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Situated just North of the big hairpin and tad up the road, The Gym holds some of Shelf Roads most brilliant (and difficult) climbs. The wall is East facing and gets sun, therefore, only part of the day. Climbing at the Gym reminds me of Sinks Canyon or Ten sleep, with somewhat fewer pockets. The newer lines still retain sharp edges and spines, but for most routes these have been eroded away. Most routes can be done with a 50 meter rope, although a 60 meter is preferred overall. The occasional two pitch routes are readily done with the same equipment. For its overall climbing value, I think The Gym is the best crag at Shelf, with almost none of the discontinuities found at the Bank.
EDIT: The current "approved" approach is to park at the Bank Campground parking area, then follow the Cactus cliff trail down into the drainage for The Bank, up the other side, east along the base of the Bank to reach the old Cactus cliff access road, then up the road, along the base of The Vault to the pit toilet below the Cash Wall, then east again to reach the far left end of Cactus Cliff. Then follow the Cactus Cliff cliff-base trail along the entire length of Cactus, then to Spiney Ridge, along the entire legth of Spiney, around the point, then north past "The New Gym", to eventually reach The Gym. Sounds like a pretty long approach, huh? Basically its ~15 minutes further than Cactus, depending on your specific destination.
75 Total Routes
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Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for The Gym:
Ga-stoned Again 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Sport, 1 pitch, 80'
The Crack of Dawn 5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Sport, 1 pitch
Urban Fringe 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b Sport
Crystal 5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c Sport, 1 pitch, 60'
The Raw and the Roasted 5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a Sport, 1 pitch
Pulley Mammoth 5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a Sport, 1 pitch, 70'
Cimmaron Lanes 5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a Sport, 1 pitch
In The Morning, You'll Be Mine 5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a Sport, 1 pitch
Spontaneous Combustion 5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a Sport, 1 pitch, 80'
The Gym Arete 5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a Sport, 1 pitch
The Smoking Pickle 5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a Sport, 1 pitch, 95'
The Ejection Seat 5.12b/c 7b+ 27 IX- 27 E6 6b Sport, 1 pitch
Lockdown 5.12c 7b+ 27 IX- 27 E6 6b Sport, 1 pitch, 100'
Bone 'n' Vein 5.12c 7b+ 27 IX- 27 E6 6b Sport, 1 pitch, 60'
Ejection Generation 5.12c 7b+ 27 IX- 27 E6 6b Sport, 1 pitch, 50'
Gym Arete Direct 5.12c 7b+ 27 IX- 27 E6 6b Sport, 1 pitch, 75'
My Generation 5.12d 7c 28 IX 28 E6 6b Sport, 1 pitch
Head Cheese 5.12d 7c 28 IX 28 E6 6b Sport, 1 pitch, 60'
The Example 5.13a 7c+ 29 IX+ 29 E6 6c Sport, 1 pitch, 75'
Deeper Shade Of Soul 5.13 8a 29 X- 30 E7 6c Sport, Chipped, 1 pitch
Featured Route For The Gym
The Gym Arete 5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a CO : Shelf Road : The Gym
Best route of its grade at The Gym? Probably. Hike up the trail and stop. The stunning arete right before your eyes is The Gym Arete. The line has a direct start at 5.12c that I have top ropped on several occasions. This seems really fingery and gets quite powerful in the entry moves that are very steep. Alternatively, step into the corner and pick out a short diagonal variation for "only" 5.12b. This seems a lot more user-friendly and gains the arete on a very natural, curving line. Overall, t...[more] Browse More Classics in CO
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