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Cob Rock
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Aid Crack T 
Brownies In The Basin T,S 
Corn on the Cob T,S 
Crystal Arete 
Devil's Dream T 
East Crack T 
Eat Left T 
Eat Right T 
Empor T 
Empor Scary Variant T 
Face Problem 
Face Route T,TR 
Game, The 
Goat, The T,TR 
Headless Horseman, The 
Hug, The 
Hurley Direct T 
Huston Crack T 
Indistinction T,S 
Left Huge aka The Hug Left 
Mantle Arete 
Ms. Fanny Le Pump T 
Night Vision T,S 
North Face Center T 
North Face Left T 
Northwest Corner T 
Othello T 
Right Crack T 
Sleepy Hollow 
South Crack (Unknown) T 
Thunder Road S 
Under The Boardwalk 
West Cracks T 
West Dihedral T 
West Rib T 
Unsorted Routes:

North Face Center 

YDS: 5.7+ French: 5a Ewbanks: 15 UIAA: V+ ZA: 13 British: MVS 4b

Type:  Trad, 2 pitches, 220'
Original:  YDS: 5.7 French: 5a Ewbanks: 15 UIAA: V+ ZA: 13 British: MVS 4b [details]
FA: Layton Kor, Chuck Naylor, 1959
Page Views: 27,023
Submitted By: Michael Komarnitsky on Jan 1, 2001

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (391)
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Ben leading North Face Center, Cob Rock.

Seasonal Closure MORE INFO >>>


This is 2 pitches.

P1. Start at base of North face between 2 huge boulders, go up crack and after 50 feet continue in crack system to the right....keep going until you reach a small pillar just over the right edge of a huge right facing corner...belay here. (Eds. beware of a huge, loose block.)

P2. Head up hand crack that curves right (tricky crux, flared jams), then head straight up to summit. You can avoid this crux finish, and from the belay, go left up huge V-slot (5.0) to summit, but why?


Standard rack.

Photos of North Face Center Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Traverse to get to Cob Rock.
Traverse to get to Cob Rock.
Rock Climbing Photo: Eric at the base of the start. The person up highe...
Eric at the base of the start. The person up highe...
Rock Climbing Photo: North Face Center From Blob Rock.
North Face Center From Blob Rock.
Rock Climbing Photo: Coming up to a great belay perch about 110' up.
Coming up to a great belay perch about 110' up.
Rock Climbing Photo: Leif is getting tired and grumpy, starting second ...
Leif is getting tired and grumpy, starting second ...
Rock Climbing Photo: This is the V-notch exit from the belay.  It is ea...
BETA PHOTO: This is the V-notch exit from the belay. It is ea...
Rock Climbing Photo: Christa Cline leading the crux hand crack on the f...
Christa Cline leading the crux hand crack on the f...
Rock Climbing Photo: Clint Locks on top of second pitch of North Face C...
Clint Locks on top of second pitch of North Face C...
Rock Climbing Photo: Cob Rock, First Pitch 50 feet up.
Cob Rock, First Pitch 50 feet up.
Rock Climbing Photo: Cob Rock from parking area w/ several climbers on ...
BETA PHOTO: Cob Rock from parking area w/ several climbers on ...
Rock Climbing Photo:
Rock Climbing Photo: Don Owens stepping right to gain the first belay l...
Don Owens stepping right to gain the first belay l...
Rock Climbing Photo: Finishing the second pitch. Note and beware of the...
BETA PHOTO: Finishing the second pitch. Note and beware of the...
Rock Climbing Photo: Peter Dillon nearing the airy belay pedestal at th...
Peter Dillon nearing the airy belay pedestal at th...
Rock Climbing Photo: On the first pitch, looking down.
On the first pitch, looking down.
Rock Climbing Photo: Lee sends N Face Center p2.
Lee sends N Face Center p2.
Rock Climbing Photo: Near the top of the first pitch.
BETA PHOTO: Near the top of the first pitch.

