Some will arguably consider this the premier section of the premier cliff of the premier area for the Denver Metro area. Many will agree that it contains the premier route for the area with The Naked Edge
. This section of Redgarden Wall
will include terrain left of Redguard
extending to Ruper
and including all above the Roof Routes
and above the Lower Ramp
Wow, what an amazing stretch of rock with an amazing history. It all began, as documneted in B. Godfrey's & D. Chelton's Climb!
, with the first ascent of T2 by Layton Kor & Gerry Roach in 1959, starting with the intro by Kor of "want to go climbing tomorrow, Gerry?", "Sure, Layton, what's up?", "Uh, just a route in Eldorado. I'll pick you up at 4 a.m." The climb proceeded as planned with the classic-Kor statements during the ascent of "This route's gotta go!" and Tower Two was opened for climbing.
The famous Naked Edge
began with Stanley Sheperd visualizing a line up this same buttress while reading the lurid novel Naked Edge
(which has been made into a movie). The unstoppable Kor followed a terrified retreat off the line with S. Komito with success in 1962 with B. Culp to open this most famous line. In 1971, Jim Erickson & Duncan Ferguson fulfilled Pat Ament's vision of a free Naked Edge
. Subsequently, it has become the goal of ultra-bold soloists and even captured on film of the late-Derek Hersey soloing Naked Edge (along with The Diving Board) in Peter Mortimer's excellent Front Range Freaks
. However, note this is a bold line has hazards for even gifted climbers. Some may recall the incredible story documented in Jeff Achey's Climb
and in an article in Rock & Ice
of Coral Bowman, in 1978, who rappelled off her line and in superhuman fashion grabbed and caught herself barehanded with her haul line, & horribly burned her hands. She saved own her life but the experience completely changed her climbing career. So, be careful up there.
Many videos have celebrated the spectacular climbing here including Peter Mortimer's excellent Scary Faces
with its focus on Jules Verne
, Beth Bennett & Lynn Hill's video on an early all-female free attempt (title?), and others.
Some of the classics here include: the popular Touch 'n Go
, 5.9; the daring route, The Serpent
, 5.10b s; T2
, 5.10d s; the intimidating The Diving Board
, 5.11a; the ultra-classic The Naked Edge
, 5.11b; the demanding Lene's Dream
, 5.11b s; Love Minus Zero
, 5.11c s: the intimidating Jules Verne
, 5.11c s/vs; the near-sport route, The Contest
, 5.11d; Green Willow Wall
, 5.11d s; Rise Above
aka Mr. Malcontent
, 5.12a; and the super-exposed Wingless Victory, 5.13b.
The climbs here are what many of us dream about and live for!
It would be wise to plan your descents before you leave the ground since none are completely obvious. Many of the lines that go to the top can be descended with at least 4 methods. 1) You can rappel the Swanson Arete
or Dirty Deed rappels with double ropes. 2) You can downscramble the East Slabs Descent (plan - to be fleshed out with its own separate description) low 4th class- note this is exposed, lengthy, and particularly slippery when wet. You may wind up a long way from your gear and comfortable shoes. Also, the last bit can be challenging in the spring with a wet slab finish or funky downclimb down a chimney. 3) you can rappel the Chockstone Chimney
rappels which take you to the top of the Upper Ramp or Meadows. Here, you can rappel the Vertigo
rappels (60m or 2 ropes) or carefully descend the Upper Meadows to the rappels below The Naked Edge
. 4) You perform the lengthy traverse W or left off the top going to the top of Redgarden Wall
around Hot Spur and into the 3rd class+ gully.
46 Total Routes
['4 Stars',10],['3 Stars',18],['2 Stars',12],['1 Star',6],['Bomb',0]