Bolt Addition to Cornucopia

Route Name: Cornucopia
Rock Formation: The Box
Number of Bolts to be Placed: 1

Description/Info/History of Route to receive added bolt.

Cornucopia is an existing sport route on the scooped out South face of the Box formation on Dinosaur Mountain.  It’s a 5.13a and rumored to be the first rap-bolted route in the Flatirons, put up over 30 years ago.  Dale Goddard is the first ascentionist.  This route is a classic and one of the best of its grade in all of the Flatirons.   It currently has 6 modern and sound ½” expansion bolts.  A mediocre #2-#3 camalot placement is available to protect groundfall potential between the first two bolts.  I’m proposing here that a 7th bolt be added between the current 1st and 2nd bolts in order to improve safety and wall aesthetics at The Box.

The distance between the 1st and 2nd bolts on the route is currently ~16ft.  A long stick clip does not span this gap.  The route starts with a thin V4ish boulder problem leading to a mantel into a large pod on the route in between these two bolts.   Once the mantel is completed, the top left portion of the pod can accept a #2-#3 Camalot.  A fall during the mantel would be scary at least and possibly injurious.  The second bolt is just out of reach of the good stance at this pod and thus it is difficult to hang a draw. A fall trying to hang the 2nd draw or clip it would certainly be serious.

I reached out to Dale Goddard, the F.A.ist and posed the question to him, asking for his thoughts. Here’s the most pertinent portion of his kind response to my query:

“The placement of the bolts on The Cornucopia reflected an ethic of its time in which every bolt was viewed as a taint on the rock.  That drove us to use as few bolts as possible — even if this meant inconvenient placements or [required] a rack of all draws and one cam. In retrospect it seems silly. As you alluded, the result is just long slings on the rock, which, while technically removable are, in practice, fixed.  So with the benefit of more perspective on the route and how it’s climbed, I’d say go for it.”

Without the bolt, the route will continue to get some traffic.  People will mostly circumnavigate placing any gear by trying to swing over from Discipline, using extra large stick clip devices, lowering in from the top to hang the draws and extended-sling-apparatus to protect the pod section, or just going for it.  With the bolt, Cornucopia will remain classic, physically challenging, and psychologically challenging as an incredible old-school-style sport route in the Flatirons.  It will eliminate most of the fall-related dangers low on the route and make Cornucopia safer and more accessible to all.  It will also eliminate the common use of a really long sling at the 2nd bolt (see picture), which improves safety and aesthetics. 

The only other route in the immediate vicinity (the scooped out South face) is Discipline, a 5.12b that runs 10-15ft to the right of Cornucopia.  The addition of the aforementioned bolt does not impact Discipline.

The approach, descent, and cliff base area are already well established and would all be unaffected by the bolt addition.

The route begins atop a ~25’ boulder/flake which leans against the main wall.  You step off the boulder onto small hand and foot holds to gain the beginning of the route and the first bolt.  The current base of the climb and staging area for this wall mostly consist of rock and erosion resistant flatter dirt areas.

This route has been in existence since the late 1980s.  The existing bolts (I think replaced around 2009) are sound, and the route is very clean and devoid of loose rock/debris that could prove hazardous to any potential user of the area.  I have personally climbed it many times and am familiar with the nature and sequence of its movement.

Considerations from Boulder OSMP:

Bolt Replacement Information

  1. Stainless steel bolts are strongly recommended.
  2. Minimum bolt size shall be 3/8” x 3 ½”.
  3. Bolts and hangers must be camouflaged prior to insertion into the rock.
  4. Cold shuts are prohibited.
  5. Drive-in bolts are prohibited.
  6. Motorized rock drills are recommended.
  7. Only chains and/or links are permitted as anchors, no chord or webbing.
  8. When replacing fixed hardware, holder will make every effort to repair and restore the rock to its natural state.

Pertinent Rules and Regulations

You must have this approved (signed) application in your possession when installing the route – or you may be found in violation of park regulations and prosecuted accordingly.

 

It is against federal, state and municipal law to disturb any nesting bird of prey.  Area wildlife closures are in effect for nesting/roosting birds of prey, from February 1st through July 31st, annually.  Please contact OSMP, or refer to osmp.org for current, updated seasonal closure information.  Sites may vary annually.

Section 5-4-2, B.R.C. 1981, (Damaging Public Property).

No person shall damage, move, remove, destroy, drill a hole in, dig, or injure in any manner whatsoever any grass, tree, shrub, plant, flower, soil, rock, or other natural object, railing, bridge, culvert, sign, building, equipment, bolt, archeological, historic, or cultural object, or any other property whatsoever belonging to the city or under the possession and control of the city, unless done pursuant to a written permit or contract from the city manager.

Section 8-3-20, B.R.C. 1981, (Fixed Hardware Prohibited).

No person engaged in rock climbing in a park, recreation area, or open space shall place or attach any object on such land unless the object in inherently capable or removal for such reuse by reasonable effort, unless done pursuant to a written permit from the city manager.

Prosecution.

Violations subject persons to fines up to $1000.00 and up to 90 days in jail.

Bolt replacement in strict accordance with this notification, when issued by the City of Boulder constitutes permission from the city manager within the meaning of the Sections 5-4-2 and 8-3-20, B.R.C. 1981, and excuses the named holder from criminal prosecution for the bolt replacement specified.

1 reply
  1. Joseph Crotty
    Joseph Crotty says:

    Yes please! And thank you for talking to Mr. Goddard and getting his approval. The past is important but lets move the ethic forward deliberately and with reason, as is here, to make things better.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *