Type: Trad
FA: Gary Isaacs, '70s
Page Views: 5,536 total · 26/month
Shared By: slevin on Aug 29, 2001
Admins: Mike Snyder, Jake Dickerson, Taylor Spiegelberg, Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Aeon Aki

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Access Issue: Dirt roads reopened as of June 2014 Details


Ghost Dance is a Vedauwoo area classic, combining a striking line with difficult and sustained climbing. GD is located left of the Friday the 13th alcove, on the SE side of the Nautilus; look for the left of three prominent, L-diagonal cracks before the alcove (the middle one, New Mutants, has a visible chain anchor at 60 feet), behind some aspen trees. From a block get yourself established in the crack. Struggle with the gear (an RP can be helpful) just as the "jams" become flared, karate-chop insecurities. A couple of difficult moves leads to wider, more positive jams, which in turn lead to wider struggling above. The upper crack is sustained, and succumbs to the usual Vedauwooesque thrashing. A long pitch. Descend by heading west (climber's left), following the line of least resistance to easy down climbing. Tape can be helpful in the shallow, technical jams. A really fine route: do it!


A few wired nuts, including an RP or two, up to a #4 Camalot. You can gauge how many of each size you want by looking at the crack from below, but probably gear in the 2" to 4" range should be emphasized.


I also thought this really good pitch. It is a cool mix of technical and physical with a side of holy shit! I had the typical good luck of getting to lead the last 2/3 of the route in a light rain(not recommened). The pro at the bottom is better tahn you expect. Bon Voyage! TF Oct 22, 2001
Don't walk by and gawk at this one, or Hesitation Blues too many times before climbing them. Among the best they are. Apr 17, 2003
I just did this route yesterday (8-29) and must say that I thoroughly enjoyed it. I personally found it to be fairly difficult for its grade. I can name quite a few solid .11s at Vedauwoo and other places that are significantly easier. If you are good at offwidths, then don't worry about bringing big gear for the final offwidth section. You can get good gear right before it and it is a very secure section. Go get on it! Aug 30, 2003
I need to flip-flop on my last comment. It is right on at Vedauwoo for .11b ish. Some recent spank sessions on some other ".11b" routes at the Voo have shown me the error of my ways. If you haven't done this route, you don't know what you've been missing. Apr 19, 2004
You might consider taping up for this one. There was blood. Jun 14, 2004
A #4 Friend works well in the one obvious spot in the beginning. #4 Camalot will work deep at the beginning of the offwidth at the top. One of my favorite routes at Vedauwoo. Jan 15, 2006
Thomas Jensen
Phoenixville, PA
Thomas Jensen   Phoenixville, PA
When cleaning I found that all of my gear that I placed had walked to the back of the crack and sure enough, for almost the length of the climb, the crack flares to the inside......SO...Place gear carefully! I almost decked as a result of a "well placed" cam ripping as I fell from about the 50 foot mark. DO this climb though! It is amazing! The fixed stopper at the beginning can be backed up with a tiny maroon 0.2 Camalot but it in there SOLID and the wire looks ok.. Have fun! Sep 28, 2008
This is one of those pitches that, after being spanked on it the first time, you say to yourself..."holy shit, 11b, really?" I'll feel hard as nails when I get that one, next time. Very strenuous pitch, by way of comparison Hesitation Blues is a warmup climb next to this. Sep 20, 2009

  5.11b PG13
  5.11b PG13
Yeah, this one makes Hesitation feel like 5.9. There is definitely a move on this one, and it comes while you are staring at gear that is just kind of ok. Sep 20, 2009
Slim, my friend Jeff who is about 180 lbs. claims there is a bomber sideways nut placement that protects the crux quite well. Probably still wouldn't want to fall once you hit the good jams though. Also, that good old broad category of Vedauwoo "5.11". Gotta love it. Sep 22, 2009

  5.11b PG13
  5.11b PG13
Interesting, I will make a mental note. I seem to remember a tweaky black Alien, and you aren't too far above the nice foot ledge/flake. Helluva route, that Gary Isaacs picked some cherries! Sep 22, 2009
EldoFiend   WY
This route now has a bolt anchor. Be careful lowering though, as it is right around 30m long. Apr 12, 2010
Laramie, WY
poundit14   Laramie, WY
As of today, there was not a fixed nut off of the flake at the start, but a #4 nut will pass in its place. Sep 17, 2010
Chris Kalman
Chris Kalman  
This is a very good route, but I'm not sure I'd agree that it's sustained. There is a very definite crux, followed by a short hard section. The rest felt (to me) pretty cruiser.

No fixed gear on this as of Oct. 2016 (hopefully it stays that way). It took some fiddling around, but I found trucker gear to protect the hard moves off the flake. Bring nuts and TCUs and such, and be creative!

Also, to reiterate other comments, don't clunk up your rack with 5s/6s for the top. Again, be creative and look around. No reason to drag the boat anchors through the 5.11 start for the 5.8 finish. Oct 8, 2016