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Devil's Head

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Scooter Trash Wall 
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Sin City 
Solarium, the 
Starcastle, The 
Tourist Wall 
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Unicorn Valley 
Upyer Buttress 
Wipeyur Buttress 

Devil's Head Rock Climbing 

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Elevation: 9,000'
Location: 39.2603, -105.1011 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 274,349
Administrators: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Richard M. Wright on Jan 1, 2001


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Raptor Closures MORE INFO >>>


Devil's Head is a relatively new granite climbing area with perhaps the highest concentration of three star routes anywhere in the Front Range. While lying in the South Platte, Devil's Head granite presents a super fine-grain textured granite that only rarely reveals the typical South Platte crystalline matrix. The rock is remarkably featured with roofs, cracks, edges, and flakes that, unlike most of the South Platte, offer up tremendous amounts of excellent, exciting, face climbing.

Devil's Head climbing occurs largely on the South and East-facing slopes of Devil's Head mountain, and the climber could not ask for a more serene place to climb. The crags face South, West, or East and overlook Pike's Peak with all the rest of the Rampart Range hills spread out in unbroken splendor as far as the eye can see.

The area possesses over 400 routes with the balance of new route activity devoted to bolt-protected sport climbing, although nearly 20 of the routes are superb granite crack climbs on bomber trad gear. While the emphasis in climbing is largely on the upper 5.11 and 5.12 range, difficulty pretty much spans the gamut, and it is a good bet that some under-rated 5.13 lies on the hill as well.

Development of new routes started nearly 8 years ago spearheaded by the relentless energy of Tod Anderson, author of the area's guidebook, "The Devil Made Me Do It". The roster of first ascentionists that Tod dragged up the hill includes (in no particular order) Tom Hanson, Scott Sills, Rich Magill, Richard Wright, Alan Nelson, Mike Lane, Janice Harnak, Ernie Moskovitz (Ziggy), Frank (Tripp) Collins, Martin Birch, Dave Fields, Eric Leonard, and Pat Burwick. Other notable developers include Pete Takeda, Ken Trout, and probably some more great climbers as well. Of more than a dozen developed crags, the most notable routes lie on the following crags: The Headstone, The Crimpfest Wall, The Red Wall, The Starcastle, The Crag Ranch, and The Shaft.

Getting There 

From Denver, the best way to reach Devils's Head is to take CO Highway 85 south to Sedalia. Then head west on CO Highway 67 to the North entrance of the park, about 10 miles. The ranger station booth marks the North end of FR 300, the Ramparts Range Road. Take this South for approximately 9 miles to the turn off for Devil's Head campground and the Fire Tower. Be aware that the Rampart Range Road will be closed from the first Monday in December to sometime in April due to snow pack. From Colorado Springs, FR 300 can be reached from the Garden of The Gods, but is a fairly torturous 20 miles North. Once at the parking lot, head up the tourist trail toward the Fire Tower about 1.5 miles. At a saddle well below the Fire Tower the trail forks right (to the tower) and left to the Zinn Overlook. Head for the Zinn Overlook along a well defined climbers trail. At the overlook, trails will fork directly toward the Headstone formation (left) and right, through the woods, toward the Red Wall, Starcastle, and The Shaft.

Per Tzilla Rapdrilla: there is a new parking lot at Mile Marker 10 - The USFS has completed the new lot at the Mile Marker 10 site used for Lower West Side Access, allowing room for a lot more cars. The new lot is just past the campsite #36. There isn't a "P" sign there yet, but I imagine they just haven't gotten around to it yet. It should be noted that this is not a legal campsite and was built for climber parking, so there is no need to park at non-designated sites along the road.


"Rampart Range Rocks" by Tod Anderson is available at Bent Gate.

As of May 2012, a new guidebook to the South Platte that includes Devil's Head was published by Fixed Pin Publishing. "South Platte Climbing" by Jason Haas, Ben Schneider, and Craig Weinhold should be available in most climbing shops sometime in the latter half of May or directly from Fixed Pin.

Ranger Station contact info 


Website for the Pike Forest Ranger District.

Land Stewardship 

Eds. With the many visitors and recreationists to the forest, we are having an impact on the land. Obviously we cherish our public lands immensely. Whenever possible, please try to limit the impact we have here and do our best to be great stewards of these beautiful lands.

