Blood,Chalk and Flagstaff's Boulders Bouldering, Boulder, Colorado USA

Beams of evening sun whisper through the trees and divide the solitude into shadow and light. Walking along the dusty path that meanders through countless rock formations, I cannot help but feel as if I were in the company of deities. Like an empty window in a ghost town, the formations here have a particular kind of presence. Almost every nubbin on the wonderfully textured rock still remembers the thumbprints of visionary climbers like John Gill, Jim Collins, Christian Griffith and countless others. To unlock the sequence of a problem is to discover a small lesson of wisdom. Endless problems adorn the sharp jugs, pockets and crystals that are speckled across the unusual sedimentary rock. Anything from V0 highballs to V10 test-pieces can be found in a small circumference, leaving something for everyone. Depending on one's mood, on nearly any given afternoon, groups of climbers can be found at the more popular spots like the Cloud Shadow or Monkey Traverse areas, as well as more remote and less visited boulders. On many evenings, Christian Griffith himself can be found showering beta and history lessons upon small groups of young hopefuls.

bouldering 1
Derek Franz goes for the jug on "East Overhang" (V2) near the Cloud Shadow Traverse area.

bouldering 2
Steve Doubilet managing the sharp balance moves of the classic "Hagan's Wall" (V5).

bouldering 3
Steve Doubilet working the last moves of "The Underling Traverse" (V8), a popular test-piece put up by Christian Griffith in the 1980's.

bouldering 4
A highball with ankle-breaking potential always makes V1 more interesting. Derek Franz gingerly prepares to top out on "Contemplation." The "Cloud Shadow Traverse" (V4 or V2) follows the chalked holds below.

bouldering 5
Darlene Kondo shakes off a pump on the very popular "Monkey Traverse" (V4 or V2). "The Monkey Traverse" is probably the most visited bouldering area on Flagstaff.

Feature written by Derek Franz; April 2003. Boulder, Colorado. Pictures one and three were taken by Will Maxwell. Derek has bouldered throughout the area and brings the ease of finding these locations to you.

BarZX Rainbow
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