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Areas in Sugarloaf Area

Bloody Arete (a.k.a. Peripheral Rock) 0 / 2 / 1 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 2
Dental Wall 1 / 0 / 5 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 6
Left Over Bun 2 / 2 / 2 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 4
Midway Rock 4 / 7 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 11
Mini Bun 0 / 3 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 3
Puppy Dog 0 / 0 / 0 / 1 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 1
Scone, The 2 / 4 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 6
Split Rock 0 / 5 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 5
Sugarbun 6 / 5 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 11
Sugarloaf 46 / 21 / 3 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 61
Wave, The 0 / 0 / 0 / 1 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 1
West Buttress 4 / 6 / 10 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 10
Winter Wall 1 / 1 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 1 / 0 / 0 / 3
Elevation: 4,050 ft
GPS: 38.771, -120.307 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 140,531 total · 848/month
Shared By: Brian Quiter on Mar 9, 2005
Admins: Aron Quiter, Lurker, M. Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Salamanizer suchoski, Justin Johnsen, Vicki Schwantes
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Description

Sugarloaf

Sugarloaf is a huge granite spire towering over the town of Kyburz on highway 50 between Placerville and Tahoe. It is considered an excellent winter crag because of its lower elevation and mostly south-southwest facing position. There's both sport and trad, with single and multi-pitch routes of grades both easy to moderate, as well as full on hard committing routes that will test the strongest and boldest of climbers. The spire is about 350 feet tall and you can walk off the uphill side without much difficulty.

Peripheral Rocks

The Sugarloaf area also includes a handful of smaller rocks that you can find along the trail leading up to Sugarloaf proper. These rocks hold a slew of low to moderate quality routes and boulder problems, with a few classics thrown in. Routes on these rocks can range from easy 5th class to extremely difficult and vary in height between 40 and 100 feet tall.

Land Ownership

The climbing area, and the Pony Express Trail that passes below it, are both in Eldorado National Forest. You can always check the ENF Website for recent information.

But access to the Pony Express Trail and climbing areas uses public right of ways over private land. As always, please respect the locals the live and work in Silver Fork and Kyburz as you hike in and out of the public playground above.

Amenities

Local businesses, including gas stations stores, a cafe, and an inn, are just uphill and downhill from Sugarloaf on highway 50, in the towns of Silver Fork and Kyburz.

Camping

There are some options for camping in the area but they are undeveloped, few and far between.
1) Drive just up the hill (east) on HWY 50 to Silverfork Rd. There are several pullouts just a few miles up the road that allow for overnight camping. However, the gate closes for the winter, so if it's snowy and icy, chances are the gate will be closed.

2) Drive down HWY 50 (West)and make a right onto 31 Milestone tract. There is a large pullout that allows camping. This road also closes in the winter months but tends to stay open longer than Silverfork Rd.

3) There is year round opportunity along Ice House Rd. Located several miles back (west) down HWY 50, Ice House Rd offers year round primitive camping along numerous pullouts and dirt roads.

Getting There

From the Bay Area, head East on 80 to Sacramento, then take 50 East, through Placerville and another ~30 miles (if you see the town of Kyburz sign and gas station, you've gone half a mile too far). After passing School Road, look for a dirt pullout on the right shoulder, on the south side of the two lane highway, and park there. Across the road on the north side you'll see a building with a locked blue outhouse on the left. This is basically half way between School Road, and Larch Lane.

Google Maps link to the parking and trailhead​​​

We had a brutal time finding the trail from the road so figured we'd document it - the trail starts to the left of this building

Once parked, walk to the east end of the dirt pullout, and carefully across highway 50 to get to the left side of the outhouse and fence around the building.

Walk uphill for ~200 feet and you'll find a 'now entering forest service land' sign. From here a climber's trail is obvious and you just walk up it to the crags.

Sugarloaf is about a 30 minute hike straight up the hill. From route 50 to the base of the main formation, it's about 600 feet up over half a mile.

