Type: Trad, Sport, 80 ft
FA: Ron Olsen, Bob D'Antonio and Bruce Hildenbrand
Page Views: 3,369 total · 21/month
Shared By: Ron Olsen on Sep 20, 2005
Admins: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac

You & This Route

97 Opinions

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Access Issue: Seasonal Closure - 2018 Update Details


The route starts on the northwest face of Witches Tower. Climb up to the first bolt on good holds. Good face moves on knobs and edges get you to the second bolt. A red Alien can be placed in between bolts here. Veer a little left and place gear to gain a ledge and the third bolt. Fire up past the third bolt using a hanging, weird block. Reach the arete and climb up past three more bolts to a two-bolt anchor. A purple Camalot can be place before reaching the anchor.


Mixed gear. Six bolts plus a small rack up to a two Camalot.
Ron Olsen
Boulder, CO
Ron Olsen   Boulder, CO
A good route with varied moves and nice exposure. The layback past the hanging flake and the moves up the arete are fun and airy.

I placed a red Alien after the first bolt, a #1 Camalot (or #2 Camalot) after the second bolt, and a #.5 Camalot to protect the final move to the anchor.

Romancing the Stone and the neighboring route Tese are must-dos on your way up to Sherwood Forest. Sep 23, 2005
Boulder, CO
Jeremy   Boulder, CO
The creepy and loose sounding rock on the middle of this route really took a lot away from this route. I'm sure it much more solid than it seemed, but I couldn't shake the feeling that I was going to pull a HUGE piece of rock off every other move.
I think it would be a really good route if you weren't a wuss like me and just cranked on everything. Jun 16, 2008
Tony B
Around Boulder, CO
Tony B   Around Boulder, CO
I did this one more 'directly' and did not step left to the Camalot placements, and as such hit some questionable rock. A good route overall though, but I was trying to figure out what was what, as maybe 50' up there were two diverging/converging lines available with bolts to the left/right of each other. Was a little confused on which was the intended line.

No less, it was a nice long pitch done to the top anchor and was enjoyable. Thanks for 'finishing' the route. Jun 24, 2008
David Youkey
David Youkey  
A nice route, but it's not 5.9; 5.8 at the most, maybe 5.7. Maybe I'm biased because I've been climbing a lot in Eldo recently. The moves past the hanging flake are indeed cool, but be careful. As Jeremy implies, all things are temporary, and some of those flakes seem to be potentially more temporary than, well, other things. Climb lightly, and tell your belayer to stand off to the side. Jun 26, 2008
I have to agree with Jeremy. This climb (while a lot of fun) has a lot of missiles hanging, waiting to release. I'm not normally a fan of altering routes, but it would be nice to see some of the more questionable items removed, simply as a safety matter.

Fun climbing, though Jul 21, 2008
Chris Piekarski
Louisville, CO
  5.8+ PG13
Chris Piekarski   Louisville, CO
  5.8+ PG13
The above comments about loose rock in 2008 are still very relevant today. I did the route a few hours ago and was quite surprised by all the loose rock. The bolts have a lot of run out (the possibly of a ground fall exists even after bolt 3 and 4), so I placed some protection and witnessed a huge flake expand with just a light tug on the cam.

