Elevation: 8,500 ft
GPS: 36.737, -118.861 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 4,689 total · 66/month
Shared By: limpingcrab on May 22, 2013
Admins: M. Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Salamanizer suchoski, Justin Johnsen, Vicki Schwantes
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Access Issue: Always check SEKI road conditions and peregrine closures Details


Buck Rock is one of the few areas in SEKI that's mostly sport climbing. The dozen routes are all steep, one pitch or top-ropes, and lie on the southeast face. Most visitors make the trip for the outstanding views of Kings Canyon and much of the high Sierra from the fire lookout on top. The lookout is accessed by a set of stairs and is usually open in the Summer.

The climbing season is Summer and Fall, the access roads close when there's snow. Many campgrounds are nearby around Big Meadows. Roadside campers must obtain a fire permit from the forest service office in Dunlap.

Webcams, historical information and more can be found on the Buck Rock Foundation website.

Getting There

These roads are closed from the first snow in the Fall until they open in late Spring or early Summer. Call Hume Lake ranger district at 559-338-2251 for up to date info.

  • Shorter, bumpier route: Coming from Highway 180 out of Fresno, enter the park and make a right turn on the Generals Highway after roughly a mile. Seven miles later, near Montecito Sequoia Lodge, turn left onto forest route 14S11. Go about 2.5 miles to Buck Rock Campground, make a left on forest route 13S04, and follow is a few miles to Buck Rock.
  • Slightly longer, smoother route: From the turn onto the Generals Highway, go 3.5 miles to the larger turnout at the junction with Tenmile Creek Road. From here take forest route 14S02, follow it for almost 6 miles and turn right on 13S04.

Sometimes the last hundred yard or so of the road is closed and has to be walked. Both of these approaches work from the Highway 198 entrance into the park also.

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Classic Climbing Routes at Buck Rock

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
Mowing the Yawn
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a
Temporary Insanity
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Mowing the Yawn
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Sport
Temporary Insanity
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a Sport
More Classic Climbs in Buck Rock »

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Harry Puchalski
Lake Forest
Harry Puchalski   Lake Forest
When I visited Buck Rock this past weekend I saw at least 4 bolted routes, although I only two see here. Anybody know anything about those routes, and if anyone has ever trad climbed any part of Buck Rock? I didnt see many places to put pro. Jun 27, 2016
Visalia, CA
limpingcrab   Visalia, CA
More info on all of the routes I know about here sekiclimbing.com/buck-rock.…

A couple are trad.

An old low 5th class route was done on the north face but I don't know many details and the other aspects don't looks great. A route to the top would be cool and totally doable but the routes stop short out of respect for the seasonal residents of the fire lookout. There's also a lot of good bouldering, just FYI.

Is the road up there open again without posted restrictions from last year's Rough Fire? I haven't been up there this season yet, aside from a few winter snowmobile trips. Jun 27, 2016
Harry Puchalski
Lake Forest
Harry Puchalski   Lake Forest
The roads are open all the way to the campground by Buck Rock, so you only have to make a 5 min or less walk to the stairs. The signs i kept seeing just said you need a permit for a fire or stove. A ranger truck was parked right at the foot of the rock. Thanks for the info! Jun 28, 2016