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Question for serious boulderers about hiking.
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Feb 11, 2013
the ridge boulder
I was wondering how far you would be willing to trek for world class bouldering if the potential was endless. Also i am curious about the farthest you've hiked for bouldering. For me it was the underground in Jtree, and Sugar pine in tahoe. The underground takes about an hour and a half with 1000ft gain. HarrisonE
From Stateline, NV
Joined Nov 7, 2011
172 points
Feb 11, 2013
Half dome Cables
I mainly sport climb, but I do my fair share of bouldering and trad climbing too. I've always wondered why in general most climbers that mainly boulder complain about long approaches.

longest approaches
trad: walls in red rocks close to 2 hrs. Going to do levitation 29 this week so that will probably be the longest approach I've done. supose to be close to 3 hours?

sport: clark mountain, Ca where Jumbo Love 5.15b is located. about 1.5 hrs with close to 2K elevation?

bouldering: tramway in Ca, about 30-40 minutes to some boulders
Jan Tarculas
From Riverside, Ca
Joined Mar 6, 2010
776 points
Feb 11, 2013
the ridge boulder
I found a bouldering area and it has massive potential, but its about 3 miles through a forest, a cliff above also has route potential. HarrisonE
From Stateline, NV
Joined Nov 7, 2011
172 points
Feb 11, 2013
after the hard stuff, into cruiser hands.
why does it matter what other people think? If it's worth it to you go for it. My longest approach is 3 hours at Red Rocks. NickinCO
From colorado
Joined Sep 17, 2010
239 points
Administrator
Feb 11, 2013
Day Lily.
If you develop it/manage it/announce it they will come. Regardless of the long approach. Cool stuff man. Have fun and good luck.

You have the power: the more details you give the more poeple will likely come. Less details equals less people. How do you want the place to be ? What energy?

The long approach may be difficult for pads but if the lines are quality its worth it for most id say that can spare the time. Pads or no pads (or create a flexible, packable pad) or if still concerned you hawe the right (option) to wear a helmet.
The Stoned Master
From Pennsylvania
Joined Dec 5, 2012
3,661 points
Feb 11, 2013
Thats Me
I hiked from the red route to the green route one time clay meier
Joined Dec 24, 2008
359 points
Feb 11, 2013
the man was smart
stashed pads??? T Roper
From VA,NM,UT,CT,MA
Joined Mar 31, 2006
1,053 points
Administrator
Feb 11, 2013
A Very Not Snowy Christmas...
The Stoned Master wrote:
If you develop it/manage it/announce it they will come. Regardless of the long approach.



boulderers in general are pretty lazy group. 20/30 min is usually the tops that I find most will regularly hike to get to the goods. There are obviously out-liers in this generalization.

To answer the question re myself, if it was endless supply of the best of the best, probably a few hours though no more then a full days' hike.
Morgan Patterson
Joined Oct 13, 2009
8,415 points
Feb 11, 2013
Better dig out the dirt bikes for this business. frankstoneline
Joined Apr 23, 2009
22 points
Feb 11, 2013
living in salt lake makes me lazy. If it's not roadside top quality bouldering, I'm disinterested. Hiking 10 minutes? Oh hells no. sevrdhed
Joined Oct 23, 2006
157 points
Feb 11, 2013
HarrisonE wrote:
I found a bouldering area and it has massive potential, but its about 3 miles through a forest, a cliff above also has route potential.


3 miles is probably more than most boulderers would like to hike, but if there's nothing closer or the quality is really that good then I'm sure you'll find people willing to make the hike on occasion. Worst case you'll just have a bouldering area completely to yourself...that's not so bad.
Ian Stewart
Joined May 17, 2010
166 points
Administrator
Feb 11, 2013
Day Lily.
Unless you're making money off of this find then it really doesn't matter if others will come. As long as you and your friends are happy and you're not hoarding/hiding the area (to me sharing the knowledge when on public land is important, its not yours or mine when public, it sounds like you'll still have plenty of first ascent "glory" with this area even if you share the location).

If you want people to come sell it well (qualtiy photos, route beta, area maps and quality approach info). As you already probably knew even if this area had the best quality rock and routes (potential) not many would go due to the distance and annoyance/ackwardness of getting pads back there plus camp equipment, etc (3 miles in will most likely get over night visitors).


