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Areas in Caballo Lake

Bat Cave Area 4 / 73 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 77
Elevation: 5,710 ft
GPS: 32.929, -107.236 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 47,308 total · 421/month
Shared By: LeeAB Brinckerhoff on Aug 26, 2009
Admins: Shirtless Mike, Jason Halladay, Anthony Stout, LeeAB Brinckerhoff, Marta Reece, Drew Chojnowski
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A very wild and as yet undeveloped area with tons of rock, how much of it is climbable and reasonably accessable is up for debate. The main aspect of the cliff line is west facing and bakes in the afternoon sun, though as the cliff contours along the hillside there are more north and south facing aspects as well. The rock is limestone and varies from great to pretty bad onion skin.

This is a pretty rough area and requires 4x4 and clearance to make it all the way to the highest parking. There are no services with in about 45 minutes so plan accordingly. Cliffs range from about 100 feet to close to 300 or taller.

Many years ago Bryan Pletta, Dave Baltz and Doug Teague did some exploring and put up a handful of mixed routes at a small cliff in the Bat Cave area but could not get others motivated to go down and continue development. The area sat for many years without any further development untill the winter of 2008/2009 when Timmy Fairfield, John Kear, Marc Beverly and Lance Hadfield among others started to add routes. Bryan also returned and added bolts to his mixed routes to make them sport climbs.

Getting There

Driving to the Bat Cave area requires a high clearance vehicle to get within reasonable hiking distance. From the interstate exit, the first 3.5 miles is on pavement and good dirt roads. The final 2 miles is very rocky but passable with "Subaru/Rav4" SUV clearance. The final 1/2 mile is the worst and there is a good parking/camping option at this "T" intersection.

From I-25 take Exit 59 (Arrey Derry/ Caballo Percha State Parks) exit.

If coming from the north, turn right (southwest) at the exit onto highway 187 and drive for 2.7 mi.
Take a left onto W. Wagoneer Rd. and drive for 1.1 mi.
Take a left onto Sugar Sand/Tumbleweed Rd. for 0.7 mi.
Veer right onto dirt for 0.2 mi.
Take a left at "T", drive under highway in single lane tunnel for 2.6 miles to fork at the dam.
From the dam, continue for about 3.5 miles to the rough "4x4" road(sometimes a rock carin here.) Turn right onto this rocky track and go about .7 miles to a rutted hill--this section requires "Subaru" clearance but isn't too bad.
Bear left on the fork at .9 miles, continue to the final fork at 1.5 miles and go right. This is a good "low clearance" camp option. Continue past a few ruts to the final hill (another parking option) and go up this to the final "T" at 1.9 miles. This is the best parking spot instead of the end of the road since several cars can park here. Walk or drive east up to the high camp. The road ends just beyond the high camp and is the access to Gotham City. The main trail to all the other crags begins from the north end of the "High Camp". Hiking to the high camp and using this less steep trail is more sustainable than the steep trail which starts at the end of the other road beyond that final parking "T".

There are two good parking/camping areas where the hiking trail starts.
For the first (lower) one take the left and continue to the end.
For the second (higher) one continue .25 mi to the end. There are two flat spots and several areas for a rough campsite.

77 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at Caballo Lake

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.8- 5b 16 VI- 14 VS 4c
Harley Quinn Devotion
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
Two Face
5.9- 5c 17 VI 16 HVS 4c
Crystal Mess
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
I'll Be Your Poison Ivy
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
Tufa Consequences
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
Mega Man
5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b
Dynamic Duo
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
Raising the Barr
5.11a/b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c
Super Hero
Sport 2 pitches
5.11a/b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c
Silver Surfer
5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a
White Washed
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a
The Odyssey
Sport 2 pitches
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a
Old Man Direct
5.12+ 7c 28 IX 27 E6 6b
New Beginning
5.13b 8a 29 IX+ 30 E7 6c
Bella Donna
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Harley Quinn Devotion Bat Cave Area > Villain Wall
5.8- 5b 16 VI- 14 VS 4c Sport
Two Face Bat Cave Area > Villain Wall
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Sport
Crystal Mess Bat Cave Area > Super Hero Wall (Grey…
5.9- 5c 17 VI 16 HVS 4c Sport
I'll Be Your Poison Ivy Bat Cave Area > Villain Wall
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Sport
Tufa Consequences Bat Cave Area > Tufa Wall
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b Sport
Mega Man Bat Cave Area > Super Hero Wall (Grey…
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b Sport
Dynamic Duo Bat Cave Area > Super Hero Wall (Grey…
5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b Sport
Raising the Barr Bat Cave Area > Barr
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c Sport
Super Hero Bat Cave Area > Super Hero Wall (Grey…
5.11a/b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c Sport 2 pitches
Silver Surfer Bat Cave Area > Super Hero Wall (Grey…
5.11a/b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c Sport
White Washed Bat Cave Area > New Beginnings Wall
5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a Sport
The Odyssey Bat Cave Area > Trojan Wall (Right of…
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a Sport 2 pitches
Old Man Direct Bat Cave Area > Bat Cave
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a Sport
New Beginning Bat Cave Area > New Beginnings Wall
5.12+ 7c 28 IX 27 E6 6b Sport
Bella Donna Bat Cave Area > Bat Cave
5.13b 8a 29 IX+ 30 E7 6c Sport
More Classic Climbs in Caballo Lake »

