Elevation: 5,817 ft
GPS: 35.805, -106.139 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 270,494 total · 1,635/month
Shared By: Anthony Stout on Feb 12, 2006
Admins: Shirtless Mike, Jason Halladay, Anthony Stout, LeeAB Brinckerhoff, Marta Reece, Drew Chojnowski

Description

Diablo Canyon is located outside of Santa Fe New Mexico, and offers fine climbing on basalt cliffs up to three hundred feet tall.

With over a hundred sport lines and many good crack lines, Diablo offers a wealth of climbing with easy, quick access from Santa Fe. Grades range from 5.8 to 5.13 and vary in steepness and exposure. Many routes are in the moderate 5.10 arena and, for 5.10-5.12 climbers, this is one of the best sport climbing areas in northern New Mexico. With the greatly increased popularity of Diablo Canyon, by now traffic has cleaned much of the loose rock from many of the more popular climbs, but some remains.

Climbing in Diablo can be found nearly year round, with shade in the summer and sun in the winter.

Approaches to the various crags can range from 5 to 30 minutes.

DANGER: Please wear a helmet while climbing at Diablo, rockfall is a significant risk here. South facing rock appears, and is, chossy and loose. This is due to the extreme fluctuations in temperatures during the winter, where the rock temperature can swing from over 100 to below 0 F in a 24 hour period. This freeze/thaw cycle is associated with tremendous thermal expansion and contraction, which can make rock that was solid yesterday become airborne today. Tread lightly while leading, belay from a spot out of the line of fire, and (if they have brains worth protecting) WEAR a HELMET.

NOTE: The majority beta text and photos are reprinted here from the website, losalamos.com/diablo/, by permission of Rick Bradshaw, who was kind enough to allow me to use his material here.

Free, undeveloped camping available in a few BLM developed campsites at the parking area.

Getting There

1) Get on the Santa Fe Bypass route (Veterans Memorial Hiway 599) either from I-25 south of Santa Fe or off of Saint Frances Drive NW of Santa Fe.

2) Exit onto Camino La Tierra heading west toward the Rio Grande, setting your odometer to 0 at the turnoff. After 4.7 miles, turn right on Old Buckman Road, which is a reasonably well-maintained dirt road. At 7.7 miles you'll pass a large blue/green colored frame (apparently used to be a windmill painted like a daisy) on your left as you follow the main Diablo wash toward the river. At 12.2 miles you should reach the first turn off into the Diablo parking area on your left. The canyon is clearly visible beyond. 2WD vehicles make it there all the time. They get stuck in the sand or mud on their way out at a somewhat less frequency.

Watch out for rattlesnakes basking and tarantulas looking for mates in the middle of the road. This is their home we're visiting, please give them the right of way.

Resources:

The guidebooks "Jemez Rock" and "Rock Climbing: New Mexico" both cover the area but are grossly outdated. There has been a huge amount of development in the Diablo Canyon area in the past decade. Using the MountainProject app is your best bet for current area and route information.

299 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at Diablo Canyon

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 64
Drunk Rednecks with Golf Clubs
Sport
5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 77
Hellboy
Sport
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 144
Post Moderate
Sport
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 37
Humbolt
Sport
5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 53
Naked Lunch
Sport
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
 46
Class Act
Sport
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
 53
Waiting to Procrastinate
Sport
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
 76
Good
Sport
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
 79
Grape Ape
Sport
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
 30
Evil Paradise
Sport
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b
 49
Evil
Sport
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
 39
Affirmative Action
Sport
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
 40
Top Gun
Sport
5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a
 41
Pale Face
Sport
5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b
 35
Clovis Hunter
Sport
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Drunk Rednecks with Golf Clubs Early Wall > Runway (Lower Tier)
 64
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Sport
Hellboy Winter Wall
 77
5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Sport
Post Moderate Winter Wall
 144
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Sport
Humbolt Early Wall > Left End
 37
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Sport
Naked Lunch Winter Wall
 53
5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Sport
Class Act Grotto (a.k.a.… > Grotto Right (W Side)
 46
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Sport
Waiting to Procrastinate Grotto (a.k.a.… > Grotto Left (E Side)
 53
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Sport
Good Grotto (a.k.a.… > Grotto Left (E Side)
 76
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Sport
Grape Ape Winter Wall
 79
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b Sport
Evil Paradise Grotto (a.k.a.… > Grotto Left (E Side)
 30
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b Sport
Evil Grotto (a.k.a.… > Grotto Left (E Side)
 49
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b Sport
Affirmative Action Grotto (a.k.a.… > Grotto Left (E Side)
 39
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c Sport
Top Gun Early Wall > Runway (Lower Tier)
 40
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c Sport
Pale Face Winter Wall
 41
5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a Sport
Clovis Hunter Solar Cave
 35
5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b Sport
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