October 18-20, 2019

Online registration for the 2019 Shelf Road Craggin' Classic has closed as the event is SOLD OUT. There will be a limited number of walk-up registrations available at the event.

Thanks for your interest and we hope to see you next year!

This October 18-20, head on down to the best limestone craggin’ Colorado has to offer. The AAC and CAMP Technical Adventure Equipment will treat you to a weekend of climbing, community, clinics, contests, films, giveaways, stewardship and more.

For 2019 we have an incredible weekend in store: clinics taught by pro-climbers and local guides, tasty food trucks and beer , games and a special presentation from Arc’teryx athlete Will Gadd. The Saturday dance party and fifth annual costume contest are great ways to spend time with your local climbing community, plus you can win top end gear at our raffles, contests and silent auctions! Cap the off the weekend with Pikes Peak Climbers’ Alliance and Rocky Mountain Field Institute by giving back to the crag. Roll up your sleeves and help keep our climbing trails well maintained.

Do some fabulous bolt clipping in the sun, learn some new climbing tricks to up your game, and give some love to your crag!

Space is limited and THIS EVENT WILL SELL OUT! Registration will close October 16 (or when sold out).


Includes: Camping & event entrance Friday, Saturday, and Sunday including access to all entertainment (some limited seating may apply); AAC trucker hat and event cup; beer for those 21+. Event ticket price does not include clinics or food. Kids 12 and under get free entry to the event. Please note, due to participant survey responses and impact on the land, dogs are NOT allowed at the event this year.

The biggest limitation for this event is parking space! Save money, bring more friends, and help the environment by carpooling with others or using the AWESOME Craggin Wagon opportunity, provided by Earth Treks (see below for details).

Being hungry sucks and cooking is hard? For $25 receive a ticket for dinner at event check-in and enjoy a food truck meal on Friday and Saturday nights.

***NOTE: If you do not get a food pass, you WILL NOT be able to purchase a food truck meal. Our event permit does NOT allow the food trucks to sell food to participants outside of the Weekend Food Pass!!! Purchasing early will save you money- food passes for either night independently will be available on site, but at a higher price.***

Up your game with an array of climbing clinics taught by professional climbing athletes and local guides. All clinics run Saturday, October 19th from 9:00am to 4:00pm, see below for clinic offerings and descriptions. Clinics are a great deal! A full day’s worth of group instruction with a guide or professional athlete will cost you $250+ anywhere else!

All aboard the Craggin' Wagon! Meet us at the Golden or Englewood Earth Treks for a ride to the Shelf Road Craggin' Classic. The $20 fare includes roundtrip travel, drinks, snacks, swag and some new friends before you even get to the event! More info below.

Join the Pikes Peak Climbers Alliance and Rocky Mountain Field Institute on Sunday from 8:30am-2pm for a trail project! This is a great way to give back to Shelf! Space is limited and registration is required, so do it now! First 15 registered participants receive a YETI tumbler.


Friday, October 18

  • 3:00 PM – 7:30 PM: Participant Arrival and Registration
    Location: Vendor Village area, at the base of The Bank road (Corrals area).

  • 6:00 PM – Onward: Weekend Kickoff Party, Raffle, and Evening Entertainment
    Stop by Vendor Village for fun contests, drink great beer, and win stuff! The purchase of raffle tickets helps to fund the Live Your Dream grant program, sending climbers like you all over the world! Buy tickets and win rad stuff!

  • 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM: Games on Games!
    Come ready to play and be up for anything from human pyramids to plank contests. What ever you do come ready to win!

  • 6:30 PM – 6:50 PM: Leave No Trace Workshop, presented by the Rocky Mountain Field Institute
    Stop by the RMFI tent to test your knowledge and win prizes!

  • 8:00 PM – 9:00 PM: Will Gadd Presentation, presented by Arc’teryx (Plus Raffle!)
    Will Gadd is known for establishing the hardest mixed ice climbing lines in the world. With monumental ideas and rather practical execution, Will has won gold medals in rock, ice and mixed climbing, set world records and climbed objectives that may never be repeated again. Hear from Will, PLUS win some swag in the raffle and giveaways!

  • 9:30 PM: The party continues with music and more vendor activities!


