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Visiting Denver in July
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Mar 18, 2014
My girlfriend and I will be attending a conference in July in Denver. We are extending our stay in order to climb as much as possible. We are from NC (home to Stone Mountain, Shortoff, Looking Glass, Rumbling Bald). We are just overwhelmed at the quantity of crags in CO seen on mountain project. Would any of you guys please give us some suggestions? My preference is trad and would love to find a great moderate (up to 5.9) route(s). Jen loves sport and can lead up to 5.11. Thanks for your time. Cheers! Tev
From Hickory
Joined May 9, 2012
27 points
Mar 18, 2014
Spoonless in the Obed.
If you're into trad, Eldo is not to be missed. There are many mega classics in the grade range you've outlined, but expect to fight for some of the older 5.9's. Then again, NC isn't known for soft grades, so you'll probably be fine. Easy long romps on the flatirons are great (e.g. Direct Route, 5.6, first flatiron), but they may be hot and crowded. For sport, nearby Boulder Canyon has plenty of options, as does Clear Creek Canyon, near Golden. There are more obscure spots with fantastic lines, but those will keep you busy. Give me a shout, I'm an Asheville native. evan h
From Denver, CO
Joined Oct 3, 2012
205 points
Mar 18, 2014
Stabby
Devils Head is by far the best near Denver sport climbing, with the only exception being CCC for chasing hard numbers. Mike Lane
From Centennial, CO
Joined Jan 21, 2006
839 points
Mar 18, 2014
J TREE
July Eldo can be REALLY HOT,

Head up to Lumpy Ridge in Estes.......

Best bang for your buck while your here....

South Platte is great but if you don't know your way around down there you can spend a whole day just getting lost.....

Head up to Estes.....
Jim Amidon
Joined Jun 12, 2001
927 points
Mar 18, 2014
ducking ropes at Copper
Jim Amidon wrote:
July Eldo can be REALLY HOT, Head up to Lumpy Ridge in Estes....... Best bang for your buck while your here.... South Platte is great but if you don't know your way around down there you can spend a whole day just getting lost..... Head up to Estes.....


+1 to all of this. Eldo is amazing and if the weather is right you should absolutely hit it, but it is highly likely it will be super hot and then rain for an hour or two in the afternoon if you are here in July. Lumpy has some of the best trad lines around and picturesque setting. Although some of the approaches are longish. The South platte area is also home to some of the biggest granite trad lines in the state but as mentioned before most of the driving/hiking isn't super obvious and it is at least a 2 hour endeavor from Denver just to get to the base of some of the crags. Clear Creek Canyon is 15 minutes away with most approaches less than 5 minutes and grades everywhere from 5.7-5.13, sport and trad. Although hardly the picturesque Colorado setting. This area is really only used by locals when we can't get out to better further out places. The only foreseeable issue I see with lumpy Ridge is that with some longer approaches and July's always present afternoon thunderstorms you could spend a good amount of time hiking out to the crag and get half way up only to get dumped on.
ChefMattThaner
From Lakewood, co
Joined May 15, 2013
349 points
Mar 18, 2014
Well you won't find much NC style granite...! A lot of heat and maybe some rain..Royal Flush in frisco is not that far away, a long mellow route...Mt Evans if you want some altitude and RMNP if the rain holds off. john strand
From southern colo
Joined May 22, 2008
2,265 points
Mar 18, 2014
Head to the Estes/Lyons area. You have full day peaks, short fast sport, boulders, and a nice selection of multipitch trad all within an hour or two. Eldo is stellar. Dream canyon is is a hidden gem IMO. There is very little info about the routes there, and I have been unable to locate information about several routes I have climbed. But they were all good enough to trek back in for a second ascent. It's also rare to see more than one other party all day.

St vrain is also pretty awesome, though lacking on the classic part.

Boulder canyon has some pretty good granite with a decent mix of sport/trad. The routes are mostly single pitch. There is some great exposure at some crags, not as much as eldo though.