Climbing Season

Weather station 7.1 miles from here

395 Total Climbing Routes

['4 Stars',36],['3 Stars',149],['2 Stars',175],['1 Star',33],['Bomb',1]

Classic Climbing Routes in Devil's Head

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Devil's Head:
Beginner's Luck   5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b     Sport, 1 pitch, 50'   The Training Grounds
Passing the Baton   5.8- 5b 16 VI- 14 VS 4c     Sport, 1 pitch, 50'   The Training Grounds
Practice Run   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Sport, 1 pitch, 50'   The Training Grounds
Chickenhead   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Trad, 3 pitches   The Headstone
Giant Dihedral   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Trad, 2 pitches, 190'   Radio Head
Too Much Nooky, Not Enough Sleep   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Sport, 1 pitch, 50'   The Training Grounds
Welcome to the Jungle   5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Sport, 1 pitch   The Jungle
Lost in the Jungle   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Sport, 3 pitches, 250'   The Jungle
Tailwinds   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 80'   Wipeyur Buttress
Mr. Hanky   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 80'   Wipeyur Buttress
Beaks and Feet   5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a     Sport, 1 pitch   Chicken Head Ranch
Jungle Mountaineering   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Sport, 3 pitches   The Jungle
Turd Burglar   5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 80'   Wipeyur Buttress
Man in the Yellow Hat    5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b     Sport, 1 pitch   The Jungle
Paper   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 100'   Wipeyur Buttress
Lady Fingers   5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b     Trad, Sport, 1 pitch, 80'   Radio Head
Topaz   5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b     Sport, 2 pitches, 220'   The Headstone
Dave's Dilemma   5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c     Trad, Sport, 1 pitch, 100'   The Crimpfest Wall
Wishbone Dihedral   5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c     Sport, 1 pitch, 80'   Chicken Head Ranch
Crimpfest   5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Sport, 1 pitch   The Crimpfest Wall
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Devil's Head

Featured Route For Devil's Head
Rock Climbing Photo: The upper crux of the route.

Dammit Samet 5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b  Colorado : South Platte : ... : Devil's Gate
Dammit Samet is an awesome route right up the center of Devil's Gate. It is the line that makes you say to yourself, "I gotta rock climb that rock climb!" The route starts with a finger crack and has several cruxes mixed in with decent rests. The Rakkup app lists it as 12d, my partner and I agreed on 12b. Get on it and decide for yourself!...[more]   Browse More Classics in Colorado

Photos of Devil's Head Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: J.Thompson and C.Mitchell climbing [Fire on the Mo...
J.Thompson and C.Mitchell climbing [Fire on the Mo...
Rock Climbing Photo: Working a "Mega" classic.
Working a "Mega" classic.
Rock Climbing Photo: Steep granite.
Steep granite.
Rock Climbing Photo: Cab crankin' at Chickenhead Ranch.
Cab crankin' at Chickenhead Ranch.
Rock Climbing Photo: Heeby Jeebies.
Heeby Jeebies.
Rock Climbing Photo: Modern Art.
Modern Art.
Rock Climbing Photo: So much good rock out there that is not on Mtn Pro...
So much good rock out there that is not on Mtn Pro...
Rock Climbing Photo: First pitch of my new climb.
First pitch of my new climb.
Rock Climbing Photo: Scenic climbing.
Scenic climbing.
Rock Climbing Photo: Pike's Peak and Devil's Head climbing areas taken ...
Pike's Peak and Devil's Head climbing areas taken ...
Rock Climbing Photo: Devil's Head as seen from the North on Rampart Ran...
Devil's Head as seen from the North on Rampart Ran...
Rock Climbing Photo: Looking left off the trail, to the left of the roc...
BETA PHOTO: Looking left off the trail, to the left of the roc...
Rock Climbing Photo: Jeff Stucker and Ben Panter.
Jeff Stucker and Ben Panter.
Rock Climbing Photo: Monster crack.
Monster crack.
Rock Climbing Photo: Paul on the FA of "That's Gold, Jerry!"....
Paul on the FA of "That's Gold, Jerry!"....
Rock Climbing Photo: The main campground at Devil's Head.
The main campground at Devil's Head.
Rock Climbing Photo: The Training Grounds.
The Training Grounds.
Rock Climbing Photo: Stairs leading to the fire lookout.
Stairs leading to the fire lookout.
Rock Climbing Photo: Welcome to the Jungle!
Welcome to the Jungle!
Rock Climbing Photo: Rocks of Devil's Head.
Rocks of Devil's Head.
Rock Climbing Photo: Secret wall with numerous possibilities for wicked...
Secret wall with numerous possibilities for wicked...
Rock Climbing Photo: The fire lookout from the Zinn Overlook trail.
The fire lookout from the Zinn Overlook trail.
Rock Climbing Photo: The Jungle, as seen from Wipeyer Buttress.
The Jungle, as seen from Wipeyer Buttress.
Rock Climbing Photo: This is the monster snowpack that kept an entire m...
BETA PHOTO: This is the monster snowpack that kept an entire m...

Show All 39 Photos

Only the first 24 are shown above.

