|GPS:||35.232, -111.625 Google Map · Climbing Area Map|
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|Shared By:||Andrew Ryder on Dec 5, 2007|
|Admins:||Greg Opland, Luke Bertelsen, JJ Schlick|
DescriptionGloria's is an extensive maze of boulders and low cliffs of dacite at the foot of Mount Elden, intertwined with caves and surrounded by a cool ponderosa forest. It's a popular quick hit for locals due to its short approach and easy access from downtown Flagstaff. It's also popular among hikers, bikers, dog-walkers, high school kids, and people between homes. Many boulders are conveniently identified by their graffiti.
The area was largely established by local hardpeople (including Bob Murray) in the 1980s, with waves of further development through the years. Problems are generally thin and technical, with a good mix of old-school moderates and crimpy testpieces, though several bold modern lines exist. The Elden dacite, a silicic volcanic rock reminiscent of slick granite, is notoriously rough on the hands. A lot of the problems are quite tall and landings range from perfect to horrendous. Many little-trafficked topropes and free solos exist on the cliffbands and larger boulders.
Gloria's is best in the spring and fall, but it is easy to chase shade in the summer, and many of the problems outside the caves dry quickly in the winter.
Getting ThereFrom downtown Flagstaff: Take San Francisco St. north through downtown until it intercepts Forest Ave. Make a right on Forest, pass Buffalo Park on the left (here Forest Ave. turns into Cedar), then make a left on West St. (there is a stoplight with a Safeway shopping center here.) Turn left on Paradise Rd. and park at the end of the cul-de-sac, careful not to block any driveways or mailboxes. Walk through the fence and navigate the maze of trails, trending generally toward the base of Mt. Elden. Look for a silver metal pipe sticking out of the ground that marks a trail straight to the boulders. Approach about 5 minutes.
Tim Toula's A Cheap Way To Fly includes a bit of information and a topo, which is thorough but might be confusing for first-time visitors. A CD-R electronic guide is available from Vertical Relief that includes all the major problems with quality topos and color photos.
Classic Climbing Routes at Gloria's
Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
Days w Precip
Prime Climbing Season