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Routes in Sundance Buttress

Adrenaline T 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a R
Banana Peels T 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
Betwixt'em T 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
Bonzo T 5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
Bushes T 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
Cajun Capers T 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b R
Chain of Command T,S 5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
Covert Action T 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
Curve Grande T 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b C1
English Opening T 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
Eumenides T 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
Firebird 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a C2
First Lady T 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b PG13
Grapevine T 5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
Great Roof Bypass T 5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
Guillotine, The T 5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
Hemp Necktie T 5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
Hurley-Neri T 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
Idiot Wind T 5.10b/c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
Jet Stream T 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b R
Kor's Flake T 5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
Last Gasp T 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b
Laura Scudders T 5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b R
Mainliner T 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
Mr. President T 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b
Nose, The T 5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
Precipitation T 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a C2
Progression T 5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
Redman T 5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a
Sidetrack T 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
Slim Pickens T 5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
Turnkorner T 5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
Turnkorner Direct T 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b R
Under The Sundress T 5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c
Under the Big Top 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
Upside Down Race Car Kitty T 5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a PG13
Whiteman T 5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a

Description

Nearly 1000 feet high, the best cliff (along with the Book) at Lumpy Ridge, but because of the long approach it sees relatively little traffic. Classics of all grades and types of climbing, including Kor's Flake (5.7), Mainliner (5.9), Turnkorner (5.10a), and Whiteman (5.11). To descend from all but the west-most routes, scramble along the top to a steep fourth-class gully that leads NE. The gully begins at the saddle between the Turnkorner Buttress (the steep, rounded section of cliff most visible on the approach) and the Guillotine Wall, an immense section of cliff which is not visible for most of the approach, but which can be seen clearly divided from the Turnkorner Buttress by a prominent chimney system when one stands in front of the rock. Downclimb the gully very carefully, or make several rappels from trees. Then follow the steep, brushy hillside (really a larger gully) around to the base of the rock.
Sundance Buttress is seasonally closed for raptor nesting. Click for details. Details
Season raptor closures Details

Getting There

Sundance is the western most formation on the ridge; hike west from the new parking lot ~0.6 miles to the Black Canyon trail from the old Twins Owls parking lot past the Book turnoff, through the cow fence, into the woods, and then keep a sharp lookout for a cairn marking the approach path on the right side of the trail (there is no sign). If you miss it, you'll be faced with a nauseating bushwhack straight uphill. Expect 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 hours.

37 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at Sundance Buttress

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
Kor's Flake
Trad 6 pitches
5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
Grapevine
Trad 6 pitches
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
Mainliner
Trad 5 pitches
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
Sidetrack
Trad 6 pitches
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
Betwixt'em
Trad 5 pitches
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
Turnkorner
Trad 7 pitches
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
Slim Pickens
Trad 6 pitches
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
The Nose
Trad 7 pitches
5.10b/c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
Idiot Wind
Trad 7 pitches
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
The Guillotine
Trad 5 pitches
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
Progression
Trad 5 pitches
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
Bonzo
Trad
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b
Mr. President
Trad 2 pitches
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
Chain of Command
Trad, Sport
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a
Whiteman
Trad 2 pitches
Kor's Flake 5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b Trad 6 pitches
Grapevine 5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Trad 6 pitches
Mainliner 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Trad 5 pitches
Sidetrack 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Trad 6 pitches
Betwixt'em 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Trad 5 pitches
Turnkorner 5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Trad 7 pitches
Slim Pickens 5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Trad 6 pitches
The Nose 5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Trad 7 pitches
Idiot Wind 5.10b/c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b Trad 7 pitches
The Guillotine 5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b Trad 5 pitches
Progression 5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b Trad 5 pitches
Bonzo 5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b Trad
Mr. President 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b Trad 2 pitches
Chain of Command 5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c Trad, Sport
Whiteman 5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a Trad 2 pitches
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J F M A M J J A S O N D
J F M A M J J A S O N D
I'd be keen to help find the bolt placements and help with the replacement of Bosch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. If you Estes crew decide to get together some monkeys with hand drills, let me know. Likely the best multi-pitch sport climb in the Front Range.... May 11, 2012
jason seaver
Estes Park, CO
jason seaver   Estes Park, CO
Yeah, we thought it would be obvious where the bolts had been too... but it's not. Getting Topher involved sounds like the ticket.... Apr 7, 2012
I think I got the second or third or fourth ascent of this great line right after a 16 year old Topher legally drilled this on lead. It is a great line that was chopped by some idiot. I am all for rebolting this incredible rock climb. Look for natural stances, the idiot who chopped this used a crowbar and ripped out big chunks of rock, so it should be fairly obvious were the bolts were.
I would be glad to come up and do a little Fred Flinstone action to get this climb revived. If you have any ?, just ask Topher, he will tell ya were those bolt were. Apr 2, 2012
jason seaver
Estes Park, CO
jason seaver   Estes Park, CO
Hey Eli, I was wondering if you were ever on Bosch Cassidy while the bolts were still in. I never was, but I spent a little time toproping on it and became convinced it should be ressurected. Nate and I replaced 2 or 3 bolts around 2005. One around the middle of pitch 1 and 1 or 2 towards the top. We had a hard time finding where the old bolts had been though. Just curious if you may have additional knowledge of their previous locations. We should get that thing reequipped this summer. Stellar climbing. Mar 4, 2012
Guy H.
Fort Collins CO
Guy H.   Fort Collins CO
Thanks for replacing the bolts, Eli. Right now, the bottom half is pretty well-protected for Lumpy. There is a ~30ft runout to the last bolt on slabby ~5.9. The 2nd pitch looks very cool! Jul 1, 2011
Eli Helmuth
Ciales, PR
Eli Helmuth   Ciales, PR
JS said: "The line left of Guillotine is Bosch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid. Most of the bolts are missing. It's possible to toprope the first pitch off the chain anchors left of Guillotine 160-170 feet up. Topher D established the route, placing the bolts on lead, but someone was apparently threatened by its existence and chopped it."

