REI Community
The Amphitheater
Select Route:
2nd Pinnacle, NW Corner T 
2nd Pinnacle, Upper East Face Right T 
D.A.'s Route T 
Dialysis Bag T 
Direct North Face T,TR 
Direct to top of Second Pinnacle  T 
Direct West Bench [formerly listed as variation] T 
Diversion T 
East Bench Dihedral T 
Inset, The T 
Inside S. Face (1st pinnacle) T,TR 
Juniper Crack (1st pinacle) T 
Left Variation (1st pinnacle) T 
Macropsychotic T 
McCrumm's Crack (1st Pinnacle) T 
North Face of the West Bench (2nd Pinnacle) T 
Northeast Chimney T 
Northeast Corner T 
Now and Zen T,TR 
Outside East Face T 
P.S. I'm Blonde T,S 
Pizza Pie Crack T 
Red Gully, The T,TR 
Red Wall aka Raptors in Cellophane S,TR 
Roof (2nd Pinnacle E. Face) TR 
SE Face aka Southeast Arete (First Pinnacle) T 
Second Pinnacle East Face T 
Second Pinnacle South Face T 
Shortcut T 
Siberian North Face T,S 
Slot [formerly listed at Direct West Bench] T 
South Face Direct (1st Pinnacle) TR 
South Face Left (1st Pinnacle) T,TR 
South Rib (2nd Pinnacle) T 
Standard Inside East Face T,TR 
T-Zero West Face aka Finger Crack T,TR 
Tyrolean Traverse TR 
West Bench Dihedral T,TR 
West Face (of T-Zero) T,TR 

Red Wall aka Raptors in Cellophane 

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

Type:  Sport, TR, 1 pitch
Original:  YDS: 5.9+ French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: E1 5a [details]
FA: Paul Piana and Suzanne Jackson, 1989.
Page Views: 4,102
Submitted By: Michael Komarnitsky on Jan 1, 2001

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (48)
Your todo list:
Your stars:
Your rating: -none- [change]
Your ticklist: [add new tick]
Your opinion of this PAGE:    [0 people like this page.]
BETA PHOTO: 2nd Pinnacle: North Face of West Bench, 5.6 R. Ra...

  • Some crags in this area are closed 1 February to 31 July: MORE INFO >>>
  • Temporary Trail and Raptor Closures MORE INFO >>>
  • Seasonal Raptor Closures MORE INFO >>>

  • Description 

    Rossiter rates this as 10c, but it is definitely not that hard. The pump factor may push the grade to 10, but technically it's 9. This route is 15 feet west of the West Bench of the amphitheatre, on the north-facing wall, a gentle overhanging route with the holds getting smaller as you go up. The crux is the moves above the third bolt. You should not have to use the large crack anywhere past the 1st bolt. This rock is a little flaky... we pulled a 12" plate off the rock in October of 1999.


    4 bolts to 2 chains. Some trad gear for the start. Access the bolts for TR via a 4th class chimney about 30 feet to the right of the route.

    Photos of Red Wall aka Raptors in Cellophane Slideshow Add Photo
    Rock Climbing Photo: North Face of 2nd Pinnacle:  Raptors in Cellophane...
    BETA PHOTO: North Face of 2nd Pinnacle: Raptors in Cellophane...
    Rock Climbing Photo: Ben Mottinger: Belay Zen Master.
    Ben Mottinger: Belay Zen Master.
    Rock Climbing Photo: Rapping off Raptors in Cellophane.
    Rapping off Raptors in Cellophane.
    Rock Climbing Photo: View of the upper wall, all 4 bolts visible.
    BETA PHOTO: View of the upper wall, all 4 bolts visible.
    Rock Climbing Photo: Red Wall aka Raptors in Cellophane...I believe.
    Red Wall aka Raptors in Cellophane...I believe.
    Rock Climbing Photo: Jon Pineau matches on a huge hold.
    Jon Pineau matches on a huge hold.

    Comments on Red Wall aka Raptors in Cellophane Add Comment
    Show which comments
    Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Jun 17, 2013
    By Anonymous Coward
    Jan 1, 2001

    There is a more difficult start up a thin crack with crappy feet that seems obvious. Harder than 9 plus, easier than .11.
    By Kreighton Bieger
    Aug 12, 2001

    Given the friable nature of the rock and the terrible landing, the first bolt seems a little high. If you start directly, which is to say left of the crack, then a piece of gear is a good idea. A #5-6 BD stopper will slot nicely in a taper crack on the left, or a mid-size cam (~ #1 Camalot) might come in handy a bit lower. Just my $.02
    By Michael Walker
    From: Loveland, CO
    Dec 12, 2001

    Way back when, in the dawn of time, like '97, the guy I was was climbing with (Boulder local) called this route "Raptors and Celophane" - to me this name has stuck (much cooler than Red Wall, no?). I do not know where he pulled this name, has anyone heard it before, and if so, where??
    By Kreighton Bieger
    Dec 13, 2001

    I'd forgotten about that! The first time I went up there, probably November '94 or so, a woman clued us into the name, as you said, "Raptors and Cellophane". "Ya know, like birds and plastic", she said.