Comments on Devil's Head Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Sep 7, 2017
By Tod Anderson
Jul 31, 2002
On July 19, 2002 Devil's Head and most of the Pike National Forest reopened. Devil's Head was not burned and retains its previous natural character. The view from the firetower provides an amazing view of the now mostly burned South Platte area.
By Chuck Arnt
Feb 16, 2004
One of the interesting side areas that I found on Devils Head is on the west side, just to the east of the gully opposite Topaz Point. Or, for those who have been in the area for more than 10 years, Virgin's Bath. The Forest Service had to change the name on the sign because unthoughtfull city slickers and their cousins keep tearing down and stealing the signs to take home and hang on their bathroom door. But for those of you that are here because they love what I call 'Extreme Hiking', follow Rampart Range Road to the sign leading to the trailhead parking area, but take the route to the right.After a couple of zig-zags and big 'S' curves, you'll come up to the area marked Topaz Point. Stop, you went too far. Back up about 100 yards or so and take the usable 2 wheel drive trail that takes you to the dig site of Topaz Point. Leave the non-climbers here to dig in the dirt for findable quartz and topaz crystals while you take the short 10 minute wall across the small gully due east. Once you hit the face, it doesn't matter if you go left or right, there's a fresh assortment of granit cracks and chimneys that will test your will and patience all day long, and give you fantastic views into the Westcreek / Deckers area.There is plenty of climbs on this side of the rock that havent been destroyed yet. All I ask is Please pickup your trash so my kids dont have to.
By Tod Anderson
Apr 9, 2004
The new guidebook to Devil's Head is now complete and available in stores. There are over 200 routes listed. The book contains many new topos and pictures as well as all of the details on how to find the new climbs. So far it's available at The Bent Gate, Mountain Sports, Mountain Miser, & Neptunes. Hope to see you up there this summer.
By Gary Apostolou
Aug 15, 2004
DH crew, just wanted to say what a great job you have done creating and marking the trails around here. I have been to DH several times over the years and it is one of the more complicated places to figure out where the hell you are. I've been climbing in the West Valley the past three weeks and along with the new guide it has been a piece a cake getting around back there. Thanks for the back breaking work.
By Anonymous Coward
Sep 20, 2004
Regarding a new bolted line put up on the Headstone on Saturday, September 11 ... PUT UP SOME ANCHORS. Your new route probably goes at 10c (onsightable for most 5.11+ climbers) and is well-cleaned, but it stops well before the top of the wall without anchors. If you're going to bolt a route and not finish it, leave out the first few bolts, not the anchors. Climbers are likely to mistake the route for something marked in the guidebook and wind up having to traverse down to the anchors on the arete when they reach the last bolt.
By Anonymous Coward
Dec 16, 2004
You might be talking about h-flake, 30' left of rock nazi. I was unable to finish pitch 2 due to weather, hope to get up there in the next few weekends. I'll post it here when it's finished. Sorry for the inconvenience.-JH
By Tom Hanson
Nov 7, 2005
Went back to The Head on Sunday. I truly can't believe that areas like The Sport Park, Clear Creek, The Monastary, even Shelf get so much action when Devils Head has, by far, the best sport climbing in the state. This is, of course, my humble opinion. But really, The Head has about two hundred and twenty sport climbs (5.9 - 5.13) and dozens of stellar trad lines. The rock is the best granite face climbing I've seen in Colorado. It must be the forty minute approach that keeps everyone away. It's too bad that a mere forty minute approach would prevent people from experiencing what is the best sport climbing in The Front Range. If you haven't climbed at The Head you are cheating yourself. Make it your next destination.
By Mike McKinnon
From: Golden, CO
Jul 31, 2006
Went there on 7/30/06 and the flies were everywhere. If you were silent, it sounded like you were in the middle of a beehive with all the swarming. They were not black flies but annoying nonetheless and swarming all over you as you climbed.
By Sorden
From: inside the Bubble, Colorado
Jul 31, 2006
Hey you forgot to mention how hot it was there yesterday! (Other than the swarms of flys and ants). What a cool place! I'd like to know what the locals know; but in the future I will avoid Devil's Head during hotter months. Dirty quality rock, bolted cracks, obscure trails, no water; I loved it! I'll be back in Autumn.
By Tzilla Rapdrilla
Jul 31, 2006
In my 15 years of climbing at Devil's Head, the flies were by far the worst I've ever seen. However, if you stayed in the shade there were very few of them. I've also experienced way more flies in Aspen and Tensleep Canyon recently than ever before too, maybe they're the cause of global warming.
By Patrick Peddy
From: evergreen,co
Dec 20, 2006
Bolts are too close together and the routes are rated on the easy side although you will still find me clipping them. We measured the distance between bolts at the Starcastle to be 42 inches apart, clipable from almost the same stance.
By Tzilla Rapdrilla
May 11, 2007
Rampart Range Road will open on Saturday, May 12, 2007, a late start this year due to the heavy snowpack.
By Kyle P.
From: Lander, WY
Nov 22, 2007
Does anyone know about any new trad routes on the Amphitheater near the Zinn Overlook split off?
By Steven N
From: CO
Jun 13, 2008
Are there any raptor closures for Devil's Head? I thought I saw something on it before....
By Christopher Jones
From: Denver, Colorado
Jun 13, 2008
Yes, there is a raptor closure but I don't know the specifics of which formations.
By Shane Neal
From: Colorado Springs, CO.
Jul 10, 2008
I believe the raptor closure is on Devils Head proper- the trad climbing destination in Hubbels book. Aka- the Dariush of Balanat. A great must do 5.9+. Closed March 1st to July 31st. The sport area has no closure that I am aware of.... Have fun!!
By jhump
Apr 3, 2009
Does anyone know when the Rampart Range Road (access road for D.H.) will reopen for 2009? Also, does it only reopen when conditions allow, or is it based on a mandatory minimum date?
By Ross Keller
From: Parker, CO
Apr 3, 2009
Rampart Range road is scheduled to open 4/10 (conditons permitting)
By Tzilla Rapdrilla
May 26, 2009
Information Sought