Saturday, October 19

  • 7:30 AM: Coffee at the tent, presented by Bivouac Coffee

  • 9:30 AM - 9:50 AM: Leave No Trace Workshop presented by the Rocky Mountain Field Institute
    Stop by the RMFI tent to test your knowledge and win prizes before you head out climbing!

  • 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM: Climbing Clinics with Pros and Local Guides
    Learning from those that are masters at their craft can seriously benefit your climbing. Sign up for a climbing clinic taught by professional climbing athletes and local climbing guides and up your game. Everyone has something to learn. Climbers of all abilities are welcome, though basic climbing knowledge and proficiency is expected. Clinics descriptions will indicate any prerequisite skills. Clinics presented by Denver Mountain Guiding, Pikes Peak Alpine School, the AAC, Irwin Mountain Guides, and athletes from our generous series sponsors!

Please show up 15-20 minutes early, ready to go. You will need to fill out a clinic specific waiver. See below for clinic descriptions and details.

  • 5:00 PM - Onward: Dirtbag Climber Throwdown Extravaganza Party
    Gather the crew and howl at the moon! Enjoy our beer garden with local brews, vendor village, silent auction and raffle, climbing games, and the fourth annual costume contest at the vendor village area! It's the climber party to end all climber parties. Light the fires. Dress up. Drink beers. Act weird.

  • 5:00 PM - 6:00 PM: Get to Know the Climber Grief Fund
    The AAC has pioneered a new program to address loss in the climbing community. The Climbing Grief Fund (CGF) evolves the conversation around grief and trauma in the climbing community and connects individuals to effective mental health professionals and resources. Stop by the AAC booth to learn more about the CGF with a certified mental health professional.

  • 5:30 PM - 5:50 PM: Leave No Trace Workshop presented by the Rocky Mountain Field Institute
    Stop by the RMFI tent to test your knowledge and win prizes!

  • 5:30 PM - 7:30 PM: Open Mic Live Music and Games
    Got musical skills? Grab your instrument, head on stage, and wow your friends with your musical prowess. Bring your instruments!

  • 7:30 PM - 8:15 PM: “Adaptive” presented by Sterling Ropes
    A film screening about two adaptive climbers in pursuit of big objectives! Q&A with the athletes following the film, then more raffles and giveaways!

  • 8:15 PM: Slackline Comp, hosted by Ubergrippen Climbing Gym
    Test your skills or just come to cheer on your friends, either way you’re in for a good time!

  • 9:00 pm: Costume Contest
    The Fifth Annual Halloween Costume Contest! Strut your stuff to warm up for the holiday and win prizes!

  • 9:30 PM: DJ and Dance Party hosted by La Sportiva
    The party continues including fire rings, s'mores, music and shenanigans.


Sunday, October 20

  • 7:30 AM: Coffee at the Tent, presented by Bivouac Coffee
    Grab some of the best coffee in town before heading out to climb or for the Stewardship Project.

  • 7:15 AM - 8:15 AM: Stewardship Breakfast
    Coffee and early bird breakfast, sponsored by the Pikes Peak Climbers Alliance and Beyond Madness Catering, at the tent for registered stewardship project volunteers!

  • 8:30 AM – 2:00 PM: Stewardship Project with the Pikes Peak Climbers Alliance
    Giving back to Shelf is cool! The Pikes Peak Climbers Alliance is leading a local stewardship and conservation project targeting high-use areas at Shelf Road. Registration required. Registration opportunities will be available on the AAC website and at the PPCA booth at Vendor Village all weekend long! Get involved and give back! **The first 15 registrants receive a Yeti tumbler!**

  • 9:00 AM - 1:00 PM: Moving Forward with Grief and Trauma Workshop, presented by Outdoor Research
    As climbers there is a high chance we will experience loss. Facilitated by both a mental health professional and professional athlete experienced with the topic, this clinic aims to create a professional and educational container to introduce grief, loss and trauma in climbing. More details below.

CRAGGIN’ WAGON, presented by Earth Treks

All aboard the Craggin' Wagon! Meet us at the Golden or Englewood Earth Treks for a ride to the Shelf Road Craggin' Classic because carpooling is cool. The $20 fare includes roundtrip travel, drinks, snacks, swag and some new friends before you even get to the event! Be sure to register ahead of time, as the bus will sell out.

