East Ironing Board Rock Climbing
Unknown soloist on the East Ironing Board. Novemb...
The first major formation west of the Third Flatiron. A four-humped fin oriented generally south (nadir) to north (zenith). Marked, when viewed from the east, by a large balanced rock on the lower end. See Rossiter "The Flatirons", p. 172 for a great photo and a not-so-useful description of the approach.
From Chautauqua, hike up the Kinnikinnic road, or up the Chautauqua trail, past the Bluebell Shelter, and onto the Royal Arch Trail. Pass the 'y' turnoff to the 2nd and 3rd Flatiron access trail, and continue up. Where the trail takes a sharp U-turn bend to the left, there is a large boulder in the trail with "(left arrow) Royal Arch painted on it. Take a hard right, over a fallen tree, maybe past a Seasonal Wildlife Closure sign, and gain an incipient path down into Bluebell Canyon. The trail dips and rolls a bit, crosses to the canyon bottom, and then begins to climb. Follow the obvious line of least resistance, and work far right or bear right when a sketchy scramble seems imminent. Shortly you will encounter a 3rd class scramble up to a level area with a large gray boulder on your right and a wonderful profile of the third at two-o'clock. You are at the nadir of the East Ironing Board. Work right to gain the bottom of the east face, or turn sharply left and follow the trail up to the west face. Stay close to the rock as you scoot around the end, and remember to bear right when things look sketchy. Shortly, you will arrive in the gully of the West face, and gain an obvious trail which switchbacks up. The first obvious line is Hunka' Hunka' Burnin' Love (10b), a 7 bolt line which has three rather closely-spaced bolts protecting the initial passage through a pebbled roof onto a face. Further up the slope you will see the obvious roof through which one gains access to Velvet Elvis (11a), Hammer of Thor (10c) and Sunbreeze (10b).
A giant boulder jam and slab bar access to the upper end of the East Ironing Board, and the Green Thumb. Either pass the jam on the right (tricky) or on the left via an exposed 4th class slab solo, to get to the fun routes on the Green Thumb, or approach [as far] Friday and Saturday's Folly and follow the trail up to the Green Thumb (faster if only interested in the upper routes). On Green Thumb, Far Niente (12a, bolts), Green Corner (8+ gear) and Diagonal Finger Crack (9, gear) are popular, if short, routes. Diagonal Finger Crack remains one of my favorite short cracks in the area.
I've done recon hikes three times to this area. It is peaceful, rarely crowded and offers wonderful climbing. Hopefully this beta will speed your approach.
Climbing Season For the North area.
Weather station 2.5 miles from here
17 Total Climbing Routes
['4 Stars',2],['3 Stars',5],['2 Stars',8],['1 Star',2],['Bomb',0]
Classic Climbing Routes in East Ironing Board
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in East Ironing Board
Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for East Ironing Board:
Smooth 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
R Trad, 3 pitches, 400'
Featured Route For East Ironing Board
Velvet Elvis 5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c CO
: ... : East Ironing Board
This is a wild and exciting route that traverses the lip of a huge overhang. If you fall off the traverse pitch you have the feeling you'd be dangling in space.Hike up to the SW of the East Ironing Board. This route is obvious as it is the last place to get on the face before a huge roof. You should be able to spot the bolts above this roof.At the base is a small overhang which leads to a left-facing dihedral (the route Sunbreeze). Clip a pin in this first overhang and crank over, then move ...[more] Browse More Classics in CO
E (foreground) and W Ironing Boards from Third Fla...
BETA PHOTO: East Ironing Board from NE of NCAR.
By George Bell
From: Boulder, CO
Feb 25, 2002
Note: The Green Thumb is now listed as a separate rock from the East Ironing Board. See that rock for climbs on the Green Thumb.