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Lower Capitalist Crag
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Cheap Labor 

YDS: 5.10a French: 6a Ewbanks: 18 UIAA: VI+ ZA: 18 British: E1 5a

Type:  Trad, Sport, 1 pitch, 80'
Original:  YDS: 5.10a French: 6a Ewbanks: 18 UIAA: VI+ ZA: 18 British: E1 5a [details]
FA: Casey Bernal and Darren Mabe, 8/03
New Route: Yes
Page Views: 3,695
Submitted By: Casey Bernal on Aug 31, 2003

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No trad gear required.

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This climb is on the Lower Capitalist area between Lunchmoney and Mounty. The first two bolts are obvious at a bulge 15 feet above the main ledge. Place the bomber #7 stopper at the back of the small ledge just above the second bolt and place the yellow Alien just before the fourth bolt. Similar to Lunchmoney but with slightly harder and shorter cruxes.


Route Status as of 5/04: 8 protection bolts and a two bolt anchor. A couple mid and long slings are nice to reduce wandering rope drag.

Retro-Optional Gear: (#7 stopper or green Alien between bolts 2&3) AND (#9 or #10 stopper or yellow or red Alien at 4th bolt).

Photos of Cheap Labor Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Alex unclipping in the crux, 6-5-09.
BETA PHOTO: Alex unclipping in the crux, 6-5-09.

Comments on Cheap Labor Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated May 8, 2017
By Anonymous Coward
Oct 6, 2003

I don't think this route will get many ascents since the prevailing ethic in Clear Creek does not include gear requirements.
By Casey Bernal
From: Arvada, CO
Oct 6, 2003

Dear ac, popular does not mean better.
By Matt Juth
From: Evergreen
Oct 6, 2003
rating: 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a

The first gear placement mentioned is not necessary; however, the second placement is nice to have. You do a couple thin moves above the yellow alien to gain the bolt. A fall would be disasterous. Fun locks at the top (wish there were more)!
By Darren Mabe
From: Flagstaff, AZ
Oct 6, 2003
rating: 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a

A few more notes on the route description:

Above the first two bolts, the climbing is not hard getting onto the ledge where you can clip the 3rd bolt. The small cam placement 10 feet below the 4th bolt is pretty handy to avoid an ugly fall.

The traverse moves onto the low angle stance at 4th bolt are brilliant (5.9). The crack (crux) leading past the last two bolts is a quick little test of finger-tip crack technique. I bolted this finish a while ago, but took me and Casey's collaboration to develop the unique start. We completed it on Labor Day weekend 2003.
By Casey Bernal
From: Arvada, CO
May 20, 2004

Recently, according to the logic of the first AC who commented on this route, someone added a bolt next to the bomber cam placement between the third and fourth bolts. Now if you run it out between the second and third bolts, it is a pure sport climb.
By Drew Allan
From: Denver/Aspen
Jun 16, 2004

This route is nice addition to the lower wall of Capitalist Crag. Now, there are two moderates next to each other that allow extra mileage for your pleasure. No need for gear on the run out discussed above; it is minimal and on moderate terrain. Both routes are either 9+ or 10a. You can decide. The fifth clip is a bit of a reach but you can step down and make the traverse easier on lower footholds. A couple of locks later bring you to the belay.
By Doug Redosh
From: Golden, CO
Jul 10, 2004
rating: 5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b

A bit harder than Lunch Money. Leo Paik and I TR'ed this line in 10/02 and called it "Change". However, kudos to Darren for equipping the route, and others in this area, that does not get the road noise that is ubiquitous elsewhere in CCC.
By richard magill
Jul 16, 2004
rating: 5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b

Nice line - very continuous - great fun.
By Richard M. Wright
From: Lakewood, CO
Jul 29, 2004
rating: 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a

Nice thoughtful line. A single small TCR was useful between clips 2 and 3. Nothing is really needed further up. This is a very nice addition.
By Jake Wyatt
From: Longmont, CO
Jul 31, 2004

Cheap Labor has a decidedly different feel from Lunchmoney, and very interesting moves.
By Ron Olsen
From: Boulder, CO
Sep 11, 2005
rating: 5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b

A sustained and interesting pitch. The crux crack near the top of the pitch is pumpy; get the sequence right the first time!
By doug rouse
From: Denver, CO.
Jul 8, 2008

Greetings, we climbed this route on Sunday July 6th. Very fun, but I am confused regarding info on trad pro needed? Has there been additional bolts placed? Anyway, everyone in our party felt comfortable with existing fixed gear. Mr. Olsen is sooo right! Get the sequence correct or downclimb! Peace.
By Shawn Mitchell
From: Broomfield
Aug 6, 2009
rating: 5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b

Maybe I was off route, but I felt the crux was some thin crimps and digits up and left just before the traverse and mantle to the final fingerlock headwall.
By Casey Bernal
From: Arvada, CO
Aug 6, 2009

I think there are two ways to do the moves past the 5th bolt. 1) You can go up and slightly left, utilizing the micro crimps and balancy footwork. This seems to be the most popular way to go. Or 2) you can traverse straight right under the bolt till you are below the headwall crack-crux-thingy and then go straight up. This way seems to have better holds though it is much less obvious. I have done it both ways many times and certainly prefer #2 (please don't take this out of context...).

Is there such thing as off route?
By Jeremy
From: Boulder, CO
Jun 20, 2010
rating: 5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b

Maybe I was having a really off day. I'm pretty solid 11, and this didn't feel anything like low 10 to anyone I climbed it with.
By Todd Ra
From: Golden
Sep 12, 2015

Climbed this today not knowing what it was.... Really surprised to see people calling it 10a by Clear Creek standards. The crux is short but definitely felt harder than low-10.
Felt very well protected as a sport route. Supplemental gear unnecessary.
By teece303
From: Highlands Ranch, CO
Sep 13, 2015
rating: 5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b

Yeah, I climbed it with Todd. Didn't feel like a 10a at the crack unless I missed something major there.
By Arthur Wright
May 15, 2016
rating: 5.10b/c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b

Felt a bit harder than most 10a's in CCC that I've done. The crux is pretty on par difficulty wise with the bottom of Aries (10c/d) nearby (but CL only has a few hard moves). Pretty fun route, but other than the finger-lock near the chains, it's pretty forgettable.

Also, definitely no gear needed between bolts. The runout between B2 and B3 is on really easy terrain and I'm pretty you would stay off the deck even if you fell.
By aikibujin
From: Castle Rock, CO
May 1, 2017
rating: 5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b

The finger crack crux felt pretty heady! I was sure if I greased off the slopers going for the clip above the crux I'd hit the slab below, so I squeezed really hard and thank God didn't have to test that theory. Maybe it would've been a clean fall, but I sure didn't want to be the one to find out!
By Greg Barnes
May 8, 2017
rating: 5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b

Small greasy feet and reachy, not so great finger locks, 10d not 10a. If you're tall, strong, and have great edging shoes, then it could feel easier. I can see this being 10a before the feet got greased up (and I bet some small edges have become smaller).

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