Sunday, March 14, 2010

Joe's Valley To Do List and Beta (edited)

So I got back out to Clear Creek Canyon this weekend and finished up my business on Interstellar Overdrive 13d. I gave a warm-up burn on it and then sent it next try (4th on try on the route). I was psyched with how smoothly it went. The climbing was really fun. Apart from being a bit height dependent (not a problem for me) and having one nasty sharp crimp and some glue, this is a great climb. That sounds like a bunch of ifs, but it really is a fun line. Here's a photo of me on the lower section of the route.

I'm really getting psyched for my trip to Joe's Valley that's coming up. I feel like I'm in good shape and am excited to try lots of new problems. I've been doing some research and have put together a list of problems I'd like to try. This is my list (perhaps a bit ambitious):

Masterpiece V13
The Ghost King V11
Ghost of War V11/12
Black Dahlia V10
Skeleton Key V11
Zero V13
Prince of Thieves V11
Mask of God V13
Moment of Truth v10
Right Sign Project V10-12?
Botox Bowtie V13
Beyond Life Sit V12
Godsend V9
Kill List V12
Black Out V12/13
Black #1 V12
The Zodiac V12 (Where's this one?)

In making this list I combed a bunch of internet sites trying to get beta on where the new problems are. I've climbed a bunch in Joe's but still didn't know where many of them are. I put together an expanded list with beta on how to find new problems. I did this mainly for myself when I get there. I thought I'd share it with everyone because some may find it useful. You should know that it is probably riddled with errors because this is info I collected through the web and almost none of it is first hand knowledge. Perhaps I'll revise it after this trip. I think there's a new guide coming out soon which will be much better than this list.

Also I added links at the bottom to videos of some of these problems.

NOTE: I owe most of this information to Jamie Emerson's blog (especially this post which has photos of lots of the boulders) and Anthony Chertudi's site. Also the stars are a complete guess on my part from photos and descriptions. Don't take them seriously... I just did them for myself because I thought they'd help me remember the ones I must check out.



The Ghost King V11 **, Ghost of War V11/12 **, V10, V8, V6, V5
New Joe's Wash. In a drainage on the right shortly after old mine and rusty car when hiking to New Joe's from the new access point higher up the road. Ghost King starts under and left of slopy arete lip. Big move to the right and then toe hook to get up to the upper slopers. Ghost King can be climbed straight up from the starting hold and is about V10. Ghosts of War V12 takes the white streak up the middle of the Ghost King boulder. The left arete of the boulder is V8. Line of crimps to the right of the left arete goes at about V6. To the left is a small boulder with a great slab that is V5 or so and climbs a mono.

LEFT FORK (all mileage from the National Forest Sign)

Masterpiece V13 ****
Up the Left fork just after the right fork splits off. Park about 100yds past the split. The boulder is across the river and a ways up the hill. It's the largest boulder on the hill, is long and brown, and a built up landing is visible at the bottom.

Left Arete of Majestic Boulder V11 ** (0.18 mi.)
Across river early on left fork. Maybe this is The Zodiac V12?.

Groundation V8/9, Obelisk V9, Black Dahlia V10 **** (1.1 mi.?)
To access this new area, drive about 150yds past the mine cart and park in a large pullout on the right side of the road. An obvious trail will lead about 200yds up the hill to the new boulders. Farthest left is Groundation V8 or V9. The Obelisk V9 is almost straight up from the parking lot, and is visible about half way up the hill, up and to the left. It starts in the middle of the face and heads right, to the arete. The Black Dahlia V10 lies hidden in a gulley of boulders about 200 yds up from the road, three quaters of the way to the cliffband and is the right most problem.

The Skull V11 (0.27 mi.)
Across river from "Wood removal by permit" sign. Long black boulder. Fairly obvious short bulge on left side.

Skeleton Key V11, Zero V13, V9, Proj. (0.35 mi.)
A large parking lot on the left. Park here to access Halloween Town, which is upstream about 50yds from the parking lot. The Skeleton Key V11 is up the hill about 7 min and is most notable for the very hard and crimpy sit-start that has ALMOST been climbed by James Litz. For Skeleton Key, pull on, left crimp, right hand pocket, and then jump for sloper. The arete to the right of Skeleton Key is V9. From here hike about 50yds up canyon to a massive overhang. Zero V13 climbs out the right side, starting on two small crimps in the black rock and heading right through a mono.

A Wrinkle in Time V11 **, Prince of Thieves V11 ***, Proj. (0.7 mi.)
A small pullout on the left. The massive boulder in the river that faces the road is A Wrinkle in Time V11. There is a project on the left side of the overhang. From here, look back down the canyon towards two massive boulders on the hill. On the down canyon side of the uphill boulder is a long black face. This is Prince of Thieves and it climbs from two small crimps, then big left hand move, then grab right hold off to the right and do another big move out left to a hold. Match this hold and then move to the left again. Pretty much straight up from here to high finish.