Comments on North Face Center Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Oct 21, 2016
By Anonymous Coward
Sep 25, 2001

The first pitch is a nice, long, sustained 5.7 with lot's of gear opportunities. The second pitch intersects with Empor and can cause some belaying difficulty if the 5.7+ finish is selected since you have to climb down slightly from the belay before heading to the top.
By Scott Conner
From: Lyons, CO
May 1, 2002

Climbed this again yesterday. Combined with the last Empor pitch I think it's easily 3 stars. The first pitch has a few .7 moves but is mostly 5.6, I think. Great apres-work climb as the approach takes about 1.5 minutes. Fun beginner lead.
By Chris Mueller
May 8, 2002

Great climb. I'd give this 3 stars and go as far as suggesting that it's a better line than Empor. The entire climb follows a broken crack system making this one of the longer (and probably best) 5.7 cracks in BC. Perfect jams are available for almost the entire route (assuming you do the 7+ finish). The first pitch is a nice warm up with a few 5.7 moves. The second pitch is more sustained with great pro the whole way up. Watch out for parties on Empor, though, as you might have to wait for them to pass(as we did).
By Legs Magillicutty
From: Littleton
May 28, 2002

Pitch 1 was excellent, however, some idiots decided to jump on the belay ledge with me as my partner was on his way up pitch 2. Personally, I would have stopped about 15' feet below to build my anchor on the larger ledge if I saw another party up there. I ran into quite a bit of loose rock (big ones) on pitch 2. All in all, a great climb. Great views of the canyon and surrounding rock.
By Brendan Sheehan
Jun 24, 2002

On a humorous note, this route is approaching sport climb status with 4-5 stuck piece of gear and a piton or two........ Rack: QDs, there's s*** stuck all the way up the crack...... Seriously though, it's one of the best routes in Boulder Canyon in my opinion.
By Scott Thompson
Aug 10, 2002

A fine route! A couple 5.7 moves with great rests. Gear: I didnt use anything larger than a 2 camalot (save for one #10 hex). Theres a great exposed belay on the arete at the top of pitch one (dont go into v-slot). This eases rope drag and allows you to see your partner, and theres no belay difficulties if parties are on empor (always). if you opt for the original finish instead of empor finish, you can: climb the exposed arete just above this belay, or jump into the easy corner. at the top of the corner, finish with a short finger crack (about 8 feet left of the bolt line).
By Anonymous Coward
Sep 1, 2003

This route has a very large, somewhat loose rock on it at the little ledge (an arete of sorts to the left) where one might set up their first belay. Be cautious of this rock! It is set well (it's been there for thousands of years) but you'll see what I mean if you are trying to place gear in it. Cheers. Brian W
By William McGehee
From: Choctaw, OK
Oct 11, 2003
rating: 5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

Climbed this line today, starting around 2 pm. Getting a little cold on the north face. The whole formation was in the shade when we showed up. Great route, three stars. Remember that the Empor link-up goes at 5.7+ easily. I spent a week in Indian Creek and this still gave me a challenge. My girlfriend had to French Free it near the top. Keep that in mind for a second with intermediate hand strength (cupping hands).
By Michael Kullman
Jun 14, 2004
rating: 5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

I think this is definitely on par with Empor in terms of overall quality and difficulty, a very enjoyable climb. I agree with the comment about Cob Rock being a gear graveyard, there is fixed gear (stoppers, TCUs, etc.) all over the place ;-)
By Matt Chan
From: Boulder
Jun 14, 2004
rating: 5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

Yeah, mucho fun at the grade. Right on par with other BC 7s like Cozyhang, The Owl, and Standard Route. I would recommend bringing double #2 Camalots and at least one #3 if you want to feel well protected on the stellar final pitch.
By Michael J Yarros
From: Colorado Springs, CO
Jul 7, 2004
rating: 5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

Very nice route. Finished the second pitch by going up the arete (instead of the V-slot) to the final short crack to the top. Like the above comments there is plenty of "gear" to clip into. First time climbing in Boulder Canyon, Great climb.
By Charlie Fried
From: New York, NY
Jun 19, 2006

This climb is a lot of fun.
By Scott Edlin
From: boulder, co
Jun 19, 2006
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

I led this in three pitches. Pitch one was to the first ledge, just after stepping right (could have gone to the second ledge a bit further up). Pitch two was up and onto the arete, belayed at the top of the arete. Pitch three (short) was up the crack 8' left of the bolt line. Done this way, I found the crux to be on pitch two, moving into the flared wide crack just above a piton with mediocre feet and non-positive hands.
By Stephanovich
From: Boulder, CO
Jul 10, 2007

Climbed on 5/15/07 and enjoyed it lots, I recommend this route.
By kevinnlong
From: Boulder, CO
Aug 18, 2007
rating: 5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

This is a fantastic route with some exposure, long (sustained) climbing, and quality rock!

