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Fifth Flatiron

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Fifth Flatiron Rock Climbing 

Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Elevation: 6,900'
Location: 39.9816, -105.2931 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 13,739
Administrators: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Mike Sofranko on Nov 15, 2001


73° | 46°

57° | 39°

47° | 33°

49° | 32°

54° | 36°
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Heroic photo of climbers on next peak to North.

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  • Description 

    The Fifth Flatiron is the last numbered flatiron. At first, it can be slightly difficult to pick out of the jumble of rocks to the south of the Third Flatiron, but it has a distinctive north ridge and a very pointy summit. The Fifth is much more isolated than the First and Second, and hardly sees any traffic in comparison. However, don't expect a wilderness experience for your jaunt up the Fifth, as the Royal Arch is just below and day hikers make lots of noise. Also, it can be challenging to know you are on the right Flatiron from its base.

    Getting There 

    Begin at Chautauqua Park, and hike up the road to the Bluebell Shelter. Follow the signs for the Royal Arch. After going over Sentinel Pass and descending steeply, you will curve around the bottom of the 4th Flatiron. Finding the bottom of the right side of the Fifth is slightly difficult on a first visit. The Tangen Towers are between the 4th and 5th Flatirons. Head up to the south of the Tangen Towers and then left towards the bottom of the Fifth. Bushwhacking may be required; however, you can reach the right side after going uphill from the Royal Arch and heading right. To reach the left side of the east face, continue to the Royal Arch, and then head straight uphill. There is a dirty flatironette in front and right of the Fifth, so keep this in mind when trying to find the start of your route.

    Climbing Season

    Weather station 3.4 miles from here

    5 Total Climbing Routes

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

    Classic Climbing Routes in Fifth Flatiron

    Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Fifth Flatiron:
    Cat Scratches   5.2 3 8 II 8 D 2c     Trad, 5 pitches, 700'   
    East Face, North Side   5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c R     Trad, 7 pitches   
    East Face South Side or Left   5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a     Trad, 3 pitches   
    Northeast Face   5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b R     Trad, 4 pitches   
    Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Fifth Flatiron

    Featured Route For Fifth Flatiron
    Rock Climbing Photo: Belay at the end of P3 (w 60m). Typically Flatiron...

    East Face, North Side 5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c Colorado : Flatirons : ... : Fifth Flatiron
    This is a long and beautiful moderate route you won't have to wait in line for. Take the first approach along the edge of the Tangen Tower to the base. The route begins in a wide crack about 20 feet left of a huge tree filled gash. The route can be done as 6 long pitches, though I did it in 7 because of paranoia after running out of rope just short of a tree on pitch 3.Climb up the crack for 30 feet, and then move left on to the face left of the crack. 4 long pitches climbing mostly left of ...[more]   Browse More Classics in Colorado

    Photos of Fifth Flatiron Slideshow Add Photo
    Rock Climbing Photo: Scott approaching the upper headwall on the north ...
    Scott approaching the upper headwall on the north ...
    Rock Climbing Photo: The free rap off of the Fifth.
    The free rap off of the Fifth.
    Rock Climbing Photo: Ego shot of Alan Chudnow at the top.  Removed anch...
    Ego shot of Alan Chudnow at the top. Removed anch...
    Rock Climbing Photo: Another shot of the Fifth.
    Another shot of the Fifth.
    Rock Climbing Photo: Summit from the west.
    Summit from the west.
    Rock Climbing Photo: East Face routes:  A. East Face Left - red. B. Cat...
    BETA PHOTO: East Face routes: A. East Face Left - red. B. Cat...
    Rock Climbing Photo: 5th from the 3rd.
    5th from the 3rd.
    Rock Climbing Photo: Antiques on the summit.
    Antiques on the summit.
    Rock Climbing Photo: Nice single rope rap.
    Nice single rope rap.
    Rock Climbing Photo: Tracy leading the first pitch on the left side. Th...
    Tracy leading the first pitch on the left side. Th...
    Rock Climbing Photo: Second pitch on left hand side route. Belay was a ...
    Second pitch on left hand side route. Belay was a ...
    Rock Climbing Photo: Fifth Flatiron from near Woods Quarry.
    BETA PHOTO: Fifth Flatiron from near Woods Quarry.

    Comments on Fifth Flatiron Add Comment
    Show which comments
    By George Bell
    From: Boulder, CO
    May 28, 2002
    After rapping off this rock, DO NOT descend to the north! This is very brushy and also it is difficult to figure out how to get back to the Royal Arch Trail. Instead, head south, up over a small col, then drop steeply down to the south of the Fifth Flatiron. There is a crude trail in this area which will take you all the way back down to Royal Arch.
    By Anonymous Coward
    Jun 12, 2004
    Does anyone else think this one isn't worth the effort as far as the Flats go due to the fernwhacking and low rock qual?
    By Andrew Gram
    From: Salt Lake City, UT
    Jun 16, 2004
    I didn't think there was bad rock or much in the way of fernwhacking on the route i submitted. One of my favorite Flatirons.
    By George Bell
    From: Boulder, CO
    Jun 16, 2004
    Actually, on the scale of Flatiron approaches, getting to the Fifth is pretty easy. All the routes in fact start less than 100 yards off the Royal Arch Trail, although it can be an unpleasant 100 yards, especially if you don't go the easiest way. I remember the rock on the Fifth as pretty good, and the summit itself is really cool. I guess the worst rock is on the back side, I can remember rock flaking off on the rappel, this is certainly something to watch for if you are under someone rappelling off. There is now a pretty good trail going down just south of the Fifth, this requires that you climb up slightly after the rappel, then descend the "trail". Do not go down north (climber's left) after the rappel!
    By Stich
    From: Colorado Springs, Colorado
    Nov 4, 2007
    The rappel is nice. You have a big, beefy CMC eye bolt. Next to it are an old rusty pin in a crack, a rusty 1/4 inch rivet with paper thin hanger, and another 1/4 inch piece of mank with an aluminum hanger that resembles a beer can pull tab. It's like a mini-museum of pro.
    By Aaron Martinuzzi
    Jul 14, 2009
    The Fifth is definitely my favorite Flatiron thus far. The North Face and Northeast Face (NE Buttress in Jason Haas's guide) are both awesome routes. The lichen on NE Face would clean up with a little more traffic - my partners and I both thought that route was better than Direct East Face on the First. The summit pitch is a ton of fun, and the slab climbing down lower is pretty thrilling. The North Face is just as much fun, just with bigger holds.
    By Long Ranger
    From: Boulder, Colorado
    Jun 28, 2016
    Soloing the last 10 meters to the summit rivals kissing a girl good night on a first date.
    By Brendan Blanchard
    From: Boulder, CO
    Sep 10, 2016
    I'll echo what LongRanger said. At least for the NE Buttress, the route is okay, but the last section after the NE downclimb's notch is GOOD.

    As for the approach and descent, there's a little irony in the fact that the approach is VERY easy to find once you've done the descent. For those who haven't done it: hike until the Royal Arch is in view up and left of you, look for three ~12" diameter trees on your right, and follow the faint trail between two of them until reaching the base of the southern end of the Fifth, follow packed ferns to your route of choice. The descent to the south of the Fifth is quite obvious now and will come down to meet up with the first 100 or so yards of the approach.

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