RED ROCK CANYON, NEVADA
In the past few decades, Red Rock Canyon, once known mainly for its sport climbing and multi- pitch trad, has become one of the most popular bouldering venues in the country. In the deep sandstone canyons, the huge walls have shed gigantic boulders, creat
FEAR OF A BLACK HAT (V9) Dominating Calico Basin’s famous Kraft Boulders, the Cube features four facets of classic climbing—even the V1 downclimb gets four stars.
Fear of a Black Hat tackles the arête on the south face, starting on a big hueco and requiring the ability to stay calm on the balancey topout. John Bachar was one of the original suitors until a broken hold dropped him on his back, scaring off later attempts. Red
Rock guidebook author Jared McMillen scooped the first ascent, retaining the name bestowed by Colorado local Brian Kimball, who’d cleaned the line for safer attempts. Nearby classics: The Pearl (V5), Monkey Bar Direct (V8), Clockwork Orange (V12) NATASHA’S HIGHBALL (V2) Most climbers make the 30-minute hike into Red Rock’s Black Velvet Canyon for the long trad routes, but pebble wrestlers will stop at the canyon mouth to sample a cluster of a dozen classic lines. With a few hard crimp moves, a pull off a mono, and then glorious, albeit high jugs to finish, Ethan Pringle's Natasha’s
Highball is not only photogenic but a standard Red Rock tick. Nearby classics: Wet Dream (V12), Atlas Shrugged (V12)
Colorado-based boulderer and art-history professor PeterBe al isth eau thor of Bouldering: Movement, Tactics, and Problem Solving.