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Ridge 1 aka Stairway to Heaven
Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
Ariel T 
Armed Forces S 
Arms Reduction T 
Army T 
Better Than Better Than Love T 
Better than Love T 
Casual Slabs T 
Forget Me Not T 
Guardian, The S 
Gunky T 
In God We Trust T 
Inscrutable T 
Like Hell It Is T 
Love T 
Seeker, The T 
Stairway to Heaven T 
Wanderer, The T 
What, What? TR 
Who, Who? T 


YDS: 5.4 French: 4a Ewbanks: 12 UIAA: IV ZA: 10 British: VD 3c

Type:  Trad, 3 pitches
Consensus:  YDS: 5.4 French: 4a Ewbanks: 12 UIAA: IV ZA: 10 British: VD 3c [details]
FA: unknown
Page Views: 1,708
Submitted By: Guy H. on Aug 15, 2001

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (14)
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Bruce Hildenbrand climbing to the summit of the Li...

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  • Description 

    This west face route starts 400 feet from the southern edge of the rock. It ascends a steep left facing dihedral to the summit of Like Heaven. The Like Heaven summit jets out of the face to the west.

    P1: Begin on a large block, reach over the void and pull over the overhang. This move is a little committing, a small nut placement at the lip might help this mental move. Head up a a few feet and tarverse right to a belay spot. (~40 feet).

    P2: Head up the wonderfully pocketed wall next to the wide left facing dihedral. Belay at the top, off of slung knobs or large cams. (~80 feet).

    P3: Climb the northern edge of Like Heaven to the pointy summit. (no pro w/ great exposure, ~30 feet).

    Descent: There are two old bolts on the summit. I guess one could do a double rope rap to the west. We did a low angle rap to the east and continued up the ridge line. We then downclimbed to a tree and rapped.


    Flatirons rack, include tricams for pockets and an optional larger pieces (2-3 inches).

    Photos of Love Slideshow Add Photo
    The old 1/4" Rawl buttonhead bolts on the summit of Like Heaven.  These were likely installed more than 30 years ago.
    The old 1/4" Rawl buttonhead bolts on the sum...
    Heading up the dihedral. <br /> <br />Photo by Sam Moeckel.
    Heading up the dihedral. Photo by Sam Moeckel.
    An old 1/4" x 1.25" Rawl buttonhead bolt with a Leeper hanger, removed from the summit of Like Heaven. <br /> <br />Not very confidence inspiring!
    An old 1/4" x 1.25" Rawl buttonhead bolt...
    The new rappel anchor at the summit of Like Heaven.  3/8" proof-coil chain and 3/8" quick links provide a rappel line down the Love route.
    The new rappel anchor at the summit of Like Heaven...
    The new 3/8" 5-piece Rawl Torque bolts with Fixe hangers, installed on the summit of Like Heaven.
    The new 3/8" 5-piece Rawl Torque bolts with F...
    Deb gets to climb in the shade.
    Deb gets to climb in the shade.

    Comments on Love Add Comment
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    Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Oct 20, 2012
    By Richard M. Wright
    From: Lakewood, CO
    Aug 15, 2001

    This route was put up by Gerry and Barb Roach in the 70s. Here is a nice story. I had the amusing pleasure of running into Barb on the route in 1981. I had been soloing everything I climbed for more than a year and had picked out LOVE as a route to check out. I went up with a rope and harness because I was uncertain how I intended to descend. Barb was at the base when I arrived and she was showing the line to some non-climbing friends, however, she had a harness and belay device. I soloed LOVE as intended but brought Barb as the second, nearly ten years after she put the line in. I thought the situation was a kick, and it was a nice route as well.
    By George Bell
    From: Boulder, CO
    Jun 20, 2002

    All three pitches as described can be done in one pitch (even with a 50m rope), although you have to be careful with the pro to avoid nasty rope drag. It is probably best to belay after pitch 2 as described.

    We did an interesting variation to the final pitch: at the very end of pitch 2, just 8 feet below the notch a pair of cracks shoots up and mostly right along the near vertical NW face of Like Heaven. Follow these cracks (easy, but wild exposure) and reach the summit of Like Heaven from the west. This is not much (if any) harder than the rest of the route, and takes 2-3" pro. Avoid it however if your second is sketchy, as there is a potential for a big pendulum fall for the leader or second.
    By Ron Olsen
    From: Boulder, CO
    Oct 2, 2003

    Gear Alert
    On 10/2/03, Bruce Hildenbrand, WIll Clopton, and I replaced the old bolts on the summit of the Like Heaven pinnacle. This was done with a permit from Boulder Open Space and Mountain Parks.

    Details are as follows:

    Old bolts replaced: two Rawl buttonhead bolts, 1/4" x 1.25", with Leeper hangers.

    New bolts installed: two 3/8" 5-piece Rawl Torque bolts with 4mm Fixe stainless-steel hangers.

    We also installed 3/8" proof-coil chain with 3/8" quick links to provide a rappel anchor for the Love route.

