On the east side of Independence Pass, on the flanks of the highest peak in Colorado, sits a wonderful crag of compact alpine granite. Featuring some of the finest 5.10 sport climbing in the state, Monitor Rock is known by most for its excellent bolted routes. There is, however, a hidden trad gem lurking among [...]
While there’s no lack of rock more suspect than a congressional budget, the truth is there are several excellent adventure routes here that offer fun climbing on mostly good stone in a spectacular desert landscape.
There is a treasure trove of 5.9 routes established in the 50’s, 60’s, and 70s’ that is within reach of average climbers like me. They combine the perfect combination of “hard enough to be interesting/ easy enough to get the free climbing flow.” Herewith a tribute to my Personal Top Five 5.9 Trad Climbs.
The Colorado Plateau is not known for it’s face climbing. There are a few exceptions out there, but generally Wingate is too steep and Navajo is just downright soft, and you are better off sticking to the cracks. That being said, we had heard about a relatively new route in a canyon outside Moab that follows a line of massive huecos up a wall.
For a long time the Drool was one of those local secrets that, like Fight Club, you just didn’t talk about (due to sensitive access.) Thankfully that all changed a couple years ago when Pitkin County Open Space bought the property the climb sits on, and you no longer have to hike in looking over [...]
For many trad climbers in Colorado, the arrival of fall means one thing: it’s time to head to the Black Canyon. The scorching heat of summer has finally relented, giving way to perfect bluebird days. While some would say the Black’s fearsome reputation has decreased in recent years, this is stll very much a place [...]
Deep in the heart of the Elk Mountains lurks a route so fearsome, people only whisper its name in conversation: “I hear it’s a tottering pile of choss.” “I hear you don’t get any good gear for 1000 feet.” “I heard Michael Kennedy soloed it naked in mountain boots.” I can’t vouch for the last [...]
By Lynn Sanson Having lived in Estes Park for 7 years I was spoiled with many easily accessible moderate multi-pitch routes. While Carbondale has great local crags, there are few options where one can go to get off the ground without driving an hour plus. So my interest was peaked when I heard about a [...]
By Mike Schneiter Every spring weekend, scores of cars pass by Colorado National Monument on their way to climbing destinations in Moab and the surrounding desert. Generally, the Monument is thought of as being a lesser climbing destination, and the mantra of “for every good pitch, there’s a bad pitch” does hold true on the [...]
One of the unique and appealing things about ice climbing is how it can change from day to day. One day the ice is fat and plastic, the next it could be thin and brittle. The same climb can offer an incredible variety of climbing experiences as the season progresses. And nowhere is this more [...]