Golden Earth Treks Bus

  • Oct 18: Meet at the Golden Earth Treks at 5pm to ride to Shelf

  • Oct 20: Meet at the event entrance at 3pm to ride back to Denver

Engelwood Earth Treks Bus

  • Oct 18: Meet at the Engelwood Earth Treks at 5:30pm to ride to Shelf

  • Oct 20: Meet at the event entrance at 3pm to ride back to Denver


Learning from those that are masters at their craft can seriously benefit your climbing. Take your climbing to a new level by signing up for a climbing clinic taught by professional climbers and local guides! A basic level of proficiency is expected for all clinics, additional prerequisites will be noted below.

Clinics for the Shelf Road Craggin’ Classic will be held on Saturday, October 19th from 9:00am to 4:00pm, weather permitting. Please show up 15-20 minutes early at the white tent. Clinics will begin promptly at 9:00am.

Participant Equipment List: Personal climbing equipment like shoes, harness, chalk, helmet, personal anchor and belay/rappel equipment. Additional anchor building/lead climbing gear is optional but recommended. Other equipment to bring includes hiking shoes, lunch/calories, hydration, sun protection, rain jacket, note-taking supplies, appropriate climbing wear.

  • SPORT LEADING with Jesse Huey, presented by CAMP Technical Adventure Equipment
    Learn how to lead climb on sport routes. We’ll start with some ground instruction to cover aspects like gear, safety, clipping, rope management, etc. Then it’s time to hit the rocks and test your new found skills with some mock-leading, and if time and skills allow, some lead climbing.

Skill Level: All skill levels

Prerequisites: Should be comfortable toproping 5.9

  • (SOLD OUT!) SELF-RESCUE: GRIGRI SAVES THE DAY! presented by The American Alpine Club
    In this clinic you’ll learn self-rescue skills every climber should know. Many improvised rescue curricula spend a large amount of time teaching complex improvisation skills: improvised ascension, improvised raising systems, improvised rappels. Instead, our Craggin Classic clinic will propose the GriGri as the centerpiece tool for small teams rescue. Meet the Grigri as pulley and progress capture. Meet the GriGri as an ascension tool. Meet the Grigri as a tandem rappelling tool. Meet the GriGri for leader rescue. It’s the one magical tool that you didn’t know you couldn’t live without.

Skill Level: All climbers are welcomed to participate, and there will be something valuable for any student. Students more experienced with Multipitch climbing will have more context for the skills presented. Students who are already familiar with the use of GriGri for belaying a toprope and a leader will get to the rescue components more quickly. However, students who have never seen a GriGri before can still have a valuable experience in this clinic.

Prerequisites: None

Additional Equipment: Personal climbing equipment (shoes, harness, chalk, helmet, and belay/rappel equipment), 4’ nylon sling or cordelette, prussic loop, 2 or 3 locking carabiners. Additional equipment such as personal anchor/tether, anchor building material, and lead climbing gear is optional but recommended.

  • (SOLD OUT!) TRAD IS RAD...FOR EVERYBODY with Jeff Snyder, presented by CAMP Technical Adventure Equipment and The American Alpine Club
    Everybody should love trad. It’s not as scary as it everyone makes it seem. The biggest reason to learn trad is that trad climbs can be found at all difficulties. Try to find a 5.1 sport climb anywhere, but there are hundreds of 5.1 trad climbs. Trad climbs outnumber sport climbs on the lower half of the Yosemite Decimal System, so trad climbs are great places to learn to lead. In this clinic, we’ll teach real world skills to climb real world trad, but we’ll focus on grades that help you learn to place sound protection, manage a rope line, and route-find.

Skill Level: Beginners and new sport climbers will get the most out of this clinic. More experienced traditional lead climbers might enjoy a refresher and feedback from the instructor, but this clinic focuses on introducing trad climbing to a newer audience.

Prerequisites: Some initial climbing and belaying experience is important. It’s hard to learn to lead anything without some basic toproping experience.

