Welcome - you've landed at the right place. .... Belay on!
[From poster by Doug Leen]
OK, Friday afternoon, 5/15/09, and our (Bill & Brett's) first view of Devils Tower, approaching from the south. Yep, it was a somewhat rainy day here, though now starting to clear. ... [Our day had begun in Boulder, CO - about a 7.5-hr drive.]
Sure, we can climb this sucker - piece of cake. :)
At the Visitor Center ... are those elevators running up and down the tower??
Nope, sorry - the elevators aren't running today, and not tomorrow either!
You can see that the upper more-broken part has been exposed much longer.
[This is one of Brett's pix - taken with an Olympus camera if you look at "Info."]
You can self-register if the Climber Office isn't open ... no charge either way.
Going up? ... sure, why not.
FYI - the Govt never uses apostrophes in place names (but one could reasonably occur between the "L" and the "S").
Thanks to Pres. Teddy Roosevelt for designating DT our first National Monument, though he had not visited it.
Near dusk: establishing home in the monument's not-large campground - and not very full this early in the season.
Up at 0500 Sat morning - and rather cool out.
Meet Ben and Jason - the mighty climbing duo from the Ozark Mtns of Arkansas. .. They got added to our guided climb, as they were rained out the day before. ... Right - they should have been able to get at least half-up the monolith with this gnarly tank.
Hmm, where do you suppose that odd shadow is coming from?
Pulling out the helmets now, and we'll all rope up together for the steep 3rd-4th class approach to the actual start of the climb.
You love climbing cracks! ... Whew - not quite our route here.
That's the Belle Fourche River below, the Tower rising 1200 feet above it.
Hey, this is still just the approach to the start of the Durrance!
Brett's great shot of Bill with DT shadowed below him.
Ben hanging loose. ... [Later I'll add any pix I get from Ben.]
Jason eager to head up.
OK, time to hang-out for about an hour and let the sun start warming our part of the world. .. Good news: no rain expected today.
Our campground is down there, almost surrounded by the meandering river.
The rock is pretty solid and stable, and one does not hear random rockfall.
Jason with the red helmet (as is mine), Ben with the white and Brett in the white with more holes (Andy not facing the camera). .. We stowed some stuff, but would all be climbing with our daypacks.
Yep - the start of the 1st pitch - the Leaning Column: 80' & 5.6.
The 2nd pitch, the crux Durrance Crack, heads up from the top of the broken column: 72' & 5.7.
This image shows the entire route - from Roper & Steck's "Fifty Classic Climbs of North America."
The Durrance Route was pioneered by Jack Durrance in 1938.
This image also aids in identifying the first six pitches. ... It helps to enlarge it - place cursor over photo and select X3Large. ... [The Jump Traverse is not labeled as "6."]
This version has combined the Flake Crack and the Chockstone Crack as one pitch.
From N. Amer. Classic Climbs: .. http://lamountaineers.org/NAC/browserf/climbs/devtdur/beta.htm