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Alvino's Arete 
Crooked Cross 
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Southern Cross 

Crooked Cross 

YDS: 5.9+ French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI British: E1 5a

Type:  Trad, 2 pitches
Consensus:  YDS: 5.9+ French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI British: E1 5a [details]
FA: unknown
Page Views: 2,116
Submitted By: pete cogan on Jul 31, 2002
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You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (18)
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Approaching the belay below the crack.


Grab a 50 meter rope and head up to the beautiful crack called Crooked Cross. Hike up to the right of the rock, then scramble left to its base. Pitch one is about 120 feet and will get you to the base of the crack itself. Pitch one begins, as you look up, about 30 feet to the right of the crack, at the low point of the wall. It's a very moderate pitch, perhaps 5.5 or 5.6, and begins in a 20 foot long right facing, bushy dihedral. Work up to what appears to be rap slings, and bang a hard left, traversing easily to the base of the crack. Excellent cracks are there to set a belay.

The second pitch is shorter, and heads straight up a beautiful line (led by partner Scott S). You can see what you might need for pro from the bottom . . . it's a terrific pitch with excellent, grippy rock.

Enjoy it. The walk off is obvious.


Standard rack for the first very moderate pitch; medium size cams and stoppers for the second pitch crack. A few extras in this size might help. Excellent cracks at the top for anchors, and easy walk off. 50 meter rope is fine.

Photos of Crooked Cross Slideshow Add Photo
The Sentinel from CO Hwy. 7. Crooked Cross is the obvious crack to the right. Fogline is around the corner to the left.
BETA PHOTO: The Sentinel from CO Hwy. 7. Crooked Cross is the ...
Getting a good rest on the upper section.
Getting a good rest on the upper section.
The tricky opening moves of P2.
The tricky opening moves of P2.
From the creek.
From the creek.
The final moves of pitch 1 (direct variation).
The final moves of pitch 1 (direct variation).
Looking up the crack and clipping the first piece.
Looking up the crack and clipping the first piece.
Todd happy to have reached some better rest stances.
Todd happy to have reached some better rest stance...
Comments on Crooked Cross Add Comment
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By Leo Paik
From: Westminster, Colorado
Jun 19, 2003

After climbing Pondemonium, Sunshine Dihedral, Upside the Cranium, Casual Corner, Lick my Plate, Alley Cat (which all felt better quality) IMHO I'd say 2 stars. Nice but not highest quality. Bit of scruff to get to a short stretch of decent climbing. No barbs intended.

By Matt Juth
From: Evergreen
Sep 16, 2003

The second pitch deserves three stars, But the approach pitch takes away.

By Michael Kullman
Sep 30, 2003

Agreed - the first pitch is a manky scramble, takes away from the overall quality of the route. The second pitch is of course about as good as it gets on the SSV.

By George Bell
From: Boulder, CO
Jun 28, 2004

We did p1 a little differently than described here, and after reading this I think it is a better way to go. The start was the same, but instead of heading right to the rap slings (and then traversing back left), head left up a steep face directly to the base of the p2 crack. This is steep, solid, and well protected, maybe 5.7 or 5.8. I thought the first pitch was pretty good, not great but at least solid.

We brought a lot of hand-sized gear for p2, but then placed nothing larger than a #1 Camalot. This crack is outstanding but takes some skill to protect as the crack is flarey and bumpy. Aliens and stoppers seemed to work well. You can probably sink a piece every foot on this crack, but it would be strenuous hanging out to figure out all these placements. p2 is short, but probably the best route I've done so far in SSV.

By outdooreric
From: Lyons, CO
Apr 20, 2009
rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI HVS 5a

I have to agree that the direct line is better. It didn't detract from the climb at all and seemed to be the way to go. It even had chalk on some of the holds. I used a #2 and #3 Camalot on the second pitch.

By Mark Roth
From: Boulder
Sep 10, 2009

Just seeing it from the road, you can tell it's a classic. The approach pitch wasn't the best, and there is even poison ivy on the climb! The trail or lack of a trail is pretty bad as well. But the crack makes it all worth it. Great protection, fun moves, and a good position...and soooo much less traffic than Boulder Canyon.

By slim
Sep 13, 2010
rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI HVS 5a

Second pitch is good, but the effort versus length thing detracts a bit.

By John Marsella
From: Berthoud, CO
Apr 14, 2012

As of 4/14/12, there are no rap slings anywhere on this route.

While the walk-off is obvious, it should be said: to access the obvious portion of the walk-off, climb over a boulder past the belay station, then step into a chimney.

Also, note that it is easy to set up an anchor / rap station to access the base of Southern Cross from the belay stance at the top of Crooked Cross.