Overview:

The immense Flatirons rise over Boulder like unmistakable landmarks signaling the presence of the Rockies. Protected as the centerpiece of Boulder’s Open Space Mountain Park, the Flatirons include dozens of major rock formations and hundreds of climbs of all types, with the steep ravines and wooded slopes of Green Mountain and Bear Peak forming a veritable wilderness abutting the city. These majestic formations serve as the backdrop and unofficial symbol of the city.

With climbing holds spread out over 20 miles (yes, miles) of climbing routes below 5.8, the Flatirons are comprised of sandstone with excellent flakes and face holds.  The climbing in this area tends to be moderate, yet despite the grades, most routes can be serious outings due to challenging route finding and run-outs.

Varying between obscure boulders and slabs, scattered with technical summits, the Flatirons are considered some of America’s most iconic and classic climbs and are deeply woven into the history of rock climbing. From afar they look intimidating and smooth. But upon closer look, abundant climbing features suddenly emerge. World-class climbing abounds for both beginner and expert trad and sport climbers.

Some of the longest traditional (trad) climbing routes can be found on the First and Third Flatirons, with some shorter sport climbing mixed in. The Southern Flatirons region holds some of the best climbing in the Flatirons and tends to be less crowded.

Experience a memorable ascent of the highly sought-after First Flatiron, Third Flatiron, or Seal Rock – with its dizzying 180-foot rappel descent. Summiting the Flatirons provides a unique perspective.  Below you and to the east lies the town of Boulder.  To the west, the high peaks of the Rockies form the Continental Divide.  You feel perfectly situated between civilization and wilderness.  Right there, perhaps you are.

Meeting location:

Colorado Mountain School
633 S. Broadway St.
Boulder, CO 80305

Details:

First Flatiron, Direct East Face: An incredible route, following flakes, corners, pronounced edges and excellent friction for 1,000 feet at a modest difficulty of 5.6. The crux of the ten-pitch route comes right off the ground, then easier climbing leads to a spectacular final ridge and an airy summit.

Third Flatiron, Standard East Face: Climbing pioneer, and Patagonia owner, Yvon Chouinard, called this route the “finest beginner’s climb in the country.”  One of the most classic routes in all of the front range, this seven pitch route climbs up the center of the Third Flatiron face.  Rated at 5.4 this route is an amazing climb regardless of your climbing ability.

The Maiden, East Ridge: Rated 5.10c, 5 pitches: From the beautiful first pitch crack climb, to the third pitch boulder problem, to the final pitch low angle slab, this route throws a little bit of everything at you. Top that all off with a mind blowing rappel off the summit, and this climb is one you shouldn’t miss.

NOTE: several Flatiron formations, including the Third Flatiron, are subject to seasonal wildlife closures, usually from February through July.

Lodging:

With a sixteen-bed lodge available exclusively to Colorado Mountain School students, course participants are welcome to reserve a bed, but should be aware that there course meets each morning in Boulder or Denver – approximately a 50 -70 minute drive from our lodge. Our lodge is located in downtown Estes Park with a full kitchen, WiFi and hot showers. Lodging must be book separately for $44.22/night (tax included). Please call our office for reservations.

Notes:

All of our courses can be run as private outings.  If you’re interested in a course, but it doesn’t fit into your schedule, please check out our private guiding options.

All Upcoming Dates and Locations:

  • October 6, 2019 - October 6, 2019 - Flatirons Classic Climb -
  • October 2, 2019 - October 2, 2019 - Flatirons Classic Climb -
  • October 30, 2019 - October 30, 2019 - Flatirons Classic Climb -

Prerequisites:

5.6 climber with multi-pitch experience. For those without experience climbing multi-pitch terrain, a Multi-Pitch Rock Climbing course or Custom Instruction is required.

Time:

7:00am - 3:00pm

Duration:

6-8 hours

Maximum Ratio:

3:1

Minimum Age:

Please call to register participants under 18

Includes:

  • Trained and/or certified guide
  • Group climbing gear
    • Technical hardware – climbing protection, carabiners,etc
    • Ropes
    • Technical softgoods – slings, cordellette, etc
  • Personal climbing gear
    • Harness
    • Helmet
    • Rock shoes

Excludes:

  • Food
  • Transportation
  • Lodging
  • Clothing, backpack and non-technical personal items
  • Rescue Insurance
  • Trip Insurance
  • Gratuity
  • Expenses due to unforeseen circumstances beyond the control of Colorado Mountain School
Item Description Quantity Example Purchase At Rent At Equipment Type
Approach Shoes

These are “hiking” shoes specifically made for approaching and descending from a climbing venue where scrambling is necessary, or even for climbing an entire route. They have sticky climbing rubber on the bottom and a formed fit to influence better climbing abilities while scrambling. Consider high-tops for additional ankles support if needed. Regular hiking boots or athletic shoes may be acceptable for many climbs.

1

Men: La Sportiva TX3 Men
Women: La Sportiva TX3 Wmn

Neptune Mountaineering

Clothing
Backpack: 18-25 liter

This small pack is carries one’s approach shoes, water, food, extra layers, and toilet kit on the route. This pack should close completely so that no items can fall out.

1

CAMP M2 20L

Neptune Mountaineering

Equipment
Belay and Rappel Device

Plaquette style devices with auto-block mode are ideal.

1

CAMP Piu 2

Neptune Mountaineering

Equipment
Belay Gloves

Leather gloves, either full fingered or fingerless. These protect your hands from rope wear when belaying or rappelling and keep your hands warm at belays.

