Thursday, October 6, 2011

Spearfish Canyon

Just got back from a long weekend in Spearfish, SD. What an amazing place! I have been climbing in Spearfish several times, but the quantity of high quality routes, the beautiful setting, and the sheer amazingness of pulling huge moves on some of the best limestone pockets you have ever dreamed of makes visiting Spearfish a joy every time.

Mike on Dead Man's Hand - 5.10b The Dark Side - Wild West Wall

But beyond that, one of the most bizarre things about Spearfish is that there is never anybody there! On this most recent trip, we made it to five different crags: Big Pucture Gully, The Danks, Shadowlands, The Dark Side and The VC. We saw one group climbing at BPG, one group just starting to climb as we were hiking out from The Dark Side, one group at The Dark Side/Sunshine Parking area, and we passed one other group as we were hiking in and they were hiking out of The VC. In total we saw 10 other climbers on this trip. That makes it pretty easy to share close to 1000 sport climbs!  At many popular sport climbing destinations around the coutry climbers often have to navigate long lines and sharp ego's before getting their shot on some of the most classic and/or coveted sends.  Recent stories coming out of places like The Red River Gorge in Kentucky where climber on climber violence is becoming more and more commonplace make Spearfish a welcomed distraction from that side of the climbing world.

View of Sunshine Wall from the other side of the canyon at The Dark Side

If you are looking for a magical place of mono's and two finger pockets that you can't touch the back of, super steep jug hauls that pump your forearms to the brink of explosion, huge dynamic moves to "The Mother of all Pockets," and you want to escape the crowds, then Spearfish is your spot!

Get the new guidebook to Spearfish and other Black Hills Limestone Here:

Swany on Badgering The Witness - 5.11a Shadowlands - Courthouse Wall

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