Type: Trad
FA: J. Erickson, D. Ferguson, 1970
Page Views: 2,328 total · 11/month
Shared By: Tony B on Nov 5, 2001
Admins: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac

You & This Route

34 Opinions

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Does this route deserve two stars? Well, it depends. Do you really like offwidth?

Not sure and want to find out? ...then this is your route! Stack a fist, [chicken-wing], heel-toe cam, arm-bar, foot stack. Leavitate? Well, no. This climb does not require a comprehensive set of offwidth techniques, but it is a good place to learn of practice many of them. It will also amaze you how good of an aerobic workout you can get while still moving so slowly.

Go up the West Ridge to the Cirque of the Cracks area and find the popular routes Terminal Velocity and Hand Crack. This will be after quite a long uphill, in an area with very little slope. Just to the right (south) of the route Hand Crack, at the right hand side of the same solid buttress, is this 6" wide splitter. This route is unique in [character] and should not be at all hard to identify. Climb easy moves up and into the vertical wall with the small cap/roof for an off width challenge. The route can be safely lead with just a few large pieces, but for comfort, take your arsenal and place at will. If you need OW gear, contact Eric Corkran (snicker).

There are anchors nearby at the top from which to descend.


Large, big, and Huge will be most helpful. The crack is 6" average. Large cams (#4-5 Camalot) and Bigbros or Tubechocks are the best idea. A few standard pieces will go as well.


Leo Paik
Westminster, Colorado
Leo Paik   Westminster, Colorado  
For a non-OW climber, this route can be done with a fair bit of face climbing. As such, 5.9 may be soft. Pro is still big. Jun 4, 2005
Jay Eggleston
Jay Eggleston   Denver
Easier than the off-width on the Grand Giraffe. I was glad to have 2 #6 Camalots and a blue Big Bro. The flake in the crack you can place smaller gear in is loose. This is a good climb if you enjoy a little groveling. Sep 25, 2009
Rich Farnham
Rich Farnham  
The hardest climbing (the first 10-15' of the wide crack) is well protected with #6 Camalots (C4, i.e. #5 old-style), but they get pretty tipped out higher up. The upper half of the climb has a flake in the back that I placed some Aliens behind. It didn't feel particularly loose to me (compared to the one in the back at the start of the climb), but I also wasn't positive that the gear would have held a fall.

Jay's recommedation of 2 #6s and a blue Big Bro worked well for me. A single set of other gear will more than cover the rest.

I found this to be a pretty good climb (if you're into this kind of thing). There aren't a lot of good OW cracks on the Front Range, but I found this to be a good one to get some training laps on. The lead is a little junky, but if you just want some OW training laps this can be easily toproped by climbing Hand Crack (aka White Lightning). Jan 12, 2010
James Beissel
Boulder, CO
James Beissel   Boulder, CO
Still some loose stuff on the upper part of this route. If you choose to do the direct finish be very careful. May 26, 2010
Guy H.
Fort Collins CO
Guy H.   Fort Collins CO
About 75 pounds of rock came out of the upper section this weekend. It is probably best to cut left to the hand crack finish. Scary! Mar 4, 2013
Eric Klammer
Boulder, CO
Eric Klammer   Boulder, CO
This thing crushed my body and soul. Way harder than I expected giving the 5.9- rating in the guidebook. My second was able to follow it rather easily with a fair amount of face climbing, but on lead with 1 #6 and a few crappy Aliens behind loose and crumbly flakes, you can bet I was in full on squeeze chimney mode. That being said, while scary, this climb was oddly enjoyable. The sequence I used to pull the final roof was certainly something to witness. Legs wrapped around that final big fin, slowly humping and huffing away. Ahh memories....

Also, final roof looks clear of loose blocks. It's a fitting finale to the route, don't miss out! Mar 15, 2015
Denver, CO
VRP   Denver, CO
Reasonable with nothing more than a #3, good fun. Mar 12, 2017
James Rein
James Rein  
This route is great. 2 #6, 1 #5, and a blue Big Bro were perfect. You could put some smaller pieces in the flake up top if you wanted. Climbed as an OW, it's easier than any 9 in the Voo. The final roof pull is a blast and a great way to end things. The topout has a bunch of loose rocks, and I would recommend a directional to keep the rope off them. Nov 27, 2017