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Routes in Block Tower

Bungi Man T 5.11- 6c 22 VIII+ 22 E3 5c PG13
Dance of Chance T 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
Desperado T 5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a R
Hurt Dance T 5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
Mister Mantle T,S 5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a PG13
Queer Bait T 5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a
Sex Dwarf T 5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
Wrist Never Sleeps T 5.12 7b+ 27 VIII+ 26 E6 6b PG13
Type: Trad, Grade II
FA: [Chris Reveley and Dave Wright in 1974]
Page Views: 1,079 total, 6/month
Shared By: Ben F on Jan 11, 2002
Admins: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac

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Seasonal Raptor Closure Details

Description

Hurt Dance is well centered on the Block Tower. The BT is located between Poe Buttress and Cynical Pinnacle. Approach from either CP or the Sunshine Wall trail. Look for a prominent left-leaning slot at the top of this wall. The climb starts directly below and heads for this slot. Start by gaining a ledge that has a left-facing low angle dihedral which leads to a crack system. There are a few ways to start this climb.

P0 - Dean Miller sandbag start (9?). This starts off a ledge slightly to the right of P1. Mantle onto a large flat area, walk back to the short right facing fatty (big cam). Ascend the fatty to gain a ledge and head up and left on a second and more pleasant right facing dihedral to belay. If you're smart, you'll scramble up to this ledge from the left to avoid this pitch. This short pitch is recommended if you want to get a close view of contorted facial expressions on climbers that are too distant to appreciate higher on the climb.

P1 - Ascend the low angle left-facing dihedral to a small ledge and continue on a really nice 5.9 finger crack. Hand jams appear higher. Continue to a 2 bolt belay or better yet, run P1 and P2 together as we did.

P2 - This pitch starts as mostly hands and soon leads to a nice wide section (9). Arm bar, stack, heel-toe and grunt your way up this beautiful specimen to a boulder wedged into the crack after the pitch gets easy. Stand on this chock boulder and set your belay using the 2 cracks on the left. There is a bolt on the face to the right that I didn't bother clipping. Topos in the book show 2 bolts - there's only the one.

P3 - Climb the finger crack on the left side of the chimney directly above the belay. Clip the poor excuse for a bolt to the left of where the crack ends. Move left (10-) to easy terrain and continue a very short distance to a small stance at the base of a crack. Send the tall skinny guy on this short pitch.

P4 - This pitch (called both 5.9 and 10-, who cares?) starts as a nice and easy hand crack and then turns mean and wide. Don't dump your fat pro in the first wide section as it is very easy. After this section, the crack leads into the left leaning slot that is visible from the ground. First chimney, then move into a hand crack inside the slot for a while, grunt your way out and up and you are squeezed by the narrowing slot, place a fatty or 2 (unless you were me), return to squeezing and arm barring, and finally get some better loving as you move over and around the end of the slot. Head to a sloping ledge at the base of an obvious crack and have a seat. By now, you'll have scraped all the hair from your palms.

P5 - It almost doesn't count as a pitch, but it is prudent to stop at the base of this pitch. It is probably 1-1/2 moves of 7 or 8. Hop up into the crack, place a wide piece grunt and its over. Continue maybe 20 more feet and set a belay somewhere. It's done.

This moderate climb has many enjoyable wide sections on it. It is possible to face climb and do some stemming to avoid squeezing into these plump portions. If you are leading these pitches, then you may want to stay in the crack. If you are seconding, then remember that life is cheap on toprope. High top climbing shoes are recommended for this climb.

Protection

Many sections of this route lend themselves to #6 Friend placements. Leave RPs and 0 TCUs in your pack. Though there are fixed anchors on this route, better ones can be had with gear in the same proximity. To descend, move to the right and find your way down. If it's sketchy, then you're off route.

Photos

Princess Mia
Vail
  5.10a/b
Princess Mia   Vail
  5.10a/b
Super fun and excellent quality climbing.

There are several ways to get to the base, none of which looked worthy, so we did the 3rd class scramble up from the left to the big ledge with lots of bushes, immediately below a very interesting juniper that appear to be attached to nothing on the face above.
P1: a short but super fun OW (5.7?) protects with a #6 leads to a super fun finger to hand crack (5.9?) and to a two bolt anchor at a stance.

P2: hands to OW (a #5 and #6 cam are useful) to another two bolt anchor at a good stance.

Both of these anchors are one button head and one 1/4 incher, but both can easily be backed up with a #3 Camalot.

P3: climb a finger crack on the left side up to an exciting but well-protected (bolt) move out to the left face (10a/b?). The original route did not have this bolt. Belay on a nice ledge by a bush.

P4: OW/squeeze or do what ever to ascend this super fun pitch. Protects quite well. Save the #6 for going around the corner at the top of the squeeze.

We walked off to the right. Pretty easy and required no downclimbing or scrambling. Sep 12, 2011
Jay Eggleston
Denver
  5.10a
Jay Eggleston   Denver
  5.10a
The Chimney pitch is excellent! A #6 Camalot was essential on this climb and I was glad to have a #5 as well. Dec 17, 2009
Dana Prosser
Boulder
Dana Prosser   Boulder
There is a shiny new bolt on pitch 3! Mar 31, 2008
Kevin Stricker
Evergreen, CO
 
Kevin Stricker   Evergreen, CO
 
The FA on this route was by Chris Reveley and Dave Wright in 1974. I believe the bolts at the anchors were added later by another party. I was actually quite [disappointed] by the rock quality on this climb, and believe there are better routes on the Block Tower. If you hike all the way up here make sure you try Queer Bait or Dance of Chance. Both of these are the same grade (5.10) and have much better rock. BTW Queer Bait is only 5.11 if you go straight up past 2 bolts on the 3rd pitch, move 5 feet left and it is a fun 5.10 seam.

Also, for the descent during the winter season it is much better to head North and descend between Block Tower and Poe Buttress as the previously mentioned descent is usually icy. Jan 26, 2006
Hill  
This route is better than it appears from the ground and is really quite an enjoyable climb. My climbing partner, Brian Milhaupt, was able to combine pitches 3 and 4 using good rope managment reducing this to just slightly over a 2 pitch route. Jan 15, 2003