The 35 Best Climbing Spots in America

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The West: Rocky Mountain National Park
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Alexandra Kahn / Getty Images23/35

The West: Rocky Mountain National Park

Less than 80 miles west of Denver, Rocky Mountain National Park is the only area in the United States with an abundance of world-class climbing in all six styles—bouldering, sport, trad, alpine, ice, and mixed. The Diamond on Long’s Peak is iconic, but there are less-crowded classics walls throughout the 265,873-acre park. Because of heavy snowfall, RMNP’s “dry” routes are seasonal; prepare to fight other climbers for parking spots and campsites during the summer and fall. “I think it’s the best place for high-alpine routes in the United States,” Hunter says. “You’ve got the Diamond and other long, adventurous climbs on amazing granite and surrounded by beautiful scenery. You’re gonna have a long, long days and come home tired. It’s wonderful.”

Closest Town: Estes Park, Colorado

Grade Range: 5.6 – 5.14 , V0 – V15

Notable Routes: 410

Classics: South Face of Petite Grepon (5.8), Casual Route on Long’s Peak Diamond (5.10a), Days of Heaven (5.10d), The Kind (V5), Bologna Pony (5.12c), Tommy’s Arête (V7)

When to Visit: June-September

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