Before bouldering was considered a sport distinct from climbing, some of the greatest climbers came to Boulder in search of challenging problems. In the 1950s and 60s, Boulder was frequented by climbers such as Royal Robbins, Corwin Simmons, Bob Beatty, Prince Willman, Ray Northcutt, Dallas Jackson and Bob Culp. Local climbing legends include Jim Erickson, Layton Kor, and brothers Roger and Bill Briggs. Arriving in Boulder in the early 1960s, Pat Ament put his skills to test on the majority of problems found on Flagstaff Mountain. The bouldering trend continued through the 1970s, and the gymnastic talents of Bob Candelaria and Jim Holloway developed even more difficult problems.
The high standards and popularity of Boulder as an excellent bouldering area continues today with newly discovered gems throughout the Flatirons. From Mount Sanitas to the West Bank, bouldering in the Flatirons is vast. The wilderness experience and escape from the city is only minutes away whether one chooses to tackle a roadside classic on Flagstaff or explore the vast and wonderful boulders that populate the Flatirons.
For more detailed information, consult local guidebooks. “Colorado Bouldering” by Benningfield, “Best of Boulder Bouldering” by Horan, or online, at www.frontrangebouldering.com and www.mountainproject.com are great places to start.