Key Hole Notch - Rocky Mountain National Park, CO - Popular climbing and hiking destination with rugged terrain


Key Hole Notch is a popular rock climbing and hiking destination that can be accessed from Key Hole Route in the Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado. The famous notch on the northwestern flank of Longs Peak is called the Key Hole Notch and for hikers is deemed a challenging paradise.

The hiking spot is very popular and during hiking season can get crowded. It is recommended that hikers arrive in the parking lot at 6 am to ensure a parking spot. It is also recommended by the Rocky Mountain National Park rangers that hiking the area should begin earlier in the morning with an early morning arrival at the trailhead to avoid the typical afternoon thunderstorms.

The Key Hole Notch portion of the trail is a challenging hiking and climbing spot and is recommended for the more skilled climber. The terrain is extremely rugged and requires rock hopping, the use of hand-holds, and scrambling. Located just below the Key Hole climbers can find the Agnes Vaille Shelter, which was a memorial that was built after Ms. Vaille died in 1925. She was the first person to climb the Keyhole Route and through the notch during the winter.

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