Rock climbing is about fun and adventure, and no place tops our backyard for its incredible variety of world-class climbing – Eldorado Canyon, Boulder Canyon, The Flatirons and Rocky Mountain National Park. These places are where the outdoors is still king, the sky is open and blue, and classic climbs abound.
The Front Range corridor between Denver and Estes Park, Colorado (Boulder being the hub) offers some of the most accessible climbing anywhere. You can start your day in Boulder (5,400′), climb Longs Peak (14,259′) by one of its 120-plus routes, and be back in time for dinner.
The Yellow Spur, Petit Grepon, Longs Peak and The First Flatiron are just a few of the scores of routes, spires and peaks famous for reasons that are obvious once you climb them. Rocky Mountain National Park holds a lifetime’s worth of rock faces – from splitter cracks to coarse slabs, and everything in between. The impeccable granite of Lumpy Ridge keeps any climber entertained. In Eldorado Canyon, over 600 routes lace the angular sandstone walls. And then there are the spectacular Flatirons in Boulder, rising like thousand-foots spikes out of the base of the Rockies, with climbing at grades accessible to almost everyone. Yvon Chouinard called the East Face of the Third Flatiron, 1,300 feet long and rated 5.4, “The finest beginner’s climb in the country.”
But there’s more to it – a spirit of the West, a culture that values recreation, takes its time and considers what you have to say. As one of our Swiss clients, Douwe van den Oever, said: “Climbing here is fun. In Europe it’s over-organized; everything is bolted; guiding has become a routine. Here things are fresh. Guides are professional yet passionate, and natural climbing lines remain free.”
Climbers have always felt at home here. Yosemite pioneer Tom Frost wrote in the original edition of the classic book, Climb!, back in 1977: “Colorado’s cliffs, located on the spine of the continent, have become the crossroads of American climbing. …It is felt by many that Colorado is the subculture center of the climbing community; where climbing is a more serious way of life, and lived more fully by sizable numbers of participants, than any other place in the nation.” You’ll feel welcome too.
All this, with 300 days of sunshine a year, make Boulder, Colorado a climber’s paradise. On any given day, at local crag or gym, you could find yourself alongside climbing legends Lynn Hill, Tommy Caldwell, Roger Briggs or other inspiring climbers. They’re all here for the same reasons: world-class rock climbing, world-class fun. It’s like Jeff Achey wrote in the 2002 edition of Climb!: “Writers go to New York. Actors go to Hollywood. Climbers go to Colorado.”
Colorado Mountain School offers rock climbing guiding and instruction services in the following locations:
- Colorado Front Range
- Fort Collins
- Estes Park
- Rocky Mountain National Park