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Jubilant Song 

YDS: 5.8 French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- British: HVS 4c

   
Type:  Trad, 8 pitches, 800', Grade III
Consensus:  YDS: 5.8 French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- British: HVS 4c [details]
FA: Joe Herbst and Terry Schultz, 1971
Page Views: 11,722
Submitted By: Matt Faust on Nov 1, 2004
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Jubilant!


Description 

Approach:As for Black Velvet Canyon, turn north off Highway 160 onto a dirt road, 4.6 miles west of the intersection with Highway 159. Take the obvious left turn BEFORE the left turn that leads to Black Velvet. Continue down this road, turning right at a distinctive 4-way intersection. Drive as close to the canyon as you are comfortable. From the parking area, hike west into the canyon, following burro trails where possible and cross-country where not. Stay on the north (right) side of the wash, aiming for a notch up-canyon on the right side. The trail becomes more distinct up a steep hillside towards this notch, left of an deep canyon. March up this steep section to a flat area known as the Football Field. From here the southface of Windy Peak is obvious. Hike on up a couple hundred more feet to the base of the face. See photo. The approach is considered strenuous, and will take an hour or more.

Climb:(P1) Follow an easy crack (the left of two obvious cracks) up a short pitch to a ledge with a bush.

(P2) Continue up the crack into a wide chimney full of loose blocks, belay where possible.

(P3) Continue up and right and find a belay below the left side of the huge roof.

(P4) Traverse right under the roof, belaying in a small corner with huge loose blocks.

(P5) Surmount the roof (5.8) and continue up easier ground for a short distance to belay in a gully.

(P6) Continue into the gully, do some chimney moves, then move right into a water streak. Balancy moves past a bolt lead to easier ground, step left to a bush to belay.

(P7) Step back right into the water streak, and continue up difficult 5.8 moves onto easier ground. Climb a corner to a belay notch.

(P8) A 5th class move leads to 4th class slab and the summit of Windy Peak

Descent:Hike west along the summit ridge and then drop into a gully that leads back south. Depending on your instinct and luck, moderate bushwacking may be in order. Hike down the gully until given a chance to sidehill left. You should end up right at your packs.

There is an entire chapter about this route in Red Rock Odyssey


Protection 

Standard rack up to #3 Camalot.



Photos of Jubilant Song Slideshow Add Photo
Upper pitches of Jubilant Song
BETA PHOTO: Upper pitches of Jubilant Song
Ron on the gorgeous walk-off.
Ron on the gorgeous walk-off.
Roof Traverse on Pitch 4
Roof Traverse on Pitch 4
S. Giffin traverses out the roof on pitch 4.  Best pitch on the climb if combined with pitch 5.
S. Giffin traverses out the roof on pitch 4. Best...
South Face of Windy Peak
BETA PHOTO: South Face of Windy Peak
view from the top of P1
view from the top of P1
We belayed too low at the end of pitch 2.  This is the start of our pitch 3, but the best p2 belay is just above Todd.
We belayed too low at the end of pitch 2. This is...
The classic roof traverse pitch of Jubilant Song.
The classic roof traverse pitch of Jubilant Song.
Climbers on the 3rd pitch of Jubilant Song.
Climbers on the 3rd pitch of Jubilant Song.
Looking down on lead at the start of the roof traverse.
Looking down on lead at the start of the roof trav...
End of the p4 traverse.
End of the p4 traverse.
2nd pitch chimney.
2nd pitch chimney.
Looking back down the from the midpoint of huge roof pitch (we linked up P3 with half of P4 and the rest of P4 with P5). Fun friction traverse under the roof.
Looking back down the from the midpoint of huge ro...
Pitch one of Jubilant Song.
Pitch one of Jubilant Song.
The spectacular p4 traverse.
The spectacular p4 traverse.
Jason on P6
Jason on P6
Jason on P2
Jason on P2
Gigi taking a picture of Jonny taking a picture of the start of the traverse under the roof.
Gigi taking a picture of Jonny taking a picture of...
rest of the roof traverse
rest of the roof traverse
The dramatic traverse under the roof on Jubilant Song.
The dramatic traverse under the roof on Jubilant S...
Alex Honnold Free Soloing Jubilant Song at the roof section.
Alex Honnold Free Soloing Jubilant Song at the roo...
The long dihedral on pitch 2 of Jubilant Song.
The long dihedral on pitch 2 of Jubilant Song.
Hanging belay after pitch 4.
BETA PHOTO: Hanging belay after pitch 4.
Approaching the overhang on pitch 1 of Jubilant Song.
Approaching the overhang on pitch 1 of Jubilant So...
Just past the roof, Brett links p4 and p5.
BETA PHOTO: Just past the roof, Brett links p4 and p5.
Clayton leading, Aaron and Martin below
Clayton leading, Aaron and Martin below
Comments on Jubilant Song Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Apr 5, 2014
By Dirty Gri Gri, or is it GiGi?
From: Vegas
Oct 25, 2005
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- HVS 4c

