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Mill Creek Crag

Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
Big Dreams  S 
Bulge to Groove T,TR 
Chimney T,TR 
Deflator-Mouse T,S 
Dihedral T,TR 
Dirty Boulevard, The S 
Eye of the Tiger S 
Face T,TR 
Face (left of Freeway) TR 
Feline Antics S 
Freeway T,TR 
Groper TR 
Honey Pot T,TR 
Jug Haul T,TR 
Lou Reed (5.12/AO) T 
Pit of Despair, The T,S 
Roof Rack T 
Scantily Trad T,S 
Slot Machine S 
Sweet Petite S 
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Mill Creek Crag  

Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Elevation: 9,500'
Location: 39.7838, -105.6242 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 5,521
Administrators: Ben Mottinger, Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monomaniac, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Harald Harb on Jun 20, 2011
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BETA PHOTO: Honey Pot 5.9 left, Jug Haul 5.10 on the right.


Drive up Mill Creek Rd, from Dumont. The National Forest boundary is well marked. Look for a big rock outcrop on your right high above the road. There are some trails that lead to the first wall, which is parallel with the road. All the way to the right side is a deep corner with two routes.

This is a secluded area with few climbers. I have put up four routes. There are chains at the top. They are trad routes, running from 5.7 to 10a. They are an easy 60m rope length.

There are 4 main routes from left to right, in order, Freeway, then by the dihedral, Honey Pot, Jug Haul, and Roof Rack. There is a bolt on "Jug Haul" to protect the first placement. If you miss the placement (flaired crack), it's a groundfall, so the clip is for safe keeping.

Since 2011, 20 new routes have been added. Most recent in 2013 October, Deflator-Mouse, 5.11b.

Getting There 

Drive west on I-70 to the Dumont exit (exit 235 off westbound I-70), about 2.5 miles. If you come from the west, you must use exit 234, Downieville. Take a right before the post office, Mill Creek Road. up about 2.5 miles. This has easy climbing for introducing new climbers to the sport. It is South-facing and warm on sunny days. Approach time to the base of the climbs is ~5 minutes and 10-15 minutes to the top for TRs.


A1. The Dirty Boulevard, 8, 1p, 75', bolts.
A2. Dihedral, 8+ R, 1p, 60', gear or TR.
B. Face (left of Freeway), 9, 1p, TR.
C. Bulge to Groove, 10, 1p, TR.
D. Freeway, 8-10, 1-2p, 30'-60'?, gear or TR.
E. Face, 7, 1p, gear.
F. Deflator-Mouse, 11, 1p, 60', gear & bolts.
G. Big Dreams , 10, 1p, 50', bolts.
H. Slot Machine, 10, 1p, 60', bolts.
I. Feline Antics, 10+, 1p, 50', bolts.
J. Groper, 10, 1p, 70', TR.
K. Honey Pot, 9 or 10-, 1p, 70', gear or TR.
L. Chimney, 5, 1p, 70', TR.
M. Jug Haul, 10, 1p, 50', bolt & gear or TR.
N. Roof Rack, 9+, 1p, 60', gear or TR.
O. Scantily Trad, 12, 1p, 65', bolts & gear.
P. Lou Reed (5.12/AO), 12 A0, 1p, 65',bolts & gear.
Q. Eye of the Tiger, 12, 1p, 50', bolts.
R. Sweet Petite, 12, 1p, 60', bolts.
S. The Pit of Despair, 9, 1p, 55', bolts & gear.

Climbing Season

Weather station 6.2 miles from here

20 Total Routes

['4 Stars',0],['3 Stars',6],['2 Stars',9],['1 Star',5],['Bomb',0]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Mill Creek Crag:
The Dirty Boulevard   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Sport, 1 pitch, 75'   
Honey Pot   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 70'   
The Pit of Despair   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Trad, Sport, 1 pitch, 55'   
Roof Rack   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 60'   
Feline Antics   5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 65'   
Deflator-Mouse   5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c     Trad, Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   
Sweet Petite   5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   
Browse More Classics in Mill Creek Crag

Featured Route For Mill Creek Crag
Lou Reed follows the rope on the right.

