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Lookout Mountain Crag

Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
5.10 Crack aka "Thin Fingers" T,TR 
5.10a Face S 
5.7 Arete TR 
5.7 Dihedral T,TR 
5.7 Face TR 
5.8 Crack T,TR 
5.9 Crack aka "Into the Void" T,TR 
5.9 Face S 
Changing Corners TR 
Shake 'N' Bake T,S 
Unsorted Routes:

Lookout Mountain Crag Rock Climbing 

Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Location: 39.749, -105.2426 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 36,860
Administrators: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Darrin Stein on Feb 12, 2002  with updates from Ethan Little


49° | 40°

52° | 37°

59° | 42°

63° | 44°

62° | 46°
You & This Area
Best climbs for YOU in this area
Your opinion of this PAGE:    [3 people like this page.]
BETA PHOTO: Lookout Mountain Crag. Most of the routes are on t...


This crag has dark granite (I think), and it is approximately 65' high and the same in width. There are two sport and four trad climbs with multiple TRs in between. There are two sets of two bolt anchors on the face, above the roof. It's a stretch to set up a TR on those, so be careful.


A. 5.7 Face, 7, 1p, gear or TR.
B. 5.7 Dihedral, 7, 1p, gear.
C. 5.7 Arete, 7, 1p, TR.
D. 5.9 Crack aka "Into the Void", 9, 1p, 60', gear.
E. 5.10a Face, 10-, 1p, bolts.
F. 5.10 Crack aka "Thin Fingers", 10- C0/A0-1, 1p, gear.
G. 5.9 Face, 9, 1p, bolts.
H. 5.8 Crack, 8, 1p, 45', gear.

Eds. Beware of rattlesnakes here!

Getting There 

From US 6, take Lookout Mountain road 1.7 miles to a parking pullout on the right side. If that is full, go around the switchback and pull off on the left side. The trail goes East of the first pullout mentioned and puts you on top of the crag. From there you can go left and down to the base. The trail down is loose, so be cautious.

Post Rock Cleaning Note 

After a rock cleaning effort, the top left side of the crag has changed. At least one set of anchors is no longer there. Please be careful.

Rock Climbing Photo: This is now the top of this face and the corner. T...
This is now the top of this face and the corner. The anchor is back behind vantage point.

Commerical Permits 

Per Robert Pearson: JeffCo Open Space issues commercial permits for this crag. They are supposed to still share the crag with other climbers. Call Cathy at Open Space 303-271-5981 for details.

Climbing Season

Weather station 2.0 miles from here

10 Total Climbing Routes

['4 Stars',0],['3 Stars',2],['2 Stars',7],['1 Star',1],['Bomb',0]

Classic Climbing Routes in Lookout Mountain Crag

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Lookout Mountain Crag:
5.7 Dihedral   5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b     Trad, TR, 1 pitch   
5.8 Crack   5.8- 5b 16 VI- 14 VS 4c     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 50'   
Changing Corners   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     TR, 1 pitch, 60'   
5.9 Face   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Sport, 1 pitch   
5.9 Crack aka "Into the Void"   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 60'   
5.10 Crack aka "Thin Fingers"   5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b C1     Trad, TR, Aid, 1 pitch, 40'   
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Lookout Mountain Crag

Featured Route For Lookout Mountain Crag
Rock Climbing Photo: Kevin Currigan; August 31, 2001.  Photo by Kara Ch...

