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Hell's Gate/ Hagerman Pass

Colorado > Leadville


Hell's Gate near Hagerman Pass is a stellar granite area offering both traditional and sport climbing. Situated between 9000' and 10000' feet, one may find splitter cracks, run out slabs, big boulders, and awe inspiring views of the frying pan drainage. While some tradsters may have visited for years, most of the climbing is less than five years old. Hell's gate itself, a massive granite outcrop, is located near the Nast tunnel which pulls water destined for the Pacific over the continental divide and into front range water taps. The Hagerman pass road was originally a railroad corridor carrying people and goods from Leadville to Basalt. Basalt is the nearsest town with amenities.

Getting There

Hagerman pass is located between Leadville and Basalt, south of the Holycross Wilderness area, north of Independence Pass. To reach from the Roaring Fork Valley drive north east from Basalt off of CO Hwy 82 along the Frying Pan Road, pass Ruedi Reservoir and Chapman Dam to where the pavement ends. Hell's Gate may be reached from below by taking a right which dead ends in about three miles at the gauging station, or taking a left on the clearly marked Hagerman Pass Road, which states "Hell's Gate 6 miles". The granite is fairly obvious right off the road in both cases, with the upper road because of switch backs taking you to a location approximately 700' above the lower dead-end road.

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Tracy Wilson finishing up the last pitch of Taliban Blues.
[Hide Photo] Tracy Wilson finishing up the last pitch of Taliban Blues.

Comments [Hide ALL Comments]

[Hide Comment] This area is pretty fun! Patrick here Bryan. Some nice hard short cracks and couple pitch slabs that have really cool movement. May 5, 2005
Jason Griffin
Estes Park, CO
[Hide Comment] Spent the last 2 weekends on the East side of the pass climbing, and wow what great granite. I have uploaded some pics of some new boulders not found in the 40 Minute from Leadville site. Jun 30, 2014