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Upper West

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Upper West Bolton Boulders 

Upper West Rock Climbing 

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Location: 44.41989, -72.90184 View Map  Incorrect?
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Administrators: Luc-514, Kris Fiore, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Kris Fiore on Apr 22, 2008
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BETA PHOTO: Upper West Topo Rt 5 a.k.a Corkscrew Rt 12 a.k.a C...

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  • Description 

    Some of the best climbing in the Bolton area. Sport climbing from 5.7 to 5.12, trad climbing from 5.7 to 5.11+, a few offwidths, some chimneys, roofs and even cracks... What more could you ask for? Also home to the infamous Vermont classics The Rose and The Thorn.

    Definitely check out the guidebook Tough Schist as there is much more than what is listed here.

    Tough Schist Guidebook

    Climbing After Rain

    With such a variation of height, overhang, and aspect, there is a huge difference in whether climbs dry after rain quickly or not. This list isn't perfect or totally comprehensive but should steer you in the right direction.

    Routes that typically stay dry or dry quickly:

    It's Not a Cruise (True Value)
    True Value
    Trespassing Direct
    Featherweight Champion
    Doug the Subway Fugitive
    Rancid Meat
    Peachy Canoodle
    Stone Staircase

    Routes that tend to seep or take a little longer to dry:

    Full Circle
    Take Back Vermont
    Take Back Vermont From Behind
    Dr. Diaz (Bottom)
    Oompa Loompa
    5.7 Corner
    5.7+ Corner
    Fresh Meat (Bottom)
    Against the Grain
    The Lorax
    The Rose
    The Thorn

    Getting There 

    Go past Lower West on Bolton Notch Road for about 3 miles until you reach the Long Trail intersection on the left. Hike along the long trail crossing a stream using rocks or a fallen log. A few minutes later turn right upon reaching a sign which directs you to split off to the cliff. The first rock on the left is the Booty Area.

    Climbing Season

    Weather station 9.0 miles from here

    47 Total Climbing Routes

    ['4 Stars',5],['3 Stars',19],['2 Stars',17],['1 Star',4],['Bomb',0]

    Classic Climbing Routes in Upper West

    Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Upper West:
    The Bookend   5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b PG13     Trad, 60'   Lower Tier
    Chockstone (aka:Captain's Crack)   5.8- 5b 16 VI- 14 VS 4c PG13     Trad, 1 pitch, 100'   Upper Tier - Right End
    Beginner's Luck   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Sport, 1 pitch, 55'   Lower Tier
    Private Property   5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   Upper Tier - Left End
    Peachy Canoodle   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 55'   Lower Tier
    Stone Staircase    5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 70'   Lower Tier
    Dr. Dias   5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 100'   Upper Tier - Right End
    The Rose   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 100'   North End
    Trespassing   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   Upper Tier - Left End
    Fresh Meat   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 80'   Lower Tier
    Arêtenophobia    5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b     Sport, 70'   Alias Wall
    Paradox   5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   Lower Tier
    The Thorn   5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c     Trad, 1 pitch, 60'   North End
    Donkey Index   5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   North End
    Doug the Subway Fugitive   5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c     Sport, 1 pitch, 70'   Hidden Ledge
    Bilateral symmetry   5.11a/b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c PG13     Trad, 1 pitch, 60'   Lower Tier
    Full Circle   5.11a/b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c     Sport, 1 pitch, 35'   Booty Wall Area
    Professor Booty   5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 50'   Booty Wall Area
    Mal Bouche   5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Trad, 110'   Upper Tier - Right End
    Featherweight Champion   5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b     Sport, 1 pitch, 70'   Upper Tier - Right End
    Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Upper West

    Featured Route For Upper West
    Rock Climbing Photo: Jess high on Dr. Dias

    Dr. Dias 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a  Vermont : Bolton Area : ... : Upper Tier - Right End
    Fantastic pitch! Nice exposure and handcrack high up on a bottomless arete. Good trad sections and bolts where you need em'. Start on Birch Tree corner and break right about 50' up at a line of 3 bolts on an awesome face. Follow this to a sweet crack and an awesome stemming finish! ...[more]   Browse More Classics in Vermont

    Comments on Upper West Add Comment
    Show which comments
    By DWABS
    Jan 3, 2011
    I've been here many times and am still confused about a lot of the names and grades of various climbs. Two are of particular interest to me and am wondering if anyone can help me out..