Big Crimpin' V10/11 **, Dark Continent V7 **, Ghurka Knife V9 **, V7 (1.5 mi.)
Pullout on the left, just before the 8 Mile sign. This small gulley right of the road is home to several problems. Big Crimpin’ V10 is at the top of the cluster and faces down river. Climb a few hard crimp moves to fun moves on juggy shelves. The arete to the left of this goes maybe around V8 but is a bit scary. Dark Continent V7 and Ghurka Knife V9 are around a cave-like feature half-way up the hill. Down towards the river is an obvious and sharp V7 arete.

Trent's Mom Area (2.0 mi.)

Mask of God V13 **, Man From the Past V11 **, Wind Below V8 ****
The Powerline Boulder lies about 100yds down stream at the same level as Trent’s Mom. There is a fairly well worn trail to the boulder, which faces downstream. The first part of the trail is a bit of a steep scramble. Man from the Past is the left most problem. Mask of God starts the same and then diverges right. Wind below is the tall face to the right. Perhaps there is another problem on this boulder called Darkest Star V10.

Moment of Truth v10 **
From the Trent’s Mom parking area, cross the river and head up the obvious drainage. After about 10 min you will come to a cluster of three or four large boulders. Almost directly in the stream is a very nice Harry Robertson problem, The Moment of Truth V10. This faces the road and begins on a perfect flat edge. The first move is a tough one, up to a right hand sloping edge. A couple crimp moves lead to a wonderful and technical mantel.

Right Sign Area (2.1 mi.)

Right Sign Project V10-12? ***
Right next to the road at the start of the Right Sign approach.

Botox Bowtie V13 **
This is the short prow just below Wills of Fire (Left Sign area). Hard compression moves low to the ground. On the same boulder as the Right Sign Project. Could be easier than 13.

Beyond Life Sit V12 **

Eden V10 ***, Anatomy Act sit V9
On right side of road just past Right Sign area up the hill a bit. Eden is a classic problem up crimps with a long move in the middle. It's on the right side of a boulder and faces the road.

Godsend V9/10 **, Kill List V12 ***, Dance with the Devil V7 ***
10 min uphill from rt. sign you will arrive at a nice black pocketed boulder home to a highball Dance with the Devil V7 (like wind below with a worse landing) and Kill List to the right of Dance with the Devil. The climb to the left is a project? On your way you’ll pass a V5ish thing and if you continue over the first cliff band you’ll arrive at the Godsend V9. Godsend is also said to be 1000 yds above Eden.

Gentleman’s Project V11 ****, Black Out V12/13 **
To get to the Gentleman’s Project V11 and Blackout V12/13, which are on the same boulder, park at The Angler and walk down the road (up river) about 100yds to a small pullout on the left. Across the street is a small cairn. Follow the well worn trail for about 8 minutes up the hill to an obvious overhanging face. There seem to be other moderate problems around as well. Gentleman’s Project is on the big boulder with a big gaston move to start. Black Out is a sit start to bad crimps in the corridor past Gentleman’s Project.

Worm Turns sit V12/13
A bit before Smoking Joe and Riverside areas. On right side in low cave.


Finger Hut Direct V13
Climb the first moves of Finger Hut and then continue straight up.

Afterthought V9 **
On a square looking boulder about 10 minutes up the hill from the Warm Up boulder described in the guidebook. Start with two sidepulls. Move to a lefthand sidepull and then dyno for the lip. A hard project is to the right.

Hydrogenated Oils V11?
Right of No additives. Obvious start on jugs and then up shallow mono pockets.

Battletoads V10 **, Playmate of the Year V9
There is a large parking area on the right about .25 miles past No Additives. From here, follow a newly marked trail up an old road grade. When the grade ends after 200yds or so, head up hill to a fairly obvious cluster of boulders. In this cluster lies Playmate of the Year V9, which faces down canyon and very nearby is Battletoads V10, a short but quality arete on perfect black rock.

Black #1 aka Brenda V12
This beautiful block is located just past Dairy Canyon on the left side of the road, 20 ft from the road. Faint white streak through horizontals. This boulder is about 10 minutes up the right fork after the road turns to dirt (maybe 4 or 5 miles).

Dairy Canyon V10/11
Presumably a bit before Black #1.


The Zodiac V12 ***

Fiery Furnace v10

Death Scream v10

Barney Rubble v10

Smoken Direct v10


Black Dahlia V10

Masterpiece V13 (Mike McClure) (James Litz) (Anthony Chertudi) (Carlo Traversi)

God Send V9/10

Eden V10

Skeleton Key V11

Afterthought V9

Prince of Thieves V11

Ghost King V11

Battletoads V10

Playmate of the Year V9


  1. Dairy Canyon is way up the right fork (don't know the miles) Black #1 is about 4 miles from around the mine. just keep your eye out for the road side boulder on your left in the 4-5 mile range.

  2. hydrogenated oils is on the no substance boulder, to the right of no additives. obvious start jug, then up using mono crimp pocket sorta holds.

  3. dude, i'm pretty sure we'll be able to see masterpiece right across the river on the left fork... pretty easy to spot.

  4. yup, what Noah said. I know where it is.

  5. Fiery Furnace is at the Hulk area. Hike up the hill a little past the dirty harry boulder. the problem looks kinda like hooters. similar steepness and style, but with a dyno and without the sharpness. very nice problem.

    keep hiking way up the hill, and a bit down canyon, and you'll run into Poseidon v8/9.