FYI - in 2001 I started replacing these bolts (smashed hangers) by hand drilling and I think Mike Caldwell replaced some of the anchors? I never finished the project, but it would be great to see this masterpiece returned back to its original state. Jul 1, 2011
Eli Helmuth
Ciales, PR
Eli Helmuth   Ciales, PR
Good luck finding solid RPs on the main pitch/seam of Cirque de Soleil?
A few bolts past the anchor into the seam - I couldn't find anything that would hold and ended up punching it to the bolts.

When I asked Mike Caldwell about it later, he mentioned getting in a slider nut and 1 offset. We talked about adding some bolts at that time, as w/out sliders it makes a sewn-up climb (bolted/good gear) pretty solid "R" rating?

Let me know if I am missing something on the gear on that second (crux) pitch. I was psyched to onsight it soon after the FA. Jul 1, 2011
Q B
Estes Park
Q B   Estes Park
Thanks, J! Yea, I talked to Doobies about the RP needs! See you out there!!! Jun 30, 2011
jason seaver
Estes Park, CO
jason seaver   Estes Park, CO
That's Cirque de Soleil - 5.12, by Mike Caldwell I believe. Don't let the bolts fool you; bring a shitload of RPs. Jun 27, 2011
Q B
Estes Park
Q B   Estes Park
Any one know what the bolted line RIGHT of the Guillotine is? At least two pitches off the ground with well-spaced bolts/some gear.
Thanks Jun 26, 2011
flynn  
The trail to Sundance, and the climbers' descent route (can't call it a trail) in that godawful gully, were the projects for the Access Fund's Adopt-A-Crag Day this October. Fifty-some logs and eighty-some rock steps went in, along with some long-needed "barbering" of the brush in the gully. Should be a lot better.

If you're a first-time visitor to Sundance, be advised that there's now a sign to direct you in lieu of the old cairn. It's actually been there for several years now.

Have fun! Nov 18, 2009
jason seaver
Estes Park, CO
jason seaver   Estes Park, CO
The line left of Guillotine is Bosch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid. Most of the bolts are missing. It's possible to toprope the first pitch off the chain anchors left of Guillotine 160-170 feet up.Topher D established the route, placing the bolts on lead, but someone was apparently threatened by its existence and chopped it. Jun 13, 2005
Descent info:

An easy descent if climbing anything from Grapevine and to the left: walk easily to the summit of Sundance and go to the east, drop down slabs between opposing corners for maybe 50 feet and spot a rappel from a tree to the climber's left. Rap 100 feet to the ground, then downclimb a short 10' wall to the trail. Follow trail until it peters out in a boulder field. Boulder hop for a ways and pick up trail again, following it until it wraps around the bottom of Sundance and meets up with the approach trail. Jul 19, 2004
There is not a pebble at Lumpy Ridge not worth climbing. The rock is superb, especially the Sundance Buttress. A mostly flat trail through a beautiful valley to some of the biggest rocks and highest quality granite in the state might be too much if one is accustomed to pulling plastic. Some climbers climb for the absolute love of it. Some climbers climb because they think it makes them look cool. Lumpy is for the former.

Headlamps are useful if you ever have to come down in the dark. Apr 29, 2002

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