There are several new routes in the alcove that lies immediately to the west of Digital Tower. Some are on the west face of Digital Tower itself and others (8 total) are on the east-facing wall adjacent to that. Any information regarding the names, ratings, etc. would be most appreciated.
By Sung
From: Denver, CO
Sep 30, 2009
Just climbed one of the new areas, up your buttress last weekend. Is anyone (Tod?) going to post the info?
By Mike Lane
From: Centennial, CO
Sep 30, 2009
Tod is updating his guidebook. There might be 30-40% more routes in the next edition. In the meantime, enjoy the solitude.
By Micahisaac
From: Longmont, CO
Jul 21, 2010
New guide book is out!
"Rampart Range Rocks" by Tod Anderson is available at Bent Gate right now. You may be able to get a copy from Tod if you see him at the crag.
By Tzilla Rapdrilla
Jul 22, 2010
The book is now available at Wilderness Exchange, Bent Gate, and Neptune's, and will hopefully be at the Mtn. Chalet next week.
By Pinklebear
Jul 22, 2010
The book is awesome. Color photo-topos and hand-drawn topos, great color action shots, history, solid approach Beta. Buy one now!
By Tzilla Rapdrilla
Jul 23, 2010
There a bunch of books now available at Thrillseekers for those on the south side of Denver and they were also shipped to Mtn. Chalet in the Springs and should be available there sometime during the week of July 26th.
By Monty
From: Golden, CO
Jul 28, 2010
Thanks for your work on the new guide! Devil's Head is a wonderful place to escape summer heat.
By Mark McMinn
Mar 4, 2011
David, there's only part of one DH crag in the Rock Climbing Colorado book, and of the 60 or so crags there, it's among the lower 1/4 in overall quality. A quick scan of the book at one of the local shops should be enough for you to decide if it's a worthwhile purchase.
By South Platte Ranger District
Mar 8, 2011
FYI: Parts of Devil's Head climbing area are closed March 1- July 31 every year for Peregrine falcon protection. The official closure order and associated map can be found here:

For questions or more information, please contact the South Platte Ranger District office at 303.275.5610.
By Mike Lane
From: Centennial, CO
Mar 10, 2011
South Platte Ranger District- considering that most of the crags in the closure area are adjacent to Jackson Creek Road and camping areas, wouldn't it make sense to close that road off to motorized vehicles, especially the bikes? I'm sure that BRAAAPPPP BRRAAAAPPP BRRRRAAAPPP from sunrise to sunset every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday doesn't help the peregrines.
By Nathan Van Horn
From: Colorado Springs, CO
Mar 26, 2011
David - be careful using the Climbing Colorado by Green. It's full of misinformation, like sometimes when it should be 1.5 miles in the book, it will say 4 miles... careful, I threw mine away after several discrepancies leading to ruining several climbing outings. It really shouldn't be on any shelves.
By Tzilla Rapdrilla
Apr 12, 2011
The road is now open to Devil's Head, about a month earlier than normal, but you have to go in via Jackson Creek Road as the north gate to Rampart Range Road is still closed for tree removal. The amount of snow is trivial, even on north facing slopes. See pictures for a couple of season opener shots.
By Tzilla Rapdrilla
Apr 15, 2011
Despite the link on some of the DH routes to a raptor closure, none of the routes listed on MP are affected by that closure. In fact, none are even within a mile of the closure boundary. Jackson Creek Road and the activity there are actually closer to the raptor closure area than the routes listed on MP. For reference, there is a crag listed in the old Hubbel book, labeled as Devil's Head that is within the area affected by the raptor closure.
By richard magill
May 9, 2011
I don't think an inaccurate bolt count equates to a safety concern... if you run out of draws, just lower and get some more... it is a sport route, remember?

Nor would "route color-coding" equate to a safety concern.

Tod did a great job on this book, in my humble opinion. But then again, I have never been the type to trust or even read the bolt count in a guidebook.
By Tzilla Rapdrilla
Jul 15, 2011
New pit toilets just installed at the main parking lot, thanks USFS!!

Now, about more parking & keeping the trailhead open longer....
By Simon Hatfield
From: Oakland, CA
Aug 2, 2011
The climbing here is absolutely stellar - amazing, fine-grained, grippy granite that is highly featured and often coated in beautiful map lichen. The setting is scenic, there are always shady climbs, and there are few other climbers.