Climbed with my sweetie 10/24/05.

Another incredible Joe Herbst route, in a beautiful canyon with an absoultely magnificent summit that I never wanted to leave! A Red Rock climb that won't be forgotten!

My two cents.... We had gear up to a #3 but I felt some larger gear would have come in handy in several spots on a few of the pitches. Also...there's a bit of chossy rock to deal with at times.

By snowey
Feb 11, 2007
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- HVS 4c

This was an awesome route. The roof traverse is an incredibly aesthetic line and a great photo op.

When we were there we did not see a single person in the entire canyon: a welcome change after doing crimson chrysalis the previous day.

By SexPanther aka Kiedis
Mar 22, 2007

I think that most 5.7 leaders will be over their heads a bit on this one. Wide gear is getting lighter and you'll appreciate it on pitch 2. It's as good as everyone says, enjoy it!

By David Arthur Sampson
Oct 10, 2007

As an alternate to the water streak for P6-P7, jodie b. nicely lead the corner up and slightly right of the large oak (at the top of the gully). This seemed like a nice variation to a scary, largely unprotected water streak.

By John Hegyes
From: Las Vegas, NV
Jan 31, 2008

At all costs link pitches 4 and 5. I've now done it both ways and the hanging belay from the detached block at the end of p4 is unnerving. The start of p5 puts the leader's butt in the belayer's face right at a crux sequence with a potential lead fall directly on to the anchor.

Linking the pitches requires some thoughtful rope management to avoid rope drag but we managed and the rope fed smooth as silk.

By prod.
From: Boulder, Co
Nov 29, 2008

Great route. Get an early start in the winter as trail finding on the way out is random. We were 10.5 hours car to car without too much goofing off.

It'd be tough for a 5.7 leader as there are some run outs. The 5.8 section was more like easy 5.7. I thought the Crux was the 2nd pitch.

I had a single rack with doubles on 2" and 3". That was plenty.

Prod.

By Max Tepfer
From: Bend, OR
Mar 30, 2009

While the water streak is probably too much for the 5.7/5.8 leader, it is a beautiful pitch with fun moves on excellent rock. While you can't put gear in wherever you like, the pitch does protect and is a lot of fun.

By George Bell
From: Boulder, CO
Apr 22, 2009
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- HVS 4c

Fantastic climb with a remote feel. This wall starts high up, so the approach has significant vertical gain. The roof on P5 is burly and was led by my partner with difficulty. Seconding, I climbed up the fridge-sized "loose block" on the right and so bypassed the burly roof. I thought the hanging belay was pretty cool and great for photo ops. But I'd skip it next time.

The P7 "water streak" is out of character with the rest of the route in that serious injury is possible for a shaky leader. If you follow the chalk, there is a 30 foot section of sustained 5.8 smearing/stemming with tiny edges for handholds and only a thin crack near the top for protection. An ugly 20' sliding fall is a real possibility onto the sloping ledge up and right from the belay, with another 20' of tumbling if you don't stop there. I recommend avoiding this pitch (as shown in the Handren topo) if you are not feeling confident.

On P7 I climbed the water streak but did not follow the chalk. Zig right on a 5.7 upward traverse, then zag left on an unprotected 5.4R ramp, rejoining the chalked line above the 30' sustained section. The rock was a bit fragile and it didn't appear anyone had gone this way recently. There is also a single bolt about 40' above here that confused me (apparently, this bolt is on the last pitch of Hot Fudge Thursday). Instead, I moved left and up, past a large detached block lying against the face to easier ground.

