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Areas in WM: Cliff Drive

Big and Small Crack Areas 2 / 6 / 7 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 9
Book, The 2 / 6 / 2 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 8
Cliff Drive's Backside 2 / 0 / 0 / 4 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 6
Overhang, The 2 / 9 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 11

Description

Climbing can be found almost in the heart of Kansas City? Too good to be true? Nope, it's there!

Along an old scenic byway, right off the road, limestone can be found. The area is shady, in more ways than one, but it seems to be improving. The rock tends to be smooth, forcing harder grips and improved foot technique. Perfect for training.

Summer can be hot and buggy and winter can be cold.

Getting There

From I-70, head north on Paseo. After some stoplights, the road splits. Left goes to I-29 and right becomes Cliff Drive. Follow this around a right curve and head through the gates. Veer left at the split. The cliffs are encountered on the right just before the sharp right curve.

Park across from the cliffs at one of the small pulloffs.

34 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at WM: Cliff Drive

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
V1 5
 3
Hawt Pockets
Boulder
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
 12
The Big Crack
Trad, TR
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
 7
Across the Choss
Sport
5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 21
Lefty
Sport
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 24
Chomping the Bit
Sport
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b PG13
 4
Blimp
Sport
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
 8
Malarious
Sport
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c X
 8
Tatoo
Trad
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
 4
Under Fire
Sport
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a
 6
Bovine Direct
Sport
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a
 13
Malaria
Sport
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a
 4
The Bolt Route
Sport
5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b
 3
Subtle Caress
Sport
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Hawt Pockets Cliff Drive's B… > Highball Wall
 3
V1 5 Boulder
The Big Crack Big and Small Crack A…
 12
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b Trad, TR
Across the Choss Big and Small Crack A…
 7
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b Sport
Lefty Big and Small Crack A…
 21
5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Sport
Chomping the Bit Overhang
 24
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Sport
Blimp Book
 4
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b PG13 Sport
Malarious Overhang
 8
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c Sport
Tatoo Overhang
 8
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c X Trad
Under Fire Book
 4
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c Sport
Bovine Direct Overhang
 6
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a Sport
Malaria Overhang
 13
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a Sport
The Bolt Route Overhang
 4
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a Sport
Subtle Caress Overhang
 3
5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b Sport
More Classic Climbs in WM: Cliff Drive »

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The Cliff Drive area is in the nice part of the Northeast neighborhood of KCMO. Usually stays pretty quiet (unlike about eight blocks south). Stay alert, but don't be a worry-wort. Sep 24, 2009
trisgo
Omaha, NE (at the moment)
trisgo   Omaha, NE (at the moment)
I just got back from a KC trip and figured I'd post. First off, I wish someone would have told me that Cliff Drive is closed to vehicles on the weekend. After reading the comments about crime in the area, I wasn't keen on leaving my vehicle sitting somewhere. The whole time while climbing, I was worried I'd come back to find my windows broken out. I was surprised to find the park filled with friendly people riding their bikes, jogging, walking their dogs. I talked to a few people and they said the park isn't as prone to crime as it once had been. The area is small, but the pro to that is that it's not over crowded (I was there on a weekend). The climbing was nice. Some loose, flaky rock, but tis the midwest. Being from Omaha, I really can't complain about ANY rock. It's a nice little spot (minus all the trash up above) if you're in the area, but I wouldn't drive cross country to get there. Maybe spend the weekend; one day at Ibex, one day at Cliff Drive? I look forward to going back (when the road's open). Mar 31, 2013
This place isn't good. The rock is caked in dirt, and is unstable. I blew an entire hold off the wall. I climbed two routes and decided to make my way to Ibex instead, which is only 20 min from this spot. Jan 20, 2014
Ryan Surface
Kansas City
Ryan Surface   Kansas City
The quality climbing(least chossy) at Cliff Drive is in the 5.11/5.12- range at the "Overhang" area. It is definitely worthwhile if you live in the area. May 12, 2014
Dakota from North Dakota   Golden, CO
Travis- Don't bother climbing anywhere in Missouri (or on most limestone) if blowing "an entire hold" off is too much for you to handle. Apr 29, 2015
RjBass  
Having any place in such a metro setting to climb seems pretty cool to me even if the rock is a bit flaky. Nice thing to know though is that ROKC (new climbing gym) is just 10 minutes away on the other side of the river. So if you are in town and this rock doesn't do it for you, just take a very short drive into North Kansas City and get your fix there. If you really need the rocks to climb in Missouri, Climbing Magazine put out a nice article with some of the best spots in the state. Check it out climbing.com/places/missour… Apr 11, 2016
BryanSchillig
Kansas City, MO
BryanSchillig   Kansas City, MO
I've been climbing at Cliff Drive for several years, and having this place so close to a city metro is an absolute gem. I've gotten great workouts at this crag and have even leveraged it for big wall practice. The crag has a well developed and maintained retaining wall and trails built by several members of the climbing community. This crag is located in a beautiful park with mountain biking, frisbee golf, running, road biking, etc...

As far as the rock quality goes, Yes, it's somewhat chossy limestone. That said, I've holds blow on me everywhere I've climbed. I've even had a plastic hold blow on me at a climbing gym, as well as holds spin at every gym I've climbed at. EVEN at my own HOME!! The Point is - Climb Smart. Pull down not out. Wear your brain bucket. Double check your stuff. Aug 2, 2016

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