Type: Trad, 150 ft, 2 pitches
FA: Pat Ament & Wayne Goss, 5.9 A4, 1964. FFA: Chuck Pratt, 1965
Page Views: 10,338 total · 52/month
Shared By: Mark Hammond on Oct 13, 2002
Admins: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac

You & This Route

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Access Issue: Seasonal Closure - 2018 Update Details


This is a novelty route. Still, it is one not to be missed. 5.8+ is traditional rating, feel free to choose your own after climbing it. Begin on left side of The Dome near Gorilla's Delight. Climb Pinnacle route, 5.10a or 5.11a, to lower right side of large A-roof and the start of the slot. Struggle to get inside (for the tunnelers) and then struggle some more to escape; head jam optional. If and when you emerge (or are reborn?), take the finger crack on the left. Go spray to your friends about how they must do it.


Normal rack, include a #4 Camalot. Perhaps, need bigger gear if climbing outside the slot (not tunneling)?


Mark Hammond
Eldorado Springs, CO
Mark Hammond   Eldorado Springs, CO
The 150ft length is a Very Rough estimate. If you try to do it in one pitch and come up short......you have been warned. Oct 13, 2002
Don't even have an illusion that this route is anywhere near 5.8+, unless your 4'2" and have no shoulders. You can also start this by going up The Owl and continuing left where you would go right to the bottom of Supersqueeze-5.6. Oct 14, 2002
Mark must be a Hobbit or a Dwarf to get inside this route. Climbed on the outside this route is well into the 5.11 range. I recommend two #5 Camalots and a #3 Big Bro if aiding this baby (the only way I could get up it). Nothing else really fits because you can't reach in far enough to place a #4 Camalot. You do place some smaller gear at the start, but be careful you don't place it too deep and you'll need to go find Mark to retrieve it. Oct 14, 2002
Tony B
Around Boulder, CO
Tony B   Around Boulder, CO
The way I have done it (twice) was one side in and one side out. Then you can pinch the rock bewteen your thighs for friction (we called the right side of the crack "Mrs Bubb" as a joke) while thrutching up the with arm-bars and poor jams. Be warned, if you slip in this position, you may damage "the goods. I'm a fairly small guy (5'10" 165lbs) but have VERY long arms, and I'm pretty flexible. So, I fit further in than most people and could reach further back than most who can fit in. I found the climb to tick in at about 5.10+/11-.

Very body-size dependent. Smaller people have an advantage, but so do apes with VERY long arms and big paws. Oct 14, 2002
I saw Dave Miller "wine master to the stars" free solo this without chalk or shoes-no lie!!! Oct 16, 2002
Hard to give this nasty 10' stretch of climbing a difficulty or a quality rating. For one thing, it's completely size dependent. As someone who is pretty narrow front to back, I could just barely fit inside -- removing my gear sling made the difference between success and failure. As a squeeze chimney, the way I climbed it, it was considerably harder than the notorious squeeze chimney section of the Harding Slot; this would make Umph Slot at least 5.10. As an offwidth, the way someone wider would have to climb it, it's probably that much harder.

Note that most of the way there is good hand size gear (and handjams) in the back, if you can reach.

Do this back to back w/ Supersqueeze for the full on abuse program -- 20' feet of climbing that will feel like that many pitches. Jun 21, 2003
Steve Annecone
Steve Annecone   boulder
This has got to be one of the nicest offwidths in Boulder (although granted, there aren't that many). I found it to be very sustained throughout the overhanging section, with very insecure arm barring and toe heel moves, until a killer chicken wing about 10 feet out can be obtained. I used a #5 Camalot and moved it along, until leaving it behind near where you can get up on the less steep upper face. I'd call this test piece 5.10d and felt it had moves as hard as the crux on Crack of Fear. Great route! Oct 25, 2003
James Beissel
Boulder, CO
James Beissel   Boulder, CO
This climb is unratable. Stuff yourself in it and call it whatever you want. I'm about 190 and getting inside the crack isn't even an option. My chest won't fit in, but I can get some good chicken wings and work the lip gaston style with my right hand. I use a #3, #2, #5, #4.5 Camalots, with some extra #1s or #2s for the anchor. Placing a #3 low on the pitch keeps the rope out of your way if you fall out. Jul 1, 2005
Jason Price
Jason Price  
I'm not a big dude--5'9", 145 lbs., and I had to climb out of the crack, chicken-winging hard with my left arm, kind of gastonneing/smearing with my right hand. Hard to believe that 15-20' of climbing gets you so thoroughly pumped! My pushing muscles--triceps/pecs (and my adductors, with regards to Mrs. Bubb!)--are aching today with nary a pain in my pulling muscles. Re: gear, we used 2 #2 Camalots low in the crack, one about 1' above the other, and a #6 Friend, pretty tipped out, 1' above that. If you aid this thing, take several #5 Camalots or #6 Friends, but for free climbing, I would say just place a #2 Camalot as high as you can and then punch it. David Goldstein is right: this thing is definitely harder than the squeeze section of the Harding Slot. Nov 20, 2006
Mike fenice
Boulder, CO
Mike fenice   Boulder, CO
After having butterflies in my stomach all day, I went for it. Climb this baby left side in, as if it wasn't already obvious enough. For the first 8', you can climb and place gear in the hand crack inside. I placed a red and gold Camalot to start. Once you start moving up you are forced outside by the laws of physics. Don't let that scare you, bust into a "chicken wing" it's the only way. You can also heel toe with your right foot. Place a number 6 and inch your way to the top. (on-sight Baby!) May 12, 2007
Joshua Merriam
Boulder, CO
Joshua Merriam   Boulder, CO
Stuggle violently
up the overhanging slot.
Umph - 5.8 my @$$. Oct 31, 2007
Santa Monica, Ca.
YDPL8S   Santa Monica, Ca.
Nothin' like doing the chicken wing thing and then putting a major stress on your funny bone. I was not laughing though at this "5.8" that my partner drug me up. For me, it was probably 5.9 A1 (seconding, I grabbed the rope). Feb 27, 2008
I onsight free soloed this back in '77 or so, when I was a skinny kid from Laramie, total tunneler. Not barefoot but in EBs. Now, 15 lbs heavier and 34 yrs, more mature, I suspect it would the fringes for me! Apr 16, 2011
The slot is really hard. Harder than any 5.10 I have ever done. And I've done my share of bombay chimney slots rated harder.
Maybe I was doing it wrong.... Jun 22, 2011

