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

Type:  Trad, 3 pitches
Original:  YDS: 5.8+ French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- ZA: 15 British: HVS 4c [details]
FA: unknown
Page Views: 3,062
Submitted By: Holly Barnard on May 4, 2002

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (33)
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Angela Arp jams a fist at the end of the second pi...

Dirt roads reopened as of June 2014 MORE INFO >>>


Zipper starts about 40 feet right of Screw. Midway up the climb, you will a group of 3 parallel cracks. You can use this feature to help you find the start.

P1 - go up pretty easy ground (20 feet) and then enter the off-width. In my opinion, entering the off-width is the crux. Grunt your way up to a ledge (another 20 feet) and belay.

P2 - there are 3 variations to P2, each given a its own name in Harper's guidebook. Zipper follows the right-most crack (more off-width). The Snap variation which we took goes up the middle crack/slot. It begins with a couple of thinner parallel cracks in the slot and then continues into some moderate off-width. The Button variation is the leftmost hand crack. Harper's book decribes it as sustained and hard to protect, but I don't know since we didn't climb it. Belay at huge platform.

P3 - Smile as you cruise up a straightforward but interesting hand crack. Place everything from nuts to that #4.5 Camalot you hauled up. This pitch has consistent foot jamming, but it's not all hand jams all the way up.

Walk off to the Northeast following the path of least resistance.


stanard rack, plus some made-for-Vedauwoo big gear, including a couple #4 camalots, a #4.5 camalot and/or a #3(green) big bro. You might want to bring a couple extra hand size pieces for the last pitch, but it isn't completely necessary.

Photos of Zipper Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: First pitch of Zipper.
First pitch of Zipper.
Rock Climbing Photo: Ethan on the Zipper.
Ethan on the Zipper.
Rock Climbing Photo: Happy to make it through the fat start of Zipper.
Happy to make it through the fat start of Zipper.

Comments on Zipper Add Comment
Show which comments
By Anonymous Coward
Jul 3, 2002

The Snap variation (second pitch, middle crack) has a nasty loose flake about the size of a large pillow -- but MUCH HARDER, HEAVIER, AND SHARPER. I cleaned a chuck from it larger than a grapefruit... but the main portion remains.

I had a tough time trying not to torque it sideways as I crawled past it. BE CAREFUL HERE.
By John Kelley
From: Sedona, AZ
Mar 21, 2005

Awesome climb, getting into the offwidth is a little funky and big gear is nice #5+. Every pitch is unique, a great varied route.
By climber73
From: Fort Collins, CO
Aug 12, 2007

The 1st pitch crux is fun as long as you have big gear. My wife lead the 2nd pitch as a squeeze, tunneling into the rock above the 1st belay. I tried to do this on lead but had to back down and set up a belay as my chest and hips were too big to fit through the squeeze (I have a 36 inch waist and she has like a 19 inch waist). I followed the 2nd pitch via the snap variation.

Save some gear for the 3rd pitch top. There are 20+ feet of climbing beyond what you can see from the belay ledge. Use one or two of your largest cams for the top section, or put hand size pieces in at the back of the crack. There is a chockstone pretty high that would be great to sling.
By Jason Funk
From: Salt Lake City, UT
Jun 18, 2008

Just did the last pitch but it was fantastic, perfect hand jams and a couple wide sections. Watch the rap with a 60m rope (won't make it with anything less) we just barely made it to the ledge with stretch - still need to down climb a little to get all the way down off the wall.
By Cory Harelson
From: Boise, ID
Jul 27, 2009
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

What a fun climb! Had I thought to tunnel at the end of pitch 2, the crux would definitley have been getting into the OW on pitch 1. But if you bring a #5 along, you can place it above your head and figure the move out worry free. After that just straightforward enjoyable OW climbing for two pitches (almost). The end of pitch 2 was perplexing. I didn't think to tunnel in behind the bulge, but in hind sight that may have worked well (doh!). I wasn't able to pull over the bulge at the end of pitch 2 and had to step left to finish on the middle crack.

The last pitch was an awesome hand and fist crack with great sustained jams all the way up. It's the stuff dreams are made of!
By nolteboy
From: Fort Collins, CO
Sep 9, 2012

The squeeze chimney on p2 is pretty tight- I almost got stuck (32" waist). Do have a couple larger pieces for the second pitch.
By cstebbins024
From: Laramie, WY
Jun 9, 2014

I don't think that any Big Bros are needed, although I only climbed the Zipper variation. The second pitch (Zipper variation) is so tight it would take an act of God to fall out of it. I suggest at least one #6 Camalot for the first pitch.
By tim.etzkorn
Jul 11, 2014

Abandoned gear! I got so frustrated with my head getting stuck in the Snap Variation that I ditched my helmet. Due to a pop up thunderstorm, I failed to retrieve it. I will probably go back next week to get it, but if anyone happens to grab it and then sees this post, I'd love to come get it from you. Thanks!
P.S. I wouldn't exactly recommend the Snap Variation anyways. The large loose flake is still there. Climbing around it - so as to not inadvertently turn your partner into a vegetable - makes the climb both significantly harder and much less fun.
By Mat D.
From: Laramie, WY
Aug 14, 2017

Climbed this with the Snap (middle) variation on July 1. Fun route! I think the Snap variation was enjoyable but fair warning: 1) the large loose Death Flake is still there, and 2) after the Death Flake, the climbing is enjoyable but the rock quality is lower than what is typical for Vedauwoo, I scraped a lot of loose pebbles off the rock.

Gear beta for Snap variation: the part of the climb you can't realy see from the ground takes #3s, #4s, and I think I placed a #5 Camalot as well.

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