Cameltrack Canyon Rock Climbing
Cameltrack Canyon is a forgotten 35' basalt area with 2 sport climbs and a few top rope options just west of Santa Fe. It has escaped publication, except for brief mention in Toula's Rock-N-Road guide, which says it was also referred to as "Asshole Canyon". This area is maybe worth checking out once if you want to explore a different area near Santa Fe, but is nowhere nearly as good, tall, or extensive as similar style basalt cragging at Diablo, White Rock, or Taos Gorge.
The climbs are on a south-facing wall, so the season is spring and fall, and warmer winter days.
From right to left, the climbs are: Tap Dancing on Glass
(5.12) sport, 3 bolts, 2-bolt anchor Unknown Seam
(~5.8) trad, 2-bolt anchor Unknown- Left Sport Climb
(~5.9) sport, 3 bolts, 2-bolt anchor Unknown Corner
(~5.8) trad, 2-bolt anchor
Finger crack through a roof, with a fixed sling, no anchor (I didn't try it. Looks 5.11?)
The anchors on the climbs can be reached from the top, if you don't want to lead (scramble up on either side). You may find other even shorter cracks or TR options suitable for beginners as well.
Rock-N-Road says this is a "locals secret area" and gives no directions. If someone wants to tell me why I shouldn't post this, please tell me and I'll consider removing this page (I'd also be happy to update this page with the correct names, FAs, etc. too.) I found this area from a non-climber, who hiked in the area and didn't understand what the bolts were for and convinced me to go check it out. I asked some other climbers, but no one I talked to knew of this area. The climbs are clearly 10+ years old and there's not much potential for any quality new lines. I don't think there should be any access issues, as it's BLM just like Diablo. This area will never be popular with its 30+ minute approach, short height, and small number of climbs, especially now that Diablo
has been developed so much in recent years and with that road improved, Santa Fe climbers can so much more easily get more climbing done there.
The fossilized camel tracks have been hidden by the BLM to protect them from vandalism, supposedly.
From the Santa Fe Relief Route (NM 599) west of Santa Fe, go west on Airport Rd. 3.3 miles. Turn right on a dirt road at a sign for Camel Tracks Training Area. Go 0.5 miles on this road to a BLM sign and small parking area on the left.
Walk 100' farther along the road, and go north through a locked gate on an old 2-track road. Follow this old road about 10 minutes to a fork- take the left fork which is marked with a BLM trail sign. Follow this road/trail, which ends after a ways, and continue up the shallow drainage about 15 minutes. The climbs are at the tallest section of cliff, on the right wall (north side of canyon).
Weather station 2.9 miles from here
4 Total Climbing Routes
['4 Stars',0],['3 Stars',0],['2 Stars',0],['1 Star',4],['Bomb',0]
Featured Route For Cameltrack Canyon
Tap Dancing on Glass 5.12 7b+ 27 VIII+ 26 E6 6b NM
: Santa Fe Area
: Cameltrack Canyon
The rightmost bolted climb is the hardest climb at the crag. It is harder than it looks. I assume this it the area classic 5.12 Toula's Rock-N-Road notes as "Tap Dancing on Glass", but I can't be certain, although the title seems appropriate.Pull through a small roof after clipping the high first bolt, which is not bad to get to. Next is a reachy move, to a thin cruxy section 2/3 of the way up.I felt this might be a little soft for 5.12, though I had trouble reading the crux, especially as it...[more] Browse More Classics in NM
By the schmuck
From: Albuquerque, NM
Jul 18, 2014
I and a buddy climbed here during our short stay in Santa Fe over the winter of 1993. We knew it as Butthole canyon, and all the routes/anchors existed then. (The fixed piece in the roof fingercrack is mine!) We had no idea who was responsible for these silly little routes :-).
By David Gilbert
From: Anchorage, Alaska
Nov 23, 2014
Just visited this area recently to check it out. The bolts at the top of the 2 Trad 5.8 climbs are missing, there is only one bolt at top of each of them, the other 2 sport routes have pretty rusted out and old chains on them. The first climb on the far left looks as if the left bolt at the top anchor was ripped out or fell out recently and the 3rd climb from the left there is a bolt in the rock at the top anchor but no hangar and the bolt. Not a good area for top roping, would not trust puttng people on these shady anchor points. As they are not well maintained. May be possible to run a long sling from behind the anchors off of some pretty bomber looking trees about 25 feet back from the cliff face. Bring long webbing!!! All together I personally wouldn't trust these old and suspect anchors.