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Areas in Sequoia & Kings Canyon NP

* SEKI Bouldering 0 / 0 / 1 / 74 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 1 / 75
Big Baldy 9 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 1 / 0 / 0 / 9
Buck Rock 1 / 3 / 3 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 5
Castle Rocks 5 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 3 / 0 / 4 / 5
Chimney Rocks 6 / 4 / 1 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 9
Cliff Creek Canyon 4 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 1 / 0 / 4 / 4
Danland 28 / 7 / 2 / 0 / 0 / 6 / 0 / 0 / 35
Gorge of Despair, The 4 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 4
Hamilton Lakes and Valhalla 10 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 10 / 10
Hospital Rock Area 15 / 0 / 2 / 3 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 19
Kaweah Lake 0 / 0 / 1 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 1
Kings Canyon 14 / 8 / 3 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 21
Little Baldy 10 / 4 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 14
Moro Rock (SEKI) 17 / 2 / 1 / 0 / 0 / 2 / 0 / 0 / 21
Neat Wall 3 / 0 / 3 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 3
Obelisk, The 4 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 4
Panther Peak 2 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 2 / 2
Tamarack Lake Area 11 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 11 / 11
Tehipite Dome 1 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 1
Tokopah Valley 10 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 3 / 2 / 1 / 4 / 12
Access Issue: Always check SEKI road conditions and peregrine closures Details

Description

The Area: Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Park (SEKI) is a land of giants. Near or within it's borders lie the largest trees on earth (Sequoias), the highest mountain in the contiguous United States (Mount Whitney), arguably the deepest river canyon in North America (Kings below Spanish Mountain), the tallest granite dome in the Sierra (Tehipite), the longest cave in California (Lilburn), and steepest river in the United States (Kaweah). Scattered throughout these superlatives are high quality climbing areas where you can enjoy the beauty of these parks in relative solitude.

To keep things organized, this area covers the climbing that is accessed from the west side of the parks. The highest peaks, Sierra crest and northern areas of King Canyon should be in the "High Sierra" area until a better system is in place.

Climbing: The climbing is excellent and a bit more spread out than it's neighbor to the north, Yosemite. Some rocks are virtually roadside with five minute approaches, while other formations will take at least one full day to get to and test the endurance of the strongest legs and lungs. The resulting experience is similar to what the original explorers of the area got to enjoy; solitude. The rocks are mostly composed of solid granite, with some marble and other forms scattered throughout the park. No matter your climbing style there is enough variety for you to find something to enjoy. Dozens of areas offer slab, steep face, big wall, cracks, alpine, and even a bit of sport climbing.

Many of the major formations were first climbed around the same time Yosemite was getting developed, and by some familiar names such as Robbins, Rowell and Beckey. Most of the modern routes were pioneered through the 80's and 90's by a handful of strong climbers including, but not limited to, Herb Laeger, Richard Leversee, Eddie Joe and David Hickey.

The only guide for the region, "Southern Sierra Rock Climbing: Sequoia Kings Canyon," is long out of print and costs a pretty penny online. Many routes have been put up by park employees and a few other folks since the book was published in 1993, so some exploring will reveal many more developed routes than most people think. That being said, there are still miles of untouched rock for those willing to earn it.

If you're looking for somewhere to explore, get the wilderness experience, and enjoy some awesome climbing, this is the place to be!

PS: For some cool history, stories, topos and photos of this and surrounding areas visit southernsierraclimber.blogs… and vertical20.com/

Also, a small online guide that continually gets updated can be found at sekiclimbing.com/

Weather and Roads

SEKI is the same as most of the Sierra; hot dry summers and cold snowy winters. This means that some roads get closed in the winter, but there is climbing at at least one of the areas year-round.

Visit the SEKI website for updated road and weather conditions at
nps.gov/seki/index.htm

Getting There

To access most areas in the Kings Canyon half of the park take Highway 180 out of Fresno. For the southern Sequoia areas the best approach is via highway 198 out of Visalia. A few backcountry spots around the Obelisk are accessed from trailheads near Wishon Reservoir. If you need more specific directions ask Google Maps for help.

265 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at Sequoia & Kings Canyon NP

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
V0 4
 7
Augustus McCrae
Boulder
V0 4
 3
Hay Ride
Boulder
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
 9
Saber Ridge traverse, south to north
Trad, Alpine 20 pitches
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 30
South Face
Trad 8 pitches
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a A2
 7
The Regular Route (Castle Rock Spire)
Trad, Aid, Alpine 8 pitches
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 9
Welcome to Little Baldy
Trad 4 pitches
5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b
 5
The Subliminal Verses
Trad, Alpine 10 pitches
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b R
 4
What Dreams May Come
Trad, Alpine 9 pitches
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b C1
 3
East Face
Trad, Aid, Alpine 5 pitches
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b
 6
Kitty From Hell
Trad 4 pitches
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b
 3
Angelfire
Sport
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c
 3
Krymptonite
Trad, Alpine 5 pitches
5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a
 4
Astro-Gil
Trad 11 pitches
5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a
 4
South Arete Direct
Trad, Alpine 12 pitches
5.12 7b+ 27 VIII+ 26 E6 6b
 4
Modern Guilt
Trad 10 pitches
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Augustus McCrae SEKI Bouldering > … > Northwest Lot > NW lot - misc problem…
 7
V0 4 Boulder
Hay Ride SEKI Bouldering > … > Northwest Lot > Boulder # 5
 3
V0 4 Boulder
Saber Ridge traverse, south… Tamarack Lake Area > Saber Ridge
 9
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b Trad, Alpine 20 pitches
South Face Moro Rock (SEKI) > S Face
 30
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Trad 8 pitches
The Regular Route (Castle R… Castle Rocks > Castle Rock Spire
 7
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a A2 Trad, Aid, Alpine 8 pitches
Welcome to Little Baldy Little Baldy
 9
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Trad 4 pitches
The Subliminal Verses Hamilton Lakes… > Hamilton Dome
 5
5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b Trad, Alpine 10 pitches
What Dreams May Come Hamilton Lakes… > Cherubim Dome
 4
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b R Trad, Alpine 9 pitches
East Face Castle Rocks > Castle Rock Spire
 3
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b C1 Trad, Aid, Alpine 5 pitches
Kitty From Hell Chimney Rocks > Chimney Spire
 6
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b Trad 4 pitches
Angelfire Danland > Valhalla Area - Main
 3
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b Sport
Krymptonite Panther Peak
 3
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c Trad, Alpine 5 pitches
Astro-Gil Tehipite Dome
 4
5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a Trad 11 pitches
South Arete Direct Hamilton Lakes… > Angel Wings
 4
5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a Trad, Alpine 12 pitches
Modern Guilt Moro Rock (SEKI) > W Face
 4
5.12 7b+ 27 VIII+ 26 E6 6b Trad 10 pitches
More Classic Climbs in Sequoia & Kings Canyon NP »

Weather Averages

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Prime Climbing Season
J F M A M J J A S O N D
J F M A M J J A S O N D
Here is the link to any current rock climbing closures in the park(s)
nps.gov/seki/planyourvisit/… Apr 29, 2014
Chad N
Central California
Chad N   Central California

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