Elevation: 5,192 ft
GPS: 17.045, -96.674 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 10,241 total · 97/month
Shared By: Optimistic on Mar 12, 2012 · Updates
Admins: Hank Caylor, Mauricio Herrera Cuadra


[see James B's comment below, there is now apparently a guidebook available.]

NOTE:This description is vague because the information I have about the cliff is vague. If you're expecting SuperTopo-quality descriptions, you're gonna be very disappointed! Think ADVENTURE (only with new stainless bolts)! Also, it should rapidly become clear that I'm in no way local to this crag, and would welcome any local that would like to take over this entry and correct it.

Located in a suburb of Oaxaca City, this is pleasant crag with apparently around 70 routes. The routes I saw were well-bolted with stainless hardware, and the bolts appeared to be in extremely good shape. This crag is certainly not one to fly across the world for, but if you're already in Oaxaca for some other reason, I think you might enjoy a day or two here. We only had one morning there and wished we'd had more.

The rock appears to be something igneous with a lot of pockets and big crystals. The rock is pretty solid: a bit of crumbling here and there on what I saw, which seemed to me appropriate for routes that I think have not seen a lot of traffic.

The cliff faces West-Southwest. When we were there (March) the sun hit the cliff at about 11-1130am and you would not want to climb there after that.

Apparently you can get off all the routes with a single 60m rope. The routes are generously bolted, so I'd think on a route that went the full 30m you might need 20+ draws, but many of the routes are much shorter, in the 10-20m range.

As of this writing, there is not a published topo of the cliff. The climbing gym, Muro Mondragon, at 14 Carretera Internacional (www.muromondragon.com) (note, I used their website several times while in Oaxaca, but as I write this in the US it seems not to work?) would be the place to go for beta. The owner is a guy named Carlos, but he wasn't there when we arrived and so another friendly climber guy gave us a ton of beta and drew us a rough map.

Everything at this crag is rated 5.8 and up. I do not know if the grades are stiff or soft, because I do not really have any idea what routes I was on! Reportedly there are routes up to 13a.

The trail (see Getting There) deposits you at the left end of the cliff. At that point there is a little northwest-facing part of the wall with some routes that look quite hard, guessing 11+ and up (but maybe they're 5.5, I didn't try 'em to find out).

Next is a little alcove containing about 8 routes in the 5.10 range. This is where I climbed...I think. If I'm right, then the routes are rated a little soft compared to what I'm used to. If I'm wrong, and I misunderstood which of the two alcoves (see below) had the 5.8's in it, then the grades are a bit stout!

On the topo the guy at Mondragon drew me, there is yet another alcove to the right around the corner from the first alcove, containg several routes in the 5.8-5.9 range on the right-hand wall as you face in, and harder stuff on the left-hand wall.

Then, to the right of that second alcove is the main bulk of the wall, which we didn't get to either. Supposedly just as you get out of the second alcove onto the main wall is a really nice "10a" starting behind a tree. Then there are a few more 10's and then things get hard for a while to the left of that. At the right-hand end of the wall the grades moderate again into the 10 range. We were told that there is a very nice easy 10 at the far right-hand end of the cliff.

Getting There

1) From downtown Oaxaca head east out Carretera Internacional, which gets you into the town of San Sebastian Tutla, for about 10 minutes if there's no traffic. If you don't have a car a cab could get you out there for probably 70-90 pesos (less than $10). [EDIT: see James B's comment below about bus service.]

2) Keep an eye out on your left for Muro Mondragon, the climbing gym at 14 Carretera Internacional. The sign is a climbing mannequin on an overhanging wall.

3) About 150 feet past Muro Mondragon, there is a traffic light at Calzada Antonio de Leon. Turn RIGHT at Antonio de Leon and go about 200 feet to its end.

4) Jog RIGHT about 30 feet and continue on Calle Constitucion. I don't know the name of the cross street there where Calle Constitucion starts.

5) Go about 8 blocks through a little neighborhood and you'll come to Calle Ferrocarril, a big divided street. Go straight across, and Constitucion will turn to dirt on the other side of Ferrocarril.

6) Continue for about 1/2 mile (very approximate, we were walking) and you'll cross the river on a concrete bridge. Along here if you're looking up and southwest, you'll see some pretty big cliff bands, but the one you're going to is much smaller and you won't even notice it until you're pretty close.

7) Continue for maybe another 1/2 mile.

8) At this point, you'll be at a group of three abandoned concrete buildings, the northern one is about the size of an outhouse, the next two progressively bigger. Some graffiti on the middle one says "Te Amamos Frida!" This is where the trail begins, going off uphill to the southeast. Just after the buildings (and the trail) the road becomes quite steep and loose, and if you've missed the buildings and are in a cab, the cabbie will probably get unhappy. Also next to the uphill, on the Left, is a small pond/lake.

9) Follow the trail uphill to the southeast for about 3-4 minutes, and you'll be at the base of the left-hand end of the wall.

30 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at San Sebastian Tutla

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a PG13
El cubo
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
El chuntaro
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
El cubo Piez Descalzos
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a PG13 Sport
El chuntaro El Chuntaro
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Sport
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