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Best Climbing 

Swope Boulders

East Coast folks may be surprised by our fair city's rolling hills, but there's no denying that we're short on mountains. But what we do have are boulders, and those are good enough for climbers to get their fix. The toughest fallen rocks lie half a mile east of U.S. Highway 71 on Blue River Road. It's a spot that attracts beginning and advanced climbers, who brave the overgrown poison ivy to tackle the massive limestone rocks. The boulders aren't much taller than a basketball hoop, but climbers use the difficult angles and pitches to practice technique. "Bouldering is about doing the most difficult moves," says Jeremy Collins, president of the Kansas City Climbing Club. "They call it Ôsolving a boulder problem,' and you have to pull out some good moves to do it." Instead of ropes and anchors, climbers set up cushy boulder pads underneath them, just in case the problem gets the best of them.

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