Is your left shoulder getting sore from all the right-to-left traverses in the Flatirons? Do you like road noise and pumpy granite? Then El Barrio, a somewhat industrial bouldering slot nestled behind the guard rail on the west end of Nip and Tuck, is the place for you.
You can see this very overhanging slot on your right as you're driving to Nederland, just as you round the bend and the road straightens out and heads due west (the Barrio is about 100 yards west of Gyro Captain, etc.). Park on the left in a huge pull-out marked by a red RTD bus stop sign. Cross the road, jump the guard rail, ford the marsh and voila!
While there are numerous variations and link-up possibilities in the slot itself, here are a few of the basic first ascents that went in:
Choss Boss (V9): This is a traverse of the entire slot staying high in the black rock through the lip of the lower cave and high across the upper crux section as well. Since like most things at the Barrio this traverse 70-80 feet long, it would probably get a mid-5.13 route grade. 5.13b? FA: Charley Bentley
Barrio Traverse (V9): This version of the traverse has undergone various evolutions as holds have snapped or been cleaned off for safety purposes (as in huge, loose blocks). It's slightly harder than Choss Boss. This variant stays butt-draggingly low through the lower cave and features a dyno crux off of poor holds to a sloping jug. Continue railing right and at the upper crux section continue to stay low on flat holds, making a hard lurch rightward to a flat hold with some traces of glue on it (this used to be much harder until the hold broke). Continue all the way along the lip until you can step off. 5.13b/c? FA: Pete Zoller/Matt Samet
Cave Problem (V9): This reachy, difficult power problem climbs out to the lip of the right side of the lower cave, starting on low holds near the crux of the Barrio Traverse and crossing into a crisp, right-hand layaway in the roof. Lock it off and gun for the upper seam. FA: Charley Bentley
Super Summer Maximum Fun Time (SSMFT) (5.14): Begin on the standard Barrio Traverse, staying low through the cave and busting the dyno crux to the flat, right-hand sloper jug. Without moving up and right to rest on the horns, head left along a rising fingertip seam on crimpers and slots.
This seam leads into Choss Boss. Reverse the lip business of Choss Boss, crusing leftward, then up, then back down along the left margin of the cave to the standard Barrio Traverse starting point.
Now loop back around right, staying low and finishing with the Barrio Traverse via the low finish, going all the way to the end. FA: Matt Samet
A crash pad, perhaps two.
Gabi on El Barrio Traverse, lower section.
Galaxy S3 pic.
|By Dan Green|
Jul 16, 2003
Barrio traverse is a fantastic way to work hard moves on a route length bouldering problem. My advice on this problem/route: do not underestimate the second crux. Climbing through the cave crux is only the beginning. Also start the route from the sit start at the far left. Those moves are great too and add to the difficulty of the first crux. It's really an intense training tool as well. Once you get it. Add a 10 pound weight belt to your traverse and watch your forarms become machines of raw, crushing power! If you want to train power endurance for Rifle style climbing, you owe it to yourself to work the Barrio traverse. Have at it, and have fun!
From: Lake Tahoe, Ca
Jun 15, 2006
...I'm new to Boulder and this was the first bouldering area I found whilst searching on my own.
Love this zone, thanks a lot to whomever put in the effort here. I see lots of glue n' such, but no complaints as it has clearly helped "solidify" the spot into a great overhanging training ground.
I am curious on the ratings... there is one problem that moves from a sit start up and left and ends after 6 or 7 moves as you come over the lip, anyone got the scoop on this one? Love that problem, great warm up!
I also noticed a 'lil spot about 100 yards back down the road that has a few quality moves on it and a ton of chalk. Right above those problems is a way overhanging bolted route that looks super human, would love to hear the beta on this zone.
|By Dan Levison|
From: Boulder, CO
Apr 8, 2009
rating: V9 7C
Also, don't underestimate the final "lip" traverse before the exit jugs, on the dog it feels easy, on the redpoint go it's incredibly pumpy and without a doubt the redpoint crux....
|By Kaelen Williams|
Oct 21, 2010
rating: V8+ 7B+
The other day I was curious about trying the SSMFT thing, and I could not fully traverse the lip of the cave, in either direction. So my question is, how on earth is choss boss easier than the regular Barrio traverse?