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West Face (5.5)

First Flatironette - Boulder, Colorado

July 3, 2012

While visiting Kim's grandmother in Denver, Kim and I had an opportunity to climb in Boulder. We had hoped to climb the famous THird Flatiron, but it is closed for raptor nesting from March through September.

We parked the car and checked in at the nearby ranger station that was situated in what looked like and older house. We learned which trails were closed due to a nearby fire and which routes were closed for raptor nesting. The Second and First Flatirons were stilll open so we set our sights on the Second Flatiron for a long, moderate route.

It was a pretty warm day with temperatures in the high 80's to low 90's and we were at elevation so we slathered on the sunscreen and made our way up the well maintained trail system. I had studied the approaches in the guidebooks on earlier trips, so I felt I had a good idea of where we needed to go. And everything did go well until we got right under the Second Flatiron. Then we headed up what we thought was the correct climbers trail but we should have stayed low. It was getting later in the afternoon, and we didn't want to be high on and exposed peak with the afternoon thunderstorms roll through so we decided to head back to the First Flatiron and climb something there.

We saw some climbers on the First Flatiron so we looked up the route in the guidebook and learned that it was one of the longer routes in the area, so we chose to climb the first "Flatironette". It was a three pitch moderate route that we could "get our feet wet" on and then come back the next day to climb the complete First Flatiron.

The First Flatironette started off with a runout seam on easy slabs and finished with easier terrain with low angle cracks and ledges. It was fun to finally be climbing in the famous Flatirons, but were really looking forward to climbing some of the higher peaks next time!