    The first climb is located at the farthest left side of the crag on a small wall. There are two bolted climbs. I'm wondering about the one on the left. There's four bolts to the anchor on this face climb. I have an old piece of paper that calls this "Home Depot" and grades it 5.9. I feel as if this grade is pretty solid for the climb. Any opinions?

    The second is around the corner from these climbs and starts on an arete to the right of a corner with four bolts and then up to a big grassy ledge. You then climb another face with wavy features four bolts up to a chain anchor. The paper I have doesn't have a name but I've heard it called "Corkscrew" and is graded 5.10a, I've heard it called 5.7 or 5.8 but am assuming that is if you climb the dirty corner itself instead of the arete. I feel though that the upper face is harder than a 5.8 in itself.

    I'm going to post these routes up on the site as the guide I have says, but I'd like opinions or any beta anyone has.
    By Derek Doucet
    Feb 1, 2011
    The true name of the route sometimes referred to as "Corkscrew" is "Breaking and Entering", FA Paul Hansen and Dave Furman. If you climb the corner, the entire route is about 5.8. If you climb the face, it's perhaps .9+ or so.

    It's Not a Cruise (aka Home Depot) is the farthest left route, on the small wall at the left end of the cliff, and is indeed tricky 5.9, FA Kristian Barrowman and June Mendell . At the right end of the same wall is True Value,FA Travis Peckham and Alden Pellet, 5.10.
    By gabe mcgann
    Apr 14, 2011
    Hey Derek? You seem to know alot about the history of the routes. I am one of those new guys to this area, and was curious if you knew of any topos for any of the areas? Or is it all just by word of mouth? I have also read about Upper Upper West Bolton, is this just a section of Upper or is it a completely different area?

    By Derek Doucet
    Apr 18, 2011
    Hi Gabe,

    No formal topos are available at the moment, but a guidebook of Vermont rock is nearing completion and will feature the Bolton area prominently. Upper Upper will certainly be included.

    Upper Upper (AKA Doube Upper) West is just a bit further up Bolton Notch Road from the Upper West pulloff. You park at the obvious Preston Pond Trailhead, on the left as you're headed up the Notch Rd.

    FYI, Upper Upper is often subject to peregrine nesting closures in the spring. I haven't heard whether or not the birds are nesting up there this year, but it will likely be posted at the trailhead if they are. It's a cool area, with medium angle, mixed gear and bolt protected face climbing, mostly in the 5.8-5.10 range. Rock quality is only fair for the most part, but the positions are nice and exposed, and there are some quite nice routes.
    By Keyan P
    From: Brooklyn, NY
    Mar 20, 2012
    Does anyone know about the bolted route in between the rose and the thorn? I did not notice it before, what does it go at and when was it put up?
    By Chris Duca
    From: Havertown, PA
    Apr 1, 2012
    The route is mid- to hard 5.12, and it went up about 3 years ago. Can't recall the name, though.
    By Matt Salter
    Apr 3, 2012
    It's now called "The Petal".

    It was first climbed in the early 90's perhaps, on TR. More recently, 3 or 4 years ago as Chris stated, it was bolted (somewhat controversially), and subsequently led cleanly. I am unsure of who bolted it. Somewhat dubious getting to the first bolt.....and yes, mid to hard 5.12 with some long moves and quite sustained.
    By Matt McIntosh
    Sep 8, 2013
    Those directions would be much better if they said "Drive past Lower West Bolton to the Long Trail" and also included the fact that the approach is a solid ten to fifteen minute hike. Definitely not complaining as this is a solid crag, but I spent valuable time trying to find it.

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