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Mt. Charleston

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Blue Sky Bluff 
Cathedral Rock 
Glass House, The 
Hood, The 
Ice House, The 
Imagination Wall, The 
Mary Jane Cliff 
Mount Charleston Ice 
Mount Charleston Ski Randonnee 
Pirate's Cove 
Robber's Roost 
Sesame Street 
Starter Crag 
Walla Walla Wash 
Yellow Pine 
Rest Day:
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Mt. Charleston  

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Elevation: 8,000'
Location: 36.2657, -115.5997 View Map  Incorrect?
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Administrator: Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Matt McMurray on Aug 15, 2006
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You & This Area
Best routes for YOU in this area
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John Heinman on Animal Attack: 5.13b, the Compton ...


This is one of the premier/most controversial climbing destinations in the US, if hard limestone routes are what you're seeking. The beautiful surroundings, overhanging caves, and cooler temperatures make Mt. Charleston a welcomed escape from the desert heat of Las Vegas during the summer months. Mt. Charleston is most well-known for having chipped routes and its hard pocketed testpieces such as Jason Campbell's Soul Train: 5.14a, Chris Sharma's Hasta La Vista: 5.14b/c, and Dan McQuade's Infectious Groove: 5.13b. Other climbers of note who contributed to the excellent climbing up on the mountaintop include Tony Yaniro, Randy Marsh, Leo Henson, Terry Parish, Rob Mulligan, Joe Brooks, Francois LeGrand, Doug Englekirk, etc. etc. etc. Mt. Charleston also sports numerous other quality lines ranging from 5.10 and up, so if you are in Vegas and looking to avoid the scorching sun and overcrowding of Red Rocks, head 45 minutes north to this pine tree oasis.

Note: The majority of the information I've posted on Mt. Charleston came directly from the guidebook Islands In The Sky, and proper credit should be given to its authors; Dan McQuade, Randy Leavitt, and Mick Ryan.

Getting There 

Mt. Charleston is located forty minutes north of Las Vegas in the Toiyabe National Forest. Take Hwy 95 north out of Vegas. Shortly after the houses stop, you will see a sign directing you to turn left for Kyle Canyon Rd. (157). Head up this road for several miles until you reach the area you're looking for. Most of the climbing is past the turnoff for Lee Canyon via the Deer Creek Hwy (158).

Climbing Season

Weather station 2.7 miles from here

133 Total Routes

['4 Stars',10],['3 Stars',51],['2 Stars',50],['1 Star',20],['Bomb',1]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Mt. Charleston:
Vegas Hose Monster   WI5     Ice, 3 pitches, 400'   Mount Charleston Ice
The Hundredth Monkey   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Sport, 40'   Walla Walla Wash
Pine In The Ass   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b     Sport, 60'   Mary Jane Cliff
Unknown   5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 50'   Yellow Pine
1057   5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 55'   Yellow Pine
Yellow Pine   5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 55'   Yellow Pine
The Rooster   5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b     Sport, 1 pitch   Robber's Roost
unknown 2   5.11- 6c 22 VIII+ 22 E3 5c     Sport, 1 pitch, 40'   Yellow Pine
The Great Train Robbery   5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c     Sport, 1 pitch   Robber's Roost
Mary Jane   5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c     Sport, 1 pitch, 50'   Mary Jane Cliff
The Cathedral Route   5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a     Sport, 3 pitches, 300'   Cathedral Rock : The Cathedral Route Wall
The Imaginator   5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a     Sport, 3 pitches, 375'   The Imagination Wall : Central Slab Area
Heating Up the Hood   5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   The Hood : Pine Tree Ledge
Gun Tower   5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 50'   The Hood : Pine Tree Ledge
The Great Train Robbery Extension   5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Sport, 110'   Robber's Roost
Highway Man   5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Sport, 1 pitch   Robber's Roost
Conny Loves Dadddy   5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Sport, 70'   Robber's Roost
Glory Daze   5.12c 7b+ 27 IX- 27 E6 6b     Sport, 125'   Robber's Roost
The Burglar   5.12c 7b+ 27 IX- 27 E6 6b     Sport, 1 pitch, 90'   Robber's Roost
Straight Outta Compton   5.12d 7c 28 IX 28 E6 6b     Sport, 1 pitch, 100'   The Hood : The Compton Cave
Browse More Classics in Mt. Charleston

Featured Route For Mt. Charleston
Sitting on the large ledge at the start of the rou...

The Cathedral Route 5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a  NV : Mt. Charleston : ... : The Cathedral Route Wall
The crux of this route is encountered on the first pitch, and consists of a tricky sequence of moves as you move onto and off of the arete at the bottom. This is followed by a series of small edge crimps on lower angled black rock. There is another crux right below the first set of anchors.Pitch 1: 8 bolts to LO (5.11c)- Follow the bolts through an initial loose section to an arete that leads to lower angled rock full of thin black ledges. Climb this slab to a corner with no more bolts in sight ...[more]   Browse More Classics in NV

Photos of Mt. Charleston Slideshow Add Photo
Mt. Charleston via South Fork in mid November.
Mt. Charleston via South Fork in mid November.
The Hydra, 5.11+, at the Universal Wall
BETA PHOTO: The Hydra, 5.11+, at the Universal Wall
the summit
the summit
Start of the crux sequence, pitch 1 of The Hydra. ...
Start of the crux sequence, pitch 1 of The Hydra. ...
Distant Mt.Charleston framed by a joshua tree in b...
Distant Mt.Charleston framed by a joshua tree in b...
Mt. Charleston  Looking down onto Highway 158; acc...
Mt. Charleston Looking down onto Highway 158; acc...
Steepness at Charleston
Steepness at Charleston
Sweet step across to the rib on The Count Becomes ...
Sweet step across to the rib on The Count Becomes ...
Good times clipping bolts @ Charleston
Good times clipping bolts @ Charleston
The Count Becomes Difficult 5.8.  Climber:  Marc R...
The Count Becomes Difficult 5.8. Climber: Marc R...

Comments on Mt. Charleston Add Comment
Show which comments
By Dirty Gri Gri, or is it GiGi?
From: Vegas
Oct 3, 2006
Campgrounds of Mt. Charleston.

The 'Hilltop' is the most popular campground, and has warm showers (coin operated). Make your reservations way ahead of time, if planning on being there in the summer/warmer months.
By Mike Dudley
From: Vegas
Jun 22, 2009
There are not that many routes listed here on MP but there are a lot of routes up there. Grab a guide book and enjoy the super hard and sharp limestone!
By bosworth
Oct 5, 2010
Keep an eye on the fixed link draws in the area, especially at crux's. After taking a couple of good sized falls on the crux of The Great Train Robbery, (the bolt below the ledge), I managed to core shot my rope on a carabiner that had been worn down enough to create an edge. I have replaced this biner, but that is not to say that it won't happen again or that there aren't more biners such as this one.

I would like to stress the importance of keeping your rope on a rope bag during belays as to keep dirt and debris from wearing down the surface of draws. It was kind enough of our fellow craggers to put these permanent fixtures up, but it is our job to keep them safe.
By Joe Wysznski
Aug 5, 2012
Please DO NOT leave trash behind. Lets keep the mountain clean! I know a lot of it might be from people hiking but I have been finding trash left at all the climbing areas, this is unacceptable! Please pick up after yourself
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