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Mt. Elden

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Elysian Buttress 
Lost Elden 
Middle Elden Canyon 
One Wall, The 
Red Dragon 
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Mt. Elden  

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Elevation: 9,299'
Location: 35.2429, -111.6048 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 225,504
Administrators: Greg Opland, James DeRoussel, JJ Schlick, Hendrixson, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Will Cobb on Apr 20, 2006
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Found this cool shot of Mt. Elden online. Furthest...


Sitting just north of Flagstaff, Mt. Elden is marked by radio towers and a fire watch tower on top and by the large burn scar on it's southeastern and eastern slopes. Composed of Dacite, Mt. Elden has great bouldering, fun cragging, and even a few multiple pitch climbs of good quality. The rock tends to be sharp and rough providing great friction and the perfect Joshua Tree training ground.

"Mt. Elden dominates many of the views from town, and as such the daydreams of many local climbers. Home to well established oldschool areas such as West Elden and Secret Canyon, it has in the last decade also brought to town a very unique style of sport climbing. The newer crags like Solitude Canyon, Red Dragon, and the One Wall boast some truly excellent pitches on priceless formations where a climber can expect to find every sort of hold imaginable.

The areas themselves are spread out across the southern flanks of the mountain with considerable distance in between them. The actual cliff aspects cover every range, so there can be quite a bit of sun/shade searching throughout the seasons, and in light years climbable all year round.

Mt. Elden was formed about 50,000 years ago in the course of several months, and is technically a 'lava dome' formed of Dacitic lava flows. There was never an explosion, rather an out pouring of flows along lateral vents. Which simply means that the crags we climb on today were once huge flows of lava slowly oozing from the mound. Evidence of these flows can be seen on top of many of crags and elsewhere on the mountain in very cool waves and fins.

There are a lot of nooks and crannies to explore on Elden, so have fun!"

JJ Schlick

Getting There 

Mt. Elden is located just north of Flagstaff. Highways 180 and 89A are used to access the climbing areas. Approaches vary from several minutes o 45 minutes.

Climbing Season

Weather station 4.1 miles from here

165 Total Routes

['4 Stars',7],['3 Stars',80],['2 Stars',62],['1 Star',15],['Bomb',1]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Mt. Elden:
Five Easy Pieces   5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a     Trad, 1 pitch, 80'   West Elden : Uptown
Right Deception Crack   5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b     Trad, 1 pitch, 70'   West Elden : Uptown
Zit Slab   5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b     Trad, 1 pitch, 70'   West Elden : Uptown
Elysian Buttress Original Route   5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b     Trad, 5 pitches, 450'   Elysian Buttress
The Prow   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 80'   West Elden : Uptown
Man On the Moon   5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Sport, 4 pitches, 350'   Higher Solitude Canyon : Main Wall
Freedom of the Hills   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 70'   Oaklands
La Diosa    5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b     Trad, 1 pitch, 80'   West Elden : Downtown
Lucky Old Sun   5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 100'   Higher Solitude Canyon : Main Wall
Twilight Zone   5.11- 6c 22 VIII+ 22 E3 5c PG13     Trad, 1 pitch, 70'   West Elden : Downtown
Mechanical Persistence   5.11a/b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c     Sport, 4 pitches, 400'   Elysian Buttress
Whiplash   5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c     Sport, 1 pitch, 80'   Higher Solitude Canyon : Main Wall
Bold is Love   5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c     Trad, Sport, 1 pitch, 95'   West Elden : Uptown
Sporting the Line   5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a     Trad, 1 pitch, 80'   Oaklands
Solitaire   5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 100'   Higher Solitude Canyon : Main Wall
Runaway Train   5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b     Sport, 1 pitch, 70'   Oaklands
Continental Drift   5.12+ 7c 28 IX 27 E6 6b     Sport, 1 pitch, 80'   Higher Solitude Canyon : Main Wall
Crown Jewel   5.12d 7c 28 IX 28 E6 6b     Sport, 1 pitch, 55'   Red Dragon
Radical by Nature   5.13a 7c+ 29 IX+ 29 E6 6c     Sport   Solitude Canyon : Lower Solitude Canyon
Topical Rush   5.13b 8a 29 IX+ 30 E7 6c     Sport, 1 pitch, 50'   The One Wall
Browse More Classics in Mt. Elden

Featured Route For Mt. Elden
Joel Unema, and James Q Martin leading pitch 2, the Space Walk Pitch.... <br /> <br />Wade Forrest Photo

Man On the Moon 5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a  AZ : Northern Arizona : ... : Main Wall
This little four pitch line takes an arcing trajectory up, and across the Main Wall linking together excellent, and exposed climbing on good to great rock. For your comfort the flight path also includes several outstanding belays, two of which are near perfect ledges which allow you to really enjoy the views, and the higher expanses of this rugged canyon. Though the first belay is semi hanging, I would think that having three passengers, with two ropes on the voyage would be no problem at all. ...[more]   Browse More Classics in AZ

Local Information for Mt. Elden
Photos of Mt. Elden Slideshow Add Photo
Tiny Horned Toad found on the approach
Tiny Horned Toad found on the approach
The Radio Fire on Mt Elden (1978).
The Radio Fire on Mt Elden (1978).
Mt. Elden topo and some of the areas.
BETA PHOTO: Mt. Elden topo and some of the areas.
Some Mt. Elden pockets found on a boulder problem...
Some Mt. Elden pockets found on a boulder problem....
Many of Elden's climbing areas can be seen in this photo taken near the Museum of Northern Arizona. The thin horizontal line of rock on the far left is West Elden. The small comma shaped dash of rock left of center is Oaklands. The rock just beneath the peak is Higher Solitude. NW facing Lower Solitude sits inconspicuously down and right. The Devil's Chair pokes up into view down and right of the radio towers. Red Dragon is the second to last escarpment on the right, and Gloria's rocks are the toes of the rock foot beneath.
Many of Elden's climbing areas can be seen in this...

Comments on Mt. Elden Add Comment
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By Todd Savoy
From: Flagstaff
Mar 2, 2010
Howdy! Does anyone have any info on Secret Canyon? I've got a copy of "A Cheap Way to Fly" but it kinda only scratches the surface. Thanks!