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#2342 - 05/25/01 07:34 PM Rocky Mountain National Park
Anonymous
Unregistered


The last full week of June I will be out in Rocky Mountain National Park. We are planning on doing some easy mountaineering, but would love to get some more cragging too. I can lead 5.6 at the gunks, and have led a few 5.7's at ragged. If anyone knows of some good routes to hit up out their feel free to let me know. Thanks.

John


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#2343 - 05/25/01 11:47 PM Re: Rocky Mountain National Park
andrew Offline

Pooh-Bah

Registered: 11/15/99
Posts: 1816
Loc: Denver, CO
Drop me an email-I live about an hour from the park and climb there fairly often.

For cragging, you should go to Lumpy Ridge-basically in the Estes Park city limits. Start off easy-very different than the gunks. Check out the Left Book area, White Whale is a classic 3 pitch 5.7 and there are lots of other routes like that on that crag. About half of Lumpy Ridge is closed for Peregrine nesting in June unfortunately, otherwise Batman and Robin on Batman Pinnacle is awesome. If you feel good after White Whale, check out Kor's Flake on Sundance Buttress, a 5 pitch 5.7++. It is unbelievably classic, but stout for the grade and you will want 1 or 2 big cams for the wide third pitch. Can't recommend this climb enough.

Need mountaineering suggestions too?

andrew

Its all A1 until you fall.
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#2344 - 05/26/01 02:12 AM Re: Rocky Mountain National Park
Judge11 Offline
old hand

Registered: 03/28/01
Posts: 1152
I agree w/Andrew. Get the Lumpy ridge guidebook and if you're so inclined, the High Peaks Book. As you're probably aware, climbing in the Park (or near it) is not like climbing in the Gunks. Altitude, weather, weather, altitude, long pitches, weather and altitude, you know the drill. Good luck and have fun.....Wish I was going.

Beware the dreaded afternoon storms...


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#2345 - 05/26/01 12:30 PM Re: Rocky Mountain National Park
Anonymous
Unregistered


I too think Lumpy is the place to go. I should warn you of two things though. 1. Lumpy is mostly vertical crack climbing, REALLY different than leading in the Gunks. 2. Get on it really early. Almost every afternoon sees a thunderstorm in Colorado, and 8000 ft. on a ridge is no place to be.
Enjoy, you'll have a great time. White Whale is a good 5.7.


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#2346 - 05/26/01 01:28 PM Re: Rocky Mountain National Park
Anonymous
Unregistered


Thank you, for all the info, I had heard lumpy ridge is a great place to go, but didnt know of any of the true classic s on it. I will definately keep those routes in mind. It will be a big change from the gunks, but we will start easy and build our way back up to our leading level. I cannnot wait less than one month from now!!!

John


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#2347 - 05/27/01 08:45 PM Re: Rocky Mountain National Park
RangerRob Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/06/00
Posts: 3765
Loc: Ulster County, NY
I agree with Lumpy as well. I was out there for the first time in 98. If you are looking for a couple of days of cragging, you can't beat it. White Whale was awesome. If you are feeling positive on Lumpy's vertical cracks, try Melvins Wheel, (5.8), and the first pitch of George's Tree, (5.9). Also, It would be criminal not to spend at least one day in Eldoroado Canyon. I know it's cliche, but climbing the Bastille Crack, 5.7+, is something every climber should do at least once. As for routes in the park, we only tried one, the Mountaineers route on the east face of Longs peak. we were dumb and tried to do the whole thing from the parking lot to the summit in one day. We made it up Lamb's Slide, and finished about half of the traverse to the couloir before altitudes headaches stopped us. I guess people usually camp somewhere beneath Mills Glacier for anything on the Diamond, am I right Andrew? Anyway, enjoy your trip, I know I'm gonna enjoy mine!!! 62 days, 14 hours, 45 minutes. :):):)



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#2348 - 05/28/01 02:11 PM Re: Rocky Mountain National Park [Re: RangerRob]
BobbyS Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 08/28/00
Posts: 367
Loc: None
For routes on the main face of the diamond you can camp at mills glacier at the base (11,500) or at chasm view (12,000) - on the flank below the cable route. From Chasm you can rappel to broadway. We stayed at Mills to do the cattle route. I think if I did it again I would rather go car to car. You never sleep well, are up early, and the decent if you leave your stuff at Mills is long and probably just as easy as walking strait back to the parking lot.


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#2349 - 05/28/01 02:46 PM Re: Rocky Mountain National Park [Re: BobbyS]
Anonymous
Unregistered


What would you suggest for a good route up longs? Is there a route called the apex route???
John


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#2350 - 05/28/01 06:17 PM Re: Rocky Mountain National Park
Judge11 Offline
old hand

Registered: 03/28/01
Posts: 1152
If you've never been to Long Peaks and want to do a "first time" route, try the Cable Route (my recommendation is based on your previously posted leading ability). If memory serves me right, the first 2 pitches are about 5.4, then some easy stuff and scrambling to the top. It's a fun route and a good introduction to roped climbing at altitude. Be careful about EXTREMELY loose rock and scree near the summit. You'll see the old cable rods protruding from the rock as you climb (but, check the guide book for more detailed beta). It starts on the extreme right side of Longs, by the edge of Chasm View. Make sure you acclimate for several days in and around the Estes Park area if you're flying in from the east coast so the altitude isn't as much a factor, (but theres no way to fully escape it, just minimize it). Car to car is a stout outing and very committing, with a start around midnight to 2 a.m. Or, camp by Chasm View, so you don't have to lug all your gear up the route. The walk off is no picnic, so be careful. Try to be walking off the peak by noon.
Anyway, I can't stress this enough.....Please, please, please be mindful of the weather....The last place you want to be caught in a storm is on the summit of Longs Peak. And, they are frequent in the afternoon in summer. With all this said, (hope it didn't deter you) have fun, use your head and take care of each other.
Oh forgot to mention...don't forget to sign in with the ranger at the Longs Peak Ranger Station.



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#2351 - 05/28/01 07:40 PM Re: Rocky Mountain National Park [Re: Judge11]
RangerRob Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/06/00
Posts: 3765
Loc: Ulster County, NY
Johnny, check out the route I mentioned as well. Keiners, or the Mountaineers route...same thing. A good mix of steep snow, easy and exposed rock, and possibly easy alpine ice. I don't recommend going car to car in one day. I spent about four days camping in the campground at the trailhead and climbing at Lumpy before going up Longs, and still suffered Extremely bad altitude headache on the ascent. If I am not mistaken, the trailhead is 8,000 ft, and the summit is just over 14,000. You're talking about doing 6,000 vertical feet in one day, while doing technical climbing. Unless you are a superlung, camp up high. Or, do a couple of acclimatization hikes up high beforehand.

RangerRob


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