Colorado is one of the prime states in the United States for rock climbing. There are hundreds of climbing areas and a variety of rock types and styles of climbing. The weather is cooler in the summer than most places in the United States. The fall temperatures are perfect for a road trip. The CO/WY 8-day Rock Climbing Camp takes a relatively new climber and develops that climber into a fully functional outdoor climber. However, climbers who already have some of the skills dialed will still get a lot out of the trip. Due to the guides’ abilities to individualize the day’s goals.
The course includes the following progression of skills: Belaying and rappelling, Movement (face and crack climbing), Artificial Protection Placement, Natural Protection, Anchor Building, Sport Leading, Trad Leading, Multi-pitch Climbing, Rock Rescue, and Bouldering. Some of these skills may be omitted or be the subject of more focus depending on the specific group.
Every CMS guide is trained and/or certified through the AMGA (American Mountain Guide Association). They will tailor the specifics of the course to the actual participants and create group and individual progressions of skills. Evening campfire discussions may consist of climbing-related topics. These topics may include: injury prevention, personal journeys as climbers, Leave No Trace ethics, and the Access Fund.
Participants on this course should have some prior experience with climbing, including a working understanding of top-roped belaying. Fitness requirements include the ability to hike 4-5 miles, rock climb at a level from 5.6-5.9 or higher, and the ability to be physically active for many days in a row. Climbers who already have some leading and anchor building skills will still get a lot out of this course due to the ability of the guides to use the venues to create individualized development.
Participants will get more out of the course by learning as much as they can beforehand. Reading books on anchor building and lead climbing, taking courses at local gyms, going out with friends to the gym or the outdoors will all set you up for success. Fitness training can include both strength and cardio training such as pull-ups, cross-fit, Yoga, stair-master. Climbing requires flexibility, strength, cardio-vascular strength, and endurance.
Arrival: Book your flight to Denver for the day before Day 1 of your trip. You will stay in a hotel after arriving. The hotels that are close to the airport have shuttle services. Please let us know if you would like to connect with other participants to share hotel expenses.
Day 1: Meet your guides in the lobby at the Hyatt Place Airport Denver Hotel on Day 1 of your trip at 8:00am with all of your baggage/gear for the trip.
Your guides will pick you up at the Hyatt Place Airport Denver Hotel on Day 1 and drop you off back at the hotel on Day 8. You will be camping for sections of the trip and staying in the CMS Lodge in downtown Estes Park for another section. While camping, meals will be cooked on camp stoves, and while staying at the lodge, participants will have the option to cook at the lodge or go out on the town. Participants are welcome to enjoy alcoholic beverages in the evenings. Each day will include short drives in the CMS van to your climbing site. Showers will be available for parts of the trip. Tents and cookware are provided by CMS.
Food: Participants will be responsible for their food for the duration of the course. We have found that adults can have a variety of culinary appreciations and that it is best to let folks choose for themselves. Several of the dinners will be spent in town. Estes Park/Boulder has many great restaurants, coffee shops, and bakeries – plan financially for some meals to be out on the town, including the option for alcoholic drinks. On day 1, we will have time to stop at a grocery store to stock up on food supplies for the duration of the trip. Lunch will not be included in the price and participants are responsible for purchasing food and supplies for lunch. There will be coolers available to keep some items cooled.
Sleeping Arrangements: You will be sharing a 3-person tent with one other person. The tent is provided by CMS. You will be camping in federal campgrounds with pit toilets, and the campground may have running water, or may not. There will be large jugs of water available at camp. In Estes Park, you will sleep in group dorms on bunk beds. You will use your sleeping bag for all of the nights of the course.
Showers: You will have the opportunity to take showers when in Estes Park. There may be other opportunities, but don’t count on them. Towels will be available in Estes Park, but you may want to bring a camp towel for other bathing opportunities in camp.
Internet/Wifi/Cell Service: You will have access to cell service when in the town of Estes Park and when on the road. When at the climbing areas and camp, there is no cell service. For charging your phones and cameras, you may plug into the van when driving, through guides get first dibs for risk management purposes. Bringing a solar charger or extra battery chargers are probably your best options for charging.
Participation: Most of the climbing areas are such that if a person is feeling under the weather or tired, they can still hang out with the group, even if they are not climbing and taking it easy. If someone would like to hang out in town/camp for a day and take a day off, in most cases, that would be manageable.
All of our courses can be run as custom outings. If you’re interested in a course, but it doesn’t fit into your schedule, please check out our custom guiding options.