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Elevation: 5,200 ft 1,585 m
GPS: 32.36032, -110.71983
Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 81,267 total · 416/month
Shared By: Hendrixson on May 12, 2008 · Updates
Admins: adrian montaƱo, Greg Opland, Brian Boyd, JJ Schlick, Kemper Brightman, Luke Bertelsen

Description Suggest change

The Chessmen Area is a sprawling collection of more than 50 routes. While climbs were established as early as 1979, the crag really blossomed in 2008 when Eric-Fazio Rhicard and Jim Scott started developing the area.

The Chessmen Area makes for an easy day of cragging due to its low elevation and proximity to the road. It has the opposite aspect of windy point. The main walls have shade until approximately 2pm.

The breakdown of the area from left to right is as follows:

* Pawn & Chessapeak: The Chessapeak Wall, which is the south face of the Pawn, contains ten routes ranging from 5.6 to 5.10-. A number of the routes are traditional or mixed. Additional routes such as Hour of Power and The Phalanx are in the vicinity.

* King: Thirteen traditional and sport lines ranging from 5.9- to 5.12+. Serf's Up (5.12-) on the Rampart and Kings Arete are classic. This area includes the King's Rampart sector.

* Checkerboard: Five sport and mixed routes ranging from 5.8 to 5.10.

* Queen: Five routes, one of which is gear protected, ranging in difficulty from 5.10 to 5.11+. Two Kings And A Pawn is a Mount Lemmon modern classic.

* Bishop: One gear, one mixed, and five sport routes comprise this sector. Grades range from 5.10- to 5.12-. Heelium and Flogging The Bishop are popular 5.12- lines. Nuts And Bolts is two pitches, the first of which is mixed.

* Knight: The six front-facing, sport lines range in difficulty from 5.10 to 5.11. Knight Owl and Knight Maneuvers are considered the best. The four traditional and mixed lines on the south face are 5.6 to 5.9+ and all are R rated.

* Lorax & Ball Return: Nine routes ranging in difficulty from 5.9 to 5.10+. Some are gear and some are sport.

* One Day Wall: Seven moderate sport and traditional routes with difficulties ranging from 5.6 to 5.9-.

Getting There Suggest change

When driving up the Mount Lemmon Highway pass the Seven Cataracts Vista, continuing a quarter mile. At approximately mile mark 9.4 park in a small, tree-lined pullout on the right that has a drainage.

Disembark and hike straight up the rocky drainage for approximately 15 minutes. The strenuous hike involves a small amount of scrambling but is over soon enough. A fork near the cliff divides the Queen and Bishop sectors. The former is reached by the left, uphill fork; the latter by the right, level fork.

This is also the currently accepted approach for the Pumphouse and the Andy Cook Wall.

60 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at Chessman Area

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 21
Aspen Gold
Sport
5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 31
Nuts and Bolts
Trad, Sport 2 pitches
5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b
 43
Queen of Kings
Sport
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
 11
Handmaiden
Sport
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
 44
Cornickopia
Sport
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
 24
King of Slots
Sport
5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b
 23
Checkmate
Sport
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
 30
Spanish American Match
Sport
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c
 96
Two Kings And A Pawn
Sport
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c
 25
The Fool's Gambit
Sport
5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c
 6
Marathon Match
Sport 2 pitches
5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a
 12
Serfs up
Sport
5.12a/b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6a
 37
Heelium
Sport
5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b
 26
Flogging the Bishop
Sport
5.12c/d 7c 28 IX 28 E6 6b
 6
Kings Arete
Sport
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Aspen Gold 1 - Pawn & Chessapeak
 21
5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Sport
Nuts and Bolts 5 - Bishop
 31
5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Trad, Sport 2 pitches
Queen of Kings 3 - Checkerboard
 43
5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b Sport
Handmaiden 4 - Queen
 11
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Sport
Cornickopia 5 - Bishop
 44
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b Sport
King of Slots 2 - King
 24
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b Sport
Checkmate 6 - Knight
 23
5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b Sport
Spanish American Match 5 - Bishop
 30
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c Sport
Two Kings And A Pawn 4 - Queen
 96
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c Sport
The Fool's Gambit 2 - King
 25
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c Sport
Marathon Match 1 - Pawn & Chessapeak
 6
5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c Sport 2 pitches
Serfs up 2 - King
 12
5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a Sport
Heelium 5 - Bishop
 37
5.12a/b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6a Sport
Flogging the Bishop 5 - Bishop
 26
5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b Sport
Kings Arete 2 - King
 6
5.12c/d 7c 28 IX 28 E6 6b Sport
More Classic Climbs in Chessman Area »

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