Red Feather

Red Feather

Posted on 06. Apr, 2011 by in News

A few years ago I spent a number of days developing some great new boulders in Red Feather Lakes, including the Vampire, The Big Bang and Mastodon. No one seemed to care too much, and I was beginning to wonder if interest in the area had waned. There were a number of other projects that I tried and failed on as well.

Dave Graham had been asking me about the area for a while and on Thursday we finally all piled into the car to check it out. Reviews of Red Feather have been mixed. I think it is a great area with some potential for new and hard problems on good granite. Other have agreed, and still others have said that it is “terrible.” I was curious as to the response of Dave, Jon Cardwell, Jimmy Webb and Diego Montull, as they are all very well traveled.

The first place we stopped was Mastadon V12. The crew seemed psyched and quickly got to work. Dave was the first to climb the problem and Jimmy followed suit half and hour or so later. Dave did the second ascent. It doesn’t seem like there was much motivation to try and top out the climb, and perhaps it simply doesn’t go. It seems like this one will hold its grade at V12.

With motivation high, we walked over the hill to The Big Bang. I had thought this was the hardest of the three problems. Jimmy is in phenomal shape and wanted to try and flash it. Dave tried it briefly and then Jimmy stepped in and crushed it. He stuck the big dyno with one arm, something I tried numerous times and failed to do, eventually using a two handed double clutch. Even a crumbling foot on the topout couldn’t thwart his effort. Jimmy thought it could be V11, but Dave failed to do the move and thought it to be harder. It’s difficult to grade such a specific move and perhaps it’s easier than V12, but perhaps Jimmy is just really strong. I’d tend to think the later after his recent flash of Burnout V12. Very nice effort on his part.

IMG_0940Dave tries a toehook method

Dave also added two new lines to the area:
Christian Fundamentalism V12, which climbs the arete of the Big Bang from a sit start and is V12
Bebe Smurf V11, which climbs a rounded bulge on horrible holds, just right of the Swoosh project.
He also did the crux move on the Swoosh project, which is probably V13.

It was a really fun day, and it’s so nice to see such experienced climbers enjoying a place I (and many other Colorado locals) have spent so much time developing. Looks like we may be getting back there soon, and I am looking forward to seeing some new problems get done!

15 Responses to “Red Feather”

  1. Beau

    06. Apr, 2011


  2. PatC

    06. Apr, 2011

    Any video of Jimmy flashing Big Bang?

  3. B3

    06. Apr, 2011

    that video should be out soon!

  4. Colin

    06. Apr, 2011

    This Jimmy Webb fellow is pretty good at climbing rocks.

  5. jacob

    06. Apr, 2011

    awesome. it’s nice to see shit get repeated and newness envisioned, but i don’t think there was a loss of interest in this place. most people that frequent the feather just don’t climb as strong as you, which means that those problems see little traffic(not to mention that Vampire is on private property)and the strong people we have in noco tend to hate the feather because it’s so incredible.

    the same handfull of people that have loved this place for the last six or seven years are still out there exploring, scrubbing and sending. just because we’re not putting up the next hard vturd doesn’t mean that interest has waned. the feather has been a deserted playground for the few of us that love to sweet talk her secrets from her and i doubt that will change. red feather, the area that people love to hate.

    Jamie, get on capps’ Flaming Lips. i wanna see a repeat of that technical stunner. maybe one of you will want to try the obvious line that continues out the arete.

  6. Newbie

    06. Apr, 2011

    If I’m indoor rock climbing, and I start on the foot holds, then climb up a route that’s already taped, can I re-tape the route with a new color and pretend like the original setter was never there?

  7. Pauly D

    06. Apr, 2011

    RED FEATHER rips! Soo much potential…

  8. B3

    06. Apr, 2011

    jacob, nice to hear you’ve still been getting out there. I know there has always been a dedicated Red Feather crew, and I always seem to have fun out there. I took some people up there who weren’t impressed and that disappointed me a bit. Dave and Jimmy seemed to really enjoy it. That compression thing is the next one we are checking out! I’ve never seen it, but I’m psyched.

  9. Rob

    06. Apr, 2011

    Where are these boulders located? is there any type of quasi-guide to the area? Can you give me a ball park or will I need someone to walk me there?

  10. Mojo

    06. Apr, 2011

    Nice! I’m liking these posts about exploring and finding new projects . . . really inspiring for me.

    Too bad Mastodon doesn’t top out . . . I usually dislike traverses but that rail feature looks pretty cool.

  11. michael

    07. Apr, 2011

    @newbie, Someone retro bolted a proj on TR with an ATC because she kept cratering, but then a hone master named Mr. came along with some new beta for an assis start and said it was go. from then on he worked the new start for 3 days after getting off the couch he sat on for a month straight for a pully tendon that was tweaked from trying to top out on TF’s FA called CV but he decided to keep it exactly the same name just for noobies & giggles and kept the new method with basically the same name Covert Methods Also. Wouldnt you know that that hone master was me? Probably knot because I still cant send JE’s double gaston method for the Resistance…I personally think the climb should be rated overhanging glass but JE still says 13C firm..Its a few pretty pennies and a dime of a price to pay for getting ratted on for just saying a simple number but what can ya do? Not everyone puffs pot and doesnt care about simple things, some people actually give a hoot and dont pollute. but who am I not to say I dont drive half an hour round trip to crank on chossy cliffs that once crumbled left and right and are now bomb proof? hopefully my honda spree will get kicken as soon as I get johnny’s tool to fix the crank shaft that needs the threads retapped.

  12. Seth

    07. Apr, 2011

    Nice post Jamie. God, I miss me some feather.

    Get Paul out there when he gets to CO in the next few weeks.

  13. matt

    08. Apr, 2011

    Here’s a legit question…
    let’s say, (very much) thanks to a municipality using some serious funds to redirect storm run-off into one of the state’s largest waterways, the said municipality did some yard work, and eventually made a nice green area at the end of a nice 3.3 mile stretch of local 4 lane road(expressway altenative) alernative/bike/jogging path/with chossy rock. 20 yards off this road exists a 30′ gently overhanging face that may go. it sits in a steep loose hill that you cannot lay a pad down without sliding all the way down. It tops out onto a steep loose ground for 15 more feet, then into a cemetery tthat;s also a historic landmark.
    A friend and i decided to wait a year to see if other (new) bolts on very public rock are removed, then use removable bolts/trad gear. our concerns are the thousands of cars that would pass by during any given session, private/public property, if public, does the water dept own it? city? park commission? chalk?

  14. Davin

    11. Apr, 2011


    we have a bunch of that style rock just north of Red Feather. Also, the really good stuff. Come on up to Wyoming. I know you want to.

  15. B3

    11. Apr, 2011

    Davin, I’ve been talking to Capps a bunch and would love to check it out. I’m sure we’ll be headed there soon.

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