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Routes in Little Eiger

"Is Our Children Learning?" S 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a
Abney 74 V4-5 6B+
Animaniac, The V7 7A+
Black Haul T,TR 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
Black Hole T 5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c
Bonehead S 5.10c/d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b
Busch Gardens S 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
Bush Administration S 5.10b/c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
Closet Climber V5-6 6C+
Conehead S 5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c
DeCappitator, The S 5.13a 7c+ 29 IX+ 29 E6 6c
Decider, The S 5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b
Delusions of Grandeur S 5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b
Disembowler, The V6-7 7A+
Eiffel Tower S 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b
Eiger Direct S 5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a
Eiger Sanction S 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b
Fire Face (Project) V11 8A PG13
Fire in the Sky V8 7B
First Impressions S 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a
Footloose S 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
Free Up The Weed S 5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
Green Zone, The S 5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
Headline T,S 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
Herbal Essence S 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
Ice Princess, The V5- 6C
Misunderestimate S 5.10b/c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
Naked Hedge, The S 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
Natural Selection S 5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c
Nordwand, The S 5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c
Persistent Vegetative State S 5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b
Radometer in the Red Zone S 5.11b/c 6c+ 23 VIII- 24 E4 6a
Smoke on the Water V7+ 7A+ PG13
Tierra Del Fuego S 5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c
Tierra Del Fuego (extension) S 5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a
Too! S 5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b
Trouthead S 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b
Truly Scrumptious aka The Animal V10 7C+
Tsunami Of Charisma S 5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c
Unknown TR 5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
Unsorted Routes:
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Type: Trad, Sport, 80 ft
FA: Ken Trout, 1988
Page Views: 7,389 total · 37/month
Shared By: Bryson Slothower on Jun 25, 2002
Admins: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac

You & This Route

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Access Issue: Seasonal Raptor Closures Details


Headline starts on the left side of the crag just right of Bonehead and Conehead and cuts up and left for about 80 feet to the anchor atop Conehead. There is a bolt down low that protects a tricky move getting off the ground (10a). Once you enter the crack it never exceeds 5.9 and the gear is very solid.

The crack stays thin with good finger locks the entire way except near the top where it is easiest to lieback. It is possible to clip a bolt on Conehead where the crack widens. This is a nice way to add a little variety to the regular bolt clipping that goes on at Little Eiger.


Now fully bolted with 6 bolts. To lead on gear, bring small cams and wires, nothing bigger than a #0.75 Camalot. Now has its own 2 bolt anchor with links/chains (formerly 2 hook anchor).


Guy H.
Fort Collins CO
Guy H.   Fort Collins CO
It appears someone has bolted this fine gear route put up by Ken Trout in the late '80s. There are bolts that are inches away from a bomber crack. If you want to lead this route in the orginal style, bring a handful of TCUs to a #0.75 Camalot, and place bomber gear right next to these shiny bolts. Is this the next Sports Park? May 5, 2003
Perhaps Mr. Trout added the bolts. If so, is it still lame? May 5, 2003
The bolt is for Conehead but can be clipped from Headline. Conehead is just one of the many good routes Alan Nelson has put up in the canyon and I for one am thankful to him. May 6, 2003
Guy H.
Fort Collins CO
Guy H.   Fort Collins CO
I agree that Conehead (5.11b) is a fine route, which I climbed for the first time last weekend. Now, there is also a second line of bolts to the right of Conehead that follows Headline, which is a bomber crack. The original bolt that Ken placed for the beginning of Headline is to the right of this new bolt line. This lone bolt is now the start of a new route which is between Eiger Sanction and the bolt line on Headline.

I am guessing you have not been up there in a while. May 6, 2003
Yeah, it's been a while, the route must have gone in since I was up there.... I'll go check it out for myself. May 6, 2003
I went up and climbed Headline again today and you are right Guy, the three upper bolts on the new route between Conehead and Headline seem rather unneeded. The first three bolts make for a good direct start to the crack however. May 7, 2003
Guy H.
Fort Collins CO
Guy H.   Fort Collins CO
Bryson, the picture that you posted shows someone climbing the start of Headline and finishing on Conehead. The first bolt that is clipped in the picture is one of the new ones on Headline. If you cross your eyes just right, you can see two more unclipped bolts above this one that are within a foot or two of the crack. May 8, 2003
There is a route between Conehead and Headline now.... May 8, 2003
P.S. Guy, that action photo is a bit of a joke, I have gear clipped on four "different" routes... May 8, 2003
Darren Mabe
Flagstaff, AZ
Darren Mabe   Flagstaff, AZ
What the hell happened to this area? There are bolts everywhere near Conehead, Headline etc... Someone added every other bolt on one of the .10s also. I think at one point you could clip 4 or 5 bolts in 15 feet. What gives? May 29, 2003
Guy H.
Fort Collins CO
Guy H.   Fort Collins CO
AC, if you feel that you did nothing wrong, why did you not include your name?