Additional Equipment: Personal climbing equipment (shoes, harness, chalk, helmet, and belay/rappel equipment). Ropes and trad racks will be helpful but not required.

  • CLIMBING PHOTOGRAPHY, presented by Denver Mountain Guides
    In this clinic, you will be taught how to shoot photos from above by ascending a fixed line. Topics include anchor building, rope ascension, how-to set up a fixed line, and framing your climber.

Skill Level: All levels welcome

Prerequisites: None

Additional Equipment: Bring your camera!

  • (SOLD OUT!) INTRO TO MULTI-PITCH CLIMBING, presented by Denver Mountain Guides
    Ever wanted to climb past the first set of anchors? In this clinic, we will cover what you need to know for efficient multi-pitch climbing. Topics include anchor building, knots & hitches, belaying your climber from above, rope management, lowering your climber, and transitioning to rappel.

Skill Level: All levels welcome

Prerequisites: None

  • GETTING TO THE GOODS: GYM TO CRAG with Jayson Simons-Jones and Chelsea Rude, presented by Adidas
    Sign up for this clinic if you have spent time in the gym but are looking to learn the fundamentals of taking that knowledge to the outdoors. The skills covered in this clinic will be an introduction into top rope anchors, building anchors, knots and hitches, belaying and lowering and rappelling. Environmental ethics for different climbing areas, risk management, and objective hazard awareness are all a part of being a conscious outdoor climber. Join Adidas athletes Chelsea Rude and Devo Derby for this new clinic geared toward the gym to crag transition!

Skill Level: All levels welcome

Prerequisites: Prior gym experience is helpful but not mandatory.

About Jayson: Jayson is an IFMGA/UIAGM Licensed Mountain Guide who has been living and guiding out of Crested Butte, Colorado since 1999, where he was the Owner/Operator of Crested Butte Mountain Guides from 2007-2014. These days Jayson can be found splitting his time between the Western Slope of Colorado guiding backcountry skiing, ice climbing, and teaching AIARE avalanche education during the winter months, and then guiding alpine climbing in the Cascades; Tetons; and the French Alps during the summer months.

About Chelsea: Chelsea grew up in Atlanta and started climbing at the age of 11. She quickly began competing and fell in love. She has won national titles and placed top 10 in World Cup competitions. Currently, she is pushing her limits in outdoor climbing. She climbed The Nose of El Cap at the age of 15 and the Direct NW Face of Half Dome at 16, and most recently has been pushing her grades sport climbing into the mid 5.14 range as well as becoming proficient on ice, trad, and aid climbing. She has coached youth US Climbing Teams and currently travels nationwide to teach clinics at gyms, universities and outdoor festivals and loves passing on her knowledge of climbing to others. 

  • (SOLD OUT!) WARRIORS WAY FALLING, COMMITMENT, AND EFFICIENT MOVEMENT with Adam Mitchell and Marcus Garcia, presented by Rock About and Adidas
    This is a two-for-one clinic! Half the day will be spent learning how to fall safely and diminish fears. The other half is focused on efficient movement skills and is independent from the official Warriors Way curriculum.

    Warriors Way session: Being effective in climbing requires us to understand the consequences of our decisions and actions. In climbing the main consequence is falling. By understanding how to fall we diminish the chance of injury and allow us to focus attention effectively on climbing. You’ll learn how to fall safely through progressive falling practice, give a dynamic (cushioned) belay, distinguish between no- and yes-fall zones, deal with fear of falling, and more!

    Efficient Movement session: Gain movement tips and tricks from professional athlete/guide Marcus Garcia. Do you ever wish you knew how to move across the wall with more grace and less raw power? Or reduce the pump factor in your climbing? This clinic will break down the micro movements that are needed to help you increase your efficiency. You can then learn the techniques to make corrections to help you gain success on your next project or outing.

Skill Level: All levels welcome

Prerequisites: None

About Adam: Adam has been climbing since the early 2000’s and fell knee deep in love with the sport. It wasn’t long before he took his skills to train others through guiding. He has many first ascents in New Mexico, Texas and Mexico and has traveled all over the western US seeking out big climbs. Adam is very involved in the local climbing community being the Texas Chair for the AAC, on local climbing committee’s and very active in bolt maintenance. He is also owner/operator of Rock-About, a guide service in Austin Texas.