Lou Reed (5.12/AO) 5.13 8a 29 X- 30 E7 6c  CO : Dumont vicinity : Mill Creek Crag
It's always momentous to loose one of our iconoclasts and Lou Reed died in October 2013 after 40 years in the RR business. While I was never a great fan of his group the Velvet Underground, I loved Lou Reed. LR, the route, takes a very steep course through the roof system via mostly 5.11 climbing before a very hard boulder crux (A0) getting past bolt 5. A cam placement is very nice in the small roof above bolt 6. Things stay solid at 5.11 above bolt 6 and deliver a final big move at the last bol...[more]   Browse More Classics in CO

Photos of Mill Creek Crag Slideshow Add Photo
This is on the left side of the huge, road-facing ...
BETA PHOTO: This is on the left side of the huge, road-facing ...
Left side many climbing options, chain hangers, fo...
BETA PHOTO: Left side many climbing options, chain hangers, fo...
Two great routes on this right side of the crag. I...
BETA PHOTO: Two great routes on this right side of the crag. I...

Comments on Mill Creek Crag Add Comment
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By Harald Harb
From: Dumont
Aug 26, 2011
This is good rock, fairly clean as well. I think Diana and I are the only ones climbing here. If more people climb it, the routes will get really nice and clean. There is some lichen in places, but no real rock falling off or that drops when you climb.
I didn't bolt the routes, because I like to have a real trad area around here that is moderate. If you want total peace of mind, top rope the routes.

These are red point ratings, so if you are not a regular 5.10 trad leader, be prepared for some spice, especially on the Jug Wall.
By Leo Paik
From: Westminster, Colorado
Oct 4, 2011
This crag is easier to spot going downhill than going uphill for a first timer. It is not this crag at the top of the ridge:

Another crag, Mill Creek Dome, above and accessed ...
Another crag, Mill Creek Dome, above and accessed from downhill of Mill Creek Crag.

Mill Creek Crag is close enough you could hit it throwing a rock. The creek is nice for a cool down/rinse off after climbing.
By Harald Harb
From: Dumont
Jun 26, 2012
Diana and I found the industrious Richard Wright c...
Diana and I found the industrious Richard Wright checking out a new route he put up going about 5.12 on Mill Creek Dome. Richard has been very busy, new routes everywhere up on the Dome.
By Richard M. Wright
From: Lakewood, CO
Oct 15, 2012
I had the opportunity to check out most of MCC routes this last weekend. While I recognize Harald's request for a bolt free area, I ran a TR through the overhanging crack and corner system 20 ft right of the Freeway route, the main dihedral on the West-facing wall. This would make fine, difficult route (5.11+ give or take a bit), but it would require at least partial bolt protection. I won't put it in with bolts if that is the consensus; however, it could be a really good addition.
By Richard M. Wright
From: Lakewood, CO
Apr 4, 2014
RE: Drew Spalding "This is an area I climbed at many years ago in the early nineties. I first toproped this line "Roof Rack" in probably 1992 and within that next year I came back to lead it also. I remember thinking it was 5.9+/10.a and certainly remember that distinct roof crack! I never did give it a name, because I was surely convinced that someone had climbed this obvious line before I did (probably in the '60s, '70s, and '80s). Good to see there is more lines to climb up there now."

Interesting comment. I have been expecting to find evidence that others had climbed here as well. However, on neither the Mill Creek Crag nor the Mill Creek Dome has anything turned up. While I would not anticipate the trad lines showing any evidence of prior climbing, I have not found evidence of rap stations, fixed pins, pitons, slings, etc, etc. That has always seemed surprising. Harald mentioned climbing the Dome on its west side some years back. It would be useful to know if other things had been climbed and where these lines might be. Thanks Drew for letting us know of at least one prior ascent.
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