If you're used to the stout, old school, grading and ground up bolting in other areas of the S'Platte (Turkey rock, Wigwam Creek) you may be (pleasantly?) surprised by the softer grading and lack of runouts.
By Tzilla Rapdrilla
Aug 22, 2011
Considering the recent Climbing Magazine article and the incomplete information contained in it, one could be misled to believe that there is no current guidebook available for Devil’s Head; when in fact, there is a recently published, comprehensive, full color guidebook for the entire area – Rampart Range Rocks. Rampart Range Rocks is available in almost all outdoor retailers in Colorado, Utah, Wyoming, and New Mexico. It should be noted that ALL OF THE PROCEEDS from this book go back to the climbing community primarily in the form of new routes and maintenance of existing ones.

Furthermore, there is an existing core community of climbers dedicated to the area, some of whom who have been climbing there for decades. Everyone is pitching in to help with stewardship of the area and new additions to the group are always welcome.
By Tzilla Rapdrilla
Apr 16, 2012
SEASON OPENER - As of 4/13/12 the road is open to Devil's Head. Be advised that the very north end of Rampart Range Road is still closed for a tree cutting operation, so you have to go up Jackson Creek Road instead. As usual the USFS kept the road closed as long as possible, so there isn't any of the winter snowpack left & the trails are all in great shape, enjoy.
By heppnerd
May 3, 2012
Never been here, and I can't make any sense of the USFS map. Does anyone know what walls are closed for falcon nesting???
By Tom R
From: Denver, CO
May 4, 2012
The closure encompases a group of lesser known crags on the far east side of the mountain. None of the areas described in Tod's guidebook, Rampart Range Rocks, are affected.
By Jason Haas
May 22, 2012
The new comprehensive, color guidebook to the South Platte (including Devil's Head) is available in all the local shops and online at Fixed Pin's website (free shipping). Happy climbing!
By Tom R
From: Denver, CO
May 23, 2012
Rock Climbing Photo: Devil's Head Guide.
Devil's Head Guide.

The Devil's Head guidebook, "Rampart Range Rocks", is available at most Front Range mountain shops.
By Bill Ballace
From: Pullman,WA
May 23, 2012
If you enjoy the climbing at Devil's Head, you should pick up a copy of Rampart Range Rocks! It is a great guide and the proceeds go DIRECTLY into continued development and maintenance of routes at The Head. About 20-50 new routes are established every year by the head crew. Support their efforts and expenses with a purchase of Rampart Range Rocks!
By Richard M. Wright
From: Lakewood, CO
May 25, 2012
Let's look at this:

(1) 400 routes, 400 anchors @ $25/anchor, net = $10,000.

(2) 400 routes, 12 bolts each @ 2.00/bolt, net = $9,600.

(3) 400 routes, 12 hangers each @ 2.50/hanger, net = $12,000.

(4) Drills and batteries over 20 years (roughly), net = $3,000.

(5) Working ropes over 20 years @ $200/rope, net = $8,000.

Hardware subcost final = $ 31,800 (roughly).

Knock off about 10% for trad routes not taking hangers and bolts.

Net final hardware cost = $29,640.00.

No charge for shifting magnetic North by 36 degrees.

Net labor cost = multiply hardware cost by 3 or 4.

Maybe we should take up a collection?
By Dave J
May 25, 2012
Tom, the picture of the guidebook you posted is the one from a few years ago. There is a new one out. Here is a picture of the cover.

It seems weird that there is this arguement about who has done more for the community, Haas or Anderson. Both have done a lot, from developing new routes (both guys doing sport and trad), replacing bolts, building new trails, creating guidebooks, etc., and both have dumped money from their guidebook sales back into the area and both have spent their own hard-earned money to improve the area. Is it really a debate of who has done more for the community or even a specific area? Seems silly to me as each man has probably done more for the community than 90% of the other members of the community. It also seems childish to me, considering these posters that are defending this book were also the ones called out for organizing an attack on Haas on the internet a few months back. None of you did ever answer a basic question I posed and it is this:

Would you rather use a guidebook with correct information or incorrect information? It's that simple. I for one do not want to use a book that INCORRECTLY states:

bolt counts
route lengths
or even where the route actually goes!

Both authors have a different styles in presenting information, but those three things above are facts and should not be different between the two guides (or this website for that matter). I've used the new Haas guidebook, and I have not found any errors in it (that doesn't mean there aren't any). The same cannot be said for the Anderson guide, which has at least one error on almost every page where I've climbed at. I posted this concern before and the "DH Crew" attacked me for it. I took it down to "lighten the mood", but since this seems to have started up again, I for one think there are some saftey concerns with using the Anderson guide. Yes, I could take and lower to get more draws and things, (and I do climb with an extra draw or two), but that seems like a silly counter-arguement. I guess the point is if I'm going to pay for information, I'd like to be paying for CORRECT information.
By Dave J
May 25, 2012
And on the being paid for hardware argument - see the last thread the DH crew started to slander the new book, but to reiterate the general question on that thread as well, since when did we start paying people to bolt routes? You do it because you want to - it's not a job like it is in Europe. Also, it's been very well established one individual didn't even bolt half the routes here. One last thing, which is truly meant to be a point and not simply to start anything, but that cost would be a lot lower if so many cracks weren't bolted. Just saying.
By Mike Lane
From: Centennial, CO
May 26, 2012
They don't do it to get paid you douche. The point is that with buying Tod's book all the proceeds go right back into development and maintainence. With your pathetic spray all over MP lately, you've implied you have been all over DH, at least enough to know to state this:
"which has at least one error on almost every page."
To be so well informed, you clearly must have utilized the various trails and clipped lots of bolts. All of which were products of personal expense; both financially and with all the sweat and getting ripped up by the thorn bushes that clogged every approach to every wall. Yet you have the audacity to fling this shit around without contributing one iota of effort to the place. You are a vile little turd.

