If there’s one thing our city loves more than craft beer and hiking, it may have to be climbing. Boulder’s climbing culture has been a fixture of our city for decades, and many professional climbers started their journeys right here, climbing on the Flatirons. From beginning climbs to advanced multi-pitch routes, Boulder and its surrounding area offers some awesome climbing spots. Here are a few to get you started.
Novice climbers can enjoy easy routes at this limestone crag and take the opportunity to explore the lesser-visited Canon City. Home to the Royal Gorge, this area has plenty of cool rock formations, climbing spots, and camping areas. Pack up some friends, a tent, and your gear, and head 1.5 hours south to Shelf Road. This area is best in the fall as temperatures stay cool and the summer tourist crowds have mostly gone home.
Just outside of Estes Park, Lumpy Ridge is gaining popularity and experiences more traffic on the weekends than weekdays. Take a half day and climb one of Lumpy’s many multi-pitch, intermediate-level routes. This climbing area doesn’t have too many beginner level options and adventurers are advised to have their footwork down pat and come prepared for technical granite. Take in views of Rocky Mountain National Park and the surrounding mountains from many routes at this spot.
Up in Red Feather Lakes, just outside of Fort Collins, Grazing Allotment is a small crag right off a main road that travels through this secluded mountain community. Large rock features, multiple beginner pitches, and plenty of easy hand and foot holds make this an awesome spot for novices to get comfortable. A combination of trad and sport routes invite a variety of climbers to enjoy this lesser-visited spot in Northern Colorado. Pack snacks and plan to spend the day, as this spot requires a bit of a drive and subsequent hike in.
No Boulder climbing list would be complete without the inclusion of our city’s picturesque backdrop – the Flatirons. All around the Flatirons, climbing areas are nestled in the sleepy pine forests. From beginner Bouldering to multi-pitch routes, climbing found its foothold in Boulder because of the awesome rock features. Outfitters around town offer plenty of climbing classes in this terrain. New climbers may consider taking advantage of this course to learn the fundamentals and get up close and personal with Boulder’s Flatirons.
There are so many more climbing areas around our beautiful city. This list of carefully curated climbing spots give all levels of climbers a chance to explore various rocks around the state without traveling too far and without having to beat out peak climbing season crowds.