    She and we also called it 'stiff 5.8'. About two years later, I went back and two guys were finishing up TRing it and just for fun I asked the grade and name. Didn't know the name, but they informed me that it went at 5.12. I still say it is 9+ or 10a tops.
    By Tony B
    From: Around Boulder, CO
    Oct 14, 2002
    rating: 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a

    Better description? Maybe... This is a sport route on the North Face of the Ginseng Tower (part of the "outside" or West face of Tower Two of the Gregory Canyon Amphitheater. Walk on the Amphitheater trail past the open amphitheatre and then walk North up a 30-40 degree incline past the west side of the Second Tower, which forms the West wall of the Amphitheater. At the North end of this there is a huge corner formed by thte two rocks that form the two summits. Looking back South at these they are Tower Two (left) and the Ginseng Tower (right). The bolted route going up the North Face of the Ginseng Tower goes at easy 5.10. It is a well protected affair once the first bolt is clipped and ascended primarily on large and secure holds. Some body-English may be required. Good fixed anchors are up top to rap from, lower off on, or set a TR from, using 2 slings.
    By William McGehee
    From: Choctaw, OK
    Nov 21, 2002
    rating: 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a

    BEAUTIFUL day today. I love these warm chinooks! This climb always seemed rather daunting to me. Finally nailed it today. Crux is definitely between the third and fourth bolts. Not much to hang onto unless you go for the layback right facing dihedral . Definitely a "pumper." My rating would be 5.10a as well. Give it a shot. It's worth it. Easy clean-up if you don't make it. 4th class chimney allows access to the chains on top to get your gear back ; )
    By Anonymous Coward
    Nov 22, 2002

    I thought the old name was "Raptor in Cellophane." That conjures up interesting images....
    By Ray Snead
    Nov 22, 2002

    The old name *was* "Raptor in Cellophane" - I remember when PP did it. The name is a layered pun, referencing both bird closures and a popular TV show of the time, "Twin Peaks." Recall the state of Laura Palmer's body...

    Pumpy, yes, but it seemed about 10a, at least when the holds stayed on.
    By James Garnett
    From: Bellingham, WA
    Aug 14, 2003

    • OLD* name? I remember climbing this in 1985, at least 5 years before Twin Peaks (which I also remember well, FWIW). The route had to have a name then, and it couldn't've been related to Laura's beach landing....
    By William McGehee
    From: Choctaw, OK
    Oct 14, 2003
    rating: 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a

    As Myke says, tread lightly here. My partner knocked off a decent flake about the size of a burrito this afternoon on TR. This face will exfoliate if you yard on the thin stuff (for proof check out the ground downhill of the base). If you stay true to the line of the four bolts, the route is a hard 5.10. Take the dihedral to the right of the line between bolts #3 and #4 for "easy 5.10" if there is such a thing.
    By Jorge Calhoun
    Oct 29, 2003
    rating: 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a

    I think Tony Bubb may cause a bit of confusion here: this climb is on Tower Two, not Ginseng Pillar. The equivalent route on Ginseng is Siberian North Face, which has only one bolt near the top.

    The setup for TR (if you don't lead the route) will feel rather exposed because you have to reach around from a small ledge to access the chains. If this doesn't suit you, you can rappel down from the Tower Two summit eye bolt to the chains. Frankly, this may not be a hell of a lot safer - you basically rappel along a ridge - but it definitely makes the setup easier.

    By Joseph Proulx
    Nov 19, 2003

    Good #11 BD stopper before the first bolt, too - there's plenty of pro available to protect the 5.7+ish start.

    However the first 2 bolts are crappy - homemade hangers beginning to rust. I bailed at the first clip because of visions of a 15' whipper at the second clip (made worse my recent unpleasant first lead fall, so cut me some slack for being a wuss). The anchor on top (did the TR again) isn't so hot either. The bolt hanger on the right (again homemade) BENT about 1/2" when I rapped off to clean up the TR. The other bolt/chain looks pretty okay.

    Anyway, a nice before-work climb on a warm November morning.
    By Chris Plesko
    From: Westminster, CO
    Nov 23, 2008
    rating: 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a

    The first bolt is definitely high for most people. I placed a mid-sized stopper about 10 feet below bolt one. The first two hangers are not the greatest, but I blew a foot and fell on the first one and it held fine. The route was fun and a good lead for me. It was getting cold and dark so I lowered off a couple heavy ovals and didn't scramble up to get them. As of this post, they're in good shape to stay on the route or as booty. The flakes, especially lower down are not totally solid, so I wouldn't yard on them too hard if you like your belayer.
    By Bill C.
    From: Fort Collins, CO
    Dec 29, 2010

    This route has some serious potential to be a truly great climb. Steep wall, consistent overhang, and jugs the whole way up really make this climb a treat (however, probably not much harder than 10a). This route does however require a fair bit of maintenance. It seems that some of most attractive holds could blow at any minute, and the homemade hangers are pretty dubious. The left anchor bolt is pretty rough, too (just a few links of rusted chain sitting on a rusty hanger-less bolt). If someone would take the time to bolt and clean this properly, then 3 stars for sure. Just my opinion, though.
    By Eric Klammer
    From: Boulder, CO
    Jun 7, 2013
    rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a

    Awesome route! Sport line with a little bit of a trad feel. I wouldn't call it more than 5.9, just a little pumpy towards the top. The creaky holds and old bolts also add some excitement. As others have said, a good medium stopper will get you to the first bolt, and the climbing there is easy anyways. Finally, the first couple of hangers have a pretty cool built in feature, you can tell which ones have been fallen on because they are bent much flatter to the rock than the others. Much be some sort of new technology....
    By Nish
    Jun 17, 2013

    As per Ray Snead, in 1992 this was regularly referred to as 'Raptor in Cellophane'.

    Mountain Project

    The Definitive Climbing Resource

    MTB Project

    Next Generation MTB Trail Maps

    Powder Project

    Backcountry Ski Maps & Secret Stashes
    FREE Stickers · Gyms · RSS · School of Rock · Contact · About