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Sandia Trad/Alpine


Original Post
Scott and Sara · · Unknown Hometown · Joined May 2017 · Points: 0

I am thinking about hitting the Sandias for some mixed trad/alpine climbing this Spring and am wondering if there is a guide book that will have some good beta.  I know there is "Sandia Rock" by Mick Schein and the "Hikers and Climbers Guide to the Sandias" by Mike Hill, but I am not sure if they include the kind of routes that I am looking for.  Any info would be appreciated.  Thanks!

Jason Halladay · · Los Alamos, NM · Joined Oct 2005 · Points: 12,039

Those two books you mention are the de facto guides for the Sandias. What kind of routes are you looking for? You might get some suggestions if you post what you're looking to climb. 

Scott and Sara · · Unknown Hometown · Joined May 2017 · Points: 0

Thanks Jason!  I am looking for longish mixed trad/alpine routes with moderate technical climbing (around 5.8 and under).  I am getting lots of good ideas for routes here on MP but having the books is always good too so I will grab the two mentioned above.  I am open to any recommendations for routes too!

mattb19 · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jan 2007 · Points: 250

The guide book and this website will have what you are looking for. Most routes worth doing in that grade are on this site and Micks book.

Jason Halladay · · Los Alamos, NM · Joined Oct 2005 · Points: 12,039

The longest, "most alpine" 5.8 I can think of in the Sandias is the Southwest Ridge of the Needle. A big outing. 

Spacey Hall · · Burque, Land of Enchossment · Joined Jul 2015 · Points: 5

Another route that would be good one to get your Sandia bearings is Northwest Ridge of the Thumb. It has an easier approach, is much shorter, and easier just to see what the Sandias are all about. When you say mixed alpine in my mind what your looking for is something with some snow / ice climbing. There isn't much in the Sandias that would fit that description except mid-winter, but you won't find much beta. Also if the weather is nasty in the central or northern NM you can always head down to the Organs for some long moderate trad. Best of luck, and if you need some more beta feel free to PM me!

Bill Lawry · · New Mexico · Joined Apr 2006 · Points: 1,615
Scott and Sara wrote:

I am thinking about hitting the Sandias for some mixed trad/alpine climbing this Spring ...

Already some good thoughts above.

Another consideration is hard snow in the morning given that the majority of approaches generally face west.  If one is not comfortable / familiar with dealing, maybe avoid advanced-commitment to an early-spring trip? ... though a quest for 'mixed trad/alpine' implies this shouldn't be an issue.

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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