clears things up.

I just want to say I'm not a purist. If drilling will get someone through what would otherwise be impossible, and climbers are the main user group of an area, I don't mind it. I don't even mind that many of Mr. Nelson's newer climbs are almost a full number grade soft. If he feels that's what the grade is, that's fine, wait for consensus to sort things out. What I have a huge problem with; however, is when someone drills pockets in something that will go naturally. I think that's weak. Very weak! If you can't pull it, I guarantee you there's someone who will do the job for you. LEAVE THAT JOB TO THEM. You won't get your name in the guidebook for the FA, but that's just the way the game goes.

Alan, mi amigo, I think we all appreciate your efforts to develop crags around the area, but when you drill climbs like Big Dog up, you do the climbing community a disservice, and you seem to think you're a hero for it. No kudos. You destroyed a good natural line, and that's unacceptable. Look at how many .12s there are in the canyon compared to .13s and up. Hard natural lines are a precious commodity, and if you drill them all down to your level, you will have destroyed the future of hard climbing in the metro area. For this, I have no thanks to give.

P.S. - Let's just say I can keep up with Mr. Drill Happy any day of the week.… Feb 5, 2002
[Hide Comment] Matt and Colin, I agree that chipping is unacceptable. Actually, I suspect Alan feels much the same way, and I would bet you won't see much more of this kind of activity in the future. I say this because this crag is the only place he has ever been involved in chipped routes (as far as I know), and he puts in more routes than anyone I know.

It is the "you're not strong enough to rate your own routes" attitude that I object to. Who cares if a route is rated incorrectly anyway? A lot of times the guy who puts the route in does it once, guesses a rating, and then moves on to the next route. If his guess is wrong, than don't blame him just because it shows up in Rolofson's guide book.

To be fair, Matt's comment implying that Alan puts up routes of poor quality is also bogus, unless you don't like the routes at Anarchy, Wall of Justice, etc. Anarchitect, Matriarch, Presto, Maestro, Ten Digit Dialing, Great Escape, Peer Review - have I named any bad routes yet?

Just because you object to a particular route or rating doesn't mean you should dis someone who on the whole has done a lot of good things for Clear Creek climbing.

Rich Feb 6, 2002
[Hide Comment] Bob, I think Alan Nelson deserves all the criticism he gets. He deserves to get it as long as those routes stay in their present condition because the message they send now to every climber that knows about them is, "chipping will be tolerated by Colorado climbers." Feb 9, 2002
Geoff Slater
Golden, CO
[Hide Comment] I just redpointed this route today after working it for weeks. This route combines the best of both worlds in crimpy face climbing moves followed up by a powerful overhang. Whatever the grade, this is a fantastic route. Mar 13, 2002
Richard M. Wright
Lakewood, CO
[Hide Comment] What a kick. I may have been on Hot Dog with Alan at the FA or perhaps second ascent. Regardless, HD has a cool sequence in the hand traverse and nice movement at the end of the traverse. Two stars in Clear Creek. Sep 7, 2004
Paul Hunnicutt
Boulder, CO
[Hide Comment] I thought this climb was super fun.

Not really stressed or too upset, but seems no need for any chipped or drilled holes on this entire wall (or anywhere). Would these climbs be soooo much harder without them? And even then - leave it for someone stronger. I much appreciated someone developing the cliff, but leave the rock natural for everyone to challenge themselves on. Truth is when I was up there climbing I couldn't tell anything was drilled...only read about it here.

I did think the move on the rail traverse was 5.11 actually. I didn't heel hook, well I did the first time and got too pumped trying to set it - I couldn't find a good spot. Then I just kind of campused along the rail, got my feet set and hit the good right hand gaston up high. The rest was not hard movement, just a bit pumpy. Not sure the extra anchors higher up add much...I'd avoid the risk of falling back onto the ledge while climbing up to them next time.

There is kind of a knee bar using a little horn for your right foot below the traverse section...if you need to rest here after the initial technical face. Mar 8, 2008
David Crockett
Chattanooga, TN
[Hide Comment] Super fun route. You can kneebar before the pumpy traverse and get a no hands rest. Jan 19, 2012
[Hide Comment] Best 5.11 I have ever done! I love it! I guess the reason people think this might be 11c is because this route is beta intensive. I looked really closely at the holds and discovered good holds and beta to make this an easy route (5.11a/b). To make this route that easy, look for holds way back in the crack and figure out the beta between bolts two and four (hint: go out left on to a sidepull really close to the bolt on the other route and bump up on the crimps out right!). Feb 18, 2012
Denver, CO
[Hide Comment] My friend climbing through the crux.… Sep 6, 2012
Curt MacNeill
Boulder, CO
[Hide Comment] This route is awesome! I'm impressed after spending my first day at this crag recently. Fun place to go and just tick off a bunch of easier stuff too. Overall a great place to hang.... Oct 18, 2012
kevin murphy
Longtuckity, CO
[Hide Comment] Yep, great route, steep and juggy. Dec 24, 2012
Peter Lewis
Bridgton, ME
[Hide Comment] Hey! Really nice job on that video clip. I used to live in Golden---and I miss being able to pull down all winter (although not always at this stout grade). Aug 27, 2013
Kevin P
[Hide Comment] Dude in the video looks totally relaxed. My ascent included a little more redlining and draw pulling. Oct 26, 2014
[Hide Comment] The bolt in the middle of the traverse is not placed well. The is a little of a bulge that will open the biner gate in a fall. Just place the biner with the gate facing right, and you will be fine. Apr 27, 2016