Type: Trad, Alpine, 350 ft, 4 pitches, Grade II
FA: John Kear and Marc Ripperger, summer 2009
Page Views: 154 total · 1/month
Shared By: John Kear on Sep 24, 2009
Admins: Jason Halladay, Anthony Stout, LeeAB Brinckerhoff, Marta Reece, Drew Chojnowski

You & This Route

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Access Issue: Seasonal raptor closure for some areas in the Sandias Details


A nice moderate route fairly close to the crest parking.
Pitch 1 - Climb up the featured slab finding pro where you can, pass a bolt after 40 feet or so and climb up to a ledge. Traverse the ledge to the right across slabs to another bolt and step up and around to corner to the right into a corner system. Follow the corner up to the left for 20 feet to a good bely stance. 5.6 100ft
Pitch 2 - scramble over easy ground taking the path of least resistance to gain the corner system on the right. Traverse into the corner and do a couple right trending moves to a bolt, clip the bolt then friction traverse right (crux) to easier ground, head up and right to a good ledge and a tree belay. 5.7+ 80ft
Pitch 3 - Climb slightly up and left into a crack system, follow the crack and face features straight up for 100 feet or so to a belay stance below some roofs. 5.6 100ft
Pitch 4 - Traverse right off the belay 10ft , climb up through a roof dodging it to the right. Keep heading up and right around a corner. Climb up the corner trending slightly right for another 40 ft to the summit. 5.6 80ft


The route is on the central section of El Paisano. Find the start by approaching the Sentinel, once on the col above the Sentinel scramble down hugging the wall to your left. After about 10 mins find the start between two small spruce trees. The wall is slabby and featured in this section. Look for a bolt about 50ft up the wall slightly to the right of the start. Walk off from the top following the Sentinel approach back to the crest.


Standard Sandia rack to 3"
Pitch 1 - two bolts, natural anchor
Pitch 2 - one bolt, tree anchor
Pitch 3 - no fixed gear, natural anchor
Pitch 4 - no fixed gear, tree anchor


- No Photos -
Bill Lawry
New Mexico
Bill Lawry   New Mexico
Thanks for putting up the route, Marc and John! Was happy to climb it today after climbing The Sentinel.

A clarification about the start of the route: our approach was from the saddle behind The Sentinel. As one scrambles down along the base of El Paisano wall, one eventually reaches a low point and then starts to gradually regain elevation. El Dueno starts BEFORE reaching the lowest point when coming from The Sentinel's saddle.

P1: Get the start right; I did not ... instead paid with pretty severe runout followed by gear schenanigans before clipping the second bolt.
P2: Good pro; felt harder than 5.7+.
P3: As a good friend says, "Don't pass up the pro, bro;" and the top of the pitch felt uncomfortably run out but may feel better the next time?
P4: Cool exit from the roof; not so cool in detached-boulder count but maybe they've all been yarded on? May 29, 2010
Climbed these today in the clouds. Surprisingly solid rock, making for a great day of "adventure" climbing. The start is indeed to the left of the low point of this formation. It is to the left towards the sentinel (we used the Torreon approach). Start is located between 2 small spruce trees (think shorter than you). I have included a photo of the start of Pitch #1. You can just make out the 1st bolt from the ground (see red circle in photo). The target area is a face section of red rock just beyond this 1st bolt. The second bolt (P1) is roughly shown in the photo.

NOTE - there is a LARGE spruce/fir tree to 20-25 feet to the left of El Dueno start - which has a nice groove leading to an overlap/roof that is about 40-50 feet wide. Eagle eyes will pick out a bolt about 10 feet above this overlap. This is NOT El Dueno, but most likely is El Painsano (see old Hill guide). This is a 1980's 1/4 inch bolt, and what is it going to hold??? (FYI).. and I did not see the second bolt described in the Hills guide.

El Dueno -

P1 - straight up to first bolt. There is a 20' section with no gear, but solid rock. Not for your 5.6 leader. After clipping the second bolt we encountered a bubbling stream - this section of the climb will have water flowing following previous days rains (especially during monsoon season).

P2 - Getting to the bolt (see second photo) felt hard!!! Made harder by getting shoes wet crossing stream... just keep chanting what would Kear do.. [Note wild flowers - we had a good Monsoon season this year, so things have really started to grow].

P3 - Nice pitch - steep for 5.6. Yes keep your eyes open.

P4 - Great exit from the roof, nice exposure. I trundled one 300 lb block from inside the corner (no yarding on it now). Most of the other boulders seemed solid.

Aug 11, 2013