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Wise Crack 

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

Type:  Sport, 1 pitch, 60'
Original:  YDS: 5.8 French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- ZA: 15 British: HVS 4c [details]
FA: Chris Alber, Rick Leitner, 2000
Page Views: 2,237
Submitted By: ClimbandMine on Oct 13, 2002

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BETA PHOTO: Wise Crack; the left-most route on the west face o...

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  • Description 

    This is the farthest left route on the west face of Surprising Crag. Climb a couple easy moves, clip the first bolt, and follow easy ground to a ledge. Clip the second bolt, then start up into the dihedral. Odd jams and lieback moves take you past three move bolts and into broken rock. one more bolt above finishes off the route. Generally unremarkable. Good views give it a star, though.


    6 bolts to a 2-bolt anchor.

    Comments on Wise Crack Add Comment
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    By J. Thompson
    From: denver, co
    Oct 15, 2002

    Repeat after me....Me must bolt everything, natural gear is not safe...Grrrrr
    By Michael Walker
    From: Loveland, CO
    Oct 20, 2002

    If we could assess the needs of bolts on each route specifically, start with this one. It's a very fun route. Problem is, as the name would imply, it's a crack. And it's bolted. And the excuse for this is?
    By DanMoore
    Aug 28, 2004

    Beyond whether this should be bolted at all (because, yes, you could totally protect it with gear), it's a fun climb. Practice your jamming skills, but keep your eyes open--whenever the jams get sparse, there's a jug in reach. I lowered, but it looked like you could walk off to left.
    By Zach Roth
    Apr 5, 2005

    i have a question for everyone. This crack being at an old trad climbing area. How can the people that bolted this crack think that they were the first ascentionists? another question is what was going on inside your head when you bolted this, are you proud of your accomplishment of bolting a trad climb? honestly? there is no excuse. if there are any "wise cracks" out there that would like to answer this for me, i would be siked! have to go bolt some cracks, peace.
    By Gary Schmidt
    From: Boulder, CO
    Jul 29, 2005

    A nice climb, but after having led it using the bolts, I wonder if it might even be easier just to go ahead and lead with trad gear. Just cause the bolts are there doesn't mean you have to use them, and their placement seemed a little awkward for the natural stances of the crack.
    By Cody Munger
    From: Carson City, NV
    Oct 3, 2005

    I just led this yesterday with cams and stoppers. Must say that the bolts are probably easier to clip if you're not used to gear placement. I had to place a #1 gold camalot in the crack while hanging off a jam on my left hand. Kind of awkward since I'm used to waiting for good stances before I place anything.

    The other problem is that placing gear in the crack runs the rope through an annoying slot where is gets stuck if you don't work really hard to keep it out. I had to climb back up my rope to get it unstuck and remove the piece that was feeding it in to the slot. The bolts avoid this problem by keeping the rope way out of the crack.
    By John Maguire
    From: Boulder, CO
    May 19, 2009

    By Michael Walker
    From: Loveland, CO
    Oct 20, 2002
    If we could assess the needs of bolts on each route specifically, start with this one. It's a very fun route. Problem is, as the name would imply, it's a crack. And it's bolted. And the excuse for this is?'s at a crag called The Sport Park....
    By S. F. Pitman
    From: Boulder, CO
    Oct 18, 2009

    I thought that it was easier to use gear than the bolts, which are somewhat awkwardly placed on the face to the right of the route. I noticed the tendency for the rope to get caught in that little corner and just placed a redirect to keep it a couple of inches out.

    Kind of a dull and unrewarding crack, but sufficed as a warmup for the west face. There was a huge group on the south face, so we just worked our way left to right.
    By Paul Donald Andrews
    From: Nederland, Co.
    Aug 28, 2010
    rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

    It is what it is, a bolted crack. Consider the bolts a safety net for the aspiring trad leader. Same can be said for "The Touch". If you like 5.8s, do it. If you're offended by the bolts, I suggest leaving that beautiful matched set of quickdraws at home and choose a climb you can safely do with a set of hexes and stoppers. Bottom line is, bolts make climbing easier and safer, just like cams, shoes, or any of the newer technologies. Most of you climbing now wouldn't be if it wasn't for some of these advancements. Nobody gets into climbing with a death wish [I hope]. So, enjoy the rock in your own way, and try not to be to judgemental about the styles and ethics of certain areas. I had to laugh a few years back when I saw the article in some climbing magazine proclaiming Sport Park one of the ten worst crags in the U.S. What elitist crap!
    By Larry Shaw 1
    From: Boulder, CO
    Aug 21, 2017

    Regardless of the bolting debate, I actually liked the climbing on this route. It actually felt like an .8, had actual crack climbing for more than 5 feet (well maybe 25), and didn't have a chalk highway up the route. The first bolt placement made me scratch my head though.

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