Weather Averages

Days w Precip
Prime Climbing Season
Aaron Hobson
Clinton, TN
Aaron Hobson   Clinton, TN
It's really good to see this area being posted. I've made a few trips up here this year and plan on many more as it's a reasonable drive from Las Cruces. I managed to get my little 2wd Geo tracker up to the parking area, although it was a bit iffy. This will be a good winter climbing area. Aug 29, 2009
Jason Halladay
Los Alamos, NM
Jason Halladay   Los Alamos, NM  
Is there any decent camping around this area or is it sketchy (a comment on one of the other pages under this area suggests carrying a gun!)? It would be quite the drive from up north so going down to spend a couple days would be ideal. Thanks. Oct 20, 2009
lance hadfield
lance hadfield   tijeras
Sarah and I camped several times and so did Ian and I. I think the best place to camp is down at the fork before the road gets steep. There is room for several cars and tents it is flat and we left a tent up for the weekend and it was left untouched. This place is going to be great for New Mexico but will take a lot of effort and little climbing for a few seasons. So come ready to work and you should stay off projects because many of these routes are not cleaned yet. We are attempting to get to the top of walls so others can set routes quicker. I will write grades on the ones I clean and try or climb so others know they are safe.
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Thanks for the great route development! All routes I climbed were very safely bolted and had great anchors. It's refreshing in this area to have thoughtful development happening. I have some gear I would be happy to donate to the cause. Apr 12, 2010
Re: directions...the green truck is gone, so take the obvious turn on the left before the road becomes impassable Dec 30, 2010
Jason Halladay
Los Alamos, NM
Jason Halladay   Los Alamos, NM  
We had a great weekend here climbing mostly at the Super Hero Wall (Grey Wall) area. All the hard work is much appreciated. Putting up all the routes from the ground must be quite difficult, time consuming and potentially scary so thank you.
It's a great desert setting and I'm sure we'll return. Good stuff. Feb 21, 2011
Craig Childre
Lubbock, Texas
Craig Childre   Lubbock, Texas
Cool spot, looks like we might need to sample this spot sooner than later! May 7, 2012
FYI, the "getting there" instructions assume you are coming from the north. If coming from the south on I-25, make a left from the top of the exit ramp off of I-25. (and the green truck is still gone ;-) Jun 23, 2012
Mike Rowley
Boise, Idaho
Mike Rowley   Boise, Idaho
I am working in T or C for a month or two and would REALLY be stoked to check this area out. Is there anyone out there who would be willing to go with me??? I promise I know how to belay, and lead haha. If anyone can swing this, please let me know! I have a house in T or C we can stay in if its too windy to camp. May 3, 2013
erik rieger
Ridgway, CO
erik rieger   Ridgway, CO
Desert limestone, great setting. Awesome. Felt like an area with a ton of potential. Mar 4, 2015
Emily Jencso
Emily Jencso   SLC, UT
New to the in T or C for a job. Any other climbers out there? Or if anyone is coming to town to visit hit me up. Jul 6, 2015
Richard Heying
Albuquerque, NM
Richard Heying   Albuquerque, NM
What's the climbing like and how far would you say it is from Albuquerque Apr 18, 2017
M. Morley
Sacramento, CA
M. Morley   Sacramento, CA  
"What's the climbing like and how far would you say it is from Albuquerque" Apr 19, 2017
Sarah Councell
Albuquerque, NM
Sarah Councell   Albuquerque, NM
So good. Thanks Sarah and Lance for putting up such well-bolted, quality moderates! Dec 2, 2017
Christy Meredith
Duluth, MN
Christy Meredith   Duluth, MN
I am a moderate sport climber that just moved to Las Cruces. I would like to get out to this area starting in November 2018. Anyone actively climbing at Caballo Lake? Oct 7, 2018

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