BETA PHOTO: Photo taken from the road, looking up to the crag.
This is a nice "after work" or "lunchtime" crag, as it's not too far up the Canyon, has a short approach, and all of the routes are short. Rossiter calls this crag 'The Arena' in his Boulder Canyon book, and Rolofson calls it 'Contender Wall' in the Sport Climbers' Guide.
There are five routes, from left to right, that go at:
A. Sucker Punch?, 11+, 1p, 20', bolts. B. Standing Eight Count, 11, 1p, 40', bolts. C. Contender Direct?, 11, 1p, 60', bolts. D. Contender?, 12a, 1p, 70', bolts & gear. E. First Round, 10, 1p, 50', bolts & gear.
All are bolted and on vertical granite with crimpy, incut holds. No slab climbing here!
As per Rolofson: Drive up the Canyon 6.3 miles (I think he says 6.2) from the intersection of Canyon and Arapahoe, and pass Eagle Rock on your left. Immediately after passing Eagle Rock, the other side of the road is a steep, rocky hillside that faces south. Up the hillside there is a small but obvious wall with orange lichen and a dark grey water streak on it. This is the Arena/Contender Wall.
Park immediately on the right, or continue around the bend and find a small pullout on the right, and walk back. Cob Rock and Bitty Buttress are just beyond.
Scramble through loose talus and past many tiny cacti, and find an incipient trail that approaches the crag from climber's right. Follow your nose and cut back to the left, scramble onto a ledge, and you will be at the bottom of the crag. The base is steep and sloping, but a few gear placements abound for belayers. Soak up the sun and start pullin!
Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for The Arena (aka Contender Wall):
Pornucopia climbs the blank pane of rock between Contender Direct and Contender, joining both climbs for the upper face to the anchor. It has three new bolts of climbing and links into Contender for your fourth clip.Pull on and move to a good rail, clip, bust into thin holds and stretch high for the second clip and move into the biz. A flat hold out right lets you clip the third bolt, then power up on better edges as you join Contender. I clipped the bolt on Contender as my fourth clip, then mov...[more]Browse More Classics in CO