Elevation: 7,176 ft
GPS: 39.232, -107.229 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 70,497 total · 345/month
Shared By: Pinklebear on Dec 4, 2003
Admins: Alvaro Arnal, Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac, Tyler KC

Description

The Narrows is a loose, scruffy area close to Carbondale, Colorado, that, for us Rifle burn-outs, has become a sort of sanctuary. Though your overall impression of the stone whilst whipping past at 70 mph on your way to the Redstone boulders will be less than stellar, the climbing itself is good, and takes place on walls invisible from the highway.

The rock is a fractured sort of granite, grey-green in hue, with black streaks coursing down the slabbier walls. The cliffs themselves are not unlike a multi-faceted sea wall holding back an ocean of scree. Ironically, however, the scree is produced by the decomposing sea wall itself. It is prone, in certain "high-danger" spots, to sloughing off great chunks, daggers and grey-green cobble-eggs that could certainly deflower even the sturdiest of climbing helmets, and the contents therein. Fortunately, for us, we need only walk under these heinous sectors of wall to reach the good, water-polished stone that has yielded all of this year's new routes.

That said, however, there is some great after-work-type climbing here: one-pitch sport and trad routes from 5.8+ to 5.13c. It is also a great area in the summer, as it's very shady and always breezy, especially in the depths of the Narrows Proper.

Getting There

From Carbondale, drive south on CO Highway 133 as if you were driving toward Marble, McClure Pass, etc. CO 133 is the only highway through Carbonale ... it's not hard to miss. If you're coming from other parts on CO Highway 82, take a left (or right) at the stoplight at the junctions of CO Highways 82 and 133. Now proceed south on CO Highway 133.

I don't have exact mileage, but the deal is this: If you get to Redstone (15 miles from Carbondale?), you've gone too far. The beta is this: Driving south on CO 133, you'll first pass through an area of red rocks and sand, big ol' Mount Sopris looming high on your left. After a bit, however, the canyon begins to narrow, and you'll see a band of shattered whitish rock coming up fast, limning the two sides of the canyon. This is the Narrows, basically knows as such because it's also the narrowest point in the canyon. Drive slowly past the rocks and, just before the cliffs on your right peter out, locate a HUGE, I mean HUGE, parking lot on the left. This is the parking lot for the free hot springs. I've never been down in the springs, but there's them that have. Not for me. I just park and get my climbing stuff and get gone.

Walk back down-canyon (north), hugging the guard rail or, for safety, walking in the bushes behind it, for roughly 50 yards, until the roadcut to your left (esentially the west side of the highway) goes from vertical to the slabby and you spot a cairned, convenient ingress. The trail here is a bit raw, but basically follows the "old game track" up the hill as it switches-back, bringing you ever closer to the rocks, which will be on your right. After about 20 minutes of this, you'll reach a fork, hard at the toe of an appealing red-and-brown buttres. Head up and left to reach BJ's area (5.8 sport, 5.10+ sport, 5.11 sport). Otherwise head right to reach the Narrows Proper, a deep, shadowy slot offering bouldering traverses, sport routes (5.11a, 5.13b) and trad pitches (5.8+, 5.10a, 5.10+, 5.13c) on nearly bomber water-polished rock.

61 Total Climbs

Route Finder - Best Climbs for YOU!

Location: The Narrows Change
Type:  to 
Quality:
Pitches:
Sort by:   then:
 

Classic Climbing Routes at The Narrows

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 13
People's Crack
Trad
5.9- 5c 17 VI 16 HVS 4c
 40
Been Caught Stealin'
Trad
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 24
Jenga Buttress Crack aka 10a Crack
Trad
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 19
Choss Warfare
Sport
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
 36
Party At Your Mama's House
Sport
5.10c/d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b
 5
El Guapo
Sport
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b
 4
Fasting on Ramadan Direct
Sport
5.11- 6c 22 VIII+ 22 E3 5c
 13
Cleanup Hitter
Sport
5.11- 6c 22 VIII+ 22 E3 5c
 14
Back From The Dead
Sport
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c
 13
Punchin' The Clock
Sport
5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c
 8
The Village Idiot
Trad, Sport
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a
 9
Pump-a-Lama
Sport
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a
 3
Deep Eddy
Sport
5.12b/c 7b+ 27 IX- 27 E6 6b
 4
Huge-a-thon
Sport
5.13a 7c+ 29 IX+ 29 E6 6c
 7
Red Faction
Sport
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
People's Crack Narrows Proper
 13
5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Trad
Been Caught Stealin' Schoolyard
 40
5.9- 5c 17 VI 16 HVS 4c Trad
Jenga Buttress Crack aka 1… Narrows Proper
 24
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Trad
Choss Warfare Front Porch
 19
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Sport
Party At Your Mama's House Front Porch
 36
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b Sport
El Guapo Watchtower
 5
5.10c/d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b Sport
Fasting on Ramadan Direct Gash > Left Side
 4
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b Sport
Cleanup Hitter Front Porch
 13
5.11- 6c 22 VIII+ 22 E3 5c Sport
Back From The Dead Front Porch
 14
5.11- 6c 22 VIII+ 22 E3 5c Sport
Punchin' The Clock Front Porch
 13
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c Sport
The Village Idiot Narrows Proper
 8
5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c Trad, Sport
Pump-a-Lama Gash > Trifle Wall
 9
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a Sport
Deep Eddy Narrows Proper
 3
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a Sport
Huge-a-thon Gash > Trifle Wall
 4
5.12b/c 7b+ 27 IX- 27 E6 6b Sport
Red Faction Narrows Proper
 7
5.13a 7c+ 29 IX+ 29 E6 6c Sport
More Classic Climbs in The Narrows »

Weather Averages

High
 
Low
 
Precip
 
Days w Precip
 
Prime Climbing Season
J F M A M J J A S O N D
J F M A M J J A S O N D

Photos