Start low and left, either in the vertical section of huecos or even further left where the wall is slabby. Climb up and right for roughly 80+ feet, generally staying at mid-height on the wall (this is where it tends to be most featured anyway). The finish stays low via a series of right-hand underclings and left-hand slaps before mantling up onto a tiny ledge before the wall turns high and slabby. While perhaps a little sharp on the tips, the Yarbles is a great challenge nevertheless, offering a number of variegated cruxes on holds ranging from half-digit pebbles to full-palm slopers. The rating is V6 or V7, thought it would probably be 12+ on the route scale.
Directions: From the top of The Gutter drop north over a notch into the prominent, tree-filled gully which splits the south end of the Second Flatiron. Descend for 70 yards, hugging the right wall, which eventually becomes the Yarbles. Start the traverse at the bottom of the gully, just above the point at which it cliffs out

The Compound: This is the longest traverse in the Boulder area, and with a recently-completed low finish offers 200 feet of fairly sustained, overhanging climbing. While some of the holds are a bit grinder on the skin, the awesome position of this traverse high in the middle of the Second Flatiron and the beauty of the stone make for an unforgettable experience. A fox lives up near here, so do your best to be nature-friendly while climbing at The Compound.

Matt Samet sends the
Compound Traverse
Begin low and right in a small-dirt filled pit that's usually overgrown with raspberry bushes. Sit start on a good incut for the left hand and a stonker letterbox for the right, pull on, and reel left along the wall. Stay low (off the top band of jugs) through the next section, then stay off of the lip proper for the rest of the traverse. The holds are almost always chalked, so it shouldn't be too hard to figure out where to go. Two very overhanging sections of climbing near the end (one crossing a horizontal cave, the other punching straight out a 45 degree overhanging headwall to reach a jug at the lip) comprise the crux. Finish by mantling over, 145 feet after you've begun. This gets a V7 or 13a route grade. The full journey continues on from here, staying low before dropping left into another raspberry-filled pit and tackling the crimpy Genghis Kahn goes hunting (V6 jugs out right are off), hitting the lip, dropping down the "Sastrugi Groove," lowball traversing left into a big throw for a perfectly round hueco and reeling left again to finish out on the prow/fin at the very leftmost extremity of the traverse. This gets a V9 or 13c route grade and is 200 feet long.
Koyaani Slot V4
Directions: From the Gutter drop north over a notch into the big gully. Cross the gully and scramble up onto the northwest-diagonalling slabs. Follow these 200 feet up to the base of the traverse.
Matt Samet sends the V8 variation
in The Gutter, 2nd. FlatIron
Matt Samet sends the Yarbles
V6/7 Traverse
The Compound Traverse
Matt sends Koyaani Slot V4
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Gutter & Compound

& Yarbles

The Yarbles: This eternally-shady venue provides a nice compliment to its sunnier neighbors The Gutter and The Compound, both because it offers cooler temps and the opportunity to traverse left to right for a change, sparing your poor, tendonitis-ridden left shoulder. While a somewhat steep hillside comprises the landing, the stone is iron-hard for the most part and you're never more than a short jump away from the ground.

The easiest way V5 stays high along the lip through the first and middle sections on incut crimps and fins. The middling way V7 stays low through the bottom (climbing within the slot itself) before crossing the lip of the slot (not the face above) through the middle section via a powerful, leftward span move. The most difficult variation V8 stays low in the slot for the beginning then moves across then under the lip via a powerful series of lock-offs through the middle sector. The Udder V4, a strenuous slot problem just west of The Gutter, provides 20 feet of similar roof/slot-type adventure to a sloping finish.
Matt Samet sends the V8
variation in The Gutter
Directions: From the Lower Satellites (the well-chalked cluster of boulders 2/3 of the way up the Third Flatiron approach trail) walk uphill and west, heading through the trees into a large gully. Surmount a slab/step in the gully and continue another minute uphill and west to the base of the Second Flatiron directly below the large overhangs on the left (south) end. Drop your stuff on a convenient flat spot and look uphill and north. The Gutter climbs in the nicely-featured slot on the back of the tiny flatironette.
Matt Samet sends the
Yarbles V6/7 Traverse
FRB Home

The Gutter: Just five minutes west of the heavily-trafficked Satellite Boulders, this excellent, 90-foot-long overhanging traverse sees surprisingly little action. It was first established by Paul Glover and John Dunne in the Spring of 1992, the first year the falcon closure was instituted for the Third Flatiron, hence the Ghetto.

The Gutter provides a great place to either get a pump or warm-up for surrounding areas like the Satellites, the Yarbles and the Compound. There are myriad variations possible, all pumpy, all fun and all sharing the same finish. There is a great variety of holds here and the rock is iron-hard and perfect. Expect to grab huecos, pockets, crimpers and iron-rock flakes en route to summit glory.


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