On Saturday, we piled the whole gang into the car and took off for North Table Mountain in Golden, Colorado. This crag is about an hour from our house, and sits directly above the Coors Brewing Plant. While it’s not exactly the most asthetically pleasing of all climbing destinations, the basalt cliff band provides climbs from 20 to 90ft tall, on solid, dark rock, with lots of interesting roofs, cracks and sloping holds.
Our group was 5 people strong: Mark and I, Rachel and JD, and Dylan. When we pulled up to the base of the south-facing rock at around 10:30am, we immediately noticed it was already about 10F degrees warmer than it had been in Fort Collins. Even though there was some snow on the ground in the area, we spent the day baking in the sun on these climbs. I had a small burn on my shoulder where my t-shirt had pulled away and I forgot to put on sunscreen, and I found myself feeling a little ill from the heat by mid-afternoon.
We got some great climbs in, though. Dylan lead up the 5.8 pictured here first thing, and did a great job of it. The crux was really getting to the first bolt, which was a pulse-quickening 20ft off the ground. The picture below is of JD enjoying the climb on top-rope. Mark grabbed the small rack we had packed and lead up a 5.8 crack climb called the Big Dihedral. Kudos to Dylan for the awesome shot on that one.
After lunch, we traveled west, and Rachel got the pink point on Kevin Spies the Line (5.6), while Dylan lead up a roof-ie and exposed 10b. Mark jumped on the longest climb I’ve ever seen at North Table Mountain. This 10a went on for nearly 80ft, and included some rather scarey run-out sections. Mark (aka McGuiver) handily protected these with his sparse biner of stoppers, and had a great time on the climb.
We all took off for the hike back to the car at around 3:30p, tired, a little sun-burnt, and very happy.