Independence Pass Bouldering

A common complaint heard in the Roaring Fork Valley is the lack of good bouldering close by. Sure there are a few things scattered here and there, from the marginal Redstone Boulders to the fun (but limited) New Castle blocks, but generally speaking, this area lacks good opportunities for quality pebble wrestling. All that changes, however, each year on Memorial Day when Independence Pass opens for the season and climbers are granted access to one of Colorado’s best summer playgrounds. Aside from a plethora of fun bolted and gear routes, the Pass has hands down the best bouldering in the area.

There are several guidebooks that do a good job of chronicling the many established problems, but there has also been a lot of recent development, and it was hard to get good info on this stuff. Until now, that is. A new site has launched,, that offers a supberb guide to the more recent problems in the area.

Let’s say you’ve heard about the Treeline area, and that it’s somewhere near the Grotto’s Day Use Parking. Head on over to the Guide, find the Treeline Area under the Grotto’s Day Use section, and you can then click on each boulder to find out about the problems there. It’s a super slick interface, and would be incredible as an iPhone app. I’m not sure how you are supposed to print out all the info to take with you to the boulders, but perhaps that is in the works for future editions. Regardless, this is still an incredible resource for a wealth of new bouldering opportunities.

Aside from the excellent topos, you’ll also find a media section with photos (and promise of video coming soon), a message board, and some helpful local links. So if you are looking for some fun new problems on the Pass, head on over to and check it out!

Locals Corner

Bulldog Creek Dog Walk (IV WI 4+)

Hayden Carpenter and Tom Bohanon recently repeated an obscure ice climb on the south side of Mt Sopris. Given a brief mention in Jack Robert’s ice guide, Bulldog Creek Walk is described as being 100 meters of WI 4. What they found was seven pitches of ice in a remote setting that makes for one […]

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