5.8 Crack 5.8- 5b 16 VI- 14 VS 4c  Colorado : Golden : ... : Lookout Mountain Crag
This route is the obvious serrated crack on the right side of the face. Excellent jugs and jams lead to the steep crux (5.8). Short but fun climbing overall....[more]   Browse More Classics in Colorado

Photos of Lookout Mountain Crag Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: The parking for the crag.
The parking for the crag.
Rock Climbing Photo: Wow, that is easy access.
BETA PHOTO: Wow, that is easy access.
Rock Climbing Photo: Quick guide.
BETA PHOTO: Quick guide.
Rock Climbing Photo: Lookout Mountain Crag - Routes E thru H.
BETA PHOTO: Lookout Mountain Crag - Routes E thru H.
Rock Climbing Photo: Sean Topp taking the quick way down.
Sean Topp taking the quick way down.
Rock Climbing Photo: 5.8 crack.
5.8 crack.
Rock Climbing Photo: Isabel on route, Frank belaying, and Unknown Kid.
Isabel on route, Frank belaying, and Unknown Kid.
Rock Climbing Photo: What a great view from the Lookout mountain Crag o...
What a great view from the Lookout mountain Crag o...

Comments on Lookout Mountain Crag Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Aug 28, 2017
By Casey Bernal
From: Arvada, CO
Feb 13, 2002
I believe the granite here is metamorphosed. It creates interesting patterns in the rock that make the climbing interesting. It is definitely different than the South Platte and Boulder Canyon. The few routes here are short, so don't plan on making a day of it. But if you in the Golden area, have some quick burns and then head to the Golden City Brewery. Fun stuff.
By Kevin Currigan
From: Lakewood
Feb 16, 2002
And-keep your eyes open for rattlesnakes. My buddy Andy just about stepped on one last summer. These guys are about an inch in diameter and two feet long. When they coil up on the ground they look just like a little, dark green, cow pie. They are very hard to see.
By Matt White
Feb 20, 2002
Last year somebody placed a number of new unnecessary bolts on this crag. Several of the bolts were partially placed, then abandoned. Maybe the bolter was using his short little pr#%k as a depth-gage?

Anyway, I just removed several of these bolts, and filled in about ten partially-drilled holes. From now on, if you want to toprope this slab, sling a damn tree.

And don't let me catch you (whoever you were) practicing to be a Sport Park grid-bolter on this crag. If I do catch you, we will be having an unpleasant discussion about spreading your filth were others have been happliy climbing since before you were a glimmer in your dad-uncle's eye.

By Matt White
Feb 27, 2002
Golden climbers (and particularly students from the School of Mines) have been teaching people to climb at this crag for decades. It is small, but it is very special to a lot of people. We'd like to keep it that way. Please respect the area and the rock. Pack out your bottles and trash, and PLEASE leave the bolt kit at home. Thanks.
By Matt Rutledge
Feb 28, 2002
This is one of the greatest rocks I've ever had a chance to play on. It has just about everything. The approach is about thirty seconds to the top of the rock. Once there you can rap down (if there is an open anchor), or scrable down a nice gully. The climbing is great. Everything from cracks to thin face moves. Almost everything has a roof to work your way over. Long slings will enable you to TR just about every route on the rock. A little gear will make it even better. (Please don't plug every placement for one anchor...)

I too was shocked to see a bunch of new bolt anchors last summer. The new anchor on top of the easy slab furthest east was a nice touch. I was never patient enough to get a good anchor set up there. The others seemed redundant. I was also confused why the bolter didn't bother to retro bolt the bottom bolt on the western most sport climb. You can tell where the bolt used to be, and if you take the bottom most start to the route, it gets a little run out at the bottom.
By Anonymous Coward
Jun 20, 2002
Today, I saw a rattlesnake at the bottom of the crag. It was very large and rattling. It was near the bushes. Be careful!!
By Anonymous Coward
Jun 28, 2002
By the way this rock is not granite it is gneiss. A very highly metomophosed rock. Just thought I would point that out since people seem confused about the rock type. By the way I agree with Matt keep your bolt kit at home.
By Steve Matthys
May 9, 2003
[Ed. Note - Moved from duplicate posting]

Details: This area has just about everything: trad, sport, top rope, and aid. The rock is of ver high quality. The crag was a very short approach, 30 seconds off the road. It has very good beginner cracks to toprope, a 5.10 finger crack that you can clean aid at a very easy A1, a few sport routes in the 5.9-5.11 difficulty. This place has just about everything in a fairly small area, so it is a great place to take friends that climb at different levels.'