About Marcus: Marcus has over 25 years of all-around climbing, and has established over 200 new routes, including everything from traditional, sport, clean aid first ascents and mixed climbing to big walls and desert towers. However, his biggest accomplishment and legacy is not how hard he can push himself, but what he passes on to the next generation of climbers as a coach and mentor. As lead coach for youth Team USA Ice Climbing, Marcus is helping develop the next generation of Olympic Caliber athletes.

  • CLIMBING EFFICIENCY with Rob Pizem, presented by Sterling Ropes
    Learn how to depump, increase your endurance, hang on longer, rest appropriately, read movements and use your body. Also includes techniques you can use in the gym to successfully prepare for outdoor climbing.

Skill Level: All levels welcome

Prerequisites: None

  • INTRO TO SPORT CLIMBING FOR WOMEN with Olivia Hsu, presented by Sterling Ropes
    This clinic for women only will focus on developing a solid foundation of movement technique as well as the skills necessary to sport climb outdoors including lead climbing, clipping efficiency, and placing and cleaning anchors. In addition we will talk about fear and hopefully demystify some ‘what if’s’ in the fear of climbing. This clinic is limited to those who identify as female. Our goal is to create and hold a safe and welcoming learning environment.

Skill Level: All levels welcome

Prerequisites: Must identify as female or nonbinary

  • CLIMB A GRADE HARDER with Phil Wortman, presented by Pikes Peak Alpine School
    In this popular clinic, spend some time learning from the pros how to train over the upcoming winter to bump your overall fitness to the next level and climb at least a grade harder! A combination of movement technique, goal setting, and targeted physiological training can contribute to your climbing performance… and it might be easier than you think! Walk away from this clinic with a clear idea of periodization, and how to use your local crags like Shelf to maximize your training efforts.

Skill Level: Climbers who are at the 5.10 sport level or higher will benefit the most from this clinic, but all levels are welcome.

Prerequisites: None

  • DYNAMITE DESCENTS, presented by Irwin Backcountry Guides
    Join Irwin guides for this clinic centered around rappelling and lowering safety. We’ve all heard that the majority of climbing and mountaineering accidents happen while descending, but did you know that an even higher percentage of those accidents were completely preventable? Increase your comfort, security and efficiency in both single and multipitch terrain during the latter half and most dangerous part of your average climbing day- the descent- with this dynamite clinic.

Skill Level: All skill levels welcome. A basic knowledge of rappelling and general ropework is helpful but not mandatory.

Prerequisites: See above

  • (SOLD OUT!) ROPE TRANSITIONS with Will Gadd and Sarah Hueniken, presented by Arc’teryx
    This is a clinic for folks looking to gain efficiency in technical systems for use in helping to move fast on long alpine, ice or rock objectives of any difficulty. Most people, in a desire for increased speed in the mountains, forego safety to reach this goal. This clinic aims to teach efficiency in some of the main areas climbers spend time unnecessarily on long objectives in regards to rope work and anchor systems, without sacrificing safety.

Skill Level: A working knowledge of rappelling, ropework and multipitch systems is helpful.

Prerequisites: Some multi-pitch climbing experience in any terrain.

About Will: Will Gadd is known for establishing the hardest mixed ice climbing lines in the world. With monumental ideas and rather practical execution, Will has won gold medals in rock, ice and mixed climbing, set world records and climbed objectives that may never be repeated again.

About Sarah: Sarah Hueniken is one of the most sought after Association of Canadian Mountain Guides alpine guides in Canada. She has also been a part of a number of first ascent teams worldwide and was the first North American woman to climb grades M11 - M14. For Sarah, the mountains are about connecting to herself and others.


  • MOVING FORWARD WITH GRIEF AND TRAUMA, presented by Outdoor Research
    (Sunday, 9:00 AM - 1:00PM, FREE)

As climbers there is a high chance we will experience loss. Facilitated by both a mental health professional and professional athlete experienced with the topic, this clinic aims to create a professional and educational container to introduce grief, loss and trauma in climbing. All are welcome to participate and while there will be invitations for discussion and sharing, participants are also welcome to simply listen. At the end of the session there will be the option to climb together for the afternoon (not a guided activity).

