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Curecanti National Recreation Area

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Curecanti Needle 
Dillon Pinnacles 
Pine Creek 
Pioneer Point 

Curecanti National Recreation Area  


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Elevation: 7,000'
Location: 38.44252, -107.48004 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 13,650
Administrators: Ben Mottinger, Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monomaniac, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: John Peterson on May 16, 2012
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Historic photo of Curecanti Needle before the cany...

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Description 

Upstream along the Gunnison River from the Black Canyon National Park lies Curecanti National Recreation Area. This area has abundant rock of varying quality. While this part of the canyon is not as steep or deep as the national park, there are many cliffs along the banks of the reservoirs. The upper part of Morrow Point is easily accessible from the rim, but the cliffs further downstream are not as easy to approach. In the winter, a number of ice climbs form in this canyon.

The iconic rock in this area is the Curecanti Needle, just across the canyon from the Pioneer Point overlook about 3 miles below Blue Mesa Dam on CO Route 92. A narrow gauge railroad used to run through the canyon and The Needle was the symbol of the line.

Getting There 

Most of the climbs here have been developed in the canyon just downstream of Blue Mesa Dam. The dam is on US 50 about 25 miles west of Gunnison or 40 miles east of Montrose. Pine Creek is on the south side just a mile downstream on US 50 while Pioneer Point is found along CO Route 92 on the north side.

Climbing Season



Weather station 3.5 miles from here

6 Total Routes

['4 Stars',1],['3 Stars',2],['2 Stars',2],['1 Star',1],['Bomb',0]
['<=5.6',0],['5.7',1],['5.8',2],['5.9',1],['5.10',2],['5.11',0],['5.12',0],['5.13',0],['>=5.14',0],['',0],['<=V1',0],['V2-3',0],['V4-5',0],['V6-7',0],['V8-9',0],['V10-11',0],['V12-13',0],['>=V14',0]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Curecanti National Recreation Area :
Northwest Rib   5.9- 5c 17 VI 16 HVS 4c     Trad, 4 pitches, 700'   Curecanti Needle
Browse More Classics in Curecanti National Recreation Area

Featured Route For Curecanti National Recreation Area
The classic pitches 3-4. Totally an awesome, 60m, full pitch.

Northwest Rib 5.9- 5c 17 VI 16 HVS 4c  CO : Gunnison : ... : Curecanti Needle
"Screw the Canyon Proper, this rock quality is the sh#t!" -Dirty Captain Meat Sauce.To access this phenomenal rib of Curecanti Needle, exit North onto CO 92 from W. US Hwy 50 (right if from Gunnison) cross over Blue Mesa Dam and drive about 7 miles west to Pioneer Point. Then exit left to Pioneer Point which is a senic overlook with an outhouse. Take Curecanti Creek Trail (right of outhouse and right from the Curecanti Trail sign) for about 1.5 miles. This can be a grueling march with kaya...[more]   Browse More Classics in CO

Photos of Curecanti National Recreation Area Slideshow Add Photo
Wall just downstream of the Pioneer Point trail.  There's a ton of unclimbed rock in this canyon!
Wall just downstream of the Pioneer Point trail. ...

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