If you still have both of your nipples, you didn't try hard enough.... :) Jun 22, 2011
Cedar Wright  
This route actually 5.8 if you find the hidden jug at the top and have a good updraft. The moves are much easier if you have a large torso and a huge ass.... Classic. Good training for The Crack of Fear... which may be 5.8 too. May 7, 2013
I wore holes through my skin at my chest and elbow, through my long sleeved shirt (the shirt did not rip). Just the friction of the shirt on my skin! Of course I didn't feel anything until I topped out. I thought that if I ever did this thing again, I'd stick a large square of moleskin on the two spots, but this is probably aid.... May 15, 2013
Evan Deis
Evan Deis  
I don't know what 11a offwidth feels like, but I know what 10+ offwidth feels like and this was hard. I am of normal size. Sep 8, 2013
Eric Klammer
Boulder, CO
Eric Klammer   Boulder, CO
Wow. Short approach, good scenery, easy communication, engaging climbing, and "exciting" nipple and crotch stimulation make this one the better, in my opinion, "date climbs" in the Boulder region. Definitely a pitch worth considering when trying to find that perfect route to show someone new to the sport what climbing is all about and to learn the origin of the saying "if your chest isn't bleeding, you're not trying!" Feb 20, 2014
Ray Lovestead
Boulder, CO
Ray Lovestead   Boulder, CO
I feel the need to provide my witness (Hallelujah).

I'm 5'8" and 180 and couldn't get anywhere but on the outside of this thing. Feels like 5.15 to me. I'm going to go home to regroup.


P.S. Sure were a lot of cobwebs on it. Does anyone actually climb this thing anymore? Sep 7, 2015
Ray Lovestead
Boulder, CO
Ray Lovestead   Boulder, CO
Climbed it again today. I think I may actually be getting worse at climbing. This climb is some kind of terrible misery that can only be appreciated when looking down at your partner and laughing like some kind of crazy person.

I was on Crack of Fear two weeks ago and found it to be 'easier' than this. Oct 1, 2015
Ray Lovestead
Boulder, CO
Ray Lovestead   Boulder, CO
Here we go again. Matt and I, once again, hanging out at the Umph. We are in fact starting to believe we are too, ahem, 'thick'. Pushes us way outside too early. This time I was able to climb the top 2/3 clean. That bottom section is brutal.

I'm going to talk to my doctor about having a few ribs removed.

Also, next time I climb this thing I'm going to tape a $100 bill in the back of the crack as a prize to whoever gets there first. Mar 6, 2016
Vincent K
Boulder, CO
Vincent K   Boulder, CO
I was pretty happy to have a #5. Apr 11, 2016
Climbed it in 1968. I remember praying hard and crying at the top. Sep 22, 2016
re.becca   Denver,co
This climb is great...for ladies under a B cup with a Beyonce ass. Spent a majority of my time groveling and cursing at my climbing partner while trying not to breathe too much for fear that my boobs would trap me to the point of him tying me off and going home.
Would do it again. Jan 21, 2017
Here and there
rkrum   Here and there
This may just be the best ~2 body lengths of climbing in Boulder. Wide crack novelty that is not to be missed.

There various solutions to this one including, but not limited to, arete humping or cartwheels.

From what I have seen and experienced, it seems like 2 outcomes are possible - hiking it or utter failure but not a whole lot in between. Fun for all body types, but some will have more "fun" than others. Jan 21, 2017
Anne McLaughlin
Raleigh, North Carolina
Anne McLaughlin   Raleigh, North Carolina
I came out of this lead a new person but not a better one.

You can walk a #6 ahead of you to keep you psychologically protected as the crack tries to spit you out into space. Jul 23, 2017
Ray Lovestead
Boulder, CO
Ray Lovestead   Boulder, CO
Attempt #5 with Matt. Silly me. I have been training for OW. This isn't an OW. It is a bouldering route where you float around the edge like a butterfly. Next attempt I'm going to bring a crash pad.

Matt needs to pick better friends. Sep 10, 2017
Nick D'Hulster
Nick D'Hulster   California
Bring a #6, and you're toproping this big boy. To be real, me and my buddy thought it was more difficult than the Harding Slot. It's still 5.8 though.... Sep 24, 2018