The Low Hanging Fruit Wall is an outcrop of some very unique and high quality climbing for the Crystal River Valley. Many early visitors to the crag cast it off as unworthy due to the raging icy Crystal River crossing, trail-less approach and lack of hangs below climbs. Today adventurous sport climbers will find the approach well worth it and encounter some of the most beautiful stone on the Western Slope. The river is still cold but there is a rudimentary trail to the base of the crag and hardy souls over the last couple years have been making belay stances. A dedicated and motivated group of locals has worked exceptionally hard at improving the approach! Thanks.
Recommended Park at the top of Daniels Hill right at the junction for the turn to Lizard Lake. Walk down the hill and past Lizard lake and then down another hill to where the road meets the Crystal river. Cross the river here.You can drive all the way to the crossing if you want. But the popularity of the Scofield Pass road has increased to the point that you might have to deal with passing vehicles in exposed single lane situations. Also getting your vehicle stuck back there might be pricy. Another option is to park at the bottom of Daniels Hill just after Beaver Lake and hitch hike.
Times may vary on how long you futz around crossing the river. I wear my shorts and water shoes there so I can just walk across the river without stopping and then keep them on for the walk up the hill to the climbing.
-From where the road meets the crossing: 15-20 minutes.
-From the top of Daniels Hill: 30 minutes.
-From the Bottom of Daniels Hill: 50 minutes.
After crossing the river you still walk up hill about 100 vertical feet to a very well-traveled game trail. Take a right and follow the gently climbing game trail to the right way farther then you would expect. You will get to a cairn after about 10 minutes. You will then switch back to the left and then up a steep slope with a black fixed line. Keep traversing left and you will encounter a second horizontal hand line. This will bring you to the right side of the wall. Walk along the base of the wall to the climbing. Enjoy.
Word of Caution: This area has received little traffic and gets a lot of run off in the spring. Be prepared to brush key holds and pull on “maypops” with caution. As always wear a helmet to climb and belay! You will need a 70m rope for most climbs, tie a knot in the end! Long draws are nice to reduce drag. Or reach back and unclip the last draw at key spots.
Route below without descriptions can be found in the Western Sloper.
1. Contact High 5.11b**
2. Donde Estas Matador 5.11a**
3. Bombs Over Badger 5.13b ** 35m
If you climb to the mid anchor it is 11a. Continue on for the full experience. The upper section is insanely hard but an incredible alpine pull hard feast. Don't underestimate how hard it is to clip the anchor.
4. Yoga with Tina 5.12a ***
So good! A little run out in the mid section.
5. Cardio Monster 5.12a **
This is a great climb. The LHFW gets a lot of run off in the spring from the snow fields above. Careful pulling on the upper flakes on this one.
6. Hoptimize 5.12c/d**** 35m 21 bolts
This is an incredible and hard 35m route. The initial part of the climb involves a very steep V2 boulder problem at the third and forth bolt. Then climb the incredible vertical orange streak. When about level with the Secret Stash anchors to the right you need to pull over a tricky overhang crux. The climbing from here to the chains is no gimme with several more challenging moves. This climb is a beast!
Recommended: You can skip the first boulder problem by climbing the first three bolts of cardio monster and then stepping right. Bring some long draws to reduce drag. If you do the direct start rech back and unclip or you will have heinous drag.
6a. Mix and Mash 5.10c ** 25m
Starts on one of the original routes to the zone Cardio Monster for a few bolts then climbs the mid section of Hoptimize through the orange streak and then steps right to the Secret Stash anchor.
7. Secret Stash 5.10b*** 25m 9 bolts
Climb the first three bolts of Chocolate Chipmunk and then move left onto Secret Stash. Follow the bolt line carefully and you will be rewarded with superb rock. Good warm up.
8. Chocolate Chipmunk 10a**
9. Pink Panther 10d - fun and challenging climb if you stay on route with some suspect rock down low. I often warm up on Chocolate Chipmunk and then top rope Pink Panther since the rope hangs right over it.
The Next Two Climbs are to the right of Pink Panther.
10. Tricky Business**** 5.12a 35m
Climb 2 bolts onto large ledge and then onto the upper wall. After the first three bolts this climb is glorious. The crux is ¾ of the way up in the bullet blue face that appears totally featureless from below. There is just enough there to make it go! That being said you will have to fight the barn door like it is blowing in a hurricane. Love it. Well bolted and clean falls. After the crux pull the easy roof to the anchor.
11. Path of Totality**** 5.12a 37m
A low boulder move into the crack on the left leads to the large ledge after 3 bolts. Move onto the upper face with huge edges into the bullet blue limestone crux just before the shallow dihedral. The crux will probably leave you scratching your head on the first lead attempt but is not that bad. Continue up the incredible dihedral and then onto the slightly overhanging headwall at the top. Another tricky move will lead to the anchors to the left. Watch your rope ends. You can double rap off of Chocolate Chipmunk. Fair warning the last bolt to the anchor involves some adult climbing but is only 5.9ish. To the right are some flakes above Ant Proof Case that I am sure no one would be silly enough to climb onto.
12. Ant Proof Case 5.11c***
This climb is a great 5.11 test piece. Climb through the crux and then a little to make the clip. Get ready to log some air time. Overall a very steep climb.
13. Blue Anteater 5.11b***
Very technical climbing. For those seeking 5.11s due Blue Anteater then Ant Proof case for the all time outing.