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The Lion's Den

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Arete T,S 
Bear Hug S 
Bride S 
Groom S,TR 
Higher Learning S 
Hole in the Wall S,TR 
Katie's Route S 
Lion's Mane T 
Offwidth T 
Unknown 1 S 
Unknown 2 S 
Unknown 3 S 
Unknown 4 S 

The Lion's Den Rock Climbing 

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Administrators: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Jesse Ryan on Jul 16, 2002


69° | 47°

74° | 48°

63° | 40°

55° | 38°

49° | 36°
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Haven't found your fill of classic sport lines wandering the main corridors and spires of the Monastery? A few more gems are hiding out in the Lion's Den. Here you might find a little more solitude, more underbrush and scree beneath the routes and even better views. The lines tend to be short and spread about the maze that is the LD. Routes in the LD proper as well as the adjecent Nursery will be described here.

Getting There 

The LD lies uphill - northwest of the Guardian. The approach path(s) are quite faint. After reaching the Guardian, the first rock reached via the Monastery trail, head directly uphill passing the Catacomb on the left. Keeping close to the rock formations on the left, the Nursery will shortly come into view. Two superb bolted 5.6 are located here accessible to toproping. Climb further uphill past the last major rock formations (few or no routes currently) and drop down the hillside to the SW. You will reach a small crag with 2 sport routes (7 and 11a) and a 11a wide crack. Just downhill from this is Bearhug(11a), a sport line with a very nice position on a gently overhanging prow. Down a loose scree filled gully you will finally reach the sport lines on Wedding (a 7 and 9 sharing an anchor) and Barnacle Rocks (a 9+) Alternatively one can access these two rocks by dropping down from the main approach into the Catacomb past the routes the Gravestone and Mausoleum, and scramble right across and below several rock ribs.

Climbing Season

Weather station 8.1 miles from here

13 Total Climbing Routes

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

Classic Climbing Routes in The Lion's Den

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for The Lion's Den:
Bride   5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b     Sport, 1 pitch, 70'   
Groom   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Sport, TR, 1 pitch, 60'   
Higher Learning   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   
Bear Hug   5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c     Sport, 1 pitch, 50'   
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in The Lion's Den

Featured Route For The Lion's Den
Rock Climbing Photo: The striking arete of Unknown 3.

Unknown 3 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a  Colorado : Estes Park Valley : ... : The Lion's Den
This is a fun arete climb with a steep crux at the 4th bolt. The rock in this area of the Lion's Den is very crystalline and sharp. Wear and tear on your finger tips may vary....[more]   Browse More Classics in Colorado

Comments on The Lion's Den Add Comment
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By Bruce Hildenbrand
Jun 28, 2015
There are a number of new routes in this area that have Fixe hangers painted dark brown and use twisted 3/8" quicklinks for rappel anchors. Hopefully, the FA team will add the requisite information to the Mountain Project database.
By Dennis of Mazo
Oct 4, 2015
Hi Bruce, my friend Tom Kohlmann is likely the activist you seek. The camo brown bolts and twist rap anchors are his trademark. He does not publish his routes but has supplied them to local guidebook author, Bernard Gillett. In the interim, I can attest that his products tend to be safe, moderate, and enjoyable, while many want for only the natural cleaning of repeat ascents to achieve classic status.

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