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Gunnison River Valley

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After Sch ool Special T,TR 
Illusional - aka Talus Hill Climb T 

Gunnison River Valley Rock Climbing 

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Elevation: 9,400'
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Administrators: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Greg Sievers on Feb 17, 2009
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The approach line (view to north).


There are endless, wicked, multi-pitch lines on the entire south-facing wall, all along the 13 mile long road south of Lake City, toward Sherman. Likely very ephemeral. There are a few plums to be picked, but they may involve crossing private property? especially Sunshine Falls.

For Invisible Ice, it's 0.5 miles south of Lake San Cristobal.

Ski or hike up the tree'd gully left of the scree slope. (Scree may be snow covered on a big snow year). Ascend 500 vertical feet, aiming for the left end of the visible wall above. One hour should get you there. At the base of the wall, traverse right 1/4 mile to the base of the ice. It may get a little sun in the afternoon.

Getting There 

6 miles south of Lake City on CR-3 (1/2 mile west of the intersection of CR7 & CR-33)(half way to Sherman). There is a parking pull off on the left about 200 yards south/past the start gully. (This is also immediately south of the small, cliffed corridor you drive through along the river).
Cross the River and beeline it for the cliff band above. Ascend in the trees, left of the image posted here.

Climbing Season

Weather station 1.7 miles from here

2 Total Climbing Routes

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

Classic Climbing Routes in Gunnison River Valley

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Gunnison River Valley:
Illusional - aka Talus Hill Climb   WI4- PG13     Trad, Ice, 1 pitch, 130'   
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Gunnison River Valley

Featured Route For Gunnison River Valley
Rock Climbing Photo: Illusional ice.

Illusional - aka Talus Hill Climb WI4- PG13  Colorado : CO Ice & Mixed : ... : Gunnison River Valley
The top 1/3 of this route is occasionally visible from CR3 as you drive south toward Sherman. It's a pure ice route. The approach is straightforward.There is now an 8mm rope/sling around a 12" spruce about 20' beyond the crest of the ice, to rap the route.There is a nice WI2 ice ramp along the falls left side.As you view the cliff band, this route is seen in 'the' notch. I doubt you'd want to try to walk off - it would suck, and take forever.= Cross the Gunnison River at a point just south of ...[more]   Browse More Classics in Colorado

Photos of Gunnison River Valley Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Rapping from top. CR7 visible below.
Rapping from top. CR7 visible below.
Rock Climbing Photo: Brian Verhulst leading.
Brian Verhulst leading.
Rock Climbing Photo: The view from the road.
The view from the road.
Rock Climbing Photo: East Valley wall ice (WI4).
East Valley wall ice (WI4).

Comments on Gunnison River Valley Add Comment
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By Greg Sievers
From: Bozeman, MT
Feb 18, 2009
We're seeking information on this route. As with most crag-sized ice, it's probably been climbed before. However, we did not find any sign of rap slings, and it would be pretty difficult to get off this cliff any other way.
By R.Rees
Feb 22, 2009
I believe it's called Classic Cruise. It's in the old Colorado Ice guide. Been looking at it for years but haven't made the walk yet, looks sweet.
By Greg Sievers
From: Bozeman, MT
Feb 24, 2009
Nope. Not Classic Cruise. CC is across Lake San Cristobal. I checked with Jack Roberts to help clear that up. We did that also. There were no signs of slings, anchors or any other descent options on this route (however, the 1998 JR Guide book does have several discrepancies, on both Classic Cruise and other routes that are posted as being located off Hwy 149) so if you're positive, please tell us more details.
By R.Rees
Feb 26, 2009
Sorry, it is called Classic Cruise. It is located very accurately in Charlie Fowler's guide San Juan Ice. I did go up there and climb it the other day and Fowler's description of the climb and location is right on par. What you are calling Classic Cruise is what I have heard called The After School special, and it is fun climbing and well-farmed.

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