|GPS:||38.839, -106.133 Google Map · Climbing Area Map|
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The Buena Vista (locally pronounced, 'Bew-na Vista') area contains a number of different crags ranging from 40 to 500 feet. With the exception of Holy Water, most of the climbs are in the low, semi-arid mountains on the East side of the Arkansas River Valley. The views of the 14,000' Sawatch Range are phenomenal on just about every route in the valley. The valley has typical Colorado mountain weather in the summer. You'll experience the typical afternoon thunderstorms that roll off the high peaks and across the valley. You can often look up and down the valley and spot isolated thunderstorms and climb around them. If you get a southern or central valley storm, head up north to the Bob's Rock area. Don't make this storm dodging a standard practice!
There is fairly solid rock throughout the valley, especially at the developed crags. Also great year round bouldering is found all throughout the valley. Routes range from 5.5 to 5.13, and boulder problems range from v0-v11. The majority of the routes in the valley are bolted face routes, while some good traditional routes do exist. Although many of the routes in the valley are bolted, one would be wise to carry some traditional gear to supplement. A few toprope options are available at Bob's Rock.
Camping abounds to the northeast of town near Turtle Rock and Split Rock and is free. There is also camping in the National Forest west of town in the Collegiate Peaks Wilderness. The guidebook is available at The Trailhead outdoor shop located on Main Street, and contains local beta for many of the climbs in the valley. You can get just about anything you need in Buena Vista, and if not there's a Walmart in Salida, about 20 miles south of Buena Vista.
Another treat are the two main hot springs near town, Mt. Princeton Hot Springs off of Mt. Princeton Rd. a few miles south of town, and Cottonwood Hot Springs about 5 miles west on Main Street. Showers can be had near the public river put-in immediately east of downtown BV. In the summer, the valley becomes a whitewater mecca. There are many fine outfitters in town if you want to spend some time in the river.
Ice climbing can be found here.
From Denver: Take US Hwy. 285 for 3 hours west from C-470 past Fairplay to Antero Junction where US Hwy. 285 and US Hwy 24 will join. Continue on what is now US Hwy 285/24 until your reach Johnson Village. Proceed to the T-Stop and turn right onto US Hwy 24. Take US 24 about 2 miles into BV.
From Colorado Springs: Take US Hwy 24 (Cimmarron) west out of downtown. Stay on US 24 until you reach Antero Junction, where US Hwy 285 and US Hwy 24 join. Turn left on what is now US 285/24 and take it over Trout Creek Pass to Johnson Village. Just after Johnson Village turn right and follow 2 miles to Buena Vista.
The most up-to-date guidebook is 40 Minutes from Leadville Vol 2. Full color and very comprehensive. Available in the link below or in your local shop.
There is another guidebook by Tom Perkins called Arkansas Valley Climbs. Available online or at your local shop.
The Trailhead has a comprehensive shop, local beta, and an awesome bakery/frozen yogurt/pop-up pizza/restaurant in the same building.
Check them out at 402 E. MAIN STREET www.thetrailheadco.com
If you are coming from the Leadville side & need coffee, bakery goods, or wifi, there are no shortages of cafes in town.
Hit up Brown Dog Coffee, The Trailhead, or Buena Vista Roastery.
For your post send pub and grub needs swing by Eddyline Brewery. Also Deerhammer Distillery usually has a burger truck outside (The Buena Viking).
RIP The Provin' Grounds Coffee Shop.
The Arkansas Valley Climber's Coalition (AVCC) is the local climbing advocacy group and is an affiliate of The Access Fund”.
They are a very knowledgeable resource and an excellent outlet for crag cleanup days, partner finder, etc.
For those on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ArkansasValleyClimbers
Bats - conservation
See a bat on a route, give a shout. Climbers for Bat Conservation is working with climbers to understand bat ecology and why bats choose certain cracks and flakes. If you see bats, and want to tell them, here is their email (email@example.com) and their website (climbersforbats.colostate.edu/).
Climbers for Bat Conservation is a collaboration between climbers, bat biologists, and land managers to understand where bats roost and where large populations may reside. They are interested in finding bats because a new disease, called white-nose syndrome (whitenosesyndrome.org/), has killed millions of bats in North America. This collaboration has identified bat roosts throughout the U.S., and as far away as Norway and Bulgaria. CBC was developed by biologists who climb and they are advocates for climbing access and bat conservation. If you see bats while climbing, please let them know by emailing them at firstname.lastname@example.org, or visiting their website to learn more (climbersforbats.colostate.edu/).
Zoologist, Colorado Natural Heritage Program (sites.warnercnr.colostate.e…)
Director, Climbers for Bat Conservation
Classic Climbing Routes at Buena Vista
Days w Precip