Believe it or not, "ice" climbs form in the Flatirons. They tend to provide a strange experience as they frequently feel serious and committing despite their proximity to Boulder. Protection tends to be scarce as does ice that provides good sticks, however the angle of the routes tends to compensate for the thickness and quality of the ice. The routes on the Flatirons seem to come in a few days after a big dump of snow during cold weather.
All of the documented routes are in the northern Flatirons, so park at Chataqua.
This route climbs the gully on the far right side of the east face of the First Flatiron. In excellent condition, this route would be trivial, however more normal conditions will require some rock climbing, some sketchy climbing on snice, some thin ice and some proper mixed climbing. Figure out how to get off the ground and into the bottom of the gully. Cruise up this with little in the way of protection until you reach a nice big patch of shady snow where the gully widens. A rock belay can be f...[more]Browse More Classics in CO
I've done two ice climbs in the southern Flatirons. A three-pitch-or-so line forms almost every November of December up an otherwise undistinguished crag high on Bear Peak, to the south of Shanahan Crag. A fairly obvious talus slope diagonals up and left to reach it. A good three- or four-pitch line formed one year in the late 80s or early 90s up the middle of the east face of the Goose. We called it Wild Goose Chase, but I think Greg Davis and a partner had climbed it the week before (and probably Gary Neptune years before that). Both were fun and interesting and impossible to rate, like true alpine climbs: thin ice and mixed scratching on the 50-degree Flatiron slabs. Every Boulder ice climber should do one of these Flatiron ice climbs someday. They're unique and right in our backyard.