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Elevation: 5,793 ft
GPS: 39.1016, -108.7346
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Shared By: Ben Mottinger on Dec 31, 2000 · Updates
Admins: Jesse Zacher, Bradley Mark Edwards, Nick Reecy, Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac, Tyler KC

Description Suggest change

RAIN, WET ROCK: The sandstone in the Colorado National Monument is fragile and is very easily damaged when it is wet. Gear placement in wet sandstone also poses a safety concern. Please wait for the rock to dry prior to climbing.

The Monument is a fine area of desert climbing in Colorado. Just south of Grand Junction and Fruita, it offers many types of climbing found in Utah such as towers, splitter cracks, and soft Wingate & Entrada sandstone. The main attractions here are Independence Monument, a 400 foot tower; Sentinel Spire; and some other spires and pedestals. Some nice one-pitch routes line the canyon walls on the approach to Independence Monument. Look for many other multi-pitch routes around the entire park.

The best climbing season is fall through spring, as summers are generally too hot. Winters can be quite cold, but on a sunny day, you and the rock will warm up--Fruita is at a lower elevation than most of Colorado at about 4,500 feet, so it stays warmer because of that, too.

Camping is available along the Rim Rock drive within the park, but it is 20/site/night + park entry fee ($10, without a State Parks Pass, free with a pass) and includes a picnic table, grill, plus water and showers are available.

You may also camp just South of Fruita on CO Hwy 340 at the State Park area, which is $18/tent site + $7 park entry fee. If you want to go cheap, turn West at the Horsetooth Public Lands sign about a half mile South of I-70 and follow this road until it turns into BLM property. It's not the nicest area, but it's free.

Camping is also available in the North Fruita Desert BLM campground for $10/night in the campground (dispersed camping is free).

Another camping option is east of the park boundary in Rattlesnake Canyon or Black Ridge. From the Fruita entrance, go about 7 miles past the visitor center and take a right (east) at a Y in the road. Once you're outside of the park, camping is wide open and free.

Getting There Suggest change

To get to Fruita, take I-70 toward Grand Junction--Fruita is about 9mi. West of GJ. Exit I-70 South onto CO Hwy 340 and take this to the appropriate entrance depending on what rock you plan to climb.

208 Total Climbs

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Location: Colorado National Monument Change
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Classic Climbing Routes at Colorado National Monument

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 524
Otto's Route
Trad 5 pitches
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 44
Steppin' On it
Trad
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
 81
100' Hands
Trad
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
 18
Super Crack of the Monument
Trad
5.11- 6c 22 VIII- 22 E3 5c
 63
Long Dong Wall (aka Bell Tower)
Trad 5 pitches
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c C0
 36
Desert Solitaire
Trad, Aid 6 pitches
5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c
 6
Tom Stubbs Memorial Route - Terr…
Trad 4 pitches
5.11b/c 6c+ 23 VIII- 24 E4 6a
 5
99 Feet of Joy
Trad
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a C1
 15
Sundial Dihedral
Trad, Aid 6 pitches
5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a
 6
Soren Roof
Trad
5.11c/d 7a 24 VIII 25 E4 6a
 18
Never Cry Wolf
Trad
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a
 94
Medicine Man
Trad 4 pitches
5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a
 12
Osiris
Trad
5.12 7b+ 27 VIII+ 26 E6 6b
 14
Get A Life
Trad 5 pitches
5.12 7b+ 27 VIII+ 26 E6 6b
 17
Flapper
Trad
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Otto's Route Independence Monument
 524
5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Trad 5 pitches
Steppin' On it Liberty Cap
 44
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Trad
100' Hands Tiara Rado
 81
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Trad
Super Crack of the Monument Red Canyon > Supercrack Buttress
 18
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b Trad
Long Dong Wall (aka Bell To… Kissing Couple… > Kissing Couple
 63
5.11- 6c 22 VIII- 22 E3 5c Trad 5 pitches
Desert Solitaire Monument Canyon
 36
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c C0 Trad, Aid 6 pitches
Tom Stubbs Memorial Route -… Terra Tower But… > Terra Tower
 6
5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c Trad 4 pitches
99 Feet of Joy Ute Canyon > Fallen Rock Climbs
 5
5.11b/c 6c+ 23 VIII- 24 E4 6a Trad
Sundial Dihedral Independence Monument
 15
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a C1 Trad, Aid 6 pitches
Soren Roof Tiara Rado
 6
5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a Trad
Never Cry Wolf Liberty Cap
 18
5.11c/d 7a 24 VIII 25 E4 6a Trad
Medicine Man Sentinel Spire
 94
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a Trad 4 pitches
Osiris Liberty Cap
 12
5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a Trad
Get A Life Monument Canyon
 14
5.12 7b+ 27 VIII+ 26 E6 6b Trad 5 pitches
Flapper Tiara Rado
 17
5.12 7b+ 27 VIII+ 26 E6 6b Trad
More Classic Climbs in Colorado National Monument »

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