This area was the first in the San Luis Valley to see ice climbing. It is south facing, so it may be very wet and sun baked at times. There are at least 6 climbs that are almost always in, and more than 30 inconsistent ice or mixed lines in the area. Anything from WI3 to M7.
This is located right above the big outhouse/pullout before going over Wolf Creek Pass from the east.
This is trad mixed at its best. You get rock stems with tools in ice runnels, dry tooling in flares, groveling, and it's all on your own gear- the best type of mixed! Maximum value for one pitch from bottom to top. It is rarely in due to massive sun hit, so if it looks decent and not rotted out up top, get on it! The crux is surmounting the large chalk stone 1/2 way up, but depending on the amount of ice on the route it could vary. The climb is obvious up through the slot at the top, but th...[more]Browse More Classics in CO
Personal 5 favorite routes in the greater chain station area: Bigsicle, Columbine, Snaggle Tooth (Hidden), Jake Brake and Sometimes (2nd tier). Nary a bolt on the mixed ones and a fun place to push your limits since the climbs are short enough you can push that limit with less committment. A great place to educate yourself for bumping it up a notch in larger venues. Ice climbing in the sun is fun too!
For the real low down on climbing here get Life By the Drop by Jack Hunt. It is the only guide that was written by someone who actually has climbed much here, and since he did most of the FAs, it's a rather authoritative source! It is also one of those guides that is just a fun read.
By Steve Marr From: Colorado Springs, CO Jan 26, 2011