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Playing Hooky Var. 

YDS: 5.8 French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- ZA: 15 British: HVS 4c

Type:  Trad, 1 pitch, 180'
Original:  YDS: 5.8 French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- ZA: 15 British: HVS 4c [details]
Page Views: 2,009
Submitted By: mountainsense on Sep 17, 2008

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (13)
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Tyler, past the crux, underclings out the overlap ...

Gate Buttress Area Recreational Lease: Climbs on Church Buttress above vault remain closed MORE INFO >>>


This interesting variation begins on the Schoolroom Direct crack (5.7 R) then joins the Schoolroom's second pitch (5.6). Rather than exiting right onto the face toward the second belay, however, continue up the corner, past dark, streaked rock and undercling/lieback leftward out the roof above. Belay in the vegetated gully using wires or small cams.
From the belay, traverse left on good edges to gain a thin crack; easy, crack-protected slab climbing leads to a short crux below an obvious roof. Undercling/jam the handcrack as it trends right out the overlap, latch the finishing jug, then rejoin the original Schoolroom just below the prominent Schoolroom Roof. Traverse left to finish at the tree or link it to the airy, A0 roof above. A great deal of gardening was required to establish this line; with a bit more traffic, this variation might provide a more direct alternative, especially if there are parties in line for Schoolroom.


A standard rack, with doubles in cams from tips to fingers.

Photos of Playing Hooky Var. Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: the yellow line shows the path taken from the base...
BETA PHOTO: the yellow line shows the path taken from the base...

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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Nov 10, 2016
By Stevie Nacho
From: Utah
Sep 17, 2008

come on now...this has been done before.
By Dave Budge
From: South Slope of the Hindu Kush
Sep 17, 2008

Well, I've been climbing up there since I was a kid and I've never heard of or seen anyone on that route. You must've done some work. In old photos that was quite the jungle line. Great job Shingo. Another nice Schoolroom option.
By Stevie Nacho
From: Utah
Sep 18, 2008

ten bucks says this has been done back in the day. Come on you "old timers" you know you've sent this in the Chuck Taylors. I'm talking to you Smoot Brothers, Kim Miller, Tyler Phillips, James Garrett, Doug Heinrich, Luke Douglas, Dennis Turnville, Jansen Gunderson, Mark Bennett, Nate Brown, George Lowe, Richard Green, Greg Lowe, Guate Garcia, and don't forget Tony Calderone.

By bsmoot
Sep 18, 2008

It has been done. I had it marked as a variation in my 1975 guide book, and I know that climbers had been doing it before I did.

Don't underestimate old timers...they climbed the hell out of the Gate Buttress!

p.s. Thanks for the clean-up
By mountainsense
Sep 18, 2008

hey, everyone! thanks for clearing that up; i thought it too obvious to escape the keen eyes of those who have been around and know the canyons much better than i... i've edited its FA status, but does anyone know what this variation is called? whodunnit and when? shingo
By tenesmus
Sep 18, 2008

I was totally going to do that this spring till Brian said it'd been done. Nice work mountainsense - I wasn't looking forward to cleaning that.

I was thinking of linking in from Schoolroom streak on the cool edges and seams from the left. When you were on it, did that look like it made sense?
By bsmoot
Sep 18, 2008


To my knowledge, that variation didn't have a name. Back in the 70's, climbers didn't name, date or record variations , unless they offered really good climbing. The early guidebooks just gave them numbers 3.1, 3.2 and so on. Naming everything wasn't as common as it now is.

The Playing Hooky variation sounds good to me. Thanks for posting up.
By Boissal
From: Small Lake, UT
Jun 10, 2011
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

Fun line, you could call it a bit dirty or just enjoy the flowering patches of indian paintbrush in the crack. Some placements down low on P2 required a bit of digging around with the nut tool, things clean up after the first 15'. The undercling/lieback section has a few crumbly feet and strenuous gear placements.
Sling everything long or the traverse to the belay will kill you. The gear recommendation was spot on, we took doubles from .3 to .75 and I ended up leading P2 with a single set as the anchor swallowed the doubles. I made it to the belay with nothing to spare.
Good eye on this one Shingo, you should advertise it more so it cleans up!
By Brian G
Jun 14, 2011
rating: 5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

Very cool line. I did have to do some weeding to place gear but I didn't mind at all. It would be great if this saw more traffic. The rope drag on the traverse did get horrible. Three stars despite the dirt and flora in the crack.
By zoso
Jun 24, 2011

Great variation. Pretty clean rock. No rope drag if you engineer it right.
By krbuckingham
Mar 22, 2012

Anyone know what the "direct" start is? Schoolroom was crowded, east adn west, so I ventured straight up, headed up a legitimate "bushwack" crack (hands to bushes to trees) to a little belay cove. From there, I could step out onto the face and go up playing hooky. Just curious if anyone knows much about this. It was a fun venture to beat the crowds.
By Woodson
From: Park City, Ut.
May 25, 2013
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

I agree, a bit more gardening is going to help this crack out. I pulled a few weeds, but definitely for a veggie lover ;) it could use a bit more cleaning until it gets stellar status. Cool route, do it to Movie Variation for a nice multi pitch outing!
By Crag Turkey
From: Holladay, UT
Nov 10, 2016

Fun variation, especially if you have a green thumb. Some really sweet under clings and laybacks on this variation. Worth it if you've done the standard, west, and want a different adventure.

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