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Sullivan's Canyon

Arizona > Central Arizona > *Prescott Areas


Basalt lined canyon cut by the Verde River. Steep, dark colored rock with many cracks and pocketed faces. Can be shady or sunny depending on which wall of the canyon you're on. Dark rock can really heat up. Never crowded. Most locals call it Sullies Canyon or just Sullies. There is some good bouldering to be done on the heavily polished blocks that have fallen in the river and alongs its banks. Watch for petroglyphs.
Despite the fact that most of the routes end at bolted rap stations, BOLTING FACE ROUTES IS NOT PERMITTED. The anchor bolts were placed because climbing out above the basalt band is dangerous and would pose a hazard to both climbers and those on the ground due to all the loose rocks. Furthermore, it is felt that adding bolts to create climbs on the narrow faces between the cracks would ruin the crack climbing experience. What face climbs there are can often be top-roped from anchors after leading one of the crack routes. Local climbers prefer that this remain a no bolting area.

Getting There

The canyon is located east of highway 89 north of the city of Chino Valley. It is roughly divided into two sections - Upper Sulivan's and Lower Sullivan's - each area has it's own approach.

Photos [Hide ALL Photos]

Sword of Damocles, rattly off-width...
[Hide Photo] Sword of Damocles, rattly off-width...
Looking out from the Nursery..
[Hide Photo] Looking out from the Nursery..

Comments [Hide ALL Comments]

Greg DeMatteo
W. Lebanon, NH
[Hide Comment] Not a destination crag by any measure but a great local spot to hone your skills, especially during the cooler months. Due to the slightly lower elevation than Prescott and the way the canyon traps the sun/heat, it can often be freezing in Prescott and mild in the canyon with no-shirt climbing days in January and February.

Though it can be rough on the hands, the plethora of face holds allows jamming practice with the relief of intermittent face holds. Most climbs are short, but it still gets credit with preparing multiple generations of Prescott area climbers for bigger and better things. A wide variety of cracks and face (top-ropes) from 5.6 to 5.11. Apr 23, 2008
Peter Franzen
Phoenix, AZ
[Hide Comment] Fun place as long as you can ignore the attitude thrown about by the Flagstaff "locals". Feb 6, 2012
J Mo
Tucson, AZ
[Hide Comment] I guess if I knocked an entire town full of climbers in some pouty fit, after a year I'd take the comment down.... Mar 9, 2013
Alexander Parrish
Prescott, Arizona
[Hide Comment] I found a pair of prescription glasses in a case yesterday 12/20/14 at one of the walls. If you can tell me what the case looks like and what exact wall I found them by I will get them back to you. Dec 21, 2014
JJ Schlick
Flagstaff, AZ
[Hide Comment] Well I knew the day would come. I started rearranging the info here for Sullies to try and preserve it, as well as, make it a little more user friendly. It will take a day for the route counts to adjust, and the rest will be a "work in progress" for a bit.

A BIG thanks to Josh Gross for both all his hard work and new routes at the crag over the last twenty some years, and also for helping to sort out all the info here on Mountain Project. Feb 23, 2015