Login with Facebook
Corte Madera

Select Area...
Coulter Grove/Rest Home 
El Nino Wall 
Main Wall 
Solar Slabs 
Video Dome 

Corte Madera  

Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Location: 32.7555, -116.591 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 39,653
Administrators: Marc Kajut, M.Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Salamanizer, Justin Johnsen, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: mschlocker on Mar 27, 2008
You & This Area
Best routes for YOU in this area
Your opinion of this PAGE:    [1 person likes this page.]
Corte Madera as seen from the approach trail.

Current San Diego County Advisories MORE INFO >>>


A fine south-facing multi-pitch crag in San Diego county. Corte Madera has a history of both traditional and sport routes. The traditional routes will offer adventure with some en-route bushwhacking. The newer sport routes climb the clean faces of this impressive cliff. The climbs are most easily approached by hiking to the top of the cliff and rappelling to the base.

Getting There 

From San Diego, head out East on I-8. Exit Buckman Springs and head South of the freeway. Right on Corral Canyon road (Morena Stokes Rd on Google). Park 4.9 miles up the road and hike in on a trail to your right (1.5-2 hours). If you have 4WD then continue up the road. Head right onto a dirt road at the first intersection and follow this to within a 1/2 hour of the top of the cliff. I'll have to verify all of this next time I head out there, please check a map.


Please note that there is a voluntary seasonal closure of anything West (Climbers' Left) of the center of the main wall due to nesting raptors. Feb 1 - June 30.

Route Guides 

The latest (2006) Kennedy climbing guide is a vast improvement from the older guide for this area. It includes many of the newer sport routes. Currently this is the only printed guide (that I know of) for this area.

Climbing Season

Weather station 6.7 miles from here

26 Total Routes

['4 Stars',1],['3 Stars',16],['2 Stars',5],['1 Star',3],['Bomb',0]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Corte Madera:
Wish You Were Here   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 100'   El Nino Wall
Im Panadilla   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 80'   El Nino Wall
Sunset Streaks   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Sport, 4 pitches, 400'   Main Wall
South Buttress   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Trad, 4 pitches, 500'   Main Wall
Close to the Edge   5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 100'   El Nino Wall
Pay Per View   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b     Sport, 90'   Video Dome
Browse More Classics in Corte Madera

Featured Route For Corte Madera
South Buttress of Corte Madera

South Buttress 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a  CA : San Diego County : ... : Main Wall
This is a gear-protected route with gear belays. Pitch breakdown is subjective. Here's how I would do it next time...P1 5.10a 120': Scramble up the ramp, carefully stemming past the yucca to the steep OW and squeeze chimney. A cruxy section of OW & lieback moves gets you to a rest, then more squeeze chimneying and stemming gets you through a second crux and up to a nice belay (med. gear) just above an old bolt. P2 5.9 190' (or 2 pitches): Lieback up the flake to a wide crack. Face climb and ...[more]   Browse More Classics in CA

Photos of Corte Madera Slideshow Add Photo
Sign at the end of the road near the trailhead, Co...
Sign at the end of the road near the trailhead, Co...
May 2009 Updated Closure for Corte Madera
BETA PHOTO: May 2009 Updated Closure for Corte Madera
Corte Madera from the road.
Corte Madera from the road.
depends/cultier grove
depends/cultier grove
cardiac arette, 10.c
cardiac arette, 10.c
An impressive and symbolic sunset after such a gre...
An impressive and symbolic sunset after such a gre...

Comments on Corte Madera Add Comment
Show which comments
By mschlocker
From: San Diego, CA
Nov 3, 2009
Now a new guide option is available. The Allied Climbers of San Diego have created a guide for El Cajon Mtn, Eagle Peak, and Corte Madera. It's quite a bit better than the SD climbing guide for Corte. I recommend you check it out at a local REI or better yet come to a member meeting. alliedclimbers.org .
By T.J. Esposito
From: San Diego, CA
Feb 18, 2013
For anyone planning on War Paint (5P 12a), a key hold broke off the start of the 3rd pitch (12a crux). It's likely now hard twelve at least and impossible to french free it (the first bolt is about 12 feet up or so.) Those inclined can skip the start by going up the 5.easy gully to the right and clipping the first bolt and swinging back in to do the super fun original crux.
By Mannamedstan
From: Encinitas, CA
Sep 25, 2013
Any beta on the dirt road? How much ground clearance or can a Subaru make it?
By Adam T.
From: San Diego, CA
Oct 6, 2013
Hey Mannamedstan, a Subaru can definitely make it, but it will require a little bit of skilled driving. I personally wouldn't go for it, but my buddy Corey would eat it up. Definitely some large ruts and a few paint can sized boulders. We did it last month with a Toyota Tacoma pickup.
By jeffblankman
From: San Diego, Ca
Nov 3, 2013
RE: the 4WD road over Los Pinos

It was not very bad at all IMO. No real skill at off-road driving needed. A bit bumpy and a few scattered rocks and ruts, but I think even a slow and measured 2WD vehicle with decent clearance could make it. Of course, different story if it's rained recently.

From the saddle down the Espinoza road is not bad, either, until right before (2 min walk) the use trail to the toe of the crag (S Buttress route).
By Dan G0D5H411
From: Colorado Springs, CO
Jan 12, 2014
Jeff is right about the first portion of the dirt road...probably could be done in a sedan if you know how navigate burms. The espinoza portion however was in really bad shape when we were there a couple of weeks ago. We were in a "sport" suv and ended up doing a 20 point turn to reverse our course after only a couple hundred yards down the road. Instead we opted to continue onto the higher parking area, hike to the top of the crag and rap in. The hike was 45 minutes, well-worn and fairly moderate in nature.