*The AAC's Climbing Grief Fund provides individual grants for counseling and is evolving the grief conversation through visibility and a network of accessible mental health services that understand grief, trauma AND climbing.



  • Walk in camping is included with your event ticket and is located at the base of The Bank road in a large flat area that includes cactus and other desert plants. There is plenty of tent space, however, please consider wearing close-toed shoes, and bring a ground cover. You will not be allowed to park next to your tent.

  • Limited van camping parking will be available as well. Expect to park close to others- space is extremely limited.

  • Off-site camping is first come, first served at nearby Sand Gulch CG and The Bank CG ($7). Additionally, there are several lodging options including hotels and a KOA campground in nearby Canon City.

  • NO DOGS are allowed at the event, including the camping areas. PLEASE RESPECT THIS RULE as there will be consequences!


  • Food trucks will be available, with some vegetarian, vegan and gluten free options. YOU MUST PURCHASE A WEEKEND FOOD PASS IF YOU WANT FOOD FROM THE TRUCKS, NO EXCEPTIONS! Our permit does not allow purchases directly from the food trucks. You must have a Weekend Food Pass. You may purchase a food pass for either night independently on site, but prices will be higher.

  • There is no breakfast provided with the Food Pass, but hot water and coffee will be available each morning.

  • No potable water is available onsite. Please plan to bring an ample supply for the weekend, and remember, it’s the desert!


  • There may be limited or no cell service at Shelf depending on your carrier.

  • NO FIRES are allowed at the free camping area- only at the designated campground sites and the fire rings on Saturday night near the main tent. Cooking stoves are ok.

  • NO DOGS at the event. Sorry. We’ve tried it in the past and people can’t seem to be responsible for their dogs, so they’re officially banned from the event. Please don’t try.

  • Shelf Road is a high desert climate- temperatures can be near freezing at night this time of year, but warm during the day. Please plan and pack accordingly.

  • There are pit toilets at each of the campgrounds. Porta-pottys and trash/recycling receptacles will be on site at Vendor Village/free camping area.

  • We encourage you to carpool to save the environment and limited parking space!

We've partnered with Rerouted Co-Op to give your used adventure gear a second life! Bring your used gear to the drop-off site at the Craggin' Classic. Rerouted Co-Op will re-sell it and proceeds go right back to the AAC to support conservation, education, and community. All adventure gear is accepted. You can donate your gear so more money goes back to the AAC or Rerouted will buy it off of you, and donate a portion of the proceeds back to the AAC. The choice is yours, but either way everyone's a winner!

From the North: Take I-25 South through Colorado Springs, to the Tejon/Nevada exit for Highway 115. Go straight through the stoplight (Tejon St) and turn right at the second light, Nevada Ave, which is the same as Highway 115. Follow 115 south to the town of Penrose, about 30 miles. Just south of Penrose is the junction with Highway 50- take this West toward Canon City, another 6 miles. Once you come into Canon City, look for the Wal-Mart on your right. Turn right at Dozier Ave, just after the Wal-Mart, then again at the roundabout, heading north. Dozier winds around to the west and changes names to Central Ave. At the first stop sign, turn right (north) onto Field Ave, also called Co Rd 9 or Shelf Rd on various maps. Field heads north for another 9 miles. Just before the pavement ends, you’ll see a brown sign marked Sand Gulch, and another one marked The Bank, both with turns to the left. Take the second left toward The Bank, and look for Craggin Classic signs and/or volunteers!  
** PLEASE NOTE: A mapping program may misdirect you. DO NOT drive Shelf Road proper in the vicinity of Cripple Creek. Go through Canon City following the above directions!!!!

From the South: Take I-25 North to Highway 50 toward Canon City, and follow the above directions from there.


Get the latest event updates on Facebook here and invite your friends to join the fun too!

Questions ?
If you have any questions regarding the Shelf Road Craggin' Classic, please contact Event Coordinator Jes Meiris at [email protected] or (503) 781-8906. You can also contact the AAC office at (303) 384-0110.

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Banner photo: AAC member Michael Lim