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The Gym

Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
Armstrong Express, The S 
Arnold! Arnold! S 
Arrowhead Spire S 
Black Mamba Arete S 
Blast from the Past S 
Bolt the Planet S 
Bone 'n' Vein S 
Bottom Feeder S 
Bubba's Belly (aka The Example Simulator) S 
Cask Strength S 
Cimmaron Lanes S 
Comin' In Smooth S 
Crack of Dawn, The S 
Crystal S 
Deeper Shade Of Soul S 
Dizzi Lizzi S 
Easy Cheese aka Trout Fishing in America S 
Ejection Generation S 
Ejection Seat, The S 
Even Bad Dogs Get A Bone S 
Example, The S 
Five Dollars S 
Fly Little Super Boy S 
Ga-stoned Again S 
Great Escape, The S 
Green Bonus, The S 
Gym Arete Direct S 
Gym Arete, The S 
Head Cheese S 
Hot Rod Lincoln S 
I Am A Machine S 
I Never Met a Carbo I Didn't Like S 
I'll Be Back S 
In The Morning, You'll Be Mine S 
Jane Fonda Warm-up S 
Librium Quiver S 
Lockdown S 
Morning Stretch S 
Muscles From Brussels S 
My Generation S 
Natty Dread S 
Needle Haven aka Fallen Prophet S 
New Rule S 
New Vernacular, The S 
Oh... What Are You Looking At S 
Orange Marmalade S 
Our Bosch of Immaculate Conception S 
Paradise Regained S 
Penitentiary Pump S 
Pinhead S 
Prickly Pear S 
Profits of Rage S 
Pulley Mammoth S 
Rally Monkey S 
Raw and the Roasted, The S 
Real Deal, The S 
Rio Station S 
Scarface S 
Senor Verde S 
She's Got a Full Set of Camalots! T,S 
Shorty Bob S 
Smoking Pickle, The S 
Solar Flex S 
Spontaneous Combustion S 
St. Patty's Slab S 
Stud with a Rug S 
There Goes the Neighborhood S 
Three Stooges S 
Thunder & Lightning  S 
Tomato, Tomotto S 
Trailer Park Logic S 
Trout Fishing S 
Untapped S 
Up Valley Goes Downtown S 
Urban Fringe S 
VHS or Beta S 

The Gym  

Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Elevation: 7,050'
Location: 38.6329, -105.2165 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 69,037
Administrators: Ben Mottinger, Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monomaniac, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Richard M. Wright on Nov 30, 1999
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You & This Area
Best routes for YOU in this area
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The Gym features the best limestone at Shelf, abun...


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.

Getting There 

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.

The upside is that there will be zero crowds once you finally arrive.

Climbing Season

Weather station 6.8 miles from here

76 Total Routes

['4 Stars',11],['3 Stars',36],['2 Stars',23],['1 Star',4],['Bomb',2]

The Classics

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 Smoking Pickle   5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 95'   
The Gym Arete   5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Sport, 1 pitch   
The Ejection Seat   5.12b/c 7b+ 27 IX- 27 E6 6b     Sport, 1 pitch   
Bone 'n' Vein   5.12c 7b+ 27 IX- 27 E6 6b     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   
Lockdown   5.12c 7b+ 27 IX- 27 E6 6b     Sport, 1 pitch, 100'   
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   
Browse More Classics in The Gym

Featured Route For The Gym
Stickin' the crux big move.

The Ejection Seat 5.12b/c 7b+ 27 IX- 27 E6 6b  CO : Shelf Road : The Gym
Anyone who slags Shelf for being too slabby (as I sometimes do when my terrible footwork is exposed) should definitely get on this climb.Campus the initial overhang into a pod, then swing though pleasant moves on big holds for about 20 feet. At the fourth bolt, the jug-hauling ends abruptly. A big crank from thin holds to thinner ones is where your onsight attempt ends. Suss out the reachy crux move, cruise throught the 5.11 moves on ther upper face, and pull your cord for the redpoint.This is a...[more]   Browse More Classics in CO

Photos of The Gym Slideshow Add Photo
Bob Robinson making it happen!
Bob Robinson making it happen!
just around corner from spiny ridge
BETA PHOTO: just around corner from spiny ridge
Looking north from the left side of the Gym with a...
Looking north from the left side of the Gym with a...

Comments on The Gym Add Comment
Show which comments
By Legs Magillicutty
From: Littleton
Feb 27, 2008
There is a route that is located a few routes right of Gastoned. The first 2 bolts are homemade. It's pockety, very positive and extremely dirty. I knocked a huge block down from the left of this route this weekend. No one was hurt. I barely touched it and POW!!! The mid point of the route is pretty clean. Up by the anchors it gets dirty again. Anyone have any idea what this route is and what it is rated? Felt like a 9 maybe? My partner quessed 10a??
By Darryl Roth
Dec 1, 2010
A note of history that I haven't seen anywhere... the first route put up at The Gym was "VHS or Beta". I chose it because of the high quality stone. Due to the thin holds and less traveled location, it doesn't see much traffic, but it certainly typifies the style of climbing that was predominant in those early days of Shelf.
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