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Santa Rita Mountains

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Elephant Head 

Santa Rita Mountains Rock Climbing 

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Administrators: Greg Opland, James DeRoussel, JJ Schlick, Hendrixson, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: James DeRoussel on Nov 3, 2003

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The Santa Rita Mountains are located 30 miles south of Tucson. This impressive range is home to Mt Wrightson, one of the taller peaks in Southern Arizona. While popular among hikers and bikers, there is precious little established climbing in this range. The remoteness and inconsistent rock quality of the crags here have probably deterred route development.

Nevertheless, there are a few 'gems', and the spectacular scenery is hard to beat.

Getting There 

From Tucson, drive I-19 south to exit for Madera Canyon. This is the developed recreational area, run by the USFS. Other parts of the range can be accessed by various forest roads.

Climbing Season

Weather station 2.0 miles from here

4 Total Climbing Routes

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

Classic Climbing Routes in Santa Rita Mountains

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Santa Rita Mountains:
West Gully   5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b R     Trad, 8 pitches, 1000'   Elephant Head
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Santa Rita Mountains

Featured Route For Santa Rita Mountains
Rock Climbing Photo: North Face of Elephant Head.  Photo courtesy of Ri...

Rocktology 5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b AZ : Southern Arizona : ... : Elephant Head
Rocktology was the best day of adventure I've had so far in Southern Arizona. The two star rating is given for the fact that it is a steep and exciting route, with great movement, that takes a devious path up a beautiful wall. As the name implies, the loose rock, bird shit, mediocre protection, and copious amounts of lichen detract from the quality, but certainly add to the adventure. A word about lichen: Kerry's guide says to bring a wire brush, but we didn't take this seriously. BRING A WI...[more]   Browse More Classics in AZ

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By CaseyK
From: Tucson, Az
Aug 22, 2010
I hiked the Old Baldy trail to Mt. Wrightson for the first time yesterday and the amount of rock towards the top is incredible. It is too bad it is a hike of 5 miles and 4000 feet of elevation gain away. There are a lot of boulders right in the canyon though, don't think they seem much climbing though.

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