This was a sleeping dog until Jason posted up his link; which originally included the book cover. He took it down quickly, but it was noticed. This whole stinking mess arose from FP's aggressive nature in trying to corner the market on beta. No one from the Head Crew thought twice about this until it was forced upon them.

The reasonable stance I thought everyone adopted was go ahead and buy Jason's book, there's no reason not to. But also, if you want to spend some time exploring DH, show your support to those who made it happen by buying Tod's book also.
By Phil Lauffen
From: The Bubble
May 26, 2012
We climb up rocks, then we come down. Sometimes there are bolts in the rocks already, sometimes there aren't.

Some people like climbing up rocks in a particular place so much that they write a book about it.

Surely we all have better things to do than argue about which book about climbing up rocks with or without bolts in it already is better.
By Dave J
May 29, 2012
Delta Bravo, or should I say Mike Lane, I am more than willing to contribute to a trail day. When has an official one ever been scheduled? Is this something you’re willing to organize? Maybe you can call everyone a douche or vile little turds when they sign up. Really good for getting referrals for your plumbing work too I bet. I would also be willing to pitch in some money for replacing old bolts. But no matter how much work someone does for an area, it still doesn’t change the fact that a crappy, error-filled book is still a crappy, error-filled book. I have climbed almost 50 routes here and can post up the errors I found in Tod Anderson’s Rampart Range Rocks guidebook on every route on this website if you’d like. It would take a while, though, as there’d be quite a few comments to make.
By Pinklebear
Jun 6, 2012
A review of Tod Anderson's fine DH book can be found here:
By Alex Andrews
Jun 8, 2012
Other than that, it's a good guide, is lighter then Platte guide by more then half its weight, plus it's $14 less.

The Platte guide has a grade index with page #s, a route index with page #s, and areas, at $38.95, pricey.

Luv how 90% of guidebook authors are sending jobs to CHINA or Korea.
FYI guidebook authors, University of Wisconsin Press, can print a 366 page guide that retails for $20 or less, $16.95 on Amazon, made in USA, Climber's Guide to Devil's Lake.
By Dave J
Jun 11, 2012
I wondered about the China thing too, then I found out from Wolverine that books are something like 2-3 times more expensive to print in the U.S. So, which would you rather have, a book printed here or a book that's $80+? Also, the Boulder Canyon book says it's printed in South Korea, but Fixed Pin's book to Table Mountain is printed in the U.S. I agree, no alphabetical index and no page numbers in the grade index is annoying, but not as annoying as one third of the sport routes having wrong bolt counts, not to mention other errors like where routes go, etc. Kind of reminds me of Bob D'Antonio's Boulder Canyon book in that respect. Yeah, Tod's book is $14 less, but it also has 1,200 less routes in it. I guess it's cool if you only want a select guidebook to the area. Here's a review to the new South Platte book by Matt Samet as well
By slim
Jun 11, 2012
I own and enjoy both of them. To be honest with you, I think the overall layout of Devil's Head is complicated enough that being able to use both books is helpful. This weekend we only saw 2 other pairs of climbers - both of whom were trying to get there bearings.

We usually look at both books to get an overall game plan and then carry Tod's book (as it is lighter and I am quite lazy).

Commenting on the China thing - get used to it. America is headed down that road (right or wrong), and there's probably no going back.
By Dave J
Jun 21, 2012
Ike Rushmore, it's been well established. You are a troll, or in your words, you're only "five months old". Start posting as your real self. I'm not really friends with Jason or the other two authors, although I did climb with Jason once or twice about 5 years ago - a real standup guy. Regardless, I just think you guys need to get called out on for your childish, disrespectful, and immoral actions.
EDIT: many of the posts by the DH crew and trolls like Ike Rushmore have been deleted
By Eva Raphael
From: Boulder, CO
Apr 18, 2013
Does anyone know if Devil's Head is accessible right now? The ranger station is not answering the phone nor returning emails, and I can't seem to find current conditions anywhere....
By Tom R
From: Denver, CO
Apr 18, 2013
Eva, the road is not open yet. The Forest Service is waiting for "the area to dry out to a point where resource damage is minimized". The phone number for the ranger district is 303-275-5610. Call them often and bug them to open the gate.
By Eva Raphael
From: Boulder, CO
Apr 19, 2013
Thanks, Tom. I did try that number several times and got only busy signals. Do you know if there's any other way to access the fire lookout tower, or is the whole area closed?
By Tom R
From: Denver, CO
Apr 19, 2013
Until they open the gate, the only way in involves a very long walk.
By Alex Andrews
Apr 25, 2013
2013 Road Opening,
Update 5/9/13 (source, South Platte Ranger district):
Rampart Range Road is scheduled to open today. 2] Devil's Head Campground opens Memorial Weekend (possibly the weekend before, but that is up the concessionaire ph # 720-445-1485)

South Platte Ranger district, 303-275-5610, the PHONE has not been working for a long time. If you get a FAST BUSY SIGNAL, IT IS STILL NOT WORKING, CALL THE PIKE FOREST SERVICE HEADQUATERS, FOR UPDATES, 719-553-1400.

