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Areas in Friendship Boulders

Fellowship Boulder 0 / 0 / 0 / 3 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 3
Friendship Boulder 0 / 0 / 0 / 6 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 6
Humiliation Boulder 0 / 0 / 0 / 1 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 1
Overbite Boulder 0 / 0 / 0 / 2 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 2
Smuggler's Cove 0 / 0 / 0 / 1 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 1
Elevation: 8,028 ft
GPS: 40.343, -105.579 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 7,261 total · 135/month
Shared By: seth schrader on May 17, 2014
Admins: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac
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Access Issue: On YMCA Property, access is questionable if not an employee or accompanied by one. Details


This gets a ton of sun in the afternoons and evenings, but the rocks stay pretty cool throughout the whole day. There are tons of pine trees and really cool rock formations here, even if you those that have no climbs on them. There are cabins situated pretty close to the boulders, particularly Friendship and Fellowship, so be courteous please. The rock is all granite, is still super sharp, and is not greased up at all. The falls aren't good on a few of the boulders, so bring at least 3 pads if you're planning on climbing on them.

If you know of any of the individuals that got the first accents on these rocks or any other boulders that you have climbed, feel free to edit and add anything!

Getting There

Drive up the YMCA main entrance. Make the 4th right, drive straight down, pass the Jellison Lodge, and go straight to Friendship Cabin. Park in the lot, and the rocks are less than 20 meters away.

13 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at Friendship Boulders

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
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Patrick Vernon
Estes Park, CO
Patrick Vernon   Estes Park, CO
Ahh the Friendship Boulders! I started climbing here 20 years ago, stealing my dad's board lasted shoes to play around on these boulders when I was a teen. Don't take this the wrong way Seth, but none of these are first ascents. The first ascent info for most of this stuff is lost to obscurity. Some of the harder problems in this area, such as the one off to the right of the nature trail behind Friendship Boulder starting on two crimps with no feet were done by Jim Belcer back in 2000 (he rated it V6). Every five years or so some strong climbers working at the Y claim it as a FA and rename it. Another one that seasonal workers at the Y eventually find and sometimes claim as an FA is the chossy, dyno problem downhill and skier's left from the zipline in Smuggler's Cove. Amazing movement on total choss. This one has gotten harder over the years but has been done countless times.

There are some really good problems here. The hardest thing we put up was a ridiculously hard, thin slab on a small dome near Fellowship Bboulder. Originally rated V7 but probably in the V8 range now as holds have broken. I spent countless hours here as a kid trying different variations before anyone would tie into a rope with me. If you want to have an adventure sniffing out an FA, head up the side of Emerald Mountain facing the Y. On the left about half to 2/3 of the way up is a large cave with a 30 foot roof. The rock is a little chossy, but there might be a decent problem on this feature. May 19, 2014
Andy Novak
Golden, Co
Andy Novak   Golden, Co
Like for Patrick, these boulders have a special place in my heart. We used to spend countless fall afternoons playing and learning here, grabbing some atrocious food from the dining hall, then returning and climbing by headlamp. Just make sure to keep things very low key (no music, large groups, smoking, etc.), or the Y will take notice. I'm glad that my favorite boulders are not listed and still hidden from the masses. Sorry, but most/all of these routes are overgraded. Jul 25, 2014

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