You’ve Got Questions. We’ve Got Answers.
What's the deal with wet rock?
After recent rain or snow storms, sandstone can become fragile. Climbing on it can cause damage to climbs and injury, including one death, to climbers. Please wait until the rock is thoroughly dry at Garden of the Gods & Red Rocks Open Space after it rains before climbing.
How do I know if the rock is wet?
- Any wet patch on the sandstone at Garden of the Gods or Red Rocks Open Space means it is still too wet to climb.
- If the ground is saturated, the rock is wet (even if it has a visibly dry surface).
- If a sand-collecting ledge is wet below the surface of the sand, the rock is wet.
- High humidity, cold temps, lack of wind may all cause the rock to take MORE than 24 hours to dry.
Where can I climb if sandstone is wet?
When Garden of the Gods & Red Rocks Open Space are wet, try climbing at: NOrth Cheyenne Canon Park, 11 Mile Canyon, Castlewood Canyon, Shelf Rd or a climbing gym.
How do I get a permit to climb at Garden of the Gods?
Garden of the Gods is a historic climbing area and as such has very specific rules. Please adhere to these rules to ensure that climbing access stays open for all. Read the rules and get a permit here.
What about Chalk?
Chalk and chalk substitutes of any kind are prohibited at Garden of the Gods. The use of chalk of any kind will cause climbers to lose access to this historic climbing area.
Red chalk and clear chalk substitutes are allowed at Red Rocks Open Space. White chalk is prohibited. The PPCA has worked with the city to allow the continued use of colored chalk and substitutes at this location. Please help keep access to chalk in this area by following the rules. Colored chalk and chalk substitutes may be purchased at local climbing shops.
Are there raptor closures?
We are fortunate to have raptors in the area that require climbers help and protection. Please look for seasonal closures select areas in Garden of the Gods from February through August. You can find the exact locations on mountain project or by stopping in a the visitors center. by allowing these magnificent birds the time and space they need, we can help ensure their species may recover.
Are bolts good or bad?
To bolt or not to bolt. That is the question. The PPCA is working on bolting guidelines at Devil's Head and on Pike's Peak with respect to preserving the history of the region as well as the natural resources. While this is in process, we ask that you do not place or remove bolts in these areas. The PPCA takes no position on "ground up" bolting vs "top down bolting." Instead, we want to ensure that bolts are placed correctly and in such a way they can be sustainably replaced to ensure our climbing resources will be preserved for generations to come. The PPCA will continue to replace aging hardware as our resources permit and we will always strive to reuse the pre-existing bolt holes whenever possible.