The descent is simple by RR standards, the Handren guide's description is perfect.

By Scott Rice
From: Colorado Springs, CO
Dec 23, 2009

Beautiful sunny mid-winter day on 19 Dec 09. Got an early start and had an amazing time up this. Made 5 pitches out of it. Scrambled up the first "pitch" then linked P2 and P3, and P4 and P5 through the roof. Ended up with awesome ledges to belay from besides the hanging belay right before the roof section.

Water streaks are a little dicey like mentioned. First one is protected by the only bolt on the route, a rusty quarter-inch with a homemade hangar. Second dicey move is about 30 feet higher but sunk a decent .75 C4 right below it, so a fall there wouldnt be too bad.

Striking views of the greater Vegas area and the entire basin await when you top it out. There is a summit register in an ammo can a bit north of where you top out at, as well as a nice ledge to take the view in from.

Descent is lengthy, hike off the slabs to the west, lots of loose rock. 10 hours car to car with a lot of BSing on the ledges and a good hour on the top hanging out. Have fun!

SR

By Tavis Ricksecker
From: Bishop, ca
Mar 17, 2010
rating: 5.8+ 5b 16 VI- HVS 4c

Definitely recommend combining pitches 4+5, using long runners under the big roof. Also, pretty easy to combine pitches 7+8, you will easily reach the summit with a 60m rope. I actually enjoyed the crux of p7, which i thought was the crux of the route. A bomber .75 c4 is right at your feet, as was mentioned. It is hard to read, but if you figure it out it isn't too bad.

By Adam Leavy
From: Asheville, NC
Feb 4, 2011
rating: 5.7+ 5a 15 V+ MVS 4b

second pitch definitly sustained 5.7 the ENTIRE way. kinda tough!

By Peter Lewis
From: Bridgton, Maine
May 25, 2011

The trail up to this route is perfectly obvious and easy. We made it to the base of the route in an hour (and we are not triathletes). We chose to build the hanging belay at the end of the P.4 roof pitch, both for aesthetics (it's cool to watch the second come up) and rope management (it' would be hard to string it out to the next belay). The belay isn't bad at all (small cams and nuts in an overhead crack on the left, mid-sized cams in the crack on the right)---and you can definitely paste your feet to the wall. When starting the next pitch, instead of stepping left five feet and surmounting the roof (5.8 and really awkward), you can hand traverse the block out the right side of the roof for five feet and then step up onto the face and back into the line of the route. It's still probably 5.8, but way less awkward. On P.7, (the second water streak pitch) you can easily escape left (5.4) onto a black, varnished wall, then climb straight up (passing the obvious cactus) and take the pitch 100 feet to the top of the 5th class climbing. Jubilant Song is a really fun route with fabulous positions on a high and exposed peak.

By Aerili
From: Salt Lake City, UT
Nov 16, 2011

After you do the traverse under the huge roof and pull the moves up the following corner, you will suddenly have perfect comprehension of how this route's name came to be...

By Joe Manlove
Dec 1, 2011

There are so many good routes in red rocks I can't believe this thing gets any traffic at all. Don't bother with it.

The only saving grace is the well cairned approach and decent trail.

By Andy Hansen
From: Longmont, Colorado
Dec 4, 2011
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- HVS 4c PG13

I would advise to disregard what Mr. Manlove has said about this great route. The trail is well marked from the parking lot to the base of the route due to the use the trail sees from hikers summiting Windy Peak. The approach can be done in under an hour. Link the 1st two pitches with a 70m and don't bother to bring anything larger than a #4 Camalot- one will suffice. The crack is wide but can be protected with mid-sized gear. On the traversing pitches the rock is soft but no worse than anything else you'll find on other RR routes. We did not belay off the loose blocks after P4- they seemed sketchy. The rest of the climbing is pretty straightforward with one delicate section of 5.8 climbing but then is cruiser to the top. This route is a great winter route plus there is a great summit with a summit register hidden in an ammo box. Our car to car time was just under 6.5 hours.

