The Boulder Canyon Bouldering Blog

Visit this site for continuously updated information on the bouldering available in Boulder Canyon. Use the links to the right to locate problems in given areas. I will be reworking the format of the site and am always open to updates and news. Contact me via this blog,, or Facebook if you have problems you want included. Happy Bouldering!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

The Graham Boulder

View of the Graham Boulder from the Southeast

View of the Right Graham Arete

Just east of Boulder Falls is an isolated and small boulder on the south side of the stream that packs a lot of punch. With at least 1 V11, a V10 and a V9/10, this boulder has a lot to offer the visiting climber. However if you are looking for big lines and tall topouts, head elsewhere.

At about 7 miles upcanyon, just across from the Boulder Falls sign, locate a pullout on the south side of the creek. Depending on the water level, it is best to cross in the vicinity of the pullout. Expect cold fast water. The trail is a bit difficult to find at first but trend right and it soon gains talus and goes beneath a cliff band. The boulder is about 100 yards downstream. Depending on the water and bushwhacking, expect 5 to 10 minutes max.

Bulge Left of Left Graham Arete V7/8?
Start on an undercling RH and a sidepull left, just behind the tree. Head right on good edges and terrible feet to pull over just left of the top-out for LGA. I haven't done this yet but it should go.

Left Graham Arete V11
Sit start matched on the obvious undercling on the far left of the north face. The beta varies but ultimately you are aiming for a poor crimp at the lip for your right hand using an undercling with your left. Go left to a better crimp and then up and right. The stand start is a good V4/5 by itself. Very sharp holds and terrible feet. See video here for an interesting sequence that doesn't use the crimpy undercling. My beta is here.

An alternate finish goes left on good edges behind the tree.

North Face Traverse V2/3
Start at a big jug above head height and traverse across the break, moving up and right to the top. Starting from the LGA undercling is V8, probably harder if you can't 't dyno for the jug. A good variation on the traverse is to go straight to a good edge on the lip from the first jug. Maybe V4 for that dyno.

The Fields Problem V6 or 7/8
Start on two head-height crimps about 4 feet right of the ramp. Go straight up on small crimps to the rail. The easier version (V6) does a quick pop off the starting holds to a LH intermediate sharp edge and a go-again to the rail. The harder version moves off the LH sharp edge to a bad RH edge straight up, then to the rail.

The Capps Problem V10 (or harder)
Right again in a shallow scoop feature is a likely V10 problem that starts on two very thin edges and throws to very poor higher edges. Go from these to the rail above. This is rated V9 by some sources but there is no way it's that grade. Any beta/history info is welcome.

Graham Boulder Traverse Project V12+ ?
Start on the Left Graham Arete undercling, then go right to the jug. From there head straight right on thin crimps to the Capps Problem and finish on that. For extra credit figure out a way to join the Right Graham Arete.

Right Graham Arete AKA The Little Sloper That Could V9/10
Grade may depend on your ability at sneaky heelhooks. Start with a poor lefthand fin-like hold and a sloper just right of the arete. Pop left to a bad sloper and then catch a small crimp RH. Go right again to a better edge and grab the rail on the left. Tiny tiny footholds.This has been called V8 by those who should know better. It's not. The V9 rating might apply to crisp conditions.

It seems that a lower right hand for the start is feasible but very hard.

Ryan Silven on the Right Graham Arete

Project V??
Start in the V4 dihedral and traverse left to the arete on impossible slopers. This could be an incredible problem.

Warm-Up Corner V4
This is a difficult warm-up but a classic line. Sit start at the base of the obvious dihedral. Painful climbing follows. Exit straight up.

There is potential for easier problems on the east face but they aren't named or graded.


wade david said...

velvet revolver v8 Fa mark hobson, at the top of boulder falls right next to the water fall. start way right sitting and climb up and left.


Peter Beal said...

Thanks Wade. I'll add it to the Dream Canyon section

chuffer said...

R Graham Arete = The Little Sloper That Could, FA: Fields/Walburn/et al.

Someone else should be able to confirm as there may have been others involved in the early development.

I remember a few of us thinking the L Graham Arete (stand) is in the neighborhood of V6 and certainly no easier than V5. A few of us that climb a lot in that grade range agree.

The thin vertical section between the two has at least two lines, at least one of which was thought to have been put up by Brian Capps, although these may also have been done by Fields/Walburn/et al. We used to refer to them as Capps Face Left V6ish and Capps Face Right "V8ish" ... for better or worse.

Impeccable rock, but a tad short.

my 2 cents - chipper

Peter Beal said...

Thanks for the info Chip and by the way where's the Flag V8 and up list? I really wonder about the grades on the "Capps" problems. The only logical right line looks much harder than V8

chuffer said...

yeah, you may be right about the Capps Face Right version, we did not try it. We did do the Lefter version in cold temps and V6 seemed appropriate at the time.

Peter Beal said...

Thanks Chip. Do you remember where the Left one started?

chuffer said...

about where you've drawn it. Moves up and slightly left from the start. my point was that there are two problems ... one that goes up and slightly left from the start at about V6 and another that that goes up and maybe slightly right from the start. some folks have referred to them as Capps Face Left and Right, but drop Brian a line and see what he remembers about them. Ryan Fields or Tim Walburn, et al may have put these up way back when too.


Mannphoto said...

Nice Peter. I think "Capps Face" does not exist. I believe it was a name once said for the Fields Face and is now somehow confused. I'd be surprised if it was done, although that being said, Brian surprises me all the time.

Fields Face certainly is no harder than V6, not at one move. Granted, that move at 20 feet would be a heart-breaker, it cannot be considered harder than "See Spot Run." I found it easier than LGA stand.

Try it when it is cold and you'll do pull ups on those tiny crimps ;-). -Andy

Peter Beal said...

Thanks for thoughts on the Fields problem. I wonder if there's a different sequence that I used. I'll try to video it. Andy Manikowski suggested easy V8 for the way we went.

The "Capps Problem" definitely seems V11+ although it could be a height thing.

dan.j.michels said...

i went for my first time the other day to check out these problems. the fields problems i believe has had a hold breakage. the left hand intermediate for the left version (the first hold you go to and bump off of has broke). implications for the right version? the way i figure, its a totally different problem now