Mount Lemmon (Santa Catalina Mountains)
> Southern Arizona
The Santa Catalina Mountains are more commonly known among climbers and non-climbers alike as, simply, Mount Lemmon. Although Mount Lemmon is only one of many peaks within the Santa Catalina range, its name has been casually applied to the range as a whole for some time.
Mount Lemmon, rising to an elevation of 9,157 feet above sea level, offers some of the best climbing in Arizona. More than 1,500 climbing routes can be found on the mountain, making it one of the most popular climbing areas in the state. With crags located at elevations ranging from 2,500-9,000', comfortable climbing temps can be found year round.
While the vast majority of the climbs in this area are accessed by the Catalina Highway, there are parts of the range accessed otherwise. This area has been organized based on access and geographical location.
Be aware of the many objective dangers that inhabit these mountains... loose rock, old hardware, extreme heat and cold, bark scorpions, gila monsters, lightning, multiple species of rattlesnakes and, perhaps most importantly, flash floods. Stay out of arroyos and major drainages, particularly during the monsoon season of July-August! Flash floods can present a lethal danger, even when skies are clear in your immediate locale.
Finally, be advised that many climbing areas within the Santa Catalinas are closed seasonally (mainly January-July) for protection of peregrine falcons and bighorn sheep. We have made every effort to note closures and restrictions within those specific areas on this site, so please do your homework before planning a trip.
The Santa Catalina Mountains are located immediately north of Tucson, and are accessible by a few different routes. See inidividual areas within the Santa Catalinas for more detailed information.
Lived in AZ for 25yrs, seen hundreds of rattlesnakes, however this is the first one I have seen like this. Peppersauce canyon.
Aerial photo of the East end of Catalinas. Some crags pointed out. Munchkinland is hidden, but behind the ridge pointed to. The ruins can be seen easily.
Panorama of the north side of the Santa Catalina mountains at sunset. Visible climbing areas include Pusch Peak, Table Mountain, and the Domes above Catalina State Park. Mt. Lemmon proper sits be…
Tower Solo at Sunset
If you are climbing at Mt Lemon, you will probably be saying in Tucson. This will be your evening view, even from downtown. Sunset on Grant Street. Photo by Tony Bubb, 12/24/01.
Gus Barber getting Eclipsed. Photo by Zach Clanton
Chrysicolla and Fishhook Pincushion Cactus (Mammilaria grahamii), Mt. Lemmon
Pusch Ridge Area
Pusch Ridge Area
A superb lieback crack at sun spots. Gosh the upper section is tough for 10+