Type: Trad, 350 ft, 3 pitches, Grade II
FA: Scott Allen, Tim Gale, Don Silver
Page Views: 371 total · 10/month
Shared By: Scott S. Allen on Oct 19, 2015
Admins: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac

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Access Issue: Road Cut access Details

Dedication & Description

This route was inspired by and named for Minerva Canavan, 1928-2015. Min was an avid climber of 14er's, skier, hiker, and birder who knew these local hills well as a counselor at Camp Shoshone in the 1960s.

First ascent, I 5.6 A1 of pitch 1 rope solo ground up by Scott Allen in July 2015.

7 bolts were placed mixed with gear. The opening 3 bolts are 1/4" buttonhead, next 2 bolts are also 1/4", next 2 bolts are 3/8" x 3.5", and the anchors atop pitch one only are 1/2"x 4".

Most of the pitch is 5.6 once past the first 20 feet.

First free ascent of entire face:

II 5.8 PG-13

Led by Tim Gale on Oct. 17, 2015.

Pitch 1: locate the Black Canyon like start with three 1/4" bolts protecting the opening 5.8 moves. Then traverse hard right, and find the shattered lime dike leading to the galaxy of green crystals. Follow bolts and gear up and right through a loose hip-roof to the solid anchors.

Pitch 2: move the belay up 25 feet to the next headwall in the trees, and climb straight up to more trees (short lead of 50 feet).

Pitch 3 starts off clean but ends very runout and loose. Find a way upwards to the safety of small trees and belay (a long pitch, 150').


Minerva's Way is located on a separate crag from the Eldora Summer Slab. Find a marbled black and white pegmatite dike 300 feet left (east) and uphill from the Eldora Summer Slab.


This is another short 'n' nasty loose talus fight above CDOT retaining fence.

The best line starts at the far west end of the fence and quickly gains slab, shrubs, trees, and such (avoiding the loose talus field directly below the start of pitch one.


From the summit, walk east and find surprisingly pleasant grassy slope down into an aspen glen and gully to the highway.

Also possible to descend from top of pitch 1 via rappel or pitch 2 via down climbing but not recommended due to loose talus and falling rock onto vehicles on highway below.
George Bracksieck
  5.8+ R
George Bracksieck  
  5.8+ R
The beta photo showing the route line is VERY misleading! Pitch one traverses right a LOT more than indicated, and it NEVER moves back left. From the 7th bolt, traverse right for about 10-15 feet, then move up and rightish about 10 feet to a hangerless buttonhead. About a foot above this buttonhead is a shallow, marginal placement for a #.75 Camalot. Just above, over a bulge lies the two-bolt anchor.

I think that the first pitch is dangerous and should be rated R. There are a few places from which a fall would put you onto the ground, and good gear placements are hard to find in the long runouts among the bolts, five of which are only quarter-inchers. I placed red, brown and blue Tri-cams and red and yellow C3s, among other cams and stoppers. I still faced lots of committing runouts on often-loose rock. Look at all of the first pitch from the ground before attempting to lead it. I should have.

Btw, the approach is horrendously loose. I was almost swept down in a rock avalanche. After climbing pitch one and rappelling from the anchor, we rapped twice from trees to descend to the road and still knocked rocks onto the road. Jul 13, 2018