A more adventurous approach is to start down at 31 Milestone Tract, and find the Pony Express Trail from near the domes there. Over less than 2 miles of trail, it reaches the elevation halfway between route 50 and the base of the main Sugarloaf. This approach can be done on foot or fat tires (assuming you bring a means to secure your bike out of sight while you slog to your wall or boulder at Sugarloaf).

Access

CRAGS, the local Access Fund affiliate, with the support of the forest service, is beginning new projects to help improve access to Sugarloaf.

124 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at Sugarloaf Area

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b R
 34
Harding's Chimney
Trad 3 pitches
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
 114
Scheister
Trad 3 pitches
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 165
Pony Express
Trad 2 pitches
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 66
Morticia
Trad
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 118
Farley
Trad
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 111
Dominion
Trad
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
 64
Fingerlock
Trad
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
 48
Hyperspace
Trad
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
 27
Self Abuse
Trad
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
 37
Bolee Gold
Trad 4 pitches
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
 31
Blue Velvet
Trad, Sport
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b
 28
Make That Move Right Now Baby
Sport
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b
 103
The Fracture
Trad
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c
 49
Taurus
Trad
5.13b/c 8a+ 29 X- 30 E7 6c
 6
Grand Illusion
Trad
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Harding's Chimney Sugarloaf > E Face
 34
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b R Trad 3 pitches
Scheister Sugarloaf > E Face
 114
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b Trad 3 pitches
Pony Express Sugarloaf > W Face
 165
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Trad 2 pitches
Morticia Sugarloaf > E Face
 66
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Trad
Farley Sugarloaf > E Face
 118
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Trad
Dominion Sugarloaf > E Face
 111
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Trad
Fingerlock Sugarbun
 64
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Trad
Hyperspace Sugarloaf > W Face
 48
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Trad
Self Abuse Midway Rock
 27
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Trad
Bolee Gold Sugarloaf > S Face
 37
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b Trad 4 pitches
Blue Velvet Sugarloaf > E Face
 31
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b Trad, Sport
Make That Move Right Now Baby Sugarbun
 28
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b Sport
The Fracture Sugarloaf > E Face
 103
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b Trad
Taurus Sugarloaf > E Face
 49
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c Trad
Grand Illusion Sugarloaf > E Face
 6
5.13b/c 8a+ 29 X- 30 E7 6c Trad
More Classic Climbs in Sugarloaf Area »

Weather Averages

High
 
Low
 
Precip
 
Days w Precip
 
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
Aerili
Los Alamos, NM
Aerili   Los Alamos, NM
Just a tip regarding the weather link for this page: my recent personal analysis and actual experience has been that Weather Underground (much as I love that site) does not portray an accurate forecast for the Kyburz area. Use noaa.gov instead; although their weather models are probably larger (and therefore less "local") than wunderground's, they seem more accurate.

If you check out the current list of Weather Underground's reporting stations at the bottom of the page (also visually listed on their WunderMap tab), you will see that not a single station is located at the same elevation as Kyburz--all are higher or lower. Further, I believe the numerous stations around South Lake skew the general forecast given for Kyburz to be colder/cooler than it really will be. Having climbed there on a day that was forecasted to be 40° with 40 mph wind gusts by Weather Underground and then finding nothing of the sort has confirmed my suspicions. That same day was forecasted to be 61° with 10 mph winds by noaa. Apr 27, 2009
Wa Na  
If you want to stay in the area, I have a 4br house just below Sugarloaf by the school. You can rent the whole house or just 1 rm. Please call/txt (530) 318-7436 for availability May 13, 2014
GizzardJones
Rancho Cordova, CA
GizzardJones   Rancho Cordova, CA
ALERT!!!!

as of March 22nd 2016 for any walk offs the Main Sugarloaf Proper, the Tree has fallen down that folks could stem out to use as a crutch for the down climb section.
Now there is a mandatory 5.5 ish 5.6 short few moves of down climbing into the final descent gully.


Mar 24, 2016
Peter J
Davis, CA
Peter J   Davis, CA
"4th class walk off" ...oldschool Dec 17, 2017

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