Eldorado Canyon Rock Climb (The Yellow Spur), Boulder, CO
Participants: Mike Sullivan, Monika Eldridge
The Yellow Spur was originally a classic aid route on the Redgarden
Wall, put up by Layton Kor in the 50's. It goes free at 5.9R or 5.10b.
The first pitch was pretty hairy, I thought, with some 5.9 moves
protected by old pitons. If you blow it, you're looking at a nasty
pendulum, even if the pins hold. Monika is a killer climber, so I gladly
let her do all of the hard leads. Pitches 2 - 4 are pretty straight 5.8
- 5.9, which lead you to a cool triangular pedestal at the base of the
Pitch 5 goes part way up the ridge and splits. The left hand option is
"The Robbins Traverse," a sick, sick runout 5.7 tiptoe across a funky
dike. We opted for the direct 10b line up the arete (the original aid
line), which is very well protected. Monika led cleanly, and I followed.
The moves are thin and sequential but not too bad, however the hair
factor is enormous. You're looking 800' straight down on Eldorado Creek.
Yikes! I blew it and grabbed a sling (B1 on the Bumbly scale) on the
last tough move. Monika cheered me up by saying she did the same thing
on each of her first three times on the route. Pitch 6 was a runout 5.6
walk up the rest of the ridge to the pyramid-point summit of Tower Two.
God, the views were awesome.
The East Slabs descent wanders all over the place, so it's good to have
someone with you who knows it, or to really take your time. Otherwise,
rap the route. This is one of the all-time-ever classic routes, at an
all-time-ever classic area. If you're solid on 5.9, I highly recommend