    The hangers and the quick-links were supplied by the American Safe Climbing Association (ASCA).
    By Jake Wyatt
    From: Longmont, CO
    Oct 3, 2003


    Thanks for your efforts in both the replacement itself, and in navigating the permit process. The hardware that was up there before looked a little scary.

    And thanks (yet again) to the ASCA for much appreciated assistance. I'd urge everyone to consider throwing a few bucks to these guys every year (safeclimbing.org/), maybe at the same time as you write your checks to the Access Fund. I've been to a few of the areas around the country that the ASCA has done their work, and it's always been top-notch.
    By George Bell
    From: Boulder, CO
    Oct 3, 2003

    Good job replacing those bolts, Ron! How long is the rap to the west, can it be done with a single 60m? I suppose one could also rap from these bolts to the east? How long is that?
    By Ron Olsen
    From: Boulder, CO
    Oct 3, 2003

    George Bell wrote:
    Good job replacing those bolts, Ron! How long is the rap to the west, can it be done with a single 60m? I suppose one could also rap from these bolts to the east? How long is that?

    The rappel down the west face to the base of Love looks quite long; I don't know if a single 60m would make it. We had two ropes with us; a 50m and a 60m and were hoping to check this out. Unfortunately, the weather turned cold and it started to sprinkle just as we finished installing the new hardware, so we downclimbed to the notch and scrambled back to our packs on the east side of the ridge and didn't do any rappels.

    It might be possible to rappel to the east, but the anchor is set up for a rappel to the west; see Photo. A second set of chains could be installed to provide an equalized rappel anchor to the east, if that would be useful.
    By Guy H.
    From: Fort Collins CO
    Oct 3, 2003

    Thanks for replacing these anchors. They were in the Flatiron Hall of Fame for worst rap anchors. Another set of rap anchors that are in the Hall of Fame are on the top of Back Porch. At least you can backup those with a large boulder.

    By Kevin Craig
    May 23, 2005

    We used 2 x 60m ropes to rap west from the Like Heaven summit. 2 ropes are definitely required. 2 x 50m might make it with rope stretch.
    By Tony B
    From: Around Boulder, CO
    Jun 15, 2006
    rating: 5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a

    You can rap west 97 feet from the summit with a single 60M rope, stopping just a few feet before the end of the rope at a good anchor in the corner, and then reset for a second rap of perhaps 50 feet to the ground. The anchors is 2X webbing on a huge, solid chockstone with a biner. Needs replaced with a rapid link. Sorry, I was out.

    Note: As of 11/07, the anchors is still present. Only 1 60M rope is necessary to descend, but someone has taken the biner. A rapid link is needed here.
    By Chris Zeller
    From: Boulder, CO
    Mar 28, 2007

    Did both Love and Better Than Love yesterday morning. Love might just be my favorite single pitch of rock in the Flatirons. The summit is definitely dramatic! This is certainly the better of the two.

    First of all, don't sweat the initial move. It looks much harder than it is. Great hands help. This is certainly no harder than 5.6.

    Thanks Ron for replacing the bolts!!!! The upper ridge is quite exposed and a wonderful rush. Finding the very solid bolts at the top was very nice. The best way to do this is with two ropes. We had two 60s and we had plenty of rope left. You need two ropes for sure.
    By Ron Olsen
    From: Boulder, CO
    Mar 28, 2007

    Chris Zeller wrote:
    Thanks Ron for replacing the bolts!!!!

    Primary credit goes to Bruce Hildenbrand, who removed the old bolts, hand drilled the holes, and provided and installed the new hardware. Replacing the bolts was Will Clopton's idea. I assisted and photographed the effort.
    By Phil Lauffen
    From: The Bubble
    Jan 19, 2009

    This is a fun climb! A little hard to find and its hard to believe that the lean-across-the-void start really is 5.4, but this climb is a jug haul on semi-steep terrain. It is also very protectable except on the ridge, which is 5.2. A fun free solo or good first lead. Bring the tricams because there are a plethora of beautiful pockets to put them in. As for the rappel leave the extra rope at home. A 57m rope reaches a great ledge above a chockstone you can sling(if there aren't already some there). I left a rapid link at the second rappel with the other 3m of our rope. (We had it cut a while ago above a core shot)
    By Legs Magillicutty
    From: Littleton
    Jul 1, 2010

    Why are these routes all listed as trad, alpine? Trad, yes but alpine? Nah.
    By Leo Paik
    From: Westminster, Colorado
    Jul 2, 2010
    rating: 5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a

    Legs, good question. I think it'll take a peek by Andy or Nick to figure this out. Perhaps the crag was initially entered as an "alpine" crag, then corrected, but somehow the check box in cyberspace remains checked?

    Add: An upstream box was checked (thanks, Andy). Now, it's unchecked. Hopefully that will fix it within the next day. Thanks for the heads up, Legs.

    It seems to have worked.
    By Brendan
    From: Golden, CO
    Oct 20, 2012

    The rap station at the chockstone is in good condition.