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Deer Mountain South Side

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Common Potoo T 
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Deer Mountain South Side Rock Climbing 

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Elevation: 9,000'
Location: 40.379, -105.5892 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 1,481
Administrators: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Leo Paik on Aug 24, 2012
You & This Area
Best climbs for YOU in this area
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A dihedral on the west face, to the left of SSE Ri...


This is just the other side of the mountain from Deer Ridge Buttress, but it is entirely different. In reality, this is a lot of rock; however, the general low angle and scruffiness will make most folks pass on this. Still, if you like solitude, the ability to micro-explore, easier grades, and sunnier aspects, there just could be something for you here.

Though rather diminutive in height, there are still a dozen or more chunks of rock here, some of it is up to 2 pitches in height. Folks have been climbing here off and on (probably more off) from at least the 1970s. There is mention in a Fricke 1971 guidebook about this rock, "the low cliffs on its south side [S side of Deer Mtn] apparently offer only indifferent climbing." Also, Gillett mentions it both in the back of his 1st edition guidebook for RMNP and on p. 274 of his fine RMNP, Estes Park Valley guidebook. Until there are more routes submitted, we'll leave these under this one area.

From a brief explore, the best rock may be on the far right two crags. I have photos of the other bits of rock up here, but they weren't too photogenic. If you want to see them / are crazy enough to go up there, let me know, and I can email them to you.

The summit of Deer Mt. is about 10,000'.

This may be subject to closures for raptors.


B. Crack, 9.
C. SSE Ridge, 2, 2p, 420', gear.

D. Common Potoo, 5, 1p, 150', gear.
E. Lonesome George, 7, 1p, 130', gear.

Getting There 

The quickest way is likely to drive into the Beaver Meadows entrance, go straight past the turnoff for Bear Lake Rd., continue up Trail Ridge until you are directly below the buttresses. Follow game trails up. It's probably 800-1000' of elevation gain, but it is fairly direct.

Climbing Season

For the Estes Park Valley area.

Weather station 3.9 miles from here

3 Total Climbing Routes

['4 Stars',0],['3 Stars',0],['2 Stars',2],['1 Star',1],['Bomb',0]

Featured Route For Deer Mountain South Side
Rock Climbing Photo: Topo of the approximate line.  Note the boulder ne...

Common Potoo 5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a  Colorado : Estes Park Valley : Deer Mountain South Side
This is a short, fun, juggy, visually unimpressive line. It is something you can add on if you do the SSE on the buttress just to the west as you descend back to your gear. 1.6 stars.Below the gully that splits this crag, there is a slightly bigger boulder. Climb on jugs that just keep coming. The gear takes a bit of time to find. You, however, will have great stances for every placement. Aim for just right of a tiny roof ~100' up. You can belay where the angle eases off ~120' up or on th...[more]   Browse More Classics in Colorado

Photos of Deer Mountain South Side Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Wow, the hummingbirds sit still around here.
Wow, the hummingbirds sit still around here.
Rock Climbing Photo: From below.
From below.

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