Good luck with your trip!
Eliot Augusto
From Boulder, CO
Joined Dec 29, 2013
35 points
Mar 18, 2014
There are 2 seasons in Colorado: Winter and July. July climbing is ok at Independence pass or at the Park. Bill Wa
Joined Mar 5, 2014
20 points
Mar 18, 2014
Tanner Dome
Devils Head and S.Platte dano72
From Colorado Springs, CO
Joined Jun 2, 2012
10 points
Mar 18, 2014
Bird closures at Devil's head in July ??? john strand
From southern colo
Joined May 22, 2008
2,265 points
Mar 18, 2014
after the hard stuff, into cruiser hands.
Bill Wa wrote:
There are 2 seasons in Colorado: Winter and July. July climbing is ok at Independence pass or at the Park.


I hope your joking… LOL. If you aren't you are spoiled rotten.
NickinCO
From colorado
Joined Sep 17, 2010
239 points
Mar 18, 2014
Got Milk? How about forearm pump? Tony leads "...
NickinCO wrote:
I hope your joking… LOL. If you aren't you are spoiled rotten.

It's Elanor - go wash your hands.
Tony B
From Around Boulder, CO
Joined Jan 1, 2001
23,510 points
Mar 18, 2014
I'd kill a snitch
Lumpy Ridge, no question. World class climbing, and cooler temps than the front range. Get an early start, rain/thunder storms tend to roll in mid afternoon during July The Blueprint Part Dank
From FEMA Region VIII
Joined Jun 21, 2013
258 points
Mar 18, 2014
Tanner Dome
john strand wrote:
Bird closures at Devil's head in July ???


no climbing areas are affected. that should be taken off this site.
dano72
From Colorado Springs, CO
Joined Jun 2, 2012
10 points
Mar 18, 2014
Living the High Life.
Bill Wa wrote:
There are 2 seasons in Colorado: Winter and July. July climbing is ok at Independence pass or at the Park.


Dumbest thing Smelenor has ever said, and that is reeeallly saying something.
Andy Novak
From Golden, Co
Joined Aug 22, 2007
322 points
Mar 18, 2014
Bill Wa wrote:
There are 2 seasons in Colorado: Winter and July. July climbing is ok at Independence pass or at the Park.


The ironic thing about this thread is that, despite the obvious idiocy of this statement and its notorious author, Ellenor has also managed to produce the best quality destination suggestion for July: Independence Pass. This would be a great place for you to go. Nice July temps, great scenery, some good camping options, and a good mix of sport and trad climbing for the grades that you're looking for. Although it is a bit farther from Denver, this would be a fantastic choice and would give you a great Colorado climbing experience. Definitely better than mucking around with our mediocre (and kind of hot in July) Front Range crags.

The one thing Indy Pass lacks is long multipitch routes. Estes/Lumpy/RMNP is the place to be for that. If you have enough time (like 10 days or somethings), you'd have a great trip by going to Indy Pass for some roadside sport and trad cragging, and then to spend the second half of the trip doing some multi-pitch routes in Lumpy/RMNP. It is best to do it in this order, since you'll acclimate at the high-elevation roadside climbing at Indy pass before having to do the big hikes in Lumpy/RMNP.

Notes on other areas suggested: Eldo, Clear Creek, and the South Platte will all be quite hot in July. Devil's Head would be a good choice, though, being higher elevation with lots of shade options; it is a nice place for mid-grade sport climbing on interesting chicken-head granite.
JCM
From Seattle, WA
Joined Jun 9, 2008
53 points
Mar 18, 2014
California weather is Soooo much better than Colorado. Here I am sitting in limbo gym climbing while I could be diving and j tree cragging...and making money...California is better than Colorado if you ask me. Maybe I just miss the Golden State...:( Bill Wa
Joined Mar 5, 2014
20 points
Mar 18, 2014
ducking ropes at Copper
Bill Wa wrote:
California weather is Soooo much better than Colorado. Here I am sitting in limbo gym climbing while I could be diving and j tree cragging...and making money...California is better than Colorado if you ask me. Maybe I just miss the Golden State...:(



If it wasn't for Californias anti-trolling laws maybe you would be allowed back.
ChefMattThaner
From Lakewood, co
Joined May 15, 2013
349 points
Mar 18, 2014
after the hard stuff, into cruiser hands.
Tony B wrote:
It's Elanor - go wash your hands.


