Sign Up  |   Log In:Login with Facebook
REI Community
Mill Creek Crag

Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
Big Dreams  S 
Bulge to Groove T,TR 
Chimney T,TR 
Deflator-Mouse T,S 
Dihedral T,TR 
Dirty Boulevard, The S 
Eye of the Tiger S 
Face T,TR 
Face (left of Freeway) TR 
Feline Antics S 
Freeway T,TR 
Groper S,TR 
Honey Pot T,TR 
Joint Therapy S 
Jug Haul T,TR 
Lou Reed  T 
Pit of Despair, The T,S 
Scantily Trad T 
Slot Machine S 
Smokin' John (submitted as Roof Rack) T 
Sweet Petite S 
Turning Point S 

Mill Creek Crag Rock Climbing 


Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Elevation: 9,500'
Location: 39.7838, -105.6242 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 7,031
Administrators: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monomaniac, Monty, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Harald Harb on Jun 20, 2011
Forecast:
You & This Area
Best climbs for YOU in this area
Your opinion of this PAGE:    [0 people like this page.]
BETA PHOTO: Two great routes on this right side of the crag. I...

Description 

Drive up Mill Creek Rd, from Dumont. The National Forest boundary is well marked. Look for a big rock outcrop on your right high above the road. There are some trails that lead to the first wall, which is parallel with the road. All the way to the right side is a deep corner with two routes.

This is a secluded area with few climbers. I have put up four routes. There are chains at the top. They are trad routes, running from 5.7 to 10a. They are an easy 60m rope length.

There are 4 main routes from left to right, in order, Freeway, then by the dihedral, Honey Pot, Jug Haul, and Roof Rack. There is a bolt on "Jug Haul" to protect the first placement. If you miss the placement (flaired crack), it's a groundfall, so the clip is for safe keeping.

Since 2011, 20 new routes have been added. Most recent in 2013 October, Deflator-Mouse, 5.11b.

Getting There 

Drive west on I-70 to the Dumont exit (exit 235 off westbound I-70), about 2.5 miles. If you come from the west, you must use exit 234, Downieville. Take a right before the post office, Mill Creek Road. up about 2.5 miles. This has easy climbing for introducing new climbers to the sport. It is South-facing and warm on sunny days. Approach time to the base of the climbs is ~5 minutes and 10-15 minutes to the top for TR.

Per the approach/driving beta as described isn't the best. 2.5 miles from the post office will actually put you in a little lot where the road turns from pavement to dirt, and with private land up the dirt road. And this is well past the cragging....

More accurately, it's about 2 miles up the road from the post office, right uphill from a steep, narrow section of road where you can see a cliff on the left, across the creek. The Mill Creek Crag won't be that visible as you're driving up because, well, it's right above you -- like only 100 feet above and back a little from the road, up and right (to the east) across from this aforementioned crag.

Addendum: look for the National Forest signs on the right after a sharp right turn. The crag is 200 yards up from there, look high on the right side of the slope.

L->R: 

A1. The Dirty Boulevard, 8, 1p, 75', bolts.
A2. Dihedral, 8+ R, 1p, 60', gear or TR.
B. Face (left of Freeway), 9, 1p, TR.
C. Bulge to Groove, 10, 1p, TR.
D. Freeway, 8-10, 1-2p, 30'-60'?, gear or TR.
E. Face, 7, 1p, gear.
F. Deflator-Mouse, 11, 1p, 60', gear & bolts.
G. Big Dreams , 10, 1p, 50', bolts.
H. Slot Machine, 10, 1p, 60', bolts.
I. Feline Antics, 10+, 1p, 50', bolts.
J1. Joint Therapy, 9, 1p, 80', bolts.
J2. Groper, 10, 1p, 70', TR, now bolts.
K. Honey Pot, 9 or 10-, 1p, 70', gear or TR.
L. Chimney, 5, 1p, 70', TR.
M. Jug Haul, 10, 1p, 50', bolt & gear or TR.
N. Smokin' John (submitted as Roof Rack), 9+, 1p, 60', gear or TR.
O. Scantily Trad, 12, 1p, 65', bolts & gear.
P. Lou Reed , 12 A0, 1p, 65',bolts & gear.
Q. Eye of the Tiger, 12, 1p, 50', bolts.
R. Sweet Petite, 12, 1p, 60', bolts.
T. Turning Point, 11+, 1p, 70', bolts.
U. The Pit of Despair, 9, 1p, 55', bolts & gear.

Climbing Season

For the Dumont vicinity area.

Weather station 6.2 miles from here

22 Total Climbing Routes

['4 Stars',0],['3 Stars',6],['2 Stars',11],['1 Star',5],['Bomb',0]
['<=5.6',1],['5.7',1],['5.8',3],['5.9',5],['5.10',6],['5.11',3],['5.12',2],['5.13',1],['>=5.14',0],['',0],['<=V1',0],['V2-3',0],['V4-5',0],['V6-7',0],['V8-9',0],['V10-11',0],['V12-13',0],['>=V14',0]

Classic Climbing Routes in Mill Creek Crag

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Mill Creek Crag:
Freeway   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 30'   
The Dirty Boulevard   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Sport, 1 pitch, 75'   
The Pit of Despair   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Trad, Sport, 1 pitch, 55'   
Smokin' John (submitted as Roof Rack)   5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 60'   
Feline Antics   5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 65'   
Deflator-Mouse   5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c     Trad, Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   
Sweet Petite   5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   
Turning Point   5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 70'   
Eye of the Tiger   5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b     Sport, 1 pitch, 50'   
Scantily Trad   5.12 7b+ 27 VIII+ 26 E6 6b     Trad, 1 pitch, 65'   
Lou Reed    5.13b 8a 29 IX+ 30 E7 6c     Trad, 1 pitch, 65'   
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Mill Creek Crag

Featured Route For Mill Creek Crag
Rock Climbing Photo: Rope is on the route.

