Hot Wee Wee, 5.9, 4 Pitches

Page Type Page Type: Route
Location Lat/Lon: 37.86046°N / 107.86423°W
Additional Information Route Type: Trad Climbing
Seasons Season: Summer
Additional Information Time Required: Half a day
Additional Information Rock Difficulty: 5.9 (YDS)
Additional Information Number of Pitches: 4
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Hot Wee Wee, 5.91st/2nd Pitches- 80m- 5.9

Hot Wee Wee is considered by locals as a “classic” route on Ophir Wall. It is a tall corner (relative to the area) located on the right side of Whimpering Wall which in turn makes up the right side of the central Ophir Wall (above the Post Office). The volcanic rock (ryholite) on this route is bomber compared to most any other trad option you will find in the Telluride, Colorado area. We climbed the Good Book next to Ingram Falls below Ajax Peak the day prior, and were pleasantly surprised at how solid Ophir climbing was in comparison. Hot Wee Wee was established by Henry Barber in 1973. Dating a route named “Hot Wee Wee” back to the Vietnam era, one can only imagine what Henry was referring to.
Hot Wee Wee, 5.9
Hot Wee Wee, 5.9

I would wire this route in three pitches if I did it again. Our first trip we did it in four. Charlie Fowler’s guide book, Telluride Rocks, references four to six pitches. None of Hot Wee Wee felt much like 5.9 except for a few moves on the first pitch and a small off width section towards the end. I advise free soloing up easy ground to the first slung rap just to the left of the main corner above. Combine the rest of the first two pitches which run up that small box in the middle of the two corners to the top of this section of the main corner. The rock is stellar and pro placements interesting. My partner led the first pitch off route (chossy corner-roof to the left), so on descent I re-led these two pitches together (from the top of the free solo 5th class section) to see the supposed crux move (coming out of the short box and back into the corner above) and it went with little to no rope drag. Then do a short pitch between the top of this corner section up to a fixed rap. Follow that with perhaps the best pitch of the day, a 200' section up the corner, with a bit of off width at the end. Move back left to a fixed rap station at the top of the route. We rapped the route itself which included a double rope fixed rap, single rope fixed rap, double rope slung rap and single rope slung rap to the ground.

Drive up to Ophir via Highway 145 from Telluride. Within a few miles, you will come to a sharp east bend in the road. Take this Ophir exit. There is no visible town, but the Ophir walls are right above the east side of Highway 145 at a sharp bend. Drive east on the county road leading to Ophir and use a left pull out fairly immediate, right before the Ophir Post Office. The Hot Wee Wee corner is obvious in the part of Ophir Wall (Whimpering Wall) right above the post office at the apex in the large scree field.

Route Description

550’+/-, 4 Pitches, 5.9

1st/2nd Pitches- 80m- 5.9/ I advise free soloing up the first 20m. Start out in a corner to the left which tops out on a ledge that leads to the main corner (slung block). Then rope up and do a full 60m pitch starting out in the awesome cracks below the small alcove/box located between a chossy corner to the left and the main corner to the right. The pro is a bit delicate at first. Once in the box, make a move at the grade up and right into the corner. Continue up the corner at a lesser grade, but fun climbing to the top of this section of the corner and to another slung block on a long ledge that leads right in continuation of the corner.

3rd Pitch- 25m- 5.8/Either run up the cracks directly above the slung block or take the corner to the right. Either way, locate a fixed belay in between the two on a comfortable ledge.

4th Pitch- 60m- 5.9/This last pitch competes with the first pitch for the best climbing on the route. This is a full 60m of fun climbing on great rock. Follow the corner until you hit a bit of fun off width (heel to toe stuff) up a small flaring chimney to the finish. Traverse back left at the top to a fixed belay.

Climbing Sequence


Take a double rope (60m) rappel off a fixed anchor back to the bottom of the 4th pitch to a fixed anchor. Take a single rope rap back to the ledge with the slung block above the corner making up the first two pitches. Take a double rope rap off of this slung block down to another slung block on a ledge below the alcove/box. One more single rope rappel gets you to the ground.

Essential Gear

Double 60m ropes. Equal mix of draws and shoulder length slings. Single to 4”. Double up on a few medium pieces if you like placing gear on 5.8. There is no fixed pro on the route, but several pieces associated with other climbs are visible. A small wire or two is helpful on the first pitch. This wall is at a high elevation and could be quite cool in the early morning hours as it sort of faces southwest, so dress appropriately. Charlie Fowler’s Telluride Rocks has a decent topo, not that you would need it. Just follow the corner.

External Links

  • Lizard Head Wilderness Area
  • Ophir Colorado
  • DowClimbing.Com