Best of Boulder Climbs. Richard Rossiter. Chockstone Press, Evergreen, CO, 1992. 180 pages, topos and black-and-white photos. $14.95.
Who decided which are the best of Boulder climbs? Why, the best Boulder climbers, of course. Knowing that any list compiled would receive intense scrutiny, Richard Rossiter recruited 50 of “the area’s most experienced climbers” to vote on the best Boulder routes. While the results definitely emphasize bolted climbs 5.11 and up, Rossiter notes that the highest-rated route was Yellow Spur, a classic 5.9, with 32 votes.
Though the majority are face routes, the sandstone and granite climbs also feature liebacks, small pebble pulling, and cracks of varying sizes. However, a final list of the routes’ scores should have been included; it’s hard to tell which lines are considered the best as each topo and photo illustrates a group of climbs, with no stars or other notation to show which is the more recommended.
Still, this guide is a boon for those who don’t wish to invest $50 in Rossiter’s two tomes, Boulder Climbs North and Boulder Climbs South, which total 717 pages. Featuring Rossiter’s Oriental-styled topos and maps along with plenty of black-and-white photos, Best of Boulder Climbs contains enough information to keep a climber busy on a lengthy stay.