Get There: Follow 6th Ave into Golden and turn left on 19th St (at the stop light). Follow 19th as it winds its way up though the neighborhood and onto the mountain itself. The crags are on the north side of the Mountain, about 1.8 miles up the road. There are small pulloffs on both sides of the road and a path leading down to the crags, follow the path for 30ft to the top of the cliff. You can either set up a rappel from the bolts or walk down to the base. Note: If you go below the huge "M" on the mountain then you have gone to far.
By Anonymous Coward
Oct 18, 2003
Seems to me that some of the cold shut anchors up top could due with replacement...Would anyone be upset if I were to replace them. Most notaly, the cold shuts atop the 5.10a face climb. One is VERY rusted and the other is spun.
By Anonymous Coward
Jul 28, 2004
Was climbing last tues. morning at a large group of kids from the Colorado Academy. 8 12 year olds showed up to climb they set up a bunch of top ropes the two instructors were talking about placing a bunch of new bolts so it will be easier to set up top ropes. I told them that this spot didn't need any bolts but they really didn't care.
By Bryan Kulla
From: Arvada, CO
Jun 10, 2006
I noticed it has been a while since someone posted here. Is this area still able to be climbed?
By Louis Marketos
Jul 17, 2006
It's still there and open to climbing. I was there recently. There was a group from CMC there who had topropes set up on all the climbs except the 5.7 Face and Dihedral. They were friendly enough and offered to let us climb on their ropes so it wasn't too bad despite being crowded.
I had a new climber with me and the 5.7 Face was great for teaching him to trust his shoes.
By Alan Klein
Jul 28, 2006
Several of the route descriptions on the list describe the same obvious routes, but with different ratings.
A good photo of the entire crag, with numbers, would help narrow this down a bit. Sorry, I didn't bring a camera with me yesterday.
By Lee Smith
Aug 2, 2006
Alan, I agree. How can a small crag with maybe 6 routes have 12 routes listed, all with different ratings?

I will take a camera and see if I can identify the routes better.
By M. Morley
From: Sacramento, CA
Sep 28, 2006
Fun "little" spot with surprisingly nice rock. Zero approach. In 2 hours' time, you can pretty much climb every variation possible.
By Allen Hill
From: FIve Points, Colorado and Pine
Apr 19, 2007
I took my nephew up here today and I must admit it's a really great little crag. The rock quality is fantastic and for a 12 year old it's got it all. Easy trad leads, a stiffer sport climb, and a fun roof to boot. For some reason it reminded me of some climbs I've done in north Wales. Similar rock I would guess.
By uncasid
Jun 17, 2007
I left some gear on the big overhang climb. If anyone found it, please let me know. We came back within 10 mins and it was gone.
By Chris Chaney
From: Stanton, Kentucky
Feb 27, 2008
Why is this called "Lookout Mountain" crag if it is actually on Mount Zion?
By Brian Tessier
From: Lakehood, Colorado
Feb 28, 2008
I believe Jeffco open space refers to it as the "Car Crash Crag"
By GeoffElson Elson
Sep 26, 2008
This crag has great rock quality and the trad here is really fun, but beware of crowds and bullshit top-rope anchors to climb around.
By Robert Pearson
Jun 22, 2009
Climbing Sunday at Lookout Mountain, Golden, Alan stepped on what looked like good rock on the Hard Smear route, just left of the Hand/Foot Crack (this is "H" on the Mtn Project page). It broke off, sending a 'large piece of flake' about 20 feet into us. Amazingly it went between four of us and stopped after hitting a pack. Alan et al tapped the remaining rock flake and discovered a 12" by 4' or so section that is hollow underneath, just waiting for a hard smear step to break it off and nail a belayer.

Second rock problem is the large slab just right of the Hand/Foot Crack (again "H"). The reason there are slabs in the first place is 'years ago' the bottom part of the slabs have broken off, leaving a fun slab to climb up and over. Unfortunately the slab in question has had enough freeze-thaw cycles to begin to look like it 'might' break loose. In addition the top of the slab has a delta piece that John was able to rock when he grabbed it, so it is 'loose and balanced'. The delta piece is 2000-3000 pounds; the complete slab is 20,000 pounds, more or less.

