Elevation: 6,154 ft
GPS: 31.87, -109.994 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 148,782 total · 680/month
Shared By: James DeRoussel on Aug 20, 2002
Admins: Greg Opland, Luke Bertelsen, JJ Schlick

Description

Cochise Stronghold is a spectacular landscape of rugged canyons and towering granite domes. While there is certainly something for everyone in this vast area, those seeking traditional, multi pitch climbing will have a special appreciation for climbing here in the Dragoon Mountains.

The amount of climbing in Cochise Stronghold is absurd, and most of the rock is of outstanding quality. Many super classic routes, put up by pioneering young climbers since the 1970's, ascend the various spires and domes in the area. Most of the quality crack climbs in Southern Arizona are found here, as are some of the longest routes in this part of the state. Many of these routes are difficult, committing, and very runout. If you cant climb them this way, go climb something else. Though bolts have made their way into the Stronghold, placing fixed gear here is still frowned upon. Additionally, this area is of great cultural significance to many people. Treat it with due respect.

Climbing is Cochise Stronghold is a true backcountry experience. The remote setting, coupled with the committing nature of many of the climbs here, require preparation beyond that of roadside cragging on Mt Lemmon. The terrain is rugged and maze-like, and it is generally easier to get lost than to get where you are going. Allow plenty of time for approaches and err on the side of caution.

While current closures do not effect the Sheepshead Area, a large portion of the climbing in Cochise Stronghold is closed annually for raptor nesting. Current closures are from February 15 - June 30 and include the entire Rockfellow Group and What's My Line Dome. Check with the Forest Service for changes and current closures.

For more information and some interesting background on Cochise Stronghold, see Bob Kerry's guide 'Backcountry Climbing in Southern Arizona.'

Getting There

From Tucson, had east on I-10 to exit #303 (Tombstone/Bisbee). Turn right (south) on Arizona Highway 80 and drive for about 20 miles. Just before Tombstone, turn left onto Middlemarch Road. Follow this rough gravel road for almost ten miles to Forest Road 687. Make a left, towards the West Stronghold and follow this dirt road north. Make the first right turn on a dirt road that leads past a windmill to the road's end. Park and hike across the grassy field to the obvious domes.

44 Total Climbs

Route Finder - Best Climbs for YOU!

Location: Sheepshead Area (Southwest) Change
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Classic Climbing Routes at Sheepshead Area (Southwest)

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 371
Ewephoria
Trad 5 pitches
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 165
Mystery of the Desert
Trad 5 pitches
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 44
Ides of Middlemarch
Trad 5 pitches
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 285
The Peacemaker
Sport 7 pitches
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 55
Phony Pony
Trad 5 pitches
5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 195
Absinthe of Mallet
Trad 7 pitches
5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a PG13
 99
The Climb Too Tough To Die
Trad 6 pitches
5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 32
The Tombstone Stripper
Trad 6 pitches
5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b
 48
Dark Horse
Trad 6 pitches
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
 36
Tour Buses Welcome
Sport 4 pitches
5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b
 48
Get The Flock Out Of Here
Trad 5 pitches
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
 72
Stampede
Sport 7 pitches
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
 22
The Inevitable Awaits You
Sport 3 pitches
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a
 21
Sheep Thrills
Trad, Sport
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a
 8
Tiny But Exciting
Sport
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Ewephoria Sheepshead
 371
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Trad 5 pitches
Mystery of the Desert Muttonhead
 165
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Trad 5 pitches
Ides of Middlemarch Sheepshead
 44
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Trad 5 pitches
The Peacemaker Sheepshead
 285
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Sport 7 pitches
Phony Pony Sheepshead
 55
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Trad 5 pitches
Absinthe of Mallet Sheepshead
 195
5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Trad 7 pitches
The Climb Too Tough To Die Sheepshead
 99
5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a PG13 Trad 6 pitches
The Tombstone Stripper Sheepshead
 32
5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Trad 6 pitches
Dark Horse Sheepshead
 48
5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b Trad 6 pitches
Tour Buses Welcome Muttonhead
 36
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b Sport 4 pitches
Get The Flock Out Of Here Sheepshead
 48
5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b Trad 5 pitches
Stampede Sheepshead
 72
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c Sport 7 pitches
The Inevitable Awaits You Muttonhead
 22
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c Sport 3 pitches
Sheep Thrills Crisis Center
 21
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a Trad, Sport
Tiny But Exciting Muttonhead
 8
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a Sport
More Classic Climbs in Sheepshead Area (Southwest) »

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