Penelope May and I combined the Solar Slab Gully and Solar Slab for a great climb during our brief visit to Red Rocks. We climbed four pitches in the Gully and 6 or 7 pitches up the Slab for a total of at least 10-11 pitches. I got lost a bit on the last couple pitches and we might have finished on the Sunflower, but the Solar Slab has some wonderful climbing. The Black Crack pitch was one of the best 5.6 pitches I have ever climbed, yeh, that good. Most of the pitches are steep, clean climbing with great protection. We did 11 or 12 rappels to gett off the formation. We started at 6:00 am from the car and got back to firm ground at 9:00pm, a long day with raps in the dark. But I would recommend this route fully, this is a real Red Rocks Classic. We had the route to ourselves. Penelope took some pictures of the route's key pitches and I have included them here on the SP. Take a look at the route's quality and go for it. It's a must do!
After an earlier attempt we went back and doubled our speed up the Solar Slab gully from the first time, and hustled on up Solar Slab, the first party up of the day. Other parties arrived, and one finally crept past us, as the leader was basically soloing. Rapped off the top of pitch 7. Sure was great to be climbing in Red Rocks again after a long hiatus.
Probably not the best route to do on the shortest day of the year, but what a great route. Watch out for the the pitch in the white rock, it must of been pitch 9 or 10.
Bob Cable and I didn't make the main summit that day, walked out thru verglas ice in the dark as usual.
Climbed this classic Red Rocks route with Bob Cable. A very demanding climb but well worth the effort, The summit is a ways from the top of the climb, but looking down the "Rainbow Wall" is spectacular.Oh yeah almost forgot we walked out in the dark again.
myles and I did the whole thing back in january, dutifully belaying every pitch. we descended the gully to the east via a dozen rappels and downclimbing, which all in all was harder than the climb. nobody else on the route that day.
well josh, i just hiked to the summit. pale effort in comparison, yet quite a worthwhile day in the life of an average adventurer.
long hike, beautiful summit in winter low light. all the ice in the creek was amazing.
I've free-soloed most of the worthwhile routes on Rainbow Mountain that are 5.10 and under. One of my favorite morning workouts is to free-solo Beulah's Book, Johnny Vegas, or Solar Slab Gully up to Solar Slab, then down the Black Orpeus descent and out Oak Creek Canyon. My best time is 24 minutes and 55 seconds from the bottom of the first pitch of Solar Slab Gully to the top of the last pitch of Solar Slab (14 roped pitches according to the Swain guidebook). If you can beat this, let me know!