Alan marked both the flake and the delta slab with chalk "X". But chalk washes off.

I hope to contact the county et al about taking my little 5# sledge and breaking the flake off. The delta 'might' be movable with a crowbar. The full slab is another problem. Remember some of the rock slides in Yosemite that buried camping climbers ?
By Greg D
From: Here
Jun 23, 2009
If you need a sledge, maybe it is not ready to come off. Be careful, wear a helmut and never hang out below other climbers.
By Robert Pearson
Sep 7, 2009
Found: Flashlight at base of cliff. Identify to claim.
By Stubby-Ian Howells
From: Denver, CO
May 29, 2010
Just curious which way the crag faces. IE, does it have summer shade? or Winter Sun?
By Casey Bernal
From: Arvada, CO
May 30, 2010
The crag faces North - no winter sun, good summer shade (except midday sun can be in your eyes...).
By Michael Slater
From: Denver
Jul 5, 2011
Was there yesterday from about 10:30 till 3 and it is a great little area. We had climbers ranging from first time in a harness to a climber who has a guide service and all had a blast. The approach can be a bit sketchy as you have to climb down some steep rocks, bring some approach shoes. The area is shady in the morning and even late in the afternoon there are places to get out of the sun.

WARNING, on the 5.10a face there were two loose bolts. I think they were the second and fourth. The climber was able to finger tighten them and continue (not recommended). We didn’t have a wrench, so please consider bringing one if you are headed up shortly.
By Eben Daggett
From: Boulder, CO
May 31, 2012
Was here today. PLEASE be very aware and careful and bring a snake bite kit. Had a run in with a HUGE and AGGRESSIVE rattlesnake today. Luckily, no one was bit, but he was chillin' in a bush on the main trail down from the road to the top anchors. He was rattling like crazy and attempted a strike on my leg. Please be safe.
By Robert Pearson
Jul 28, 2014
Climbed 7/26/2014.
JeffCo Open Space now calls this "Car Crash Crag", no idea why. They also issue permits to commercial groups who supposedly can 'take' all the routes, but I was told they are still supposed to 'share' the crag. This is done to avoid overcrowding and conflicts but could easily lead to commercial groups taking whatever and whenever. Call Cathy at Open Space 303-271-5981 for details.
By Gajewski
Aug 11, 2015
Left some webbing and 4 locking biners on top of the 5.7 on the far climber's left of the wall. If anyone picked them up, let me know!
By Ben Coryell
Oct 21, 2016
The far left slabs of Lookout Mountain Crag are now much safer. We trundled some huge blocks today. Everything should clean up with a good rain! Most of the remaining debris is loose soil and smaller rocks.

There are still two bolts remaining; however, it would probably be best to bring a static line to set your anchor with. In the meantime, be careful out there!
By Noah Yetter
From: Lakewood, CO
Oct 23, 2016
To clarify the above (just by observation, I was not involved), the rock which hosted the relatively-well-placed anchor chains for the leftmost routes is no longer there. That area is now very loose soil and quite a few loose rocks; do not attempt to traverse it. To set up a TR here, you will once again need to use the old anchor bolts which are perhaps 6 feet back from the edge. Bring some long webbing or cord.
By AleyaJean
From: Golden, CO
May 14, 2017
To continue the observations on the area where the rocks were trundled last year, the soil continues to erode making access the two bolt anchor difficult. Set up there yesterday and moved a few football-sized lose rocks before they came down on the group below. Make sure to let people below know you'll be working above them, and be prepared to extend the anchor pretty far down below you.
By Aaron.Willey
Aug 28, 2017
GF left my belay device at the bottom of the 5.7 route. It was a green Mega Jul, if someone would be so kind to get it back to me, there will be a reward involved. Thanks!

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