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Valentine Crack T 

Valentine Crack 

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

Type:  Trad, 2 pitches, 250'
Original:  YDS: 5.8 French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- ZA: 15 British: HVS 4c [details]
FA: FA: Bob Irine, Rick Reese, Ted Wilson, Feb. 14th, 1963, FFA: George Lowe, Rex Alldredge
Page Views: 1,747
Submitted By: Nathan Fisher on Apr 23, 2005

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (12)
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BETA PHOTO: Don't shy away from the big protection! Thin #5, #...

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


The main right-facing crack system about in the center of the Dragon Arch Buttress. Dragon Arch climbs are a bit gritty and this one is no exception. This climb starts relatively easy with a tough 5.8 move (protects with #2 Camalot perfectly), then progresses into a lengthy lie-back sequence. There were 2 additional pitons below the 5.8 crux. The belay station has shifted upwards by about 10-15 feet from the Ruckman guide, so bypass the three old pitons, and instead stop at the slung flake. The upper pitch is wide and hard to protect if you don't have the larger gear; however, this is where the climbing gets better. Wide crack on your left, bottomed seam to your right, gritty face underneath. Do you chicken-wing up, face climb, or come up with another way to climb this crack? Barring the gritty rock, this climb is good. If more people climbed it, it would vastly improve. hint hint. Cleaned up, this route would rate two stars.


Bring a standard rack, heavy on the large stuff. Cams seemed especially nice in a couple of locations, otherwise hexes, worked fine.

Photos of Valentine Crack Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Nothing says Romance like the V-Crack!!
Nothing says Romance like the V-Crack!!
Rock Climbing Photo: This is J-Sexy looking UP towards the top. Note th...
This is J-Sexy looking UP towards the top. Note th...
Rock Climbing Photo: The goodness rising above me
The goodness rising above me
Rock Climbing Photo: Behold! Le wide crack!!
BETA PHOTO: Behold! Le wide crack!!
Rock Climbing Photo: This is the slung-detached-block + rattly BD#4 + m...
This is the slung-detached-block + rattly BD#4 + m...
Rock Climbing Photo: This is the tri-pin old belay. Don't stop.
This is the tri-pin old belay. Don't stop.
Rock Climbing Photo: Be prepared for plenty-o-laybacking for pitch #1
Be prepared for plenty-o-laybacking for pitch #1
Rock Climbing Photo: Nearing the first belay
Nearing the first belay

Comments on Valentine Crack Add Comment
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By Anonymous Coward
May 24, 2005

Glad to hear the belay is moved. led the second pitch as a fledgeling 5.6 leader, and running it out above 3 straight up in ancient blades for, a hanging belay, scared the hell out of me. Thought if I blew it I was gonna factor 2, and send us to the deck. YIKES! Needless to say I buried myself in the back of this chimney and groveled to the top. Standing on the top-out chockstone I vowed to never climb it again!! Probably much better now though, I was just crazy gripped!
By Stevie Nacho
From: Utah
Nov 8, 2009

This route is good.
By samg Gileadi
Nov 11, 2009
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

With a name like "Valentine Crack" and the thought of easy access (5.8 easy!) may make Valentine Crack sound like something where you could just drink a few beers, ignore the initial looks of the thing and cruise it, closer inspection will reveal it to be scruffy, piss-sodden, and full of choss.

The first pitch turns out to be gritty laybacking, not the fun jamming you might hope for. The first belay is complete choss. There may be one fun or tricky move in the chimney, the rest is just kinda... And once you top out there is no quick exit.

My low opinion of the thing may have something to do with the state of the first belay (detached flake soggy with rat urine) causing me to scurry up the chimney without bothering to rack most of the gear from the first pitch, thus not placing much gear, only to find the top soaked with yet more rat urine. Damn! Probably the only route thus far that made me feel like vomiting after sending it- there is fun wide, and then there is Valentine Crack... Historical value- well, those guys all put up some kickass routes, this one? Hmmm.... an anti-classic.

The gear is good right above the first belay. Warm up on Dragon Arch...
By Greg Gavin
From: SLC, UT
Dec 1, 2011

although this climb is dirty it shouldn't be avoided.
By thehackattacks
From: Park City, UT
Apr 30, 2015

UUUUUGH! SO Awesome! We love off-widths and this is one of our favorites to date. If you like the wide then rack up your big bros, grab your balls (or ovaries) and giddyup into this burly boy!! An LCC OW not to be missed- major adult content!!! BEWARE- that flake isn't slung anymore at the first belay so be prepared to build an anchor.
By Sam Cannon
From: Salt Lake City, UT
Apr 3, 2017

For the first belay bring a 4.5 or modern 5. Don't use that detached flake, it flexes under pressure. The 4.5 is a textbook placement to the left of it, and then I got a .75 equivalent and a blue metolius for a bomber gear anchor.

The second pitch is not an offwidth, and we didn't use anything bigger than a four but were comfortable with running it out a bit.

Despite loose and at time rotten rock I thought the movement on the route was incredibly fun. I loved the second pitch, and the liebacking on P1 was super fun as well.

There is no obvious descent, no bolted belays on route. I recommend bringing some extra cord, webbing, and a rap ring or two, or do what we did and scramble over and down to the Enter the Dragon anchors and make 2 raps with a 70m rope to the base. As a caution, you have to do some downclimbing to get to those anchors on really poor rock. We set up a belay off a horn and from above and then I belayed my partner from the anchor so at least he wouldn't take a ground fall if he slipped.

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