Don't be fooled by the grade; it makes you earn a 5.7. The crux for me on the second pitch was quite dicey as the feet seemed mediocre. Once I committed, the moves went cleanly.

Have fun.
By Marty Combs
From: Boulder, CO
Apr 29, 2011
rating: 5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

Next time I climb this I'm going to bring a 70 meter rope and make it one, long, mind-blowing pitch of 5.7. It might even be possible with a 60 meter especially if you are comfortable with a few moves of simul-climbing.
By farkas.time
From: Storrs, CT
Aug 14, 2011
rating: 5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

Excellent climb. First pitch is sustained fun. Second is awesome, but I was very scared. I recommend doubles in larger cams (#2BD, I think) for the zig-zag...that or fiddle with hexes (blah). I didn't have cams and felt pure terror as I dashed for the top. Also, confidence with hand and fist jams is a plus. This was harder than 5.7 for me.

I don't recommend doing it in one pitch -- starting up the zig-zag with rope drag would be a...drag.
By Robert Buswold
From: Longmont, CO
Sep 11, 2011

Fun, easy handcrack for the start, to more fun, thinner finger cracks later on.
By Justin Brunson
From: Broomfield CO
May 7, 2014
rating: 5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

Full value 5.7. Direct finish feels like modern 5.8 and is easily the best part of the route.
By Jake Riggs
From: Boulder, Colorado
Mar 19, 2015
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

Good first multi-pitch trad climb. As of February 2015, there are still many fixed nuts and cams throughout the route. The V-slot exit to the left is quite easy for the first part (5.2) but has 15 feet or so of steeper crack climbing at the end (5.7).
By Behave
From: Oklahoma City, OK
Jun 27, 2015

Jumped on this route a few days ago (the afternoon of June 24th) and had to bail. Left some gear behind. If anyone comes across is and is kind enough to return the pieces, please PM.
By JamesMartin
Aug 16, 2015

LOST: 70m rope - Mammut Infinity - blue - COB ROCK, Boulder Canyon.

Hello all,

I was climbing at Cob Rock yesterday (8/15/15), specifically North Face Center route, ending at 2pm. I left my rope at the base of the climb before heading out - 70m Mammut Infinity in a black Metolius rope backpack. If you managed to snag it on your way out, please give me a ring at (207)450-7212. $50 reward.

By Camper Wes
From: Denver, CO
Mar 6, 2016

This has been brought up in previous comments, but I just wanted to reiterate. Be very cautious around the flake/block on the small belay ledge for pitch 1!!

Before I realized how detached it was, I had placed a cam in the crack created by the block and the face. Tugged on the gear slightly to test and the whole block shifted, not a ton but enough that I nearly crapped my pants. Yikes! So just a word of warning to anyone getting on the route for the first time. From below, everything looks solid and ready to accept gear. Don't be fooled like I was!

Also, in my opinion, this makes the ledge nonviable as a belay per the route description. I ended up climbing around the block and building an anchor at the base of pitch two (see pic), which caused a lot of rope drag.

Otherwise this was a really fun, quality route. Have fun out there!
By Ben Pettys
May 29, 2016

If you like climbing five fun cracks, then this climb is for you! We broke up the route into three pitches to make sure my second could hear me a little better in the canyon. The hand jams are bomber, and the crack just keeps going and going and going with great gear throughout. The belay shown in the book sure does look questionable to me as stated by others. It's a huge, detached flake resting on the ledge. Looked a little sketchy to me, so I decided to setup the belay directly below the start of the 2nd pitch of Empor which created rope drag. This was an amazing route I'd climb again - must do for sure!
By Zachary Hanners
Jun 6, 2016

Hey all,

Got my rope stuck on the rappel down today 6/6/16. If anyone has the heart to undo it from the horn on their rap down and return it to me, it would mean the world. My phone number is 401-864-7675. Thanks so much for considering.
By Owen Shepherd
Jun 18, 2016

Got a #3 cam stuck near the top of this route today. Several parties tried to retrieve it to no avail If you happen to get it and are feeling benevolent, my phone number is 949-500-7562, and I live in the Boulder area.
By PWells
From: Fort Collins, Colorado
Oct 21, 2016
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

The boulder on top p1 is definitely ready to go. Don't build anchor there, build it around on same wall as final pitch, still comfy. Bring a bomb shelter, wear a helmet.

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