I am glad that you made this crag safe for everyone. By adding bolts to the crack climb Headline and 6 bolts to the previously good climb Eiger Sanction, maybe this crag can make the top 5 list next year.

On a serious note, most climbers like myself enjoy the hard labors of the people who put up routes in the canyon. Please don't ruin this great climbing resource by bolting crack climbs and placing bolts 2-3 feet apart on 5.10s. Aug 17, 2003
Tony B
Around Boulder, CO
Tony B   Around Boulder, CO
3 bolts from the "nearby" route are within 18" of the crack on Headline, and in fact cross it at the top, meaning one bolt on either side of the top end of the crack. That's just plain wrong. Where's the crow-bar?
I don't see this as one of the 'top 5 worst crags' but this section of the wall sure qualifies as one of the worst sections of rock/botched bolting. Excepting the Sport Park, it's the worst job I've encountered to date. Aug 18, 2003
Ken Trout
Golden, CO
Ken Trout   Golden, CO
January, 2008: Sorry it took so long to get my AC comments erased. Thanks for the help getting access Leo!

For me Headline is best as a bolted crack because it is one of the few climbs my wife will lead at Little Eiger. We just don't carry gear in Clear Creek.

We do occasionally see young climbers do the crack as a gear lead, without the old-style crying about bolts. It's new thinking; sport and gear climbs coexisting. Now they've got me thinking...Mrs. Hen on natural gear?

Aug 18, 2003
Tony B
Around Boulder, CO
Tony B   Around Boulder, CO
I lead Headline on all trad gear. Peter Spindloe did the route after me. His wife, Joanne and then Chris Parks came next. The only complaints I heard about this "sucking" trad style of ascent was that the bolts on it didn't belong. Aug 19, 2003
Hey AC from - or should I say Ken Trout?

It's obvious from your style of writing when you compare it to the rantings about bolting on the South Face of the Maiden that you are one in the same. Aug 19, 2003
Matt Juth
Matt Juth   Evergreen
I'm a little confused about the use of A.C. as a new form of war protest. Political debates on climbingboulder make for lousy route beta. Sep 8, 2003
Jay Samuelson
Denver CO
Jay Samuelson   Denver CO
Climbed this route yesterday (11/07/06) on gear, highly recommend skipping the bolts. You can even skip the first one if you brought a couple micro-nuts with you, but whatever style you choose to climb, have fun. Nov 8, 2006
Jon Zucco
Denver, CO
Jon Zucco   Denver, CO
Sick climb. Good finger crack route for trad-impaired. Thanks for the bolts, I swear I'll buy some more pro next pay check. Aug 15, 2008
*** for the climbing, and a huge thumbs down for the bolted crack. May 4, 2009
Top Rope Hero
Was Estes Park, now homeless
Top Rope Hero   Was Estes Park, now homeless
TROUT: We do occasionally see young climbers do the crack as a gear lead, without the old-style crying about bolts. It's new thinking; sport and gear climbs coexisting.

ELVIS PRESLEY: Now Adam and Evil, they go hand in hand/ Eve taught him sin, that's the way it all began.

Another online round of pride and prejudice about another (shamefully!) bolted crack. I always wonder, at these moments, if the nay-sayer set would care to spare us the drama and just start chopping.

Regardless, I’m no spring chicken; at 40, I don’t think I qualify for Trout’s “young climber.” But I first happily sent this as a sport route, then came back and as happily sent it trad. No complaints, no worries. And I’d climb it again, either way (though I would, personally, prefer to send it trad, again).

If I’m offended by a bolt, I. Just. Skip it. (Here is a not-so-random question: Why is it OK to pound in multi-point anchor chains, but not an occasional bolt?) Luckily, I’m not so constrained by what we might here label as an outdated, "Puritan" code of climbing ethics or yore.

Not incidentally, no, I don’t think that a bolted trad line in CCC means we’re gonna see an army of drillers bespoil Indian Creek. Facile, blunted arguments like that miss the more nuanced observation that the ethos of any given climbing area will always define itself by the very people who most use it—not by random tourist jocks. (Or, for that matter, by the increasingly marginalized curmudgeons who want their world their way.) The process of policing is always organic, and ethics will always evolve. (In climbing as it is in politics as it is in sexual mores as it is in....)

