Emerson Boulder – Westmont University

Westmont College Boulder

The Boulder on the Campus at Westmont College in Montecito, CA  has received some solid quality time with me over the past few months and was also the subject of my first day of getting back into climbing. This Boulder is at the heart of the University near the Emerson Hall Dormitory (hence the name) and provides great boulder problems from V0 to V7 and a problem listed as a V5 that I have been told by a trustworthy local is really “the hardest V8 I have ever climbed” – a reassuring statement once you check out the problem.

This boulder is located on the middle of Private Property, so please be wary of what you do when you are at the boulder. I have been asked to leave by security, and I have heard of other people having problems with security as well. However, for the numerous times I have climbed here, I have not been bothered again.


Once you have entered the main entrance of Westmont College, drive straight until you come to the Emerson Hall sign where you will turn left. Park in the lot on your left and you will see the boulder on your right. [see a map for Santa Barbara Climbs including the Emerson Boulder]

As you can see, the Emerson Boulder is like a gift to the soul who cannot make the drive up the 154:

North Face

Westmont College Boulder

A         Fight the Devil and Pray; V4 – traverse right starting at On My Way to finish on                   Elmer Gantry
B         On My Way; V1 – up the blunt prow
C         Down on My Knees; V1 – sit-start the seam
D         Logos; V0 – up the hueco to slopers (one of my favorites here)
E         A Weeping and Gnashing of Teeth; V1 – Center of the face (fun technical face                 climb on crimps and pockets)
F         Elmer gantry; V2 – Just left of the tree. Tops out directly on slopers

West Face

Westmont College Boulder

South West Face

Westmont College BoulderG        Sister Sharon; V0 – Clean climbing on the arete
H        Lucifer Jim; V1 – Behind the tree on edges and pockets
I          Honk if You Love Jesus; V5 – Low start with a foot just off the ground (a variation            of this using the pocket has been suggested to be a V8+)

East Face

Westmont College Boulder

J          Luke; V4 – Just right of the tree. Crimpy, technical and a very weird start
K         Shoes of the Fisherman; V3 – Starts on John’s holds but goes left and finishes             up Luke
L         John; V3 – Up and right off the hueco
M        The Way of the Truth and the Light; V7 – Start Luke and traverse right finishing                on Elmer Gantry. Long (I mean “Long”)

Not Pictured: (on the South face of the boulder – left of the tree)

N         Mark; V1 – Start on Low Edges
O         Matthew; V0+ – Big edges to pocket



2 Responses to “Emerson Boulder – Westmont University”
  1. Tom says:

    Dude Neil! Great job on this boulder mapping and explanation! Hopefully we’ll get some company in our territory, thanks to this great addition.

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