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Fern Canyon

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Fern Canyon Rock Climbing 

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Elevation: 7,000'
Location: 39.965, -105.2885 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 31,545
Administrators: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Leo Paik on Oct 17, 2006

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  • Description 

    This is an organizational entry suggested by one our users to help with clarify crag locations for those less familiar. This is a minor gully/canyon on the NE side of Bear Peak in the southern half of the Flatirons. It hosts numberous shorter 1-2 pitch climbs of a moderate to advanced level of difficulty. The approach is often 45-60 minutes, although the hike itself is a bonus for the day. Nonetheless, there are some beautiful routes in this area. The great majority of routes here are face climbs. Many routes have a southerly aspect, which permits wonderful climbing on sunny fall & winter days.

    Crags accessed from this Fern Canyon Trail include: Nebel Horn Ridge, Onoclea, Pellea, East Ridge, Fiddlehead, The Goose Eggs, The Goose, Mars Block, & Seal Rock. However, for the purpose of this organization, we'll include those crags ordinarily approached from the Fern Canyon trail: Nebel Horn, East Ridge, Onoclea, Pellea, Fiddlehead, The Goose Eggs, & Mars Block.

    Some fine routes here include: East Face/S Goose Egg, 5.2 R; East Face/Pellea, 5.5 R; Rad for Rookies, 8; Rainbow Bridge, 9; Fountain of Youth, 10; A Shadow Sickness, 10; Edgemaster, 10; Leprechaun Promenade, 10 R; Everpresent Lane, 10+; Lucky Charms aka Rip This Joint, 10+; Ilga Grimpeur, 11; Lightning Bolt Arete, 11; the short but gorgeous Ruby Slipper, 11; Fluorescent Gray, 11 R; Slabmaster, 12-, Exile, 12-; Castles Made of Sand, 12-; Chains of Love, 12; & the controversial but historically significant Superfresh, 12+.

    Getting There 

    The closest approach is likely from NCAR at the West end of Table Mesa at the south end of Boulder. From here, hike West to the Mesa Trail, go South on the trail down into the Bear Canyon drainage, continue up to the Fern Canyon sign. Ascend this pretty trail to various point at which you wander NW toward the route of choice.

    Useful Links for Raptor Closures 

    Per fossana:

    Climbing Season

    Weather station 2.2 miles from here

    61 Total Climbing Routes

    ['4 Stars',6],['3 Stars',21],['2 Stars',25],['1 Star',8],['Bomb',1]

    Classic Climbing Routes in Fern Canyon

    Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Fern Canyon:
    East Face/Onoclea   5.3 3+ 10 III 9 VD 3a     Trad   Onoclea
    East Face/Fiddle Head   5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c     Trad   Fiddlehead
    East Face/Pellea   5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a R     Trad, 3 pitches   Pellea
    Rads For Rookies   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Sport, 1 pitch   Nebel Horn Ridge
    Rainbow Bridge   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Trad, Sport, 1 pitch   Nebel Horn Ridge
    A Shadow Sickness   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 80'   Fiddlehead
    Fountain of Youth   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b     Trad, Sport, 1 pitch   East Ridge
    Leprechaun Promenade   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b R     Sport, TR, 1 pitch, 60'   Fiddlehead
    Everpresent Lane   5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b     Trad, 1 pitch, 80'   East Ridge
    Edgemaster   5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 70'   East Ridge
    False Gods, Real Men   5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b     Trad, Sport   Nebel Horn Ridge
    Lucky Charms aka Rip This Joint   5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b     Trad, 2 pitches   Fiddlehead
    Iron Cross   5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c     Trad, Sport, 2 pitches, 100'   East Ridge
    Fluorescent Gray   5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a PG13     Trad, 1 pitch, 90'   East Ridge
    Ruby Slipper   5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a     Trad, 1 pitch, 50'   Nebel Horn Ridge
    Castles Made of Sand   5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Sport, 1 pitch   Fiddlehead
    Slabmaster aka Stealth Bomber   5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 85'   East Ridge
    Exile   5.12a/b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6a     Sport   East Ridge
    Chains of Love   5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b     Trad, Sport, 2 pitches   Fiddlehead
    Superfresh   5.12d 7c 28 IX 28 E6 6b     Sport, 1 pitch   Superfresh Boulder
    Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Fern Canyon

    Featured Route For Fern Canyon
    Rock Climbing Photo: Near the crux traverse. Photo by Ico.

    Fluorescent Gray 5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a PG13  Colorado : Flatirons : ... : East Ridge
    This route is located just above the huge gap in the East Ridge. It follows a beautiful face just right of a jagged, left-leaning arete. Start with the burley, slightly overhanging hand and finger crack in a gully. A few 5.10 moves right off the deck lead to a thin, reachy 11b section (lower crux). Continue up to a broken ledge with a small tree below the first bolt. Gear isn't great at the ledge, I slung a horn but some tricky nut placements may also work to protect the moves up to the firs...[more]   Browse More Classics in Colorado

    Photos of Fern Canyon Slideshow Add Photo
    Rock Climbing Photo: The Nebel Horn from the north ridge of Bear Peak.
    The Nebel Horn from the north ridge of Bear Peak.
    Rock Climbing Photo: Since the route "Superfresh" is often re...
    Since the route "Superfresh" is often re...
    Rock Climbing Photo: When seen from the South, Fern Canyon reveals its ...
    BETA PHOTO: When seen from the South, Fern Canyon reveals its ...

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