By Tradoholic
Dec 4, 2011
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- HVS 4c PG13

Andy, we linked 2-3 with a 70m barely, not 1-2. Best to climb the short first pitch to the ledge then link the next two.

Definitely link 4-5, don't belay off that hanging block, it looks really bad, surmount the roof and around a corner is a nice set of cracks for a belay.

I wish we would have lined 6-7 up the water streak, it would have been more enjoyable but would probably need a 70m as well. A red C3 was key in the p7 crux.

By SexPanther aka Kiedis
Dec 4, 2011

Some people see cold beer, pretty girls, and hear good music bumping on the stereo, and think "this party sucks." This route's a lot of fun. The name is there for a reason. Large hexes work great on the route+save weight, I can see linking helping out, only part that seemed sketchy to me on the whole route was the moves above the junk bolt, once that's replaced, it'll be even more badass.

By Tradoholic
Dec 4, 2011
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- HVS 4c PG13

Agreed, this climb has the whole package, reasonable approach, technical climbing, a little spice, great summit and easy walk off. No more choss than any other RR moderate.

I didn't think the bolt was too manky either but an update might be nice. On par with the run-out on the other pitches it wouldn't be unreasonable to not have it there at all, there's a bomber #2 C4 a bit lower down.

By Andy Hansen
From: Longmont, Colorado
Dec 5, 2011
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- HVS 4c PG13

Although I did clip the bolt I would suspect that any other confident leader wouldn't need to clip it at all. The reason I did was because there was a lot of hullabaloo about the moves above the bolt- but those were clearly not 5.8 moves and with that good #2 C4 below you it wouldn't be too nervewracking to have no bolt there. But, to keep the route original (the bolt wasn't put up on the FA was it? Unlikely.) a bolt replacement wouldn't be a bad idea. Overall I would say this route is not burly for the grade as some had indicated. I have certainly been on harder Herbst routes with the same grade.

By Ryan Hoover
Dec 30, 2012

Fun route with an airy 4th pitch. Went up an exciting variation on the last pitch that went out right past a piton, under a roof with a crack in the back. Seemed 5.9ish? Anyone know anything about it? You can link the last two pitches this way.

Also, it seems like starting on "A Song & A Prayer" to the right, up to the ledge would be a better way to start the route.

By Ben Lock
From: Cedar City, UT
Jan 6, 2013

First to ascend route in 2013! What a great day! No need for anything larger than #3. Beautiful all day sun! Try building anchor just above roof problem above pitch 4. No issues w/ rope drag if done correctly. car to car in 7.5 hours.

By Martin Bennett
From: Manchester, UK
Jan 16, 2013
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- HVS 4c

Wonderful! Good climbing with a remote and more serious feel to it. Finishes on a summit too, as well as having an inspiring name. Did it on the recommendation of Larry de Angelo - if you happen to see this Larry - thanks from The Brits you met on "Lotta Balls" October 21st.

Jubilant Song - Martin Bennett on the roof traverse. Photo by Alan Blackburn.
Jubilant Song - Martin Bennett on the roof traverse. Photo by Alan Blackburn.

By MaraC
Apr 2, 2013

AWESOME route.

The approach was pretty straightforward. We followed the directions in Handren's guide and found everything no problem. We also discovered a slightly faster way through the dirt roads - taking the second turnoff after the Black Velvet parking(instead of the first one) brings you closer to the 4-way intersection, and skips some very rocky sections of the road.

Someone had broken into a car in the other parking lot (closer to Illusion Crags). Don't leave valuables out here.

We linked P4 and the first part of P5, and then linked the rest of P5, P6, and part of P7. I meant to go around the 5.8 bit in the water streak by taking the 5.4 variation, but missed it, and ended up going through some roofs between those two lines that felt about 5.6/7. Can't wait to go back!

By Joshua Calvert
Oct 31, 2013

Last weekend was my first time climbing at Red Rocks.

The approach is supposed to be 1 - 1.5 hours according to the guide book. However my climbing partner was not that fit -- it took us 3 hours to start the first pitch from the time we parked the car. There is a lot of loose rock to scramble over, and the path is often faint.