Eye of the Tiger 5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b  CO : Dumont vicinity : Mill Creek Crag
Climb up the triangular rust-colored face on excellent granite. Movement on Eye of the Tiger is cool, and the route is well-protected. The climbing gets progressively more difficult approaching the crux roof. Sequencing through the roof took some time to figure out but was kick to solve....[more]   Browse More Classics in CO

Photos of Mill Creek Crag Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Left side many climbing options, chain hangers, fo...
BETA PHOTO: Left side many climbing options, chain hangers, fo...
Rock Climbing Photo: Honey Pot 5.9 left, Jug Haul 5.10 on the right.
BETA PHOTO: Honey Pot 5.9 left, Jug Haul 5.10 on the right.
Rock Climbing Photo: This is on the left side of the huge, road-facing ...
BETA PHOTO: This is on the left side of the huge, road-facing ...

Comments on Mill Creek Crag Add Comment
Show which comments
By Harald Harb
From: Dumont
Aug 26, 2011
This is good rock, fairly clean as well. I think Diana and I are the only ones climbing here. If more people climb it, the routes will get really nice and clean. There is some lichen in places, but no real rock falling off or that drops when you climb.
I didn't bolt the routes, because I like to have a real trad area around here that is moderate. If you want total peace of mind, top rope the routes.

These are red point ratings, so if you are not a regular 5.10 trad leader, be prepared for some spice, especially on the Jug Wall.
By Leo Paik
Administrator
From: Westminster, Colorado
Oct 4, 2011
This crag is easier to spot going downhill than going uphill for a first timer. It is not this crag at the top of the ridge:

Rock Climbing Photo: Another crag, Mill Creek Dome, above and accessed ...
Another crag, Mill Creek Dome, above and accessed from downhill of Mill Creek Crag.


Mill Creek Crag is close enough you could hit it throwing a rock. The creek is nice for a cool down/rinse off after climbing.
By Harald Harb
From: Dumont
Jun 26, 2012
Rock Climbing Photo: Diana and I found the industrious Richard Wright c...
Diana and I found the industrious Richard Wright checking out a new route he put up going about 5.12 on Mill Creek Dome. Richard has been very busy, new routes everywhere up on the Dome.
By Richard M. Wright
From: Lakewood, CO
Oct 15, 2012
I had the opportunity to check out most of MCC routes this last weekend. While I recognize Harald's request for a bolt free area, I ran a TR through the overhanging crack and corner system 20 ft right of the Freeway route, the main dihedral on the West-facing wall. This would make fine, difficult route (5.11+ give or take a bit), but it would require at least partial bolt protection. I won't put it in with bolts if that is the consensus; however, it could be a really good addition.
By Richard M. Wright
From: Lakewood, CO
Apr 4, 2014
RE: Drew Spalding "This is an area I climbed at many years ago in the early nineties. I first toproped this line "Roof Rack" in probably 1992 and within that next year I came back to lead it also. I remember thinking it was 5.9+/10.a and certainly remember that distinct roof crack! I never did give it a name, because I was surely convinced that someone had climbed this obvious line before I did (probably in the '60s, '70s, and '80s). Good to see there is more lines to climb up there now."

Interesting comment. I have been expecting to find evidence that others had climbed here as well. However, on neither the Mill Creek Crag nor the Mill Creek Dome has anything turned up. While I would not anticipate the trad lines showing any evidence of prior climbing, I have not found evidence of rap stations, fixed pins, pitons, slings, etc, etc. That has always seemed surprising. Harald mentioned climbing the Dome on its west side some years back. It would be useful to know if other things had been climbed and where these lines might be. Thanks Drew for letting us know of at least one prior ascent.
By Monomaniac
Administrator
From: Morrison, CO
Jul 2, 2015
This is a worthy crag that offers some relief from the summer heat. It's only about 15 minutes further from Denver than the west end of Clear Creek, and it's easily 10 degrees cooler than those crags. The left side stays shady till ~10am, and the right side until 1pm. Short approach and beautiful setting. Kudos to Harald and Richard!
By Harald Harb
From: Dumont
Jul 21, 2016
If you are coming up to the Mill Creek Crag, I suggest you bring a stick clip. Most of the 10 and 11 level climbs have very challenging, off-the-ground moves, with hidden or not obvious beta. Be safe, the climbing is great.
By Pinklebear
Aug 7, 2016
The approach/driving beta as described isn't the best. 2.5 miles from the post office will actually put you in a little lot where the road turns from pavement to dirt, and with private land up the dirt road. And this is well past the cragging....

More accurately, per Pinklebear: it's about 2 miles up the road from the post office, right uphill from a steep, narrow section of road where you can see a cliff on the left, across the creek. The Mill Creek Crag won't be that visible as you're driving up because, well, it's right above you -- like only 100 feet above and back a little from the road, up and right (to the east) across from this aforementioned crag.

Again, if you get to where the road turns to dirt, you've gone too far. Backtrack down canyon and look up and left for it, very close to the road, in the narrows.
By Harald Harb
From: Dumont
Aug 12, 2016
Look for the National Forest signs on the right after a sharp right turn. The crag is 200 yards up from there, look high on the right side of the slope.

The Definitive
Climbing Resource

Inspiration & Motivation
to Fuel Your Run

Next Generation Mountain
Bike Trail Maps

Backcountry, Sidecountry
& Secret Stashes

Better Data. Better Tools.
Better Hikes!