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Out of the Black

5.11, Trad, TR, 40 ft,  Avg: 2.3 from 9 votes
FA: unknown
Colorado > Ft Collins > Horsetooth Rese… > Duncan's Ridge


Climb the overhang of the Patriot Tower up into the arete. Move up on edges right of the arete and transition left on the face. Once you've successfully transitioned to the face move up on a right hand crimp on the face (left of the arete) and lunge to a deep seem on the far left side.

It is 5.12 when climbing straight up the face near the right arete.

You can bail out left at the top and completely skip the 5.12 crux, making it 5.11-.


It is on the Patriot Tower.


Use toprope anchors.

Photos [Hide ALL Photos]

Compilation of me working Out of the Black.
[Hide Photo] Compilation of me working Out of the Black.
Out of the Black.
[Hide Photo] Out of the Black.

Comments [Hide ALL Comments]

eric owen
Estes Park, Colorado
[Hide Comment] I lead this route on 5-24-15. The bolts are where you would want them to be. A large block, the size of a basketball, released from the a horizontal break (that I was standing on) between the 3-4 bolt. It will likely be harder for shorter people.

The beta: DON'T read if you want the onsight.
There is a sit down, no hands rest once you clip the 3rd bolt on the "perch rock" that sticks out of the break. Work some magic to stand up using a lefthand side-pull in the middle of the face, an undercling in the horizontal break and the right arete. Then get a right heel toe lock in the horizontal break you are standing on, make a hard cross over with the right hand to a crescent moon-shaped sidepull (close to 4th bolt). Re-arrange feet, slap to the left arete (where I feel x2) from from the left sidepull in the middle of the face at chest level. Compress HARD between the right and crescent edge and the left hand arete and dead-point the horizontal break (it's a 1-2 pad incut) on the arete. I'm 5'8 with a +3 ape...I could barely reach the slap out the the left arete. Good luck May 25, 2015
Will Winham
Fort Collins, CO
[Hide Comment] Using a heel hook on the right face to reach the face crimp and an intermediate in the left arete, I was able to top this guy out following the left arete at about 11b. Don't hesitate to get on this route! Jun 2, 2015
[Hide Comment] This is definitely a fun route, although to me it falls nowhere near the posted grade of 5.12+. I can see how this route would be harder for shorter climbers, but I'm still skeptical that it would reach 12+ with the proper beta.

I too topped this route out via the left arete, which felt very natural for me, following the path of least resistance. To traverse over and hang from the lip in order to clip the chains seems as though it would be a bit contrived. Using the topout method, the anchors seemed to be in a poor place, since getting situated to lower or rappel from the top of the pillar seemed a bit hairy and unnecessary (I untied and dropped the rope), but perhaps all of these bolts will be gone soon, since it seems they were (most likely unknowingly) added to a previously established route. Jun 2, 2015
Ryan Harty
Fort Collins, CO
[Hide Comment] I really enjoyed working on this route, but I couldn't quite finish it off. Gonna come back when the weather gets warm again.

Note: the retrobolts have been removed, dunno who did it or when, but they're gone and epoxied over, so it's trad or TR only now. Oct 9, 2017