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Areas in Cosumnes River Gorge

Buck's Bar Dome 22 / 0 / 33 / 1 / 0 / 1 / 0 / 0 / 40
Granite Cove 1 / 0 / 1 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 1
Gutenberger Wall 8 / 6 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 14
Hispaniol Rock 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0
Midway Rocks 1 / 0 / 1 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 1
Struggler Cliff 3 / 0 / 8 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 8
Ten-Minute Cliff 6 / 0 / 5 / 1 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 6
Upper Slab 0 / 0 / 1 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 1

Description

Nestled into the western Sierra near the town of Placerville, you will find this granite gem. Climbing is quite varied, from short bouldering, sport, and multipitch traditional lines. Most of these are topropeable short lines, physical for their grades. Descents are as varied as the climbing.

Most of the granite in the area has been washed by water over many many years, and now is quite smooth. We're not talking Yosemite glass, so friction routes are still doable.

Boasting several hundred existing routes on many different rocks, there are many many days of climbing for people of all abilities. This is an excellent place to set your first pro, and also a great place for the development of new routes.

The most comprehensive guide book for this area is William Cottrell's Rock Climbs of Placerville, CA.

Access

There are no access fees for climbing in Cosumnes River Gorge. For decades, these climbing areas were on privately owned land, with the owner has permitted hiking and climbing access. A 1979 trip report by Bob Branscomb in the American Alpine Journal mentioned that the owner requested that no campfires be lit. In 2004, the American River Conservancy purchased the property and transferred its ownership to the Bureau of Land Management, preserving public access indefinitely.

Getting There

From Hwy 50, exit on Missouri Flats (Right). Take that a few miles until you find a T-intersection with Pleasant Valley Rd and take that to Bucks Bar. If you are unfamiliar with the area the turnout for parking is just before Buck's Bar Cir., so if you see Bucks Bar Circle road then you just passed the spot.

Once out of the car, head off the right side of the road in the middle of the guard rail. There is a wide trail that is paved for the first few hundred feet. The approach is downhill and takes about 10 minutes to the main climbing areas.

71 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at Cosumnes River Gorge

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
 43
The Pod
Trad, TR
5.8- 5b 16 VI- 14 VS 4c
 22
Magic Beans
Trad
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 83
Unconquerable
Trad, TR
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 111
Test Piece
Trad, TR
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 33
Live and Learn
Trad
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 16
Squeeze Cheeze
TR
5.9- 5c 17 VI 16 HVS 4c
 15
Gardens of Babylon
Trad, TR
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 106
Dinkum
Trad, TR
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 9
Lichen Us
Trad 4 pitches
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 19
Bat Roof
Trad, TR
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
 18
Fly or Die
TR
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
 49
Adhesion
TR
5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c
 7
Bat Roof Direct
TR
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a
 17
Ten Minute Crack
Trad, TR
5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b
 8
Fingerprint
TR
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
The Pod Buck's Bar Dome > Dinkum Gulley
 43
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b Trad, TR
Magic Beans Buck's Bar Dome > Dinkum Gulley
 22
5.8- 5b 16 VI- 14 VS 4c Trad
Unconquerable Buck's Bar Dome > Main Area
 83
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Trad, TR
Test Piece Buck's Bar Dome > Main Area
 111
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Trad, TR
Live and Learn Buck's Bar Dome > Great Flake
 33
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Trad
Squeeze Cheeze Buck's Bar Dome > Main Area
 16
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c TR
Gardens of Babylon Ten-Minute Cliff
 15
5.9- 5c 17 VI 16 HVS 4c Trad, TR
Dinkum Buck's Bar Dome > Dinkum Gulley
 106
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Trad, TR
Lichen Us Gutenberger Wall
 9
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Trad 4 pitches
Bat Roof Buck's Bar Dome > Main Area
 19
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Trad, TR
Fly or Die Buck's Bar Dome > Main Area
 18
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b TR
Adhesion Buck's Bar Dome > Main Area
 49
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b TR
Bat Roof Direct Buck's Bar Dome > Main Area
 7
5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c TR
Ten Minute Crack Ten-Minute Cliff
 17
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a Trad, TR
Fingerprint Buck's Bar Dome > Main Area
 8
5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b TR
More Classic Climbs in Cosumnes River Gorge »

Weather Averages

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Prime Climbing Season
J F M A M J J A S O N D
J F M A M J J A S O N D
I've climbed here quite a bit. It's cool for beginners who enjoy toproping, most anchors can be walked up to. If you sport there's only 3 routes a 10a, 10c, and a 9, they're ok but not great. a near by river makes for good swimming in the summer time. Mar 2, 2005
This place is a lot of fun, but I wouldn't really recommend camping right around the crag. This weekend there was a large pile of freshly broken glass along the shoulder where everyone parks. No problem during the day but I didn't want to leave my car there over night. Also, there isn't a lot of level ground in the area and you would have to keep a pretty low profile. Definitely some national forest camping within 10 miles or so. May 20, 2013
Nicholas Boyce
Placerville, CA and Flagler…
Nicholas Boyce   Placerville, CA and Flagler…
Really nice place to go during the winter or when it is wet. In the summer it gets pretty hot during the mid day and there really isn't a lot of shade for the main climbing area. The water is easily accessible to swim in once the water level goes down. Most of the routes are clean and the trail is in pretty good shape getting there. I'd be sure to lock my car up and put away any bags in the back. A few people have had there car window smashed and a bag stolen over the years. I have never worried about it with my gear out of sight. Apr 3, 2018

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