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8 - Summit Crags

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Fortress, The 
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8 - Summit Crags 

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Elevation: 8,500'
Lat, Long: 32.4325, -110.796 Map Incorrect?
Page Views: 185,343
Administrators: Greg Opland, James DeRoussel, JJ Schlick, Hendrixson, Kristine Hoffman
Submitted By: James DeRoussel on Jul 11, 2010
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Tucson from 9,000 ft.
Closed to climbing, March 15-June 30 MORE INFO >>>


The Summit Crags, as the name implies, are located near the uppermost elevations of Mount Lemmon. They are home to some of the longest and highest quality routes in the Santa Catalinas.

The seasonal raptor nesting closures limit the season here to late summer and autumn. Be particularly aware of afternoon storms and lightning if visiting this area early in the season.

Getting There 

Driving up the Catalina Highway, turn right on the road to the ski valley. Continue past the ski valley, through a gate, and down a rough paved road. Drive to the gravel parking lot on the left just before the observatory. Park here and continue on foot, up the road, following the 'trail' sign. (Stay left when you see the sign at the observatory).

90 Total Routes

['4 Stars',11],['3 Stars',32],['2 Stars',36],['1 Star',10],['Bomb',0]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for 8 - Summit Crags:
Standard Route   5.6 4c 14 V S 4b     Trad, 4 pitches, 450'   Rappel Rock
Black Quacker   5.7 5a 15 V+ MVS 4b     Trad, 450'   Rappel Rock
Bender-Axen   5.8 5b 16 VI- HVS 4c     Trad, 1 pitch, 80'   Rappel Rock
The Rupley Route   5.9 5c 17 VI HVS 5a     Trad, 4 pitches, 450'   The Fortress
Quick Death   5.9 5c 17 VI HVS 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 80'   Rappel Rock
Steel Crazy   5.9 5c 17 VI HVS 5a     Sport, 4 pitches, 450'   The Fortress
Chiboni   5.9+ 5c 17 VI E1 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 70'   Rappel Rock
Fort Stress   5.9+ 5c 17 VI E1 5a     Sport, 4 pitches, 400'   The Fortress
If You Bolt It They Will Come   5.10 6b 20 VII- E2 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 145'   The Ravens
El Curvo   5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ E3 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 130'   The Ravens
Voodoo Child   5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ E3 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 100'   Rappel Rock
Helm's Deep   5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ E3 5b     Trad, 3 pitches, 400'   Rappel Rock
Sir Clipalot   5.11- 6c 22 VIII+ E3 5c     Sport, 3 pitches, 240'   The Fortress
Raven Maniac   5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ E5 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 140'   The Ravens
Hard Day at The Orifice   5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ E5 6b     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   The Fortress
Orifice Politics   5.12 7b+ 27 VIII+ E6 6b     Sport, 105'   The Fortress
Eureka   5.13- 7c+ 29 IX+ E7 6c     Sport, 75'   The Fortress
Heel-A Monster   5.13- 7c+ 29 IX+ E7 6c     Sport, 100'   The Fortress
Coup de' tat   5.13 8a 29 X- E7 6c     Sport, 100'   The Fortress
Granite of the Apes   5.13 8a 29 X- E7 6c     Sport, 90'   The Fortress
Browse More Classics in 8 - Summit Crags

Featured Route For 8 - Summit Crags
It's a looong way down.

Hard Day at The Orifice 5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ E5 6b  AZ : Mount Lemmon (Santa Catalin... : ... : The Fortress
Follow the general directions given to get to The Fortress but don't go down the gully. Just as the trail starts down the east side of The Fortress follow the ledge around the left side and you will find a safety cable. This cable will lead to another cable that will guide you safely down to the climbs.The Orifice is in the running for one of the mountains best sport climbs. This route has a huge exposure factor (laugh at your friends when they get needlessly scared), some great jug hauling and ...[more]   Browse More Classics in AZ

News and Events For 8 - Summit Crags
Photos of 8 - Summit Crags Slideshow Add Photo
smiles all around
smiles all around
The summit crags, from left to right: Rappel Rock, The Fortress, The Ravens
The summit crags, from left to right: Rappel Rock,...
The end of summer.
The end of summer.
Toofast enjoying a bit of winter near the summit
Toofast enjoying a bit of winter near the summit
Comments on 8 - Summit Crags Add Comment
Show which comments
By Andy Bennett
From: Tucson, AZ
Jun 11, 2012

Still CLOSED March 15-June 31. Climbing during the closure has the potential to hurt us all, please don't be a jackass. The Steep, Reef, Raycreation Area, South Park and others are good hot-weather alternatives during the closure.

By Jimbo
Jun 13, 2012

+1 Andy. Lots and lots of other crags on the Lemmon. Be patient everyone.