I lead every pitch. This takes more time -- I managed no better than 1 hour per pitch.

At the end of pitch 2 the guidebook says "on top of some boulders". There is a boulder with a pyramid point that is just right for sling-looping. Under the boulder some webbing and a steel screw link provide for a nice last-clip -- which was great because I had just about run out of cams. Would anyone suggest the best way of setting up a belay anchor at this point?

I noticed the boulder creaked occasionally -- like there were micro movements. This boulder is going to fall at some point and I hope no-one is standing on it when it does. I tried to figure out mechanically what ever must be keeping it in place and I concluded that it was a miracle.

Now if you look at the picture titled "Upper pitches of Jubilant Song": some time around point 5 or 6 it seemed natural to climb to the left -- to me it's no more difficult than anything climbed in the lower pitches. I certainly was not aware of the water streak while I was climbing although the guidebook says to look out for it.

We got to the top near sunset; after a time we needed headlamps to find our way down. The wind was howling at the top. A compass is best for finding the north west direction off the plateau -- so glad my Casio Protrek watch has one. Finding our backpacks was not easy. On the way back to the car large numbers of Cairns and Google satellite view prevented us from getting completely lost.

We finally got back to the car 14 hours later at 9pm. There was no rescue party waiting -- I don't think the park rangers even check this side of the mountain for late-night cars.

As to the grade, myself I can lead a 5.10b in the gym, but I still would not climb anything more difficult than Jubilant Song when it comes to multi-pitch Trad climbing. The approach, weight of the gear, sustained effort, height exposure, and dehydration, are all factors that subtract from the grade you *think* you can climb.

Next time I'll make sure my partner gets their fitness up in the weeks before I climb to prepare for this approach. Starting well before sunrise would also be a good idea.

And also make sure I have high-quality head-lamps to take all the way to the summit in case of a late walk-out.

By George Bell
From: Boulder, CO
Oct 31, 2013
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- HVS 4c

Joshua, sounds like you had a great adventure! Great job getting down in the dark without incident! After you gain more trad experience, you will learn how to go faster, safely. My first long trad climbs I went so slow I ended up spending more than one unexpected night out, but after a while I learned how to speed things up. Some years ago I repeated the first climb I did in Yosemite (Royal Arches) in probably 1/3 the time!

By Nathaniel Dray
Mar 31, 2014
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- HVS 4c

Great climb!!!! The roof traverse is absolute gold. I led the second pitch, stemming in the corner. Pro is great but it is a whopper of a 5.7 if you do not have good stemming technique. For the novice leader be prepared to feel the burn. I found it best to climb fast and run it out rather than waste energy placing a lot of gear. the rest of the pitches were really fun. definitely worth the long hike in. If this was closer to Red Rock park it would be constantly mobbed.

By wesnice
Apr 5, 2014

This route has a beautiful approach and solitude. With all due respect, I will give my two cents in hopes that it helps climbers who may be close to their ability and experience level on this one.

The first part is crack climbing with many face holds (pitch 1 to the middle of pitch 3). At the end of the second pitch there is a loose blocky section that I would suggest climbing past and belaying in a nice chimney-ledge zone that is composed of pretty good rock and has a large area to stand and sort out gear.

The middle section is the fantastic roof traverse. Linking P4 and P5 is easy to do for the leader but may have some drawbacks. The follower could be faced with a nasty, slabby pendulum if you reduce rope drag by running it out (or back cleaning excessively). There are good placements under the roof, so I would suggest using them with double length runners. The issue is that you may have a hard time communicating with the follower, thus you may tug on them as they are traversing. Each time they clean a piece, they risk being pulled off by the top belay. There may be a way to set up the belay from the end of P5 so that you can still communicate with the follower if the wind picks up.

The final section (p6 and p7) is the water polished groove. If you don't like the first part of the groove for p6, consider going up a shallow corner that is just above-right after the gully with the shrub (a few people have already mentioned this). The corner has a fun mantle move, good pro and you can exit via fun face moves (maybe harder than 5.7, but well protected) . P7 took small cams every 8 feet or so (small red and then blue metolius), not too much different than the spacing on a sport climb - but it feels run out compared to the rest of the climb where pro seems to be available everywhere.