1

CAMP Axion

Neptune Mountaineering

Clothing
Chalk Bag

Holds climbing chalk, which is usually made from Magnesium Carbonate. This is the same compound that gymnasts, weightlifters, and other athletes will put on their hands in order to improve friction and grip.

1

CAMP Patabang

Neptune Mountaineering

Equipment
Climbing Harness

UIAA or CE approved; With belay loop and gear loops. The waist belt should fit over multiple layers of clothing.

1

CAMP Laser CR

Neptune Mountaineering

Colorado Mountain School

Equipment
Climbing Pants, Shorts or Capris

For all seasons, cotton, loose-fitting (or tight, stretchy) pants are usually acceptable for rock climbing. Shorts are acceptable during the summer - though shorts expose the knees and shins to abrasions. New climbers are encouraged to wear pants or capris. A synthetic material (like in softshell pants) may be required by your guide due to potential rain storms.

1

Men: Rab Vapour Rise
Women: Rab womens Vapour-rise pants

Rab Stores

Clothing
Cotton Socks

Cotton Socks are acceptable for most rock climbing days. Synthetic and merino wool socks tend to be too hot and make climber’s feet sweat excessively.

1

Point 6 Socks

Neptune Mountaineering

Clothing
Food

Proper lunches that are prepared ahead of time are recommended (sandwich, burrito, leftover pizza, etc), along with an assortment of snack bars, gels, or trail mixes. Feeze-dried meals are acceptable on overnight trips, but not day trips.

1

Made in Nature, Thrive Tribe

Neptune Mountaineering

Equipment
Lightweight Baselayer Top

Synthetic or Merino Wool; Worn against the skin and is considered a "wicking" layer that facilitates the movement of moisture away from the skin and through the layers. Hooded base layers add extra versatility.

2

Men: Rab Forge LS Tee
Women: Rab Force LS Tee

Rab Store

Clothing
Lip ScreenSPF 15 or higher.

Non-SPF rated lip balms can actually increase your chances of getting burned.

1

Rocky Mountain Sunscreen Lip Balm

Neptune Mountaineering

Optional
Long and Short Sleeve T-shirt

Cotton or Synthetic and Merino Wool; Bring a variety of short-sleeve or tank tops, and a few long-sleeve. Long sleeve cotton t-shirts can be nice for the crack climbing days. Synthetic shirts are not required for rock climbing, but some may prefer the feel and quick-dry performance.

1

Rab Stance Tee

Rab Store

Clothing
Midweight Baselayer Top

Synthetic or Merino Wool; Adds extra warmth and protection from the cold and wind without creating a moisture barrier as a jacket would. Having at least one base layer that is hooded adds versatility, protecting the neck and ears from cold winds.

1

Men: Rab Nucleus Hoody
Women: Rab Nucleus Hoody

Neptune Mountaineering

Clothing
Rock Climbing Helmet

UIAA/CE approved; Should be large enough to fit over a beanie. Plastic helmets are more durable, but heavier. Foam helmets are lighter, but more easily damaged when carried in a pack.

1

CAMP Titan

Neptune Mountaineering

Colorado Mountain School

Equipment
Rock Climbing Shoes

Technical rock shoes are required. For beginning climbers, having a looser fit is advisable. In this case, loose means that toes are touching the front of the shoes when standing, but are not forced against the front of the shoe. In colder weather, thin socks inside climbing shoes are a great option. On long routes, rock shoes should be comfortable enough to wear for day.

1

La Sportiva TC Pro

Neptune Mountaineering

Colorado Mountain School; Neptune Mountaineering

Clothing
Smartphone

Great for taking photos and videos. Smartphone batteries tend to shut down in freezing temps - keep your phone in a warm inner layer. A tether is ideal in the mountains to protet against dropping your phone.

1 Optional
Softshell and Fleece Jacket

Water-resistant, windproof, yet it "breaths," which means it allows moisture to move through. Hoods are ideal. There are multiple thicknesses of Softshell jackets. A lightweight or medium-weight jacket is preferred. Fleece jackets are acceptable.

1

Men: Rab Salvo Jacket
Women: Rab Salvo Jacket

Neptune Mountaineering

Clothing
Sports Bra

Provides support and allows for full range of motion

1

North Face Beyond the Wall

Neptune Mountaineering

Clothing
Sun Hat

A billed hat to keep the sun at bay during the approach and descent.

1

Neptune Mountaineering

Clothing
Sunglasses

"Wrap-Around" style sunglasses with 100% UV Protection.

1

Julbo Shield

Neptune Mountaineering

Equipment
SunscreenSPF 30 or higher.

Travel size.

1

Rocky Mountain Sunscreen SPF 50

Neptune Mountaineering

Equipment
Water Bottles

1 liter bottles are the standard. Bladders such as Camelbacks and Platypus are acceptable for above freezing temps, but only in conjunction with another bottle. Bladders are not acceptable during sub freezing temps. Sports drinks are also acceptable.

2

Nalgene, Hydro Flask

Neptune Mountaineering

Equipment
Waterproof Shell Jacket

Non-insulated, Gore-Tex, Dermizax, Event, or other waterproofing system is required. Mostly, this jacket sits in the bottom of your pack and comes out when the weather gets nasty with precipitation. This jacket should fit over all other layers.

1

Men: RAB Ladakh GTX Jacket
Women: RAB Women's Kangri GRX Jacket

Neptune Mountaineering

Clothing

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