The thing is, CCC is sporty—VERY sport climbing oriented here. (Duh.) Not only that, it’s wicked close to a major metropolitan climbing mecca; and, yes, younger, newer, urban-er climbers are naturally going to adopt their own set of ethics, their own set of standards for what is right and what is rubbish. They are going. To bolt. (Yes, even the occasional, very rare CCC crack.) We can cry “foul,” but forward thinking climbers aren’t easily swayed by squawking.

For the record, in case it wasn't clear: I do NOT advocate a laissez-faire attitude toward bolting in general or toward bolting cracks in specific. If anything, I detest universal, capital “T” truths. And therein lies the point. CCC is sporty; it will carry with it a continually evolving, sport-climber’s ethicality. Try to bring that purist, Yosum attitude to Clear Creek, and you’re only going to bash your head against the rock of indifference. Oh, wait...Yosemite Valley, the bastion of puritan ethics, right? Too bad all those gaping pin scars. And so much for the "Puritan" ethic.

By the way, if climbers REALLY want to prove their Puritan mettle, then here’s an invitation to let their conviction meet some courage: Climb naked. Don’t bring chalk, don’t lace up in those fancy shoes. For heaven’s sake, don’t use anchor chains or clip into any single bolt, ever, anywhere, under any circumstances. Because the very moment we so much as slather up in sunscreen, we introduce artifice into the natural world—and that sure ain’t all that pure.

Trout has it right: New thinking is in; stale, crusty, supposedly “purist” thinking is quickly going the way of the 8-track. (The wha?) That’s an entry point for friction, sure. But perhaps the answers lie in open dialogue, mutual respect, COMPROMISE. Maybe (gasp!) even an update to what we perceive to be right and wrong. Ethics 2.0. Hey, there was a time, you know, when the conservative set even saw Elvis Presley as the Satan.

Either way, I think we’d ALL be better served trying to figure out things like how to preserve access, how to open new areas, and how to keep those fucking squirrels from eating my PB&Js! And you don’t accomplish any of that by pointing fingers and crying about which bolts are acceptable, which are absolute evil. You want pure, climb naked. Otherwise, let’s work on this thing together and keep climbing, eh?

Oh, yeah. Nice climb. Tons of fun. Aug 25, 2009

I would think, if anything at all, trying to climb routes with limiting bolt placement and maximizing natural pro opportunities is making a pretty strong comeback. Lots of strong climbers out there doing this currently, and hopefully bending the grid-bolt-at-will mentality a bit. Aug 25, 2009
Jeff Chrisler
Boulder, CO
Jeff Chrisler   Boulder, CO
Not being a trad climber, I appreciate the bolting on such a great route. However, I will be a trad climber at some point and will pass the bolts as was done on the photos attached to this climb. Sep 18, 2009
Ben Cassedy
Denver, CO
Ben Cassedy   Denver, CO
Excellent post by Top Rope Hero, and I have to say I agree. I clipped all of the bolts on this, and had a blast on the route. Generally I'm against bolting easily protectable cracks. But I probably wouldn't have gotten on this thing if the bolts weren't there. I did it and really liked the route. I'd like to come back and do it on gear though. Jun 26, 2010
Boulder, CO
L G   Boulder, CO
Climbing a crack and clipping bolts is a joy and avoids the encumbrance of a rack in an area where it's not otherwise needed. I, too, agree with the post by Top Rope Hero; It's cool to have the choice. Aug 22, 2010
Peter Lewis
Bridgton, Maine
Peter Lewis   Bridgton, Maine
I used to guide this a lot back in the mid '90s. It was cool to take good clients up a nice, little, trad route standing proud among a sea of bolts. I really just don't understand why it had to be bolted. Get a little rack, learn how to use it, and start leading some trad. It's actually really fun! And the argument that it's nice to have the option is ridiculous---why not just bolt every crack everywhere, then? Madness. There. I ranted. Felt good. Sep 26, 2014
I know it's mostly a sport climbing area, but I don't think continuous splitters should be marred by bolts. Apr 9, 2015
Robert Chappe
Robert Chappe  
Fun climb on gear. Not easiest 10a for newer trad climbers, but then again maybe it is, bc if you get sketched out you can just clip the bolts.

Gear beta said up to 0.75, but there is easily a section that would eat a #4 and would make you feel a little better for the 4 feet of OW. Jul 26, 2016

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