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Third Buttress

Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
Ah Maw T 
Feathers T 
Left Wing T,TR 
Mojo Rising T 
Monster Woman T 
No Mo' Jo' T,TR 
Standard Left Start T 
Standard Route T 
Standard Variation T 
West Face (variation) T,TR 
What's Up? T 
Wingtip T,TR 
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Third Buttress  

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Location: 40.0125, -105.308 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 34,512
Administrators: Ben Mottinger, Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monomaniac, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Leo Paik on Mar 29, 2006
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BETA PHOTO: The Elephant Buttresses. Most routes start off th...

  • Reopened after rockfall MORE INFO >>>
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  • Description 

    The Third Buttress is the most popular of the Elephant Buttresses & is home to a number of good, moderate routes on solid rock: Standard Route, 7+; Monster Woman, 8+; Wingtip, 10c; Left Wing, 10c; What's Up?, 10d; and the impressive FM, 11c. This area can be quite popular. It does have the unique aspect that multiple of its routes start on or near an old pipeline.

    Some routes start up a gully between the Second and Third Buttress, and others start right off the water pipe. Routes here are 1-2 pitches long. No bolts here.


    A. Feathers, 8+, 1p, gear.
    B. Wingtip, 10, 1p, 65', gear.
    C. Left Wing, 10, 1p, gear.
    D. Pegasus?, 11, 1p, gear.
    E. Misdirected?, 11+, 1p, gear.
    F. What's Up.?, 10+, 1p, gear.
    G. FM, 11, 1-2p, gear.
    H. Kangaroof?, 11, 2p, gear.
    I. Mojo Rising, 9, 190', gear.
    J?. No Mo' Jo', 11+, 1-2p, gear.
    K. Variation?, 9+, 2p, gear.
    L. Standard Route, 7+, 2p, 190', gear.
    M. Monster Woman, 9-, 2p, 190', gear.
    N. Ah Maw?, 10- R, 2p, 190', gear.
    O. West Face, 7, 1-2p, 170', gear.

    Getting There 

    Cross the bridge, go R, go up to the water pipe, and walk right, past the First and Second Buttress, to the Third Buttress. There are several prominent cables anchored from the pipe to the rock.


    There are multiple options: 1) The most commonly used descent is the 4th class to low 5th class downclimb down the ramp, but this is exposed. This is not advisable with beginners or in the rain. 2) Scramble down between the Second and Third Buttress and rappel 90' from the tree atop Pine Tree Route. 3) If the water level is low enough, you can take the water tunnel between the Third and Fourth Buttress. Be prepared for darkness and wet legs/feet; watch your head in the tunnel. 4) If you're not in a hurry, you can walk down between the First Buttress and the Dome, and walk the water pipe back to the Third Buttress.

    Climbing Season

    Weather station 2.2 miles from here

    13 Total Routes

    ['4 Stars',1],['3 Stars',4],['2 Stars',7],['1 Star',1],['Bomb',0]

    The Classics

    Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Third Buttress:
    Standard Route   5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b     Trad, 2 pitches   
    Standard Left Start   5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b     Trad, 2 pitches   
    Standard Variation   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Trad, 2 pitches, 175'   
    Mojo Rising   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Trad, 2 pitches   
    Ah Maw   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a PG13     Trad, 1 pitch, 65'   
    Left Wing   5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b     Trad, TR, 1 pitch   
    Wingtip   5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b PG13     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 65'   
    What's Up?   5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b     Trad, 2 pitches   
    FM   5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a     Trad, 1 pitch   
    Browse More Classics in Third Buttress

    Featured Route For Third Buttress
    At the beginning of the "double dihedral"...

    FM 5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a  CO : Boulder Canyon : ... : Third Buttress
    This route is on the Third Elephant Buttress, on the north side. To access it walk along the pipe till you reach a gully between the Second and Third Buttresses. Scramble about 20 feet up the gully to the base of the climb. This climb follows a left facing dihedral that begins about 40 feet up. The route is to the right of Left Wing and starts up a short face to an obvious, chalked finger crack. Make some challenging moves to gain the finger crack (5.10ish) and follow the crack a few moves to a ...[more]   Browse More Classics in CO

    Photos of Third Buttress Slideshow Add Photo
    Third Buttress 1. Standard Route (7+) 2. West Face...
    BETA PHOTO: Third Buttress 1. Standard Route (7+) 2. West Face...

    Comments on Third Buttress Add Comment
    Show which comments
    By Flatirons Climbing Council
    Mar 25, 2014
    The entire Third Elephant Buttress has re-opened for climbing. We organized a small volunteer effort to gently remove a 120+ pound loose rock on the popular Standard Route (5.7+) that threatened whatever may have been in its path climber, belayer, or the steel water pipe. Big thanks to ubiquitous do-gooder Mike McHugh for his technical expertise as he continues to support the Front Range community through his selfless heavy-lifting!
    By Phil Lauffen
    From: The Bubble
    Apr 19, 2009
    Does anyone know what the route that goes to the right of the end of the Standard Route on the top part of the Third Elephant Buttress? I got to it by climbing up the far right side of the Third Elephant Buttress. It fires right up twin slightly-overhanging cracks that has a fixed nut in the right one just below the crux. It spit me off a few times today, and I want to know its grade.... for purely selfish reasons.
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