Page Type: Mountain/Rock
Lat/Lon: 41.19681°N / 105.38709°W
Activities: Trad Climbing, Sport Climbing
Season: Spring, Summer, Fall

Overview/Approach

SS Maywood, 5.10a***
Dow leading SS Maywood, 5.10a***

(SS Maywood in photo above as seen from atop the "Heap")

Spectreman, 5.11c****
Spectreman, 5.11c****

Upper Blair is considerably more spread out on more formations and walls than Lower Blair and therefore even more remote in terms of trafficked routes.  That does not mean that it does not have its share of established lines (just shy of 60 in the “Voo” guide) of which there are a few would be classics.  Vedauwoo’s popularity has more to do with the social element from Boulder than real climbers seeking out real lines, therefore many of the would be trad classics at Upper Blair see little to no attention.  SS Maywood, 5.10a***, would be a classic example.  This is one of the finer C4 #3-#4 sized corners in the park.  On the more difficult scale, Spectreman, 5.11c***, could compete for the most aesthetic line in the entire park.

On the other hand, there are some moderates that are not worthy of even half the praise the “Voo” guide gives them, i.e. Tomb Raider, 5.9****, which is barely worth a one star recommendation much less the four the guide gives it.  I do not find the guide as consistent for Upper Blair (grades or recommendations) as it is in the more popular areas of the park.  An advantage of Upper Blair vs Lower Blair is that it offers ample camping within hiking distance to all the routes.  The only formation that contradicts that statement is what the guide names “Naughty Pleasures Wall” and/or “Pretzel Wall” on its map but the locals name the feature something else entirely.  This area is officially guided for beginners (as of 2018) and mostly features bolted routes.  We witnessed zero climbers on the other formations whilst witnessing this formation gang banged by a guided church youth camp (pun intended)..

As is the same for Lower Blair, access the Blair/Wallis road from the south side of the interstate and go under the interstate to access dirt road 705. Continue north past private property to a trailhead day use area on the right (Lower Blair).  Continue on 705 and shortly take a right on 707.  Climb this dirt road and look to take a right on 707A and then a right at the Y.  You can start scoping out camping spots along this road (2018).  If day tripping it, you can park at a parking area at the next right below the long north face of the first feature.  You can hike around left or right depending on where you are heading.  The “Voo” guide has several directional errors and can be confusing, naming too many of the walls, etc.

Formations Listed from North to South

John’s Tower, North Side, Left to Right

Jamminy Crackit, 5.11b**/

Yellow Belly, 5.10d***/

Funhouse, 5.9/

Burning Man, 5.11a***/

Big House, 5.7**/

Becker, 5.6*/

Married on Morphine, 5.12-/

Vowel Movement, 5.9***/

John’s Tower, South Side, Left to Right

Scarlet Begonias, 5.11c/

Seventeen Pantomimes, 5.10**/

Rose Hips, 5.10d**/

Ultra Bypass, 5.9/

Ultra Violets, 5.10d***/

Soul Fire, 5.12a**/

Double Dippin’, 5.10c*/

Diagonal Crack, 5.9/

Iron Maiden, 5.12**/

Blood Clot, 5.11**/

Roof Route, 5.11a**/

Promiscuous Pink Panther, 5.11PG***/

Panties Stay On, 5.8/

Little John’s Tower, Left to Right

Inebriation Confabulation, 5.11PG*/

Alternate Start, 5.8R***/

Baobab Tree, 5.8***/

The Heap, Spectreman Buttress, Left to Right

Upper Tier

My Clone Sleeps Alone, 5.10a/

Real Men Don’t Spread Their Legs, 5.11b/

Storm Watch, 5.10c/

Live and Let Live, 5.7/

Rubber Biscuit, 5.10b/

Behind the Blue Eyes, 5.11***/

Lower Tier

Upper Tier Approach, 5.8/

County Swing, 5.11d*/

Call me Barney, 5.11c/

The Rookie, 5.12a/

Aspen Stem, 5.10/

Repoman, 5.12bPG***/

Spectreman, 5.11c****/

Maywood Wall, North Side, Left to Right

Easter Island, 5.12a/

Jihad, 5.11d/

SS Maywood- 135’-5.10a***/ How this perfect fist corner does not receive the highest recommendation in the guide is beyond me.  It is an aesthetic wide corner.  Maywood Wall is at the northwest end of the feature directly behind (east) the Heap.  The corner is obvious and covered in lichen.  From a well shaded belay pod, scramble up a ramp for 45’ to the base of the corner.  Place a C4#1 at the start and from there rely solely on #3’s and #4’s.  For the competent leader, a pair of each will suffice.  If at your limit, take more.  It is sustained and the final half is more challenging (starts to overhang slightly) than the lower half.  The fists are not dead on desert sandstone type, but require more finesse.  Obviously, top ropers will no doubt lie back the corner, but a leader is going to want to be right shoulder in whilst fisting his/her way to the top with feet in the crack for much of it.  Fixed rap, 70m rope just makes it down .  Single C4#1.  Doubles or more of #3 and #4.  Dow

Valhalla, 5.11d/

Calling on You Moscow, 5.11b/

What the French Girl Said, 5.11b/

Maywood Wall, South Side, Left to Right (Wango’s Workshop)

Wango, 5.10cPG**/

Girls Gone Wild, 5.9*/

Once You Go Zach, You Never Go Back, 5.9/

Missing Tooth- 40’-5.7**/ Yet the third softly graded and overrated climb on this wall.  It is either a joke or I am missing something.  An easy solo, more like 5.5, up the gut of the tooth like feature to the left of Tomb Raider.  There is a piton near the top (2018) and fixed anchor on top.  Dow

Tomb Raider- 125’-5.9 (A0)****/ There is not a legitimate 5.9 move on this route, nor should it be given any stars in the local guide, much less four?  The last pitch does not need to be aided either (as the Voo guide has it listed), rather goes at 5.10-.   Easily done in one pitch vs three as the guide has laid out.  The start is protected by a bolt but did not need to be, you can clip it from the deck.  From there, climb the easy (well featured) hand crack (5.7) that diagonals up and left to a set of anchors.  Don’t clip the anchors to avoid rope drag and rather place a small to medium piece out left on a 5.6 traverse.  Pull over this roof via dike holds (5.6) and walk back right to the base of two bolts going up the short west face.  Climb solid crystals up through these bolts and walk to the summit anchor.  A 70m rope gets you all the way to the ground from there.  Single to C4#2.  Dow

Tombstone Variation, 5.9*/

Roadtrip Prerequisite- 40’-5.8***/ Another overrated and soft graded climb which is unusual at Vedauwoo.  Easy hands (5.7) take the right leaning crack from the base of Tomb Raider (the left leaning crack).  Walk left to its own fixed rap.  Single to C4# 2.  Dow

Pretzel and Naughty Pleasures Walls (same small formation), Left to Right

Tips and Asps, 5.11c/

Pretzel Logic, 5.11c/

Walking on Water- 50’-5.7***/ A fully bolted climb to the far left of this wall.  Starts with great position with a tremendous view of a chunk of Vedauwoo.  One move wonder through the first bolt or two and then 5th class up to the fixed anchor.  Dow

Stick to Snake, 5.6*/

Stairway to Heaven, 5.8**/

Missiles for Jesus- 90’-5.10c***/ Fully bolted climb. Not sure why the recommendation.  This is a one move wonder after the first bolt at the grade via lay back off crystals.  Then 5.7 climbing to the fixed anchor above the bulge.  I had to climb it if but for the name alone.  Dow

The Force, 5.8**/

Missionary Position, 5.9**/







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