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Elevation: 3,516 ft
GPS: 43.49307, -122.66402
Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 11,444 total · 149/month
Shared By: gso Orton on Nov 4, 2017 · Updates
Admins: Winston Mueller, Micah Klesick, Nate Ball

Description Suggest change

McKinley Rock is a 350 ft high dome-like andesitic dike formation at the top of Steamboat watershed on the Umpqua National Forest. From the summit register you'll have a view of Mt. Thielsen and Bailey.

There are 10 establish routes ranging from 5.6 to 5.10d. The rock is very coarse grained providing excellent friction. The closes description of the texture I can think of for comparison is the quartz monzonite at Joshua Tree. Totally different rocks with similar texture.

For the most part routes are bolted in 1980's "alpine" style with an average distance between bolts of about 10 feet and 50 m pitches. The two exceptions are Terminator which is a 30 m sport route with an average bolt spacing of about 6 feet, and a traditional crack climb on the first pitch (5.8) of Testosterone Monkey with gear placements from 1 to 4 inches. Note that the first 50 feet of routes on the east side of the south face can be a little mossy, particularly on the shaddowy start of Wipeout and Easy Street which are more to the SE. Once dry the moss becomes less of a factor, but is fun to climb anyway.

If this is your first time to McKinley Rock I would recommend beginning on Easy Street (5.8 G) by way of Wilding-101 (5.10a G) or Hang Ten (5.10a PG13). PG = exposure and leads generally may be unsuited to someone transitioning from gym to outdoor climbing at the same rating.

Descent: rappel from the register either ~80 ft down the backside (N) and a steep scramble, or a recommended 350 feet in three and a half 30 m rappels down the south side. For bailing on route: we recommend taking a 2nd rope and some cheap 1" tubular webbing as most belays are without chains. Or better yet, plan on upgrading a few of the existing belay hangers with chains while your there!

Guide Book: Rock Climbing Western Oregon, Umpqua. 2007. Editor: Greg Orton. Publisher: Mtn. 'N Air Books. Available: Ashland Outdoor Store, Ashland; Mountain Provisions, Ashland; While Away Books, Roseburg; Douglas County Trail Guides, Roseburg; Back Country Gear, Eugene, Amazon Books.

This rock still has a lot of potential for first ascents. Especially on the wide open wall between Big Balls In Cowtown and Testosterone Monkey.

Getting There Suggest change

CURRENT RECOMMENDATION: Forest Service road 3825 from Steamboat Creek.

Refer to Rock Climbing Western Oregon, Vol. 2: Umpqua 2007 map pages 204-205.

McKinley Rock is roughly 2 hours from Eugene by way of Oakridge to Steamboat Creek, or 2 hours from Roseburg by way of the North Umpqua Highway 138 and Steamboat Creek. From Steamboat m.p. 12.8, turn west onto Cedar Creek Road (Forest Service Road 3821) and drive 4.2 miles to the first Y-intersection in the road. Turn right at the Y-intersection, reset your odometer and take the first two waterbars very slowly!! Continue on for 1.6 miles from the Y-intersection to the Long Ridge Trailhead (signed). Hike the Long Ridge Trail 1 mile to McKinley Rock. An alternative to Cedar Creek is to continue up Steamboat Creek Road to the next road north (Forest Service Road 3825 Note: This approach is currently blocked by downed trees 3/2022). Once you reach the ridge top on FS-3825 take the fist right onto FS-3821 and follow it down hill to the Long Ridge Trailhead. From either direction you will see a silver water tank on top the ridge just before you come to the Trailhead. This is an enjoyable hike along two ridges under old growth sugar pines. Parking & dry-camping at the trailhead or down on Steamboat Creek is free. The nearest campgrounds are around N. Umpqua River. Nearest cabin resort is Steamboat Inn (5*), close to both Old Man pinnacles & Redmans Tooth (aka Bucktooth) climbing areas. 

2022 Update: Long Ridge burned in 2021. From trailhead follow the trail/fireline to middle of 3rd ridge where you will leave the fireline and follow the trail (right) to McKinley Rock.

Refer to Rock Climbing Western Oregon, Vol. 2: Umpqua 2007 map pages 204-205.

11 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at McKinley 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
Sport 5 pitches
5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b PG13
Sport 3 pitches
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Sport 5 pitches
5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b PG13 Sport 3 pitches
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