Chimney Rock is a large, freestanding formation on the west side of the Catalina Highway near mp 11. Proximity to the highway, and a variety of climbing, have made Chimney Rock a popular crag for many years.
The Standard Route (5.7+) is a fun traditional climb that meanders for five short pitches up the broad east face of Chimney Rock. Moderate climbing and comfortable belays make this a great route to learn about multi-pitch climbing.
The southern portion of the east face also hosts a number of harder routes, many of superb quality. On the back (west) side of Chimney Rock are a couple of very hard sport routes. These can be inspected by rapping off the top of Chimney Rock where Standard Route finishes.
Driving up the Catalina Highway, go past Chimney Rock and park in a large pullout on the right just past mp 11. Highway construction has destroyed the old access point, so you have two options.
Direct option: From pullout, walk down-highway about a quarter mile until you are directly below the east face of Chimney Rock. (Be careful walking as there is not much shoulder here).Just below Chimney Rock, there is a break in the cliff where you can fourth-class up about 15 feet to access the rock. This is what remains of the old access. Be careful not to fall into the roadway or kick rocks down onto passing cars.
Safe option: From pullout, walk across the highway to a large culvert. Scramble up slope just right of this culvert to gain the upper ledge. Bushwack south 1/4 mile, paralleling the highway until you reach Chimney Rock.
29 Total Routes
['4 Stars',2],['3 Stars',12],['2 Stars',9],['1 Star',6],['Bomb',0]
Browse More Classics in Chimney Rock
Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Chimney Rock:
FIUTT 5.9 5c 17 VI HVS 5a , 2 pitches, 200'
Crows Nest 5.10 6b 20 VII- E2 5b Trad, 2 pitches, 220'
Jungle Gym 5.10c 6b 20 VII E2 5b Trad, 1 pitch, 80'
Featured Route For Chimney Rock
Centerpiece 5.10- 6a 18 VI+ E1 5a AZ
: Mount Lemmon (Santa Catalin...
: ... : Chimney Rock
This plum was picked in the late seventies by the prolific Steve Grossman. The route starts in the small dihedral to the right of Stoner's Boner. 20 feet up, it pulls a small roof with a hand crack in it. The top section gets steeper and finishes with good pro and a great steep hand crack that is as good as they come on Mt. Lemmon. Great rock, great line and great gear....[more] Browse More Classics in AZ
Latest Regional Forum Messages
|By randy baum|
From: Minneapolis, MN
Oct 26, 2008
best single-pitch traditional climbing crag on mt. lemmon.
one negative: be wary of chopped anchors.
Nov 25, 2008
I strongly suggest NOT taking the "safe option" approach. We had a dog with us and decided to approach that way. It was ridiculously unpleasant. My 2 cents, if you can't manage the short scramble, find somewhere else to climb. Great routes though.
Mar 31, 2009
Found baseball cap at the base of the routes on Chimney Rock evening of 30 Mar 09. PM me to collect. Thanks! -Tiffany Brainerd
|By Adam Block|
From: Tucson, AZ
May 2, 2010
From the picture, it looks like it may be pitch four.
|By CALEB ANDERSON|
May 2, 2010
Great area on Lemmon for all trad routes and great views like most of Lemmon, however be so kind to watch for loose rock and big blocks for your belayer, and passing traffic on the road below.
|By Tim Arnold|
Apr 11, 2011
If it helps anyone, the location of Chimney Rock is at this approximate latitude and longitude: 32.36865600 N,110.70476300 W
Apr 12, 2011
Thanks for posting that. I've been trying to find Chimney Rock for 15 years. Now I finally can.
Feb 20, 2013
Even with the GPS this was a mess. Finally found the wall but pictures from our book were useless. We climbed some route which took a #4 had a boulder slung as the first mini pitch then went up to a bolted anchor which then continued to some steep sport route. If anyone knows if that is even a route and if so what name is appreciate it.
|By Alex McIntyre|
From: Tucson, AZ
Feb 21, 2013
GregC- you did 8th & Main into Icarus (the 5.11 sport route up the overhanging arete of the pillar).