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The Whale

Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
Among the Stars 
Arnold’s Demise 
Big E 
Blow Tube Envy 
Bound in Blood 
Captain, The 
Esse Curve 
First Mate 
Gomers in Blue Shirts 
Good Stuff, The 
Happy Ending (formerly Top-Rope) 
Honeymoon Down Under 
Just Happens 
Mister MIA 
Never Ever Slab, The 
Plunge, The 
Red Venus 
Route to the left of The Thin Line 
Tempest Toast 
Thin Line, The 
Undulating Dingo 
Virgin Bolters 
Whale Rider 

The Whale 

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Elevation: 6,600'
Lat, Long: 38.8461, -104.8824 Map Incorrect?
Page Views: 18,515
Administrators: Ben Mottinger, Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monomaniac, Kristine Hoffman
Submitted By: Anna Moore on Jul 15, 2006
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The Whale.


The Whale is the long, humped fin on the west side of Red Rock Canyon between upper lake and the north side of the Quarry.

The trail from the south end (Quarry Wall) meets the crag just north of Big E.

This crag faces East, so it drops into the shade by 3pm or so.

Getting There 

Two trails access the wall. The first takes off from the west canyon trail and climbs to a notch with steps and a dirt bank and then up left and back right through scrub oak to the northern part of the face. The rail reaches the face just south of Aphrodite. The second ascends a bushy ramp system left (south) of Solar Slab to the right of Never Ever Slab, walk left along the top of the slab to reach the cliff-base trail. A path along the cliff base connects the two trails. Avoid bushwhacking and scrambling off the trails, so new social trails or not created. Also, watch for poison ivy. (All information is from Red Rock Canyon Open Space book by Stewart M. Green.)


Never Ever Slab (down and left of the bulk of The Whale)
A. Happy Ending (formerly Top-Rope), 9, 1p, 70', bolts.
B-C. The Never Ever Slab, 0-4, 1p, 90', TR.

The Whale
D. Dreamtime, 6, 1p, 50', bolts.
ED. Aborigine, 7, 1p, 55', bolts.

F. Honeymoon Down Under, 7+ PG-13, 1p, 85', bolts.
G. Undulating Dingo, 8, 1p, 80', bolts.
H. Arapiles, 9 or 10, 1p, 80', bolts.
I. Big E, 5 PG-13, 1p, 80', bolts.
JI. Bound in Blood, 8, 1p, 80', bolts.
K. The Good Stuff, 7, 1p, bolts.
L. Esse Curve, 7, 1p, bolts.

M. Route to the left of The Thin Line, 10-, 1p, 65', bolts.
N. The Thin Line, 9, 1p, 60', bolts.
O. The Plunge, 10-, 1p, 70', bolts.
P. Just Happens, 9-, 1p, 60', bolts.
Q. Virgin Bolters, 9-, 1p, 70', bolts.

R. Tempest Toast, 7, 1p, 80', bolts.
S. Whale Rider, 6, 1p, 80', bolts.
T. Finnacle, 8-, 1p, 80', bolts.
U. The Captain, 9-, 1p, 75', bolts.
V. First Mate, 9, 1p, 50', bolts.

W? Gomers in Blue Shirts, 10-, 1p, 85', bolts.

X. Aphrodite, 9, 1p, 100', bolts.
Y. Arnold’s Demise, 10, 1p, 105', bolts.
Z. Among the Stars, 10-, 1p, 110', bolts.
AA. Mister MIA, 9+, 1p, 100', bolts.
BBAA. Blow Tube Envy, 7+ PG-13, 1p, 105', bolts & gear.
BB1. HMS, 9+, 1p, 100', bolts.
BB2. Red Venus, 6 PG-13, 1p, 100', bolts.

