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Bowman Valley

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B - Word 
Bowman Bouldering 
Boy Scout Wall 
Candy Land 
Canyon Creek Crag 
Cove, The 
Fun House, The 
Gas and Electric Crag 
Gum Drop, The 
High Lands 
Ireland 
Larry Land 
Old Flume Face 
Rediscovery Dome Left 
Rediscovery Dome Right 
Scottland 

Bowman Valley Rock Climbing 


Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Elevation: 5,500'
Location: 39.4443, -120.656 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 39,316
Administrators: Aron Quiter, John Robinson, M.Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Salamanizer, Justin Johnsen, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Kurt Swanson on Jan 13, 2012
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Best climbs for YOU in this area
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View looking east from the top of the southern dam...

Description 

Bowman Valley (sometimes called Bowman Lake) is a series of secluded crags beneath the Bowman Lake Dam where a number of easy to difficult sport climbs have been developed in recent years, with great deal of sport climbing development opportunity here. The rock is heavily textured granite, with excellent friction, and ranges from slab to overhanging roofs with permadraws.

Free camping can be had here, and the only traffic the road gets is National Forest staff, ATV enthusiasts, and climbers. There is excellent swimming in the lake by climbing above Larry Land onto the damn and crossing over the spillway.

Getting There 

The approach varies depending upon the vehicle used to enter on the National Forest, but a rental car can usually make it within a few miles of the approach trailheads. A good SUV can take you all the way. Take Bowman Lake Road off of Highway 20, usually approached via Interstate 80. Once you turn off of Interstate 80 and head down highway 20 (toward Nevada city) you go 3.5 miles and you will turn right onto Bowman lake road. Continue on Bowman Lake road for 13 1/2 miles and you will come to a bridge below Bowman Lake dam. This bridge will be the landmark for the areas in Bowman Valley. The road starts out paved but the last 5 miles are gravel and a little rough in spots. See the GPS location for the precise location of the area to park in.

Climbing Season



Weather station 0.5 miles from here

107 Total Climbing Routes

['4 Stars',8],['3 Stars',57],['2 Stars',34],['1 Star',5],['Bomb',1]
['<=5.6',4],['5.7',5],['5.8',11],['5.9',6],['5.10',30],['5.11',30],['5.12',18],['5.13',2],['>=5.14',0],['',0],['<=V1',0],['V2-3',0],['V4-5',0],['V6-7',0],['V8-9',1],['V10-11',0],['V12-13',0],['>=V14',0]

Classic Climbing Routes in Bowman Valley

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Bowman Valley:
Pulp Friction   5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b     Sport, 1 pitch, 100'   The Cove
Krusty the Clown   5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b     Sport, 1 pitch, 45'   The Fun House
Flumetastic   5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b     Sport, 1 pitch, 130'   The Cove
Circus Tricks   5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b     Sport, 1 pitch, 70'   The Fun House
Dope on a Rope   5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Sport, TR, 1 pitch, 100'   The Fun House
El Sasquatchito   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Sport, 100'   The Fun House
Rock n Rolla   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 80'   Candy Land
Pork Chop   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 70'   Boy Scout Wall
Cheers and Jeers    5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b     Sport, 80'   Rediscovery Dome Left
Sugar Rush   5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b     Sport, 75'   Candy Land
Shangri-La   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b     Sport, 90'   Rediscovery Dome Left
One run game   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b     Sport, 70'   Boy Scout Wall
Rock Fondler   5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b     TR, 1 pitch, 90'   High Lands
Crooked Bowtie   5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b PG13     Sport, 1 pitch, 90'   Rediscovery Dome Right
Hello Larry   5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c     Sport, 80'   Larry Land
Flying Snakes   5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c     Sport, 1 pitch, 80'   The Cove
Last Boy Scout   5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c     Sport, 50'   Boy Scout Wall
Hot Rod   5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c     Sport, 65'   Larry Land
Super Natural   5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a     Sport, 60'   Larry Land
Larry Land   5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a     Sport, 75'   Larry Land
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Bowman Valley

Featured Route For Bowman Valley
Rock Climbing Photo: Mike Carville exiting the roof on Porn Star .12b. ...