The Stoned Master
From Pennsylvania
Joined Dec 5, 2012
3,661 points
Feb 11, 2013
It depends on where you are too. At Virginia Tech, the best bouldering nearby (not world class) was an hour to hour and a half walk. We would do it fairly frequently, but we could also drive to the New in not much more time.

In Seattle, the best boulders nearby are currently mostly about an hour hike, and when Leavenworth is too hot or too cold, there will always be people up there. Not nearly as many as when you could drive to the boulders though.
dylanfllr
Joined Feb 14, 2012
3 points
Feb 11, 2013
mountainproject.com/v/stone-la...

This thing and a few surrounding boulders might be worth the trek - but its a looooong steep hike. It's on the way to Haimovi Tower in the Indian Peaks - maybe lug one small pad back there if you're going to climb the tower. I think most parties bivy after the approach and take two days to climb the tower, so its not a ridiculous concept. Lots of potential for harder problems on exceptional granite.
Kevin Landolt
From Fort Collins, Wyoming
Joined Jun 1, 2009
642 points
Feb 11, 2013
Ian Stewart wrote:
Worst case you'll just have a bouldering area completely to yourself...that's not so bad.


This.

A few other things that are true:

- The era in which bouldering is "practice climbing" is long over, even though some climbers still think that way. Now, bouldering is a pursuit that some climbers engage in as thier primary climbing motivation. If one is dedicated enough to train for bouldering specifically, one will also likely be dedicated enough to hike for a ways to get to good bouldering.

-To say that boulderers are lazy is true, but this is only part of the truth. The full truth is that all climbers are lazy--sport, trad, ice, whatever--and a crag next to the road will always be more popular than one that is a long hike.

- 3 miles isn't that far, and people will definitely hike it if it is worth it. As such, the climbing must be of good quality and quantity to justify the hike. Also, in order for people to want to make the hike, the area must offer something that the roadside areas do not, such as better climbing, a different style or rock type, a great setting, or cooler summer temperatures. Look at Mt. Evans and RMNP; lots of people make those long hikes regularly, because the climbing is worth it.

-If the hike seems too long to most, that is fine too. As stated in the quote above, you'll just have your own private climbing area.
JCM
From Seattle, WA
Joined Jun 9, 2008
53 points
Feb 11, 2013
the ridge boulder
good to hear some people are willing to hike out there so these great boulders won't go to waste, (i would climb on them notheless), as for its 'unique' location, it sits in a beautiful meadow with hundreds of visible geometric blocks that have fallen of a cliff that towers above. Probably the best location i've seen for bouldering. As for me I like hiking, and the longer the approach the more of an adventure it is, i just wish more serious boulderers were like that. HarrisonE
From Stateline, NV
Joined Nov 7, 2011
172 points
Feb 11, 2013
Cobra Kai
HarrisonE wrote:
I found a bouldering area and it has massive potential, but its about 3 miles through a forest, a cliff above also has route potential.

Is this in CA? Roughly what part of the state?
My longest approach so far is around six hours. I find hiking large crash pads for hours to be more of a pain than heavy backpacks. Crash pads normally get caught on more vegetation.
Red
From Arizona
Joined Sep 11, 2008
1,322 points
Feb 12, 2013
RNclimber wrote:
I've always wondered why in general most climbers that mainly boulder complain about long approaches.


2 hour hike with a well-packed 50L bag? No big deal. 2 hour hike with a giant piece of foam catching on every tree branch and acting as a parachute every time the wind blows? Bit more of a pain.
Craig T
From Chicago, IL
Joined Apr 19, 2010
7 points
Feb 12, 2013
The Stoned Master wrote:
or if still concerned you hawe the right (option) to wear a helmet.


There is the solution! Just take a nice, lightweight helmet and you will be fine.
chuffnugget
From Bolder, CO
Joined Sep 14, 2011
22 points
Feb 13, 2013
avatar
If it is a long approach to the bouldering that is fine by me. I enjoy being in the wilderness, and I enjoy hiking and backpacking as well. If i'm with my friends, who cares how long the approach is, we will get there eventually, and we will have a good time in the process. IamDman
Joined Jan 12, 2013
15 points


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