5/8/13 - it is still not working, you will not get a busy signal know, just some guy's private cell phone.
By LuisC
From: Boulder
Jun 21, 2013
Does anyone know if the road is open now? Are there any other closures due to fires or anything?

Also, what's the best place to camp if we want to climb in the Devil's Head area?

Thanks, never been there, so any info would be appreciated.
By Derek Lawrence
From: Bailey
Jun 21, 2013
Yes, the road is open. There are no closures due to the fires; however, there is a fire ban which affects all the free camping sites. It was not smoky last weekend, but I'm not sure about current conditions (will find out tomorrow...). Free camping can be found all along Rampart Range Rd with the site just past Mile Marker 10 being the only one you can walk to the crags (Wypeyur Buttress and the rest of the Lower West Side). Pay camping available at the Fire Tower trailhead.
By LuisC
From: Boulder
Jun 25, 2013
Thanks a lot, Derek!
By J. Albers
From: Colorado
Aug 20, 2013
Hey folks,

I just thought that I would post up and encourage everyone to keep their eyes open as you fly down Rampart Range Road lest you are able to mitigate a similar situation that my partners and I had to deal with last Saturday. We were coming home from Radio Head and were about to drive around the prominent hairpin turn before hitting the fire lookout intersection, and we came across a pretty raging but unattended campfire. It appears as though someone left two big (3+ foot) logs over hot coals and the wind whipped the fire up. We poured what water we had left to get the fire out and then spent some time digging and stirring to get it "out-out". Anyway, it may be a good idea to carry a bit of extra water and keep your eyes open for this kind of thing.

Also, to the climbers who threw their cigarette butts all over at the base of Crandall Hammer Arete (in the last week or so), you are douchebags. The rest of us aren't your mother, pick up your own sh*t.
By Joe Forrester
From: Palo Alto
Oct 18, 2013
Anyone have good recommendations for good south facing walls/routes now that it has gotten chilly?
By Tzilla Rapdrilla
Oct 18, 2013
There are several areas that get good sun this time of year, the obvious being the Solarium of course, along with Wipeyur, Jungle, Crimpfest, Arena, and Crag Ranch. Since most of the walls face either east or west, you can flip flop to stay in the sun by switching crags about mid-day. Hope this helps.
By Josh Jones
From: Denver, CO
May 27, 2014
Does anyone know which areas are closed for peregrine falcon nesting? The South Platte River District was not helpful....
By Tzilla Rapdrilla
May 27, 2014
Josh, the only area that's in any published guide is Devil's Head Rock down along Jackson Creek. None of the other crags are affected.
By Jason Haas
May 27, 2014
To add to Tod's response, I will say that there are no signs posted down there (old or new). That doesn't make it OK to be there, just saying it would be easy to mistakenly climb in the affected area without realizing it. I left that closure info out of my book, because the rangers I spoke to numerous times over the years didn't know anything about it, and I couldn't find anything on their website. Hubbel printed a closure note in his Platte guidebook for the area, but he didn't remember where he got the information from, so I didn't know the validity of that info. However, when my book went to press, a link with a PDF about the closure appeared on this page from a user named 'South Platte Ranger District', but they never responded to my PM and haven't logged in basically since they posted that, and no one at the ranger district knew who created the account. Anyway, thanks for asking for clarification first to keep access relations good. If you're looking for a guidebook, all the areas listed in Tod Anderson's Rampart Range Rocks book are fully open.
By Todd Leeson
May 28, 2014
Devil's Head closure is listed on the USDA website here: I wonder how much they've monitored the peregrine activity after this report was issued (almost 20 years ago)?!?!
By Josh Jones
From: Denver, CO
May 29, 2014
Thanks, everyone! This is my first trip to Devil's Head, so I appreciate the info. I've looked at the areas listed in Tod's guidebook and compared that to the "Closed Area" shown on Exhibit B of the USDA closure. My understanding is that I will not be encroaching on any of the closed areas. I've also spoke with a ranger at the South Platte Ranger District. She was clueless and very short with me even after I explained my concerns. Needless to say, I have done my due diligence.

Jason: I was looking for your guidebook yesterday. It was sold out at both REI (Denver) and Wilderness Exchange. I was going to compare yours to Tod's and see if there was any significant difference, mainly the content of the DH area. I know there has been a lot of contention on this subject, but do you think your book has the same content (routes, areas) as far as the DH area goes?

