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Routes in Uptown

5.10 TR TR 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
Baxter Crack T 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b
Bold is Love T 5.11- 6c 22 VIII+ 22 E3 5c
Bolt Ladder Boulder C0
Bonobo V5 6C
Chicken Fixin's T 5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c R
Five Easy Pieces T 5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a
Gone Fishin' T 5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
Inferno T 5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b PG13
John's Jugs T 5.12 7b+ 27 VIII+ 26 E6 6b
Left Deception T 5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
Magic Static V5+ 6C+ R
Megadeath T 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
Middle Deception Crack T 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b PG13
Now Smell This S 5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a
Orangutan V2+ 5+
PMC T 5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c
Prow, The T 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
Retirement Crack T 5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
Right Deception Crack T 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
Right Elephant Crack T 5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a
Slab Problem V4- 6B
Spread Eagle T 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a R
Spread Flake T 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
TT's Terror T 5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
Tunnel NE V3 6A
Verse in Ragtime T,S 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c PG13
Zit Slab T 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
Unsorted Routes:
Type: Trad, 65 ft
FA: John Gault (early 80's)
Page Views: 1,434 total, 10/month
Shared By: Will Cobb on May 19, 2006
Admins: Greg Opland, Luke Bertelsen, JJ Schlick

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One of the best routes at West Elden, if you can climb it!

Located just right of the Baxter Crack, John's Jugs climbs the steep fingers and tips crack that splits an overhanging headwall.

Start over boulders and broken rock to access the crack. Launch up the fingers/tips crack which widens to thin hands just before the cliff top.


Located about 50 yards left (north) of the Deception Cracks.


2 x #0 TCU/Blue Alien
2 x #1 TCU/Green Alien
1 x #2 TCU/Yellow Alien
1 x .5 Camalot
1 x .75 Camalot
1 x 1 Camalot
Possibly a couple of stoppers

There are several sturdy trees at the top of this route for TR anchors or to rap off. This route is easily TRed after climbing the Baxter Crack.


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Colin Cox  
I think this is one of those lines that is really striking....but hard because it's painful. It had to be done because it's there, but that's about it. Apr 14, 2014
I am not trying to be a complete jerk, and some of that was meant for a friend, but I do hold to the opinion. As someone who has climbed a lot in Flag, including many poor routes (I have done all the routes on the upper tier of the Pit, for example), this one stood out as really not fun. The initial description cites it as one of the best of the area, I felt that was off target, by a long way. Sorry if I offended you in my word choice, I'm not the funniest person I know. Feb 10, 2013
Kyle, why would you show up at an area and for your first climb jump on something clearly labelled as:
"So short and so painful!" (and by a local with a lot of stuff under his belt)
and then complain about it being short and painful ?

This is a locals testpiece, it's not one you'd put a visitor onto for a first climb unless they're on some sort of hardest route circuit trip.

Follow Will's suggestions and the area might grow on you. Bouldering is also pretty good, especially for being so close to town.

Add to that list Watermelon, Flameout, TT's Terror, Retirement Crack, Bold as Love (looks cool, don't think I've done it) a number of other testing stemming corners abound. Apr 27, 2010
Will Cobb
Flagstaff, AZ
Will Cobb   Flagstaff, AZ

Sorry that you did not like this route as much as I did. You are right, it is sharp. If you ever decide to get back on it again ask Chris Tatum about how he taped for it. I think that it really helped him save his skin.

Before you swear off West Elden may I suggest a couple of other routes? Colin's new route "Bold is Love" is really good. "The Prow" and "Twilight Zone" would be 3 star routes anywhere.

Hope to meet you out climbing sometime.

Will Apr 24, 2010
If this is one of the best routes, I'm glad I haven't done any others. A miserable 6 ft of sharp jams. What fun. A wise old fat guy (with sausage fingers) once said there is too much good rock and life is too short to climb routes like this. Nov 12, 2009
Yeah, JG drumming up business... gnaw. (or BM for that matter.)
Decent programmers, probably better boulderers.

Seems like I'd heard that John's folks had passed on and left the house to John. He was living there over on 6th.

John and I were in math grad skool together in early 80s. May 1, 2009
Guilty! I just don't seem to be getting it right. May 1, 2009
Ken, I think you are on a mistaken identity rampage, it's DAVE Baker that owns the Summit Hut (and bagged all the good lines 40 years ago). Apr 30, 2009
I climbed with John a few times when I lived in Flagstaff. I think I saw John Gault was a guide in a Google search or in Mountain Gazette.

I'm editing my comment. I just did a google search and found a few John Gault references, but none about a guide in Colorado. It was in Mountain Gazette or I am mistaken.

I noticed a comment from JBaker in Tucson. Mr. Baker might remember my son Nathaniel when he was a student at U of A about five years ago. He climbed at Lemmon and attended a few of your slide shows, if I have the right John Baker/Summit Hut Apr 30, 2009
John was a good partner (he and I bouldered a lot back and climbed a little in the mid 80s) and a good guy...but not what you'd call a "people person". PD...can you picture him drumming up business ? I'm laughing. Apr 30, 2009
Yeah, John as a guide, highly unlikely.
His was (is) a reclusive personality.

Last I knew, John was in Tucson but that was 10-15 years ago.
After he'd been in Albuquerque working with Bob and me. Apr 30, 2009
I absolutely cannot picture John Gault as a climbing guide. Are you sure about that ? Apr 30, 2009
John Gault lived in Flagstaff in the late seventies and early eighties with his two dogs. He had a very high ape index,large biceps,and was prematurely bald.

If the climb is rated as a 5.12 in the early eighties, figure it is a 5.13 today. During this period climbers in Flagstaff and probably throughout Arizona, thought all the hard climbing was in Yosemite and gave climbs lower ratings than they deserved.

I think Gault is a climbing guide in Colorado now. Apr 29, 2009
Chris Tatum
Flagstaff, AZ
Chris Tatum   Flagstaff, AZ
This route is stout... This thing took me so long to do just because of the pain... I could only get a few tries each day. So short and so painful! Hats off to the guys that did this thing on nuts!
I used, in this order...
.5 Camalot
Yellow Metolius
Purple C3
Yellow Metolius
#3 Camalot Feb 1, 2009
Was it JG or Dick Cilly (Cilley?) who snagged the first ? Apr 14, 2008
First ascent John Gault (early 80's)- previously known as "Tenure Crack" and the site of much effort by other locals Sep 1, 2007
Tried this one today... Couldn't touch it, even on toprope. Owie! Brutally sharp overhanging tips at the crux. Aug 22, 2007
Who is John Gault? Jun 21, 2007