Porn Star 5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b  CA : Tahoe Vicinity : ... : Larry Land
Climb Super Natural .11c past anchors and then continue through giant blocky roof with fixed draws....[more]   Browse More Classics in CA

Photos of Bowman Valley Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Bowman Lake, CA. Overview map.
BETA PHOTO: Bowman Lake, CA. Overview map.
Rock Climbing Photo: Mike Carville on the Porn Star .12b. Larry Land, B...
Mike Carville on the Porn Star .12b. Larry Land, B...
Rock Climbing Photo: Sanam on Rock n Rolla .9. Candy Land, Bowman Valle...
Sanam on Rock n Rolla .9. Candy Land, Bowman Valle...
Rock Climbing Photo: spring storm coming in over bowman valley, ca
spring storm coming in over bowman valley, ca
Rock Climbing Photo: Bowman Valley from Windy Point.
Bowman Valley from Windy Point.
Rock Climbing Photo: looking down from top of Bataphopbia(8.5) on Redis...
looking down from top of Bataphopbia(8.5) on Redis...
Rock Climbing Photo: Gabe Metzger on Super Natural .11c. Larry Land, Bo...
Gabe Metzger on Super Natural .11c. Larry Land, Bo...
Rock Climbing Photo: Larry Land. Bowman Lake, CA.
Larry Land. Bowman Lake, CA.
Rock Climbing Photo: FA- Nick Muehlhausen Riding around and lichen it- ...
FA- Nick Muehlhausen Riding around and lichen it- ...
Rock Climbing Photo: max jones high on rediscovery dome, bowman valley,...
max jones high on rediscovery dome, bowman valley,...
Rock Climbing Photo: Bowman Valley panoramic from atop Larry Land wall ...
Bowman Valley panoramic from atop Larry Land wall ...
Rock Climbing Photo: the cove, bowman valley, ca
the cove, bowman valley, ca
Rock Climbing Photo: derrick lindsay on shangri-la 5.10-, rediscovery d...
derrick lindsay on shangri-la 5.10-, rediscovery d...
Rock Climbing Photo: Scotland Wall
Scotland Wall
Rock Climbing Photo: Bowman Valley
Bowman Valley
Rock Climbing Photo: Josh on Sub Text .12a.
Josh on Sub Text .12a.
Rock Climbing Photo: Josh Horniak on the first ascent of Larry Land .11...
Josh Horniak on the first ascent of Larry Land .11...
Rock Climbing Photo: Bowman Lake Valley, CA.
Bowman Lake Valley, CA.
Rock Climbing Photo: Simeon and Mike on Predator 11d. The Cove. Bowman ...
Simeon and Mike on Predator 11d. The Cove. Bowman ...
Rock Climbing Photo: Bowman Valley panoramic from atop Rediscovery Wall...
Bowman Valley panoramic from atop Rediscovery Wall...
Rock Climbing Photo: Hansi Standtheiner on the third ascent of Thrillbi...
Hansi Standtheiner on the third ascent of Thrillbi...
Rock Climbing Photo:  A perfect place in Nevada City to end a perfect c...
A perfect place in Nevada City to end a perfect c...
Rock Climbing Photo: not a bad campsite!
not a bad campsite!
Rock Climbing Photo: B Word right side
B Word right side

Show All 30 Photos

Only the first 24 are shown above.

Comments on Bowman Valley Add Comment
Show which comments
Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Jun 20, 2016
By jesselyb
From: Sioux Falls, SD
Jan 13, 2012
Anyone have specific route info? I hear there's supposed to be a guidebook coming out with Bowman in it, but anybody want to help a guy out in the mean time?
By J. Albers
From: Colorado
Jan 13, 2012
Kurt, the wall you called "Steve's Slab Crag" is actually called 'The Funhouse."

