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Routes in The Checkerboard Wall

Checkerboard Wall T 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
King Me T 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
Maiden Voyage aka The Red Dihedral, The T 5.9- 5c 17 VI 16 HVS 4c
Monkey and the Engineer T 5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
Ouiji Board T 5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b
UNO! T 5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c R
Type: Trad, 325 ft, 3 pitches, Grade II
FA: Josh Gross, Madoline Wallace
Page Views: 3,013 total, 24/month
Shared By: Josh Gross on Oct 1, 2007
Admins: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac

You & This Route

28 Opinions

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2016 Raptor Closures Details


Climb the wall above the Checker Board Wall's traverse ledge.

This is 3 pitches long. Look for steep, right-facing flake feature 6 feet off ledge.

P1. 5.10. Climb past a fixed pin (out of sight 30 feet up the pitch and left of start of route). (More of a trail blaze) stay just left of pin, then head up and left. Once you reach moderate ground, head up 30 feet to a good ledge and #0.75/#2 Camalot belay.

P2. 5.9. Climb a big, right-facing corner. At end of corner traverse, go left under cool nose feature.

P3. 5.10. Move around nose left then up OW to a hand crack through a small roof and the rim.


Fun climb. Might have had loose rock at one time but not now. The first pitch is G not PG if you have smaller cams and wires. No awkward placements. Good pitch with positive holds and great rock....5.9 + is a fair, not sandbag, grade.

Yeah, it’s a step up from Maiden Voyage, but not a giant step.

The last two pitches are not as good as the first but worth doing.

A fun linkup is Newberry’s Delight/Maiden Voyage/King Me. I’d give it a Grade III. Oct 3, 2017
Michael Underwood
Denver, CO
Michael Underwood   Denver, CO
We linked Maiden Voyage to King Me (a worthy combination), but we were at first a bit disoriented and didn't know where King Me was located with respect to Maiden Voyage. I've posted a beta photo to help with the linkup. You'll be standing near a huge boulder just left of pitch 5 on Maiden Voyage. Look around until you spot the formation I boxed in red. While you can't use this formation to find the start of the route, you can at least use it to get moving in the correct general direction. Jun 8, 2017
Nick Niebuhr
Santa Fe, NM
  5.10- PG13
Nick Niebuhr   Santa Fe, NM
  5.10- PG13
I thought this was a pretty good climb! I found more than just the new Black Canyon guide makes it sound like the first pitch only protects with c3s/TCUs, but there are a few good finger-size placements to calm the nerves. The pin seemed pretty solid to me, but the holds above right of it felt a little loose and looked like something big had broken off recently.... Second and third pitch are a hoot! This climb is definitely a step up from Maiden Voyage, much more sustained whereas MV only has a couple short crises surrounded by mostly easy climbing. Jun 4, 2017
Very good route indeed and a great way to finish Maiden Voyage. The runout on P1 is not too bad, and the gear is good protecting the crux.

HELP! I think I left my camera somewhere just to climber's left of the topout. It's a Panasonic point and shoot in a red case, and I would be hugely grateful if someone could return it. Thanks! May 26, 2016
Lynn S
Lynn S  
Very good route! Each pitch has its own unique characteristics. If you are solid on 5.10 and have TCUs, pitch one will be a blast for you. The finishing moves on p3 were great exiting out from underneath the bulge. Well done, Josh and Mado! May 22, 2016
Jason Antin
Golden, CO
  5.10 PG13
Jason Antin   Golden, CO
  5.10 PG13
T'was my first day in the Black, so that could impact how I viewed this link-up. The ranger recommend we link Maiden Voyage into King Me to the rim.

A few thoughts: we are thrilled to have topped out via King Me, rather than slog up the gully. However I think King Me is a completely different league of climbing, compared to what you will encounter on Maiden Voyage, and I wouldn't recommend it to a party whose "limit" was Maiden Voyage (very moderate climbing on solid rock).

The moves on the first pitch are relatively straightforward, but I felt the first 30-40 feet of climbing to be no-fall terrain, which is why I gave the route a PG-13 rating.

The area near the KB is fun and reminded me of corner climbing in Eldo..only looser ;)

Go do it, but feel solid on 5.10a. Oct 12, 2015
Those vertical zebra stripes, just to the left of the climb, are a great way to confirm you're at the correct start. Jun 11, 2014
Dave Vaughan
Boulder, CO
Dave Vaughan   Boulder, CO
My partner Mark and I were in the Black last weekend and decided to climb “King Me” as an alternative to shwacking up the gully post Checkerboard Wall climbing per the climbing ranger’s recommendation. We got a very faint copy of the topo (missing a number of details due to poor print quality as we would discover) from the ranger who also said “look for a juniper tree and cairn at the base of the route”. Well, there must be more than one cairn next to a juniper tree on the traverse ramp off the top of Checkerboard Wall….

We found a juniper and a cairn and enough route features to match our ailing topo, so we headed upwards. Pretty quickly it was obvious that our line was likely rarely or never climbed, but we kept going through 3 pitches of fair to marginal quality climbing. We were really wondering why the ranger would recommend a pile like this, but on the drive home, we took a look at MProject and saw the picture and detailed topo of King Me. We obviously did not climb King Me (apologies to the climbing ranger for comments made en route ;-)), instead we climbed a line a couple of hundred feet to the right of King Me. Unless some other suckers have climbed this line, we’re thinking this might be an FA, so we’ll go with the name “Choss Me” and a grade of 5.10+ DB (don’t bother). See route pic I posted if you’re interested…. Gotta love the Black!

Jun 10, 2014
Jeremy Werlin
Jeremy Werlin  
Really fun route with lots of good, varied climbing. The route has cleaned up nicely and is a combine with the Monkey or Maiden. Strongly recommended. May 24, 2013
Eric and Lucie
Boulder, CO
Eric and Lucie   Boulder, CO
Found this route quite enjoyable.
First pitch has really good 5.10 with sharp holds and pretty good pro.
Watch for a loose block just right of the pin.
P2 is a long wide crack on pretty clean rock. Not bad at all.
BTW, I find it surprising that this route would not have been climbed before '07... was that pin really placed in 2007? Jun 4, 2012
Petaluma California
stevecurtis   Petaluma California
To identify the start, look for 4 black streaks on a wall left. The climb begins on loose appearing flakes 15 ft up.

There is a fair bit requiring a trundle on pitch 2. I'd recommend this route over the exit gully. One star is about right. May 17, 2009
J. Thompson
denver, co
J. Thompson   denver, co
Did this route the other day and thought I'd add a couple of things.
You can get a topo at the ranger station. Some of the things on that topo are wrong or misleading. For one there is no "ramp" identifying the start. There is also no "tunnel through".

The route is fun and good quality climbing. The fixed pin on pitch one leaves something to be desired. It's a KB with the eye sticking about an inch and a half out of the rock. It's also the only decent piece you'll get for awhile, and the rock isn't great. The climbing isn't to hard in that section however.

This climb is better than the hump up the "descent" gully. May 14, 2008