The Box Climbing Areas Rock Climbing
|GPS:||34.005, -106.989 Google Map · Climbing Map|
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|Shared By:||Bob Broilo on Jan 27, 2006|
|Admins:||Aaron Hobson, Jason Halladay, Anthony Stout, LeeAB Brinckerhoff, Marta Reece, Drew Chojnowski|
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DescriptionThis area has a series of cliffs and boulders of mixed-quality rhyolite. Nice area for winter climbing and bouldering on days with mild winter temperatures. Summer can be hot and buggy, but shade can be found and many sport climbing faces are very pleasant in the mornings. One can find a plethora of moderate sport routes in the 5.10- 5.11 range, most of which are bolted, though some are mixed and require the occasional gear placement.
Though initial impression of rock quality may be disappointing, much of the rock is actually quite solid (and it varies depending on the area you are climbing at). Some of the looser faces have some routes that have had holds reinforced with glue, and some were chipped.
Well the climbing is fun, the bouldering is spectacular, particularly up at Alf Rig.
The best camping here is south of the cattle guard, south of the parking for the southern areas. There is a pulloff to the left that is sheltered from the wind and gets good morning sun.
Box can be broken up into four major areas to ease navigation:
Northern Box areas are accessed from the first large parking area. This parking area has a toilet, trash container, and information kiosk. Areas served by this parking include Red Wall, Waterfall Wall, Streambed, Dirt Wall, and Wine Wall.
Southern Box areas are mostly accessed by following the road south through the wash and up and over the hill. There is a good trail serving Major Wall, Alcohol Wall, Pocket Change, etc. on the northern end of this parking. Another trail on the south end of the parking near the cattle guard heads to Unbeatable Boulder, Tres Hermanans, Harmonica Convention, etc. Please don't park in the turnaround spot and please use the trails as this is a delicate environment.
Spook parking is accessed by turning off US60 before The Box.
The western Box areas generally are more scattered and require a bit more hiking. These include Alf Rig, Inflatable Hitler Wall, Hidden Wall, Dog Ball Banana Wall, and Mesquite BBQ Wall. There is no general parking and the trails are faint or overgrown.
Rack: 10 draws, set of wires, and a single set of Camalots up to #3 should be fine. Though, just a set of quick draws will get you up a most of the routes.
- The Socorro Bouldering Guide:
- An seemingly abandoned but promising guide to both the boulders and the cliffs:
"New Mexico Bouldering" by Owen Summerscales, 2016
Rock Climbing New Mexico by Dennis R. Jackson. Incomplete and inaccurate, but currently the only in-print guide to the sport climbing.
"The Enchanted Tower, Sport Climbing Socorro and Datil, New Mexico" by Salomon Maestas and Matthew A. Jones, 1993. (Out of print)
Find Socorro on Interstate 25 (about 1 hour south of Albuquerque). From there head west on US highway 60, and drive about 7 miles. Keep your eyes peeled left as you cross a bridge (you are driving over the bridge that goes over the canyon), and you will see The Box to your left. Just after crossing that bridge turn left onto a dirt road. You will see a sign for The Box. Follow the road over and then down the hill about 0.25 miles, take a left, and you will find parking for the northern Box areas. The southern and western Box areas are about a mile further down the road to the south.
Classic Climbing Routes at The Box Climbing Areas
Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
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Prime Climbing Season