...and as far as more info, there will be a new guidebook in the near future.
By Kurt Swanson
From: Philadelphia, PA
Jan 14, 2012
some info about routes at Larry Land can be gleaned here:

supertopo.com/climbing/thread....

Having been there myself, I have just two pieces of beta to offer: easy stuff, go to the funhouse, hard stuff go to Larry Land.
By mike carville
Feb 16, 2013
Bowman Valley off I-80/Hwy 20 past the Emeralds (13 miles). Some of the best moderate sport cragging in the Tahoe area. So far about 70 routes - mostly 5.8 - 5.12. Free camping, excellent swimming. Larry Land lies below the cement dam/Bowman Lake, Candy Land and the Cove across the flume base of the descent road (Windy Point). Plus Scott Land, Ire Land, B-Word. All offer excellent climbing of all grades. Cheers.
By Aerili
From: Los Alamos, NM
Feb 20, 2013
Thanks for posting this area up!
By Nukem
From: Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Jul 4, 2013
so many effing bugs here!! but the amazing climbing makes up for it, well worth the trip out!!
By mike carville
Sep 1, 2014
Best time to climb here is spring and fall. Best places to camp are around the Cove/Candy Land and just past washout on left near B Word.
By Ari G
Jul 13, 2015
Great climbing and some of the most consistent bolting I have seen in California.

Bowman Lake Road is fine for all cars up through the developed climbing areas. But if you plan to continue farther along the road to camp by the lake, you will not make it in a 2WD sedan. We barely made it to Bowman Lake campground in a Subaru Forester this past weekend.

Beautiful weather and climbing, thanks to all who have been developing these routes.
By Kelley Gilleran
From: Sacramento, Ca
Aug 14, 2015
issuu.com/agrphoto/docs/cc13_s...

Awsesome article about Bowman written by Mike Carville starts on page 56 of the 2015 summer edition of California Climber Magazine.
By Ajberge
May 7, 2016
Anyone know if you can access Bowman lake at this time?
By Kelley Gilleran
From: Sacramento, Ca
May 8, 2016
mountainproject.com/v/sentient...

Looks like JJ was out there a week ago or so. Should be good. Probably a little sloppy due to the rain.
By Marji
May 13, 2016
As an Emeralds-lover I finally checked out Bowman yesterday - we had an amazing time and will certainly go back more regularly. To all the folks who developed this area and continue updating it, thank you. It's one of the few places in the states that reminds me of the thoughtfulness, consistency, safety and excellent/fun route quality that I experience every summer living in Switzerland.

On the drive back around 6pm an insane guy in a gigantic truck trailering a large boat nearly hit us and knock us off the ledge in the more dangerous unpaved section around a corner's blindspot. We had a bad near-miss for which he hardly slowed down but did a lot of swerving and skidding. If I hadn't been paying attention and move to the right shoulder he would have hit us, he was flying too fast to break. Luckily, I was already on guard because I could tell with the ATV trailers and shot gun shells this is popular non-climber territory. What's that road like over the weekend when those folks are in full throttle? It almost makes me not want to go out there at certain times (I'm sure other climbers would like less folks out there anyway, lol). But really - has anyone else had drama with people driving badly on that road? If this guy had done this to me closer to Bowman there wouldn't have been the minimal shoulder for me to drive on! Do rangers patrol the area at all?
By mike carville
May 29, 2016
tahoeclimbing.com/img/excerpts...

Check out Josh Horniak's new website for his upcoming guide book to Tahoe north shore. Free topo for Larry Land, Bowman.
By Chasing Choss
From: California
Jun 20, 2016
PG&E had the cove lit up all night with lights as they were working on the flumes this weekend. anyone tried to go climb while they had the lights on? would be pretty awesome if they didn't mind!!

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