This formation is another good section of Clear Creek rock offering some good routes in the 5.11-5.12 range as well as a couple 5.10 routes. The climbing here tends to be overhanging and powerful. The area is rather new so there is a bit of loose rock on the routes, however all the big stuff has been cleaned off. All the routes here are well bolted and have bomber anchors at the top. The routes vary from 60 feet to 80 feet in height. A general comment on the Clear Creek guidebook for the area. The ratings for these climbs were published after only a few ascents, and there is some discussion about the true ratings of the routes. Also, there has been a lot of new activity on the rock and there is almost double the routes that are found in the Clear Creek guidebook.
Drive up Clear Creek Canyon as for Catslab, taking the left fork when you get to the Central City fork. Park at the pullout just beyond tunnel 5. Look up and to the north side of the road to see this very overhung formation. Walk across the bridge and up the steep hillside via any of the small trails. Watch out for cactus everywhere. There is a nice flat belay area at the base of the rock. This area receives lots of sun and is an excellent winter crag. Summer is likely to be very hot at this formation.
This photo is a bit misleading. There are _2_ routes on the far left side that share anchors, and are around 5.10/5.10+ respectively. THEN there's a 5.11 that goes up a slab to the _right_ side of the crack that the 10+ climbs, and then shoots off right through the overhang to an independent anchor. Finally, (this is the left side only) there's the massively manufactured route that goes out right on 2 drilled jugs to a low anchor. The #2 shown in the photo is really a sort of amalgam of both the 5.11 and the drilled route. Maybe another photoshop session is in order?
Note that I'm in no way bashing Quinn for the photo. I imagine a route got added at some point, which is what's confusing matters.
I'd agree with you about the ratings on the leftmost routes, Walt. IMO the far left is a good 10a--maybe a star or two. The next in from that is 10b/c with 2-3 stars....fun and pumpy. Seems like the upper half of the b/c might have been added after the fact, what with the midway anchors and slight runout from the ledge. Not too bad a clip if you cheat a little left and have an above average ape index. Straight up the chalked crimpers would be considerably harder..and pretty balsey. Anyway...they're good routes and give the weekend warriors..like me...a chance to get up something on the Dog House.