Warbonnet Ridge

Page Type
Colorado, United States, North America
Route Type:
Hiking, Mountaineering, Trad Climbing, Scrambling
Summer, Fall
Time Required:
A long day
Grade III 5.8

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Warbonnet Ridge
Created On: Feb 5, 2006
Last Edited On: Dec 3, 2007


From the Wild Basin Ranger Station take the Thunder Lake Trail to the Lion Lake Trail Junction. Take the Lion Lake Trail to it's end at Lion Lake #1, then continue up past Trio Falls to Lion Lake #2,and on to Snowbank Lake then on up to the base of the route. (see map)

Route Description

Climbing the slabs on the 1st...
The route starts up a inside corner, to the left (NW) of the "nose" of the arete. We built a small cairn at the start when we did the first ascent in 1989, it's probably still there.

1st lead ascends the slabs to the left of the inside corner, 80 - 90 feet , 5.6.

2nd lead starts with a short 5.7 lieback in the corner, then works its way up a chimney to a belay ledge just above the top of the chimney, 80 - 90 feet, 5.7.

3rd lead starts with a short right hand traverse on a ledge, then lieback up a flake and work back left and up a groove to a good belay stance, 80 feet, 5.5. Rope drag is a problem on this pitch.

4th lead goes up a "V" groove leading up and right towards the "Nose" of the Warbonnet Ridge to a large ledge, 100+ feet, 5.5.
At this point walk towards the "nose" of the ridge along this exposed ledge across the front of the ridge to the east side of the arete. This ledge is the one we named the "Walk on the Wild Side" ledge (see photo).

5th and 6th leads climb up the steep slabs and blocks on the right edge of the nose of the ridge, 5.5.

7th lead ascends an prominent crack system on the nose of the ridge, 90 feet, 5.8. This is the crux lead.
The 7th lead on the Warbonnet...

At this point we were able to unrope and climb simultaneously up through the upper section of the route until the last 80 foot headwall just below the top of the route. Some of the moves in this section are 5th class, but because the ridge goes up in short steps we felt it was safe to climb unroped ... others may not agree.

8th lead goes up a steep headwall to the ridge leading to the summit, 80 - 90 feet, 5.4.

The entire route up the ridge is approximately 1500 feet long.

Essential Gear

A standard rack with a selection of stoppers and cams, and a 50 meter rope.

Miscellaneous Info