Swan Mountain Bolted Toprope Solo

(NOTE: I've started posting a new blog just for rope solo http://ropesolo.blogspot.com/ - visit if you like)

(Note: the bolts on this route have since become unusable - do not duplicate unless you can set your own toprope on gear - June 2009)

Reading on Mountain Project for Keystone Area in Colorado, I came across the Swan Mountain Road Bouldering Area. Just down the trail another 10 minutes or so (whole thing took me about 14 minutes this morning) is a Top Rope Crag - about 30' max give or take, with two listed 5.6 Routes. Perfect.

Angie has a pic on her blog showing the view across the lake from the top of the routes.

At the top of the East 5.6 (Left according to Mountain Project) are two bolt hangers.


I got my stuff together:

and clipped a figure-eight on a bight to the hangers using three quickdraws set to overlap gate directions, one longer as a fall-back.

Walked around to the East and down to the bottom:


Looking up the rope - rope on right is the extra from when I dropped a loop of 60M rope and just tied it off at the top to make it easier to pull up:

Cruxy section is just above the shaded blocks halfway between the ropes - left hand small crimp and right in small toe-pocket.

Tied in about where the tangle is - normal Top Rope Solo technique, and starting to climb:


Topping out - about 20 minutes with a few minutes of FEAR to deal with at the cruxy section stepping out of the crack and onto the face with a left crimper about 3/8" and a right toe pocket about 1/2":


All in all a great time, beautiful weather and a nice hike. After calling in alive to Angie I packed my stuff and took the low trail hiking back through the Traverse Wall area.