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Redgarden - Roof Routes
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Downpressor Man S 
Evangeline S 
Fire and Ice  T,S 
Gem, The T 
Guardian Saint T 
Guen-Ice  T 
Guenese T 
Hands In The Clouds T,S 
Huck Off T,S 
Kloeberdanz T 
Kloeberdeath/ Candallegro T 
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Le Toit Direct T 
Le Verne T 
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Temporary Like Achilles T,S 
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Wasabe S 
Wisdom, The T 

Hands In The Clouds 

YDS: 5.12a French: 7a+ Ewbanks: 25 UIAA: VIII+ ZA: 25 British: E5 6a A0

Type:  Trad, Sport, Aid
Original:  YDS: 5.12a French: 7a+ Ewbanks: 25 UIAA: VIII+ ZA: 25 British: E5 6a A0 [details]
FA: Mark and Scott Tarrant, 1987
Fixed Hardware: 1 Lead Bolt [details]
Page Views: 4,598
Submitted By: Richard M. Wright on May 1, 2001

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Scott Bennett digging deep near the middle of the ...

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  • Description 

    Hands In The Clouds is another fine addition to the Eldorado hit list by Mark Tarrant. The climbing in Hands in The Clouds begins either with the Temporary Like Achilles slab off the ground or at the double bolt anchor above the Achilles roof. The roof itself was freed by Jerry Moffat [Eds. Ben Moon?] close to ten years ago at 5.13d and can be done nicely at A0. Logically, the Moffat ascent should constitute the real end of Achilles and not the start of Hands. Wander largely leftward up the broad Psycho slab for 2 or 3 airy clips and small, tricky feet. This is followed by a cruxy move (5.12a) over a small overhang and more vertical face climbing that moves left again for a bolt. Friends and nuts protect a right facing corner and some spacey climbing to a double bolt anchor. I thought that there were two 5.12 cruxes and a lot of 5.11 style face climbing. The climbing on Hands is typical Eldo: spacey gear, a tad tough to fish it all in, and some "Eldo-weirdo" moves. (NB: Mark has indicated that one additional bolt was added to the face crux since Hands went in 1987) Three stars for great climbing, exposure, and perfect (albeit weird) Eldo sandstone. This is another classic route in the Eldorado pantheon.


    Half a dozen QD, several small camming units, and a fist full of stoppers. Double ropes willl touch the ground from the Clouds anchor. Otherwise, two raps with a 60m rope. Just above the Temporary Like Achilles roof is a double bolt anchor.

    Photos of Hands In The Clouds Slideshow Add Photo
    Rock Climbing Photo: Scott Bennett at the second clip with Rob Kepley b...
    Scott Bennett at the second clip with Rob Kepley b...
    Rock Climbing Photo: Scott Bennett at the under cling crux  en-route to...
    Scott Bennett at the under cling crux en-route to...
    Rock Climbing Photo: M.T. and Scott T. (age 16) scoping the line and dr...
    M.T. and Scott T. (age 16) scoping the line and dr...
    Rock Climbing Photo: Scott Bennett bearing down just past the third cli...
    Scott Bennett bearing down just past the third cli...
    Rock Climbing Photo: M.T. and Ray Atkinson on Hands In The Clouds, 1986...
    M.T. and Ray Atkinson on Hands In The Clouds, 1986...

    Comments on Hands In The Clouds Add Comment
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    By Anonymous Coward
    Jul 29, 2004

    Wild position and kind of thrilling climbing above the big roof. 5.11 right above the belay with two .12a sections above that--lots of power and quite pumpy for its length. There are 4 bolts on Hands; no gear needed although there is a good runout between 3 and 4 which can be protected with a TCU under a little roof (takes the edge off clipping the 4th bolt). Note that the description mentions climbing on the Psycho Slab which is actually the 3rd pitch of Psycho, above Hands. You can continue past Hands with the Psycho Slab and end up at the Upper Ramp, or belay at the Wisdom anchor and then rap back to the hanging belay at the beginning of Hands. If you do this, take some gear to direct the rope (big nut, #3 Friend), since the Wisdom anchor is down and left of where you finish Hands in the Clouds. For some reason, all the routes that climb above the roof routes (Psycho, Evangeline, Hands, Wisdom...) provide a spooky atmosphere and seem pretty out there even though they're only one pitch off the ground.
    By Willie Mein
    Jul 30, 2004
    rating: 5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a

    Hands in the Clouds is a great sport line with outstanding position. If it were the first pitch off the ground, there would be a waiting line to get on it.

    I suggest that one also try Huck Off after doing Hands in the Clouds. It is about the same grade and spice, and the climbing is steep, powerful, and interesting. It starts at the same anchor and goes left and up through the overhanging bulge. You can also TR the route (for those that may be afraid to fly) from the rap anchors that you'll be using to descend for the 3rd anchor on the Wisdom. Huck Off was not bolted with hangdogging in mind. Good bolts, clean falls. You'll either send or be sent. This one also stays dry when it is raining, unless your partner is spraying.
    By Rob Kepley
    From: Westminster,CO
    May 16, 2009
    rating: 5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a A0

    Outstanding climb featuring bulletproof rock. This thing is a wild ride the entire way that's "in your face" the moment you leave the belay. It ain't no "sport route". A very sneaky climb that would be a proud onsight.
    By Joseph Crotty
    From: Broomfield, CO
    Nov 1, 2009
    rating: 5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a A0 PG13

    Unique climb that combines airy position, deceptive reads, and sustained just past vertical climbing to produce a classic. Packs a heavy punch for just four bolts. True red point grade.

    Have a 0.5 purple Camalot or grey/red Alien ready (AKA panic piece) for the vertical finger slot after finishing the leftward traverse before clip four. Don't bother to put a cam in the flared overhead horizontal slot as it will blow out. Also, note, you can back clean the route on lower from The Wisdom P3 anchor.
    By Rob Kepley
    From: Westminster,CO
    Nov 1, 2009
    rating: 5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a A0

    Yaaaay! It goes! Also, the above description of the route makes little sense. From the belay you climb slightly right and up to a bulge. Clip the 3rd bolt and do a wild traverse left about 6-8 feet then straight up under the big roof. Make a dicey clip of the 4th bolt then traverse right to a powerful move and finish on jugs.
    By Bob Rotert
    Dec 12, 2010

    Just a correction to the write up above from Richard. I believe the Archilles roof was first freed by Ben Moon and not Jerry Moffat as written above. Maybe Moffat did it as well. I don't recall hearing of the roof being freed by anyone else, and I had heard some holds had snapped on previous attempts since Moon's ascent. Maybe some one else knows more about this. At any rate, most mortals will aid the roof to get to Hands in the Clouds.
    By Lisa Montgomery
    From: Golden, CO
    Sep 28, 2016

    With the consent of the first ascensionist, an additional 5th bolt was added to Hands in the Clouds. The new bolt is located above the crux and protects the follower from potentially taking a large pendulum. Thanks, ACE, for supplying the hardware.

    See ACE application archive for details: ACE application for additional bolt

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