Another name change?! Damnit I was gone for awhile… she got me again.

The only thing wrong with Colorado is all the Californians that moved here! :)
NickinCO
From colorado
Joined Sep 17, 2010
239 points
Mar 18, 2014
Got Milk? How about forearm pump? Tony leads "...
NickinCO wrote:
The only thing wrong with Colorado is all the Californians that moved here! :)

Really, just one of them. The rest are mostly OK.
Tony B
From Around Boulder, CO
Joined Jan 1, 2001
23,510 points
Administrator
Mar 18, 2014
tomato, tomotto, kill mike amato.
lumpy in july is usually brutal hot. nothing like grinding up slabby flared cracks that are broiling in the sun. uggh.

eldo is usually pretty hot also.

for sport near denver, devils head has great routes, higher elevtion (cooler tmeps), and you can find a bunch of shady corridors.

trad - the park or mount evans would probably be your best bet. vedauwoo is fairly close - you can chase shade and enjoy a western experience.
slim
Joined Dec 1, 2004
2,043 points
Mar 18, 2014
slim wrote:
lumpy in july is usually brutal hot. nothing like grinding up slabby flared cracks that are broiling in the sun. uggh.


Yeah, if you were to rotate Lumpy by 180 degrees such that it faced north, it would be a decent summer crag. As it is...high elevation but south facing is a somewhat difficult combination; it often seems like it is either windy/snowing/baltic or you are broiling in the sun.

No one else giving a good word for Independence Pass?
JCM
From Seattle, WA
Joined Jun 9, 2008
53 points
Mar 18, 2014
JCM wrote:
Yeah, if you were to rotate Lumpy by 180 degrees such that it faced north, it would be a decent summer crag. As it is...high elevation but south facing is a somewhat difficult combination; it often seems like it is either windy/snowing/baltic or you are broiling in the sun. No one else giving a good word for Independence Pass?

Camping is great at Independence Pass too. There are a bunch or "secret" cragging spots along the highway too. I had to use pliers to pull the info about it from the local guide. That's the areas they take clients and wanna keep it hush hush. It's ok. Nice bolted area. Good moderate trads too.
They don't know that ares that's why they don't say anything. I spent a summer in Vail while my boyfriend was on a job contract. That's how I know.
Bill Wa
Joined Mar 5, 2014
20 points
Mar 18, 2014
after the hard stuff, into cruiser hands.
JCM wrote:
Yeah, if you were to rotate Lumpy by 180 degrees such that it faced north, it would be a decent summer crag. As it is...high elevation but south facing is a somewhat difficult combination; it often seems like it is either windy/snowing/baltic or you are broiling in the sun.


Or all of the above in the time it takes to climb a few pitches ;)

Tony, I'm just kidding. It seems most people in Colorado are either from California, Texas, or the midwest… and Texans are worse than the west coast folks :)
NickinCO
From colorado
Joined Sep 17, 2010
239 points
Mar 18, 2014
Golden Gate SP has really good mid summer cragging that's high enough to stay bearably cool. Check Mt. Torodin or the Grendel. Only an hour or so from Denver. Rogerlarock
From Nedsterdam, Colorado
Joined Sep 22, 2008
23 points
Mar 19, 2014
Got Milk? How about forearm pump? Tony leads "...
What about Staunton? I have not been yet... Tony B
From Around Boulder, CO
Joined Jan 1, 2001
23,510 points


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