29 Total Routes

['4 Stars',0],['3 Stars',2],['2 Stars',25],['1 Star',2],['Bomb',0]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for The Whale:
The Good Stuff   5.7 5a 15 V+ MVS 4b     Sport, 1 pitch   
Aborigine   5.7 5a 15 V+ MVS 4b     Sport, 1 pitch, 55'   
Blow Tube Envy   5.7 5a 15 V+ MVS 4b     Sport, 1 pitch, 105'   
Honeymoon Down Under   5.7+ 5a 15 V+ MVS 4b PG13     Sport, 1 pitch, 85'   
Undulating Dingo   5.8- 5b 16 VI- VS 4c     Sport, 1 pitch, 80'   
Virgin Bolters   5.9- 5c 17 VI HVS 4c     Sport, 1 pitch, 70'   
Just Happens   5.9- 5c 17 VI HVS 4c     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   
The Captain   5.9- 5c 17 VI HVS 4c     Sport, 1 pitch, 75'   
The Thin Line   5.9 5c 17 VI HVS 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   
Happy Ending (formerly Top-Rope)   5.9 5c 17 VI HVS 5a     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 70'   
Mister MIA   5.9+ 5c 17 VI E1 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 100'   
First Mate   5.9+ 5c 17 VI E1 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 50'   
Aphrodite   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ E1 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 90'   
Route to the left of The Thin Line   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ E1 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 65'   
Among the Stars   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ E1 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 110'   
Gomers in Blue Shirts   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ E1 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 85'   
The Plunge   5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ E2 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 70'   
Arnold’s Demise   5.10b/c 6b 20 VII E2 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 105'   
Browse More Classics in The Whale

Featured Route For The Whale
Bruce Vollmer leading Gomers. <br /> <br />Photo by Ann S.

Gomers in Blue Shirts 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ E1 5a  CO : Colorado Springs : ... : The Whale
Gomers starts in front of a large pine tree, between two small conifers. Start up the slab, staying to the right of the large bush. There’s a cruxy section past the second bolt, but after the first clip, the route is fairly sustained climbing on thin features. The two arching overlaps above offer some very interesting movement and the crux is to be found between the two. These unique features set Gomers apart from the other routes on the Whale. This is a true classic for the area....[more]   Browse More Classics in CO

Photos of The Whale Slideshow Add Photo
Another gorgeous day on the Whale.
Another gorgeous day on the Whale.
Gabby starts her first ever rappel.
Gabby starts her first ever rappel.
View from the top of the Whale, looking south past the Top Rope Wall to the Cave (center of photo).
View from the top of the Whale, looking south past...
Late afternoon on the Whale.
Late afternoon on the Whale.
The Whale, Solar Slab, and Quarry (far left).
The Whale, Solar Slab, and Quarry (far left).
Every other route getting sent. A wonderful day at RRCOS.
Every other route getting sent. A wonderful day at...
Comments on The Whale Add Comment
Show which comments
By Nathan Hoobler
May 21, 2009

While exploring the Whale last night, we climbed a route between The Thin Line and Esse Curve. Four bolts and felt 5.9+ ish. It doesn't seem to be in the RRCOS climbing book (at least not my first edition).

Is this a new route or am I directionally challenged? FWIW, the route was fun. A challenge for me, though probably easy for most.

By Stewart M. Green
May 26, 2009

Yep. It's sort of a new route. We put that one up back in January. Unnamed and unrated. Look around for the other new ones. We've been keeping them off the radar for now because there will still be a few more to go up...trying to get a little more adventure at ole Red Rock Canyon.

By Ryan Sanders
From: C Springs
May 26, 2009

And we appreciate it, Stewart.

Our favorite so far is what Tom is calling Outer Reach (to keep the nautical theme).

By Andrew Keet
Jun 17, 2009

Great Post! Very informative and a great read. I saw this site during my browsing and think it may be relevant www.whales.org.za .Keep up the great posts!

By Nathan Hoobler
Jul 7, 2009

I think we might have climbed Outer Reach tonight. It was a touch loose down low, but had some cool moves up a double overlap toward the top. Seven bolts, I believe. Always fun to discover a new route where there wasn't one before.

By Dan Petty
From: Colorado Springs, CO
Nov 11, 2010

Lat/long: 38.846075, -104.88238.

By Mark Derham
From: Lakewood, CO
Dec 4, 2013

We hiked around for 45 minutes looking for this place not realizing we were on the opposite side the climbs are on. Park in the far SE lot and hike up the Red Rock trail for about 10 minutes. The Whale will be on the right shortly after the pond.