Lastly, can anyone recommend any good camping spots? Tod's guidebook states the the camping along Rampart Range Road, north of the DH campground, can sometimes be noisy with ATVs and motorcyclists. Tod recommends camping south of the DH campground along Rampart Range Rd.
By Monty
From: Golden, CO
May 29, 2014
"Tod recommends camping south of the DH campground along Rampart Range Rd."

That is spot on!
By Chris. T.
Jun 25, 2014
Any thoughts on dog access to the Crimpfest Wall?
By Tzilla Rapdrilla
Jun 25, 2014
No problems getting dogs to Crimpfest, & if gets too hot, there you can always swing over to Red Wall or Mirror Wall.
By Chris. T.
Jun 25, 2014
Thanks for the info, T-Zilla! We are stoked to check out this incredible area.
By MeganOttesen
From: IN
Mar 16, 2015
Hi, what chances do you think Devil's Head will be open to climb on April 2? Thanks!
By Tzilla Rapdrilla
Mar 18, 2015
Not likely, as they seem to keep Rampart Range Road closed as long as they can in recent years. You can call 303-275-5610 and ask about the status, which is a good idea before heading up only to find the road gated.
By Samantha Silver
May 16, 2015
Can anyone tell me where the Technicouloir Crag is featured in the Rock and Ice article about Devil's Head?
By Tzilla Rapdrilla
May 18, 2015

The Technicoulior will be added to the Rakkup app sometime this summer. It sits on a steep, north-facing hillside and is best on a hot summer day. It's pretty hard to find, so we have to record the GPS tracks to get there.
By Greg Hand
From: Golden, CO
Jul 22, 2015
Be aware that the trail to the fire lookout has been destroyed. Last night a microburst hit the area. It will require several weeks to clean up.
By Trevor Thrift
From: Denver, Co
Aug 29, 2015
Does anyone know if the park is still closed?
By Greg Hand
From: Golden, CO
Aug 29, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: Trail to lookout cleared.
Trail to lookout cleared.

It has been open almost 2 weeks.
By Chris G.
From: Lakewood
Nov 14, 2015
Anyone know if the gate is still open to Devil's Head with the recent snow?
By Tzilla Rapdrilla
Nov 14, 2015
DH is still open, but there's about 6 inches of snow, so a good set of snow tires or 4WD is needed as the road is not plowed. The rock was sunny and dry today. The road is gated right after Thanksgiving weekend.
By J. Albers
From: Colorado
Jun 13, 2016


Folks should be aware that there is a pretty huge wasp (or some such stinging creature) nest in the ground right next to the staging area for the Unwall. If you are facing the wall while standing in the very nice open flat area at the base of the routes (The Unwall #4 and #6, The Unimpressed etc.), then if you simply turn around you will be staring at a fairly large pine tree that is maybe 15-20 feet from the wall (really the first tree IIRC). Anyway, right on the backside of this tree built into the roots and decomposing tree matter is a ground nest that must be around 4-6 feet in diameter, because the entrance alone is 1-2 feet wide. Anyway, I climbed at that wall and walked past it multiple times last year and didn't even notice the wasps or the nest until my puppy walked a step too close (she didn't even step on the entrance), and the vibration sent a cloud of many, many hundreds (maybe thousands) of wasps streaming out. Needless to say we all ran and luckily the swarm gave up after about 100 yards. My puppy was stung probably 6-10 times. Anyway, probably not a reason to avoid the wall, but certainly something that folks with a dog or small children should be aware of.

Admins, I figure this should be a 'condition report' without a time limit, because I can't imagine this nest is going anywhere anytime soon.
By Erin O'Brien
Apr 17, 2017
While hiking the Devil's Head fire tower trail yesterday, a ranger stopped to talk to us. His message was a warning that they are "probably going to close" the area/trail due to excessive litter, specifically dog waste.

I've already reached out to the Access Fund to understand what if anything we climbers can do about this, but in the meantime, if you go here, pack out all of your trash including the #2s your four-legged friend leaves behind, and it's OK to shame your fellow humans into doing the same. It seems this issue may threaten a number of areas especially those near Denver.

  • *Update - the Access Fund got back to me and after speaking with the Forest Service this appears to be a "misunderstanding", and while dog waste is a concern, they are not planning to close the trail.
By Benjamin Graboyes
Jul 7, 2017
Lost a pair of Maui Jim sunglasses at Chickenhead Ranch. If anyone finds them, please shoot me a message, would be greatly appreciated, and I can pay for shipping plus a little extra!
By Tzilla Rapdrilla
Sep 7, 2017
New parking lot at Mile Marker 10 - The USFS has completed the new lot at the Mile Marker 10 site used for Lower West Side Access, allowing room for a lot more cars. The new lot is just past the campsite #36. There isn't a "P" sign there yet, but I imagine they just haven't gotten around to it yet. It should be noted that this is not a legal campsite and was built for climber parking, so there is no need to park at non-designated sites along the road. Kudos to the USFS for getting this lot completed.

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