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The Whale's Tail

Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
Amputee Love T 
Buffoon T 
C'est What? S 
Clementine T 
Dihedral One T 
Dihedral Two T 
East Slabs T 
Finger Crack T 
Free Speech S 
Gumbo T 
Gut Feeling T 
Horangutan T 
Jack The Ripper T 
Jim Crack T 
Kid's Climb T 
Left Arete T 
M T,S 
Martindale T 
Monument, The S 
NED (Nothing Except Dynamics) T 
New Cambria T,TR 
No Problem T 
Northeast Arete T 
Second Coming S,TR 
Spoof T 
Spoof Roof T 
West Crack T,TR 
West Dihedral T,TR 
West Face [Whale's Tail] T,TR 
Yorkshire Ripper, The T 

The Whale's Tail  

Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Location: 39.9312, -105.283 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 66,409
Administrators: Ben Mottinger, Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monomaniac, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Ben Mottinger on Jan 1, 2001


59° | 42°

66° | 46°

63° | 44°

63° | 44°

66° | 44°
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Bastille - M-F closures. Climbing reopened after flood MORE INFO >>>


Many routes exist on this little rock. Some of the easiest slab routes in the canyon and some difficult lines often toproped.

Getting There 

Cross the bridge--it's basically right off the trail to the West next to Redgarden and across from the Bastille.

Climbing Season

Weather station 0.1 miles from here

30 Total Routes

['4 Stars',0],['3 Stars',3],['2 Stars',13],['1 Star',14],['Bomb',0]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for The Whale's Tail:
West Crack   5.2 3 8 II 8 D 2c     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 160'   
West Dihedral   5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 80'   
New Cambria   5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b R     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 90'   
West Face [Whale's Tail]   5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b X     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 80'   
Jack The Ripper   5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a X     Trad, 1 pitch, 100'   
C'est What?   5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c     Sport, 1 pitch   
Free Speech   5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 40'   
NED (Nothing Except Dynamics)   5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b PG13     Trad, 1 pitch, 35'   
The Monument   5.12d 7c 28 IX 28 E6 6b     Sport, 1 pitch   
Browse More Classics in The Whale's Tail

Featured Route For The Whale's Tail
Pulling the bulge on pitch 1 on great, solid jugs ...

Clementine 5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a  CO : Eldorado Canyon SP : The Whale's Tail
This route begins low on the SW side of the formation, up and left around the cave and bouldering at the base. Locate a left-facing corner, climb up about 15 ft. and traverse right (the hardest part to protect), and over the bulge. Stick to the left, unless you like bushwacking, and climb an easy face that leads to an easy crack (some loose rocks) which will take you to the false summit. A 60m trad. rope allowed us to complete in one pitch. Descend from cable at the top of the [[West Dihedra...[more]   Browse More Classics in CO

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By Matt Rutledge
Jan 11, 2002
This is a great rock for people who want to get into leading. The crack numbered (1) goes about 5.2 with pro placements at about every move. The crack numbered (3) goes about 5.4 with even more pro placements than the other crack. Both anchors are solid, and can be backed up if so desired. The face (2) is easily TR'd from the anchor for the first crack. It goes about 5.easy.

I think the crux of this entire face is getting to the belay ledge.

Oh. A 60m rope is really nice to have for raping off the anchors on the first crack. I've had bad luck getting ropes stuck on this one, so stand as far to climbers right as you can when pulling the ropes.
By DanMoore
Nov 24, 2003
Getting to the base of the west face of this rock is a bit hairy. It's not that you're afraid of falling, it's just that the ground is so far away.
By Anonymous Coward
Jun 12, 2004
I've felt for many years that the ratings are backwards. That the left crack is 5.2 with some 5.4 moves while the curving corner to the right is almost class 4 with some 5.2 moves to exit to the anchor. Any other comments?
By Mike Abraham
May 25, 2005
I kind of agree with the comment that the crack (#1 in the photo) seems harder than the corner (#3 in the photo). I think the crack just seems steeper, and is definitely longer. The corner has only the one move to get around the flake. So I guess I give 'em each a 5.3 to even it out. No matter how you slice it, they're both terrific routes, no matter how good you are.
By Benjamn P
From: Boulder, CO
Mar 16, 2015
LOST GEAR: my girlfriend borrowed my rack & got a cam stuck on 3/15/15. See 'West Crack' for description.
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