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Doorway Rocks - Major Mass

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Hammer Wall & The Keyhole 
Lower Major Mass 
Upper Major Mass & Jungle Gym Tower 

Doorway Rocks - Major Mass Rock Climbing 

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Submitted By: Tom Anderson-Brown on Apr 8, 2002
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Major Mass Sunset 10-09-10


Major Mass is located near the top of the Potholes trail to the west of Red Rocks and just to the west of Minor Mass. The formation contains a good range of climbs with good exposure and length (80-100 feet).

The area lends itself to "multi-pitch" climbing (Midwest style), allowing up to four pitches of climbing from the base of the Red Slab to Jungle Gym Tower and the top of Devil's Doorway.

The area could be climbed and explored during any summer weekend without running into more than a handful of people. The quality of the climbs here is on par with those found at the most popular spots in the park.

Getting There 

To access Major Mass, park at the South Shore parking lot. Take the paved trail north across the railroad tracks until you reach the junction of the Balanced Rock Trail and the Grottos Trail. From here you have two options.

Option 1) Turn left at the junction and hike to the top of the bluff via the Balanced Rock Trail. At the top turn right and follow the Devil's Doorway Trail about 1/4 mile. You will go down a set of about 5 rock steps and to your right you will see a gully with vertical walls on either side (Ramsay's Pinnacle area). Take this fourth-class gully down the west side of the Major Mass. You can walk to the base of the Major Mass, or cut in left onto one of its handful of terraces.

Option 2) Turn right at the junction and walk along the Grottos Trail. Looking up to your left you will see the Devil's Doorway formation. If you're really burly you could cut up through the talus slope from here. If not, continue to the Potholes Trail, a trail of rock steps that skirts the east side of the greater Doorway Rocks formation. About 3/4 up the bluff, about 50 yards below the Red Rocks formation, you can cut west across the boulder field to the base of Minor Mass and continue on until you reach Major Mass (look for the large gully that separates the Major and Minor Mass, and also look for the "Keyhole").

Alternatively, you could hike to the top of the bluff via the Potholes Trail and go around the top of Minor Mass on the Devil's Doorway Trail and find the gully that separates Major and Minor Mass (the top of this gully is near the east end of the Devil's Doorway side trail). Descend this gully with Major Mass on your right.

Climbing Season

Weather station 3.7 miles from here

71 Total Climbing Routes

['4 Stars',0],['3 Stars',19],['2 Stars',39],['1 Star',10],['Bomb',2]

Classic Climbing Routes in Doorway Rocks - Major Mass

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Doorway Rocks - Major Mass:
Jungle Gym   5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c     Trad, 1 pitch, 100'   Upper Major Mass & Jungle G...
Kenosis   5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c     Trad, TR   Lower Major Mass
Angel's Crack   5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b     Trad, TR   Upper Major Mass & Jungle G...
Cedar Tree Wall   5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b     Trad, TR   Upper Major Mass & Jungle G...
Stettner's Overhang   5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b     Trad, TR, 40'   Hammer Wall & The Keyhole
Dippy Diagonal   5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b     Trad, TR   Lower Major Mass
Jolly Roger   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Trad, TR   Upper Major Mass & Jungle G...
Archway Cookie   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Trad, TR   Lower Major Mass
Hammer Crack   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Trad, TR   Hammer Wall & The Keyhole
Hammer Master   5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a     Trad, TR, 50'   Hammer Wall & The Keyhole
Hammer Case   5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Trad, 1 pitch   Hammer Wall & The Keyhole
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Doorway Rocks - Major Mass

Featured Route For Doorway Rocks - Major Mass
Rock Climbing Photo: Tom Anderson-Brown on Angel's Crack just below the...

Angel's Crack 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b  Wisconsin : Devil's Lake : ... : Upper Major Mass & Jungle G...
Angel's Crack sits on the highest cliff band of the Major Mass of Doorway Rocks. Start the climb at a 5 ft tall slab. Once on top of this slab you will see a very flat face with vertical and horizontal cracks in it. This is the Jolly Roger. Angel's Crack is around the adjacent corner to the right. Climb up the dihedral using stemming and jamming moves. There are also plenty of blocks and ledges to hold. Continue up the dihedral and pass the arrowhead slab on your left. Climb out of the d...[more]   Browse More Classics in Wisconsin

Photos of Doorway Rocks - Major Mass Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: The top of Major Mass is an especially good place ...
The top of Major Mass is an especially good place ...
Rock Climbing Photo: Doorway Rocks seen from the Grottos Trail at the b...
BETA PHOTO: Doorway Rocks seen from the Grottos Trail at the b...
Rock Climbing Photo: The gully between the Major Mass (left) and the Mi...
BETA PHOTO: The gully between the Major Mass (left) and the Mi...
Rock Climbing Photo: This is "Layback Boulder" as seem from T...
BETA PHOTO: This is "Layback Boulder" as seem from T...
Rock Climbing Photo: The Doorway Rocks seen from 3/4 up the Potholes Tr...
BETA PHOTO: The Doorway Rocks seen from 3/4 up the Potholes Tr...

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By Anonymous Coward
Mar 27, 2004
Major Mass provides some of the best climbgs in the park. Routes with easy anchoring spots include Split Decision, Mary Jane and Jolly Roger.