Fun, but be careful both when on the rock and when belaying. Jul 2, 2011
mtoensing   Boulder
This route isn't good at all. The looseness of the rock makes it kind of serious, so make sure your belayer wears a helmet for sure. I tried to avoid the loose sections as best as I could making it probably a bit harder, but if you just tromp around on the flakes, it is probably 5.8. Anyways, super crappy climb. Not recommended at all. Jul 8, 2011
Clint Locks
Clint Locks   Boulder
Matt - I'd have to disagree. I had a blast on it! Really fun, and pretty safe, especially if you place the supplementary gear. Sure, there's some loose rock, but that's all part of the outdoor experience, especially on crags facing that aspect. BTW--a helmet won't do a belayer much good if any of those aforementioned blocks go. Just sayin'. Have fun out there! Jul 11, 2011
prod. Kenny
Boulder, Co
prod. Kenny   Boulder, Co
The climb to the right is much better without the loose blocks. Jul 28, 2011
Jeff Chrisler
Boulder, CO
Jeff Chrisler   Boulder, CO
I'd agree with those posting about loose stuff, mainly large and some small flakes. Because of the comments, I was doing the hollow punch test, and there was a lot that didn't sound good at all. Unfortunately, this really takes a lot away from an otherwise fun warm-up route. I am sure that in the next few years if not sooner, this route will change drastically due to large blocks and flakes coming off. Be aware of what you are pulling and stepping on while on this route! Apr 25, 2012
Cincinnati, OH
Raiden   Cincinnati, OH  
Great route. I found the route to be clean with no loose rock so get on it!

It's just fine without any gear if you are solid on the grade. Use a couple long slings to reduce rope drag.

Also, there are two 3rd bolts - not sure why. We clipped the left one. Jul 18, 2012
Las Vegas
carterrrrrr   Las Vegas
Great climb, no need for gear but HOLY SHIT! Loose rock! Be very careful climbing this one. I pulled one baseball-sized piece with chalk on it and felt many a large flake move under body weight. Put your belay far right and wear a helmet! Sep 18, 2012
Jay Eggleston
Jay Eggleston   Denver
I did not notice any loose rock. May 23, 2013
Peter J. Beyel
Glenwood Springs
Peter J. Beyel   Glenwood Springs
The bolting on this route needs some work. A fall going to the chains would be nasty. I really think adding some bolts to this rig would be the right decision. Jun 17, 2013
I did this route yesterday with no gear. I didn't feel it needed it. Perhaps a tad run out but nothing compared to what you can find in RMNP. A groundfall from the third bolt seems only probable with a bad belay. I had a lot of fun climbing this, and got down with a smile on my face. Interesting/fun movement for the grade.

Tread lightly. There are some large flakes that if pulled off could be potentially fatal even with a helmet. Belay should back off the wall after the 3rd bolt. Jun 20, 2016
Andy Hansen
Longmont, CO
Andy Hansen   Longmont, CO
This is a damn near classic route. There is a little bit of hollow rock here and there but nothing that's going to come off in a catastrophic way. I kept climbing past the anchors into the neighboring 10-, and this creates a really good mini-extension to an already awesome moderate. Doing the pitch this way, the route is exactly 30m. Tie knots in the end of the rope! All that's really necessary in terms of gear is a finger-sized cam for after the 2nd bolt and a long draw on the anchor of this route to climb up to the anchor of the 10- without rope drag. Jul 22, 2016
Hansen Wendlandt  
Last year the flakes seemed hollow. This year, that whole system on the left is moving and weak. It was great while it lasted, but someone is going to get hurt on this route; don't let it be you. Jul 28, 2018
My partner and I went up on this route to address the comments about loose rock. The only thing we found that needed attending to at this time was a large flake in the small, right-facing dihedral between the 2nd and 3rd bolts. Dale pulled it off, and now the #1 or #2 Camalot placement between the 2nd and 3rd bolts is probably a red or yellow Alien. The difficulty of the climb did not change.

Also, the bolt which protects the roof move on the route Nala is directly above the 2nd bolt on Romancing the Stone. The third bolt on Romancing the Stone is up and left and at about the same height as the bolt on Nala. Don't be confused.

Lastly, someone put nice, new Mussy Hooks and SS quicklinks on the anchors of Romancing the Stone and Tese. Thanks for the hard work and hardware. Sep 17, 2018
Boulder, CO
Branty   Boulder, CO
There is a large rock scar to the left of the roof, and a matching ~4 foot block down near the creek, with visible impact points leading back to this climb! Did someone pull it off, or did it fall? Sep 30, 2018
Read the comment directly above yours. Sep 30, 2018