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The Whale's Tail

Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
Ahab T 
Amputee Love T 
Buffoon T 
C'est What? S 
Clementine T 
Dihedral One T 
Dihedral Two T 
East Slabs T 
Fight Gone Bad T 
Finger Crack T 
Free Speech S 
Gumbo T 
Gut Feeling T 
Horangutan T 
Jack The Ripper T 
Jim Crack T 
Kid's Climb T 
Left Arete T 
M aka The Divine Ms. M T 
Martindale T 
Monument, The S 
NED (Nothing Except Dynamics) T 
New Cambria T,TR 
No Problem T 
Northeast Arete T 
Second Coming S,TR 
Spoof T 
Spoof Roof T 
West Crack T,TR 
West Dihedral T,TR 
West Face [Whale's Tail] T,TR 
Yorkshire Ripper, The T 

The Whale's Tail Rock Climbing 

Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Location: 39.9312, -105.283 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 31,487
Administrators: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Ben Mottinger on Jan 1, 2001
This Afternoon

72° | 46°

56° | 42°

46° | 36°

49° | 34°

57° | 40°

58° | 42°
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  • Description 

    Many routes exist on this little rock. Some of the easiest slab routes in the canyon and some difficult lines often toproped.

    Getting There 

    Cross the bridge--it's basically right off the trail to the West next to Redgarden and across from the Bastille.

    Climbing Season

    Weather station 0.1 miles from here

    32 Total Climbing Routes

    ['4 Stars',0],['3 Stars',4],['2 Stars',11],['1 Star',17],['Bomb',0]

    Classic Climbing Routes in The Whale's Tail

    Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for The Whale's Tail:
    West Crack   5.3 3+ 10 III 9 VD 3a     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 160'   
    West Dihedral   5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 80'   
    West Face [Whale's Tail]   5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b X     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 80'   
    New Cambria   5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b R     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 90'   
    Jack The Ripper   5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a X     Trad, 1 pitch, 100'   
    C'est What?   5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c     Sport, 1 pitch   
    Free Speech   5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 40'   
    NED (Nothing Except Dynamics)   5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b PG13     Trad, 1 pitch, 35'   
    The Monument   5.12d 7c 28 IX 28 E6 6b     Sport, 1 pitch   
    Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in The Whale's Tail

    Featured Route For The Whale's Tail
    Rock Climbing Photo:

    Left Arete 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Colorado : Eldorado Canyon SP : The Whale's Tail
    On the left side of the West face of the Whale's Tail, start up route #1, West Crack. As soon as the face to the left becomes broad, head up left and out on the face, near or on the arete which caps the Jack The Ripper roof. The climb is edging and smearing on good holds and good, but sometimes distant gear. A good leader will probably not get hurt on a fall, so I call it "S-" (edit: now known at PG-13).There are fixed anchors at the top of Jack... so one can rap off.This route IS worth...[more]   Browse More Classics in Colorado

    Photos of The Whale's Tail Slideshow Add Photo
    Rock Climbing Photo: The Whale's Tail from across the river.
    The Whale's Tail from across the river.
    Rock Climbing Photo:

    Comments on The Whale's Tail Add Comment
    Show which comments
    By Matt Rutledge
    Jan 11, 2002
    This is a great rock for people who want to get into leading. The crack numbered (1) goes about 5.2 with pro placements at about every move. The crack numbered (3) goes about 5.4 with even more pro placements than the other crack. Both anchors are solid, and can be backed up if so desired. The face (2) is easily TR'd from the anchor for the first crack. It goes about 5.easy.

    I think the crux of this entire face is getting to the belay ledge.

    Oh. A 60m rope is really nice to have for raping off the anchors on the first crack. I've had bad luck getting ropes stuck on this one, so stand as far to climbers right as you can when pulling the ropes.
    By DanMoore
    Nov 24, 2003
    Getting to the base of the west face of this rock is a bit hairy. It's not that you're afraid of falling, it's just that the ground is so far away.
    By Anonymous Coward
    Jun 12, 2004
    I've felt for many years that the ratings are backwards. That the left crack is 5.2 with some 5.4 moves while the curving corner to the right is almost class 4 with some 5.2 moves to exit to the anchor. Any other comments?
    By Mike Abraham
    May 25, 2005
    I kind of agree with the comment that the crack (#1 in the photo) seems harder than the corner (#3 in the photo). I think the crack just seems steeper, and is definitely longer. The corner has only the one move to get around the flake. So I guess I give 'em each a 5.3 to even it out. No matter how you slice it, they're both terrific routes, no matter how good you are.
    By Benjamn P
    From: Boulder, CO
    Mar 16, 2015
    LOST GEAR: my girlfriend borrowed my rack & got a cam stuck on 3/15/15. See 'West Crack' for description.
    By Rachel Harkleroad
    Aug 8, 2016
    I left a tricam on a ledge leading up to West Dihedral. Please contact me if you are able to retrieve it!

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