Elevation: 8,500 ft
GPS: 37.939, -107.816 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 4,722 total · 32/month
Shared By: Tristan Perry on Aug 21, 2007 with improvements by Gaea
Admins: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac
Access Issue: Open with restrictions - Private Property Details

Description

The Ames Wall is a seldom visited crag across the way from the Ophir Wall. The two share certain characteristics - adventure climbing, loose rock, scary situations, talus approach...but other than that they are really as different as two multipitch crags could be. Think of the two as heaven (Ophir) and hell (Ames). While Ophir is sunny, warm (you can climb rock there virtually any month of the year) and generally inviting, Ames has a dark and foreboding feel to it. It hides away year round in the shade, is cold, damp, and correspondingly mossy and vegetative. The rock type at Ophir is of mostly granitic composition (this is subject to debate), but the Ames Wall supposedly has three distinct layers, like a cake; from bottom to top it goes Dakota Sandstone, Rhyolite, and finally Mancos SHALE. For those of you who don't know rocks well, shale is generally avoided like the plague. To give an idea of how avoided this crag is, the most popular season is likely the winter...where people flock all season long to attempt one climb only: the all-time classic Ames Ice Hose. Nevertheless, several full-length, high-quality routes go up various sections of the wall. They seem to be few and far between. For those looking for a "different" experience...give it a shot!

Getting There

Drive south from Telluride on the Scenic highway until you descend a long hill into Ophir and Ames. Ames Wall stares right back at you on your right. At the bottom of the hill, turn right down a dirt road (heads up for falling rocks!) and go down for a few hundred yards until you take a SHARP left down to the historical Ames Power Plant. Park here and head up the trail, across a river (with a raging waterfall close by), and up a hill to the Galloping Goose Trail (a good running trail!). Mosey along this to the right and pick your route.

Per Gaea: folks are welcome to park in the Ames Power Plant parking lot, but please walk up the Forest Service road that leads behind the Power Plant and house. The Ames Power Plant has installed SIX new "no trespassing" and "no parking" signs this year, but I continue to have people walking through my yard (often waking me up at 5:00 am).

There area trails from the power plant to the house, but I maintain these for my personal use. PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE be more courteous! I want everyone to enjoy the ice falls, but please stop doing so at the expense of my privacy!

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