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The Dark Side

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Dark Side Wall 
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The Dark Side  

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Location: 44.29387, -103.87401 View Map  Incorrect?
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Administrators: Andrew Gram, Peter Gram, Greg Parker, Andy Busse, Mike Housiaux, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: B. Climbin' on Jul 29, 2011
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Lee sets up at Dark Parking Lots, 5.12b

Mountain Project continues to expand with Hiking Project, and we're giving away loads of gear from Arc'Teryx, Superfeet, & Zeal. Check it out!


Are you sick and tired of baking in the hot Tatooine sun with these Goody-Two-Shoes who keep telling you that it's not O.K. to get angry and wipe out an entire village of Sand People just because you're having a bad day?

You, my young friend, need to step on over to The Dark Side. This is the premier Spearfish Canyon crag if you are seeking shade and relief from hot, summer days and want to crank on some of the most bullet-proof rock in the area.

Getting There 

Tis best to park in the Sunshine Wall Parking lot which is 18.4 light years (O.K. miles) up Spearfish Canyon if you are traveling from Spearfish or 7.8 miles if you are traveling from Lead.

Either way you're going to go past the Cheyenne Crossing store, which I suggest you stop and get stocked up with water, candy bars and take a bathroom break before heading to the climbing areas past this last outpost of civilization.

After driving away from Cheyenne Crossing (heading towards Newcastle on Highway 85) you will travel for approximately 1.2 miles until you reach a large pullout on the left hand side of the road. Please park far away from the bridge that leads to the private residence.

Get out of your vehicle and start walking down the canyon as if you were heading back to Cheyenne Crossing. Go past a wooden guardrail and past a couple of houses which are located in the valley below the paved road you are walking on. Once you get past the entrance to the private, gravel road, which these houses are located on, start looking down toward the creek. The trail from the highway is hidden within some tall grass. If you can't find this part of the trail from the road, look for a primitive wooden bridge that crosses the creek. Cross the creek carefully and start walking uphill.

Your journey will take you through what appears to be the forest of Endor. There will be tons of ferns and what appears to be acres of lush, green moss that resembles a shag carpet as it spill down the hillsides. Please stay on the trail the best you can! In some sections you will have to go around and over some fallen trees.

This area is a unique habitat for some plants that probably don't grow in many places within Spearfish Canyon. Please respect the flora! Near the top of the trail you'll run into what appears to be piles of rock that form up into a wall. Once you reach the road at the end of the trail, head left to go to the Wild West Wall and The Goldmine...however, if you're a Jedi in training, who is simply pissed at the worlds and wants to get on some stellar climbs...take a right and head to The Dark Side. We have cookies.

Climbing Season

Weather station 5.0 miles from here

38 Total Routes

['4 Stars',7],['3 Stars',28],['2 Stars',2],['1 Star',1],['Bomb',0]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for The Dark Side:
Princess, I Wanna Leaha.   5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a     Sport, 70'   Warm Up Wall
Dead Man's Hand   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b     Sport, 80'   Wild West Wall
E-walk   5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b     Sport, 45'   Dark Side Wall
Mister Fister   5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c     Sport, 80'   Dark Side Wall
Gives Good Helmet   5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c     Sport, 65'   Dark Side Wall
Black Rainbow   5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c     Sport, 60'   Warm Up Wall
Muira, Muira On The Wall   5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a     Sport, 80'   Dark Side Wall
Concracktion   5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a     Sport, 80'   Dark Side Wall
Power of the Darkside   5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a     Sport, 80'   Dark Side Wall
Black Hole   5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Sport, 80'   Dark Side Wall
Darth Gaydar   5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Sport, 90'   Dark Side Wall
Prison Bound   5.12b/c 7b+ 27 IX- 27 E6 6b     Sport, 70'   Dark Side Wall
Gabba the Nut   5.12d 7c 28 IX 28 E6 6b     Sport, 60'   Dark Side Wall
Tough Love   5.13a 7c+ 29 IX+ 29 E6 6c     Sport, 80'   Dark Side Wall
Browse More Classics in The Dark Side

Featured Route For The Dark Side
The red rope is hanging off Concracktion 5.11c. Th...

Concracktion 5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a  SD : Spearfish Canyon : ... : Dark Side Wall
Oh my God! It hurts! But the pain is totally worth it in the end. This climb is phenomenal! Starts in a crack that leads to a layback which then positions you on a dainty ledge with only a couple of killer mono's to crank your way to the next hold if you can find it.The pain doesn't stop there! Keep navigating your way through hard to read holds up around the bend. This climb feels forever long because you won't see the anchors till it's nearly over. Just keep breathing and pushing your way up t...[more]   Browse More Classics in SD

Photos of The Dark Side Slideshow Add Photo
Brian Stampe does battle with Darth Gaydar, 5.12a ...
Brian Stampe does battle with Darth Gaydar, 5.12a ...
Yo! Check it out! We gots some bad ass routes all ...
Yo! Check it out! We gots some bad ass routes all ...
I wish I had a better pic, of this super good rout...
I wish I had a better pic, of this super good rout...
A scene from The Darkside.
A scene from The Darkside.
Brian takes on Stump In The Rump, 5.11b
Brian takes on Stump In The Rump, 5.11b
Jamie takes down Sinister, 5.12c  Dark Side Wall, ...
Jamie takes down Sinister, 5.12c Dark Side Wall, ...
Climbers taking on Shady Lady (left) and Starfight...
Climbers taking on Shady Lady (left) and Starfight...

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