REI Community
Blue Mounds State Park (Luverne)

Select Area...
Bouldering @ Blue Mounds 
Mini Fortress Area 
Mound Creek Trail Outcrop 
North Quarry Area 
Prairie Walls Area 
Receding Ramparts Area 
South Quarry Area 

Blue Mounds State Park (Luverne) Rock Climbing 

Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Elevation: 1,090'
Location: 43.6975, -96.1747 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 58,271
Administrators: Kris Gorny, Chris treggE, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Glenn Burns on Apr 5, 2006


50° | 40°

45° | 35°

45° | 37°

51° | 38°

53° | 35°
You & This Area
Best climbs for YOU in this area
Your opinion of this PAGE:    [0 people like this page.]
Prairie Walls section with climbers on Cussin' Cra...


Blue Mounds State Park is located in the southwest corner of Minnesota. Located approximately 4 miles from the town of Luverne, BMSP offers rock climbing on quartzite similar to the rocks at Devils Lake, WI. The quartzite cliffs rise approximately 100 feet from the prairie and offer 50-60 foot climbs of various difficulty from 5.4 to 5.12. The area is primarily a traditional climbing crag, but top roping is possible with the proper gear. There are also number of bouldering problems. There are no bolted routes.

Getting There 

From the town of Luverne, go north 4 miles on Minnesota Hwy. 75. Turn east on County Road 20 and go 1 mile to park entrance.

The most commonly used climbing parking lot is off Rock County 8. From Luverne take 75 north about 1 mile out of town (or from the state park ranger office take 75 south) and take a right on Rock County 8 . Continue on Rock County 8 for about a mile maybe less. As the road forks to the right there is a small parking lot on the left, park here. The majority of the approach trails are off the paved bike/pedestrian path. This bike/pedestrian path can also be reach from the camp grounds and you can approach the cliff from the north rather than the south.

Climbing Season

Weather station 2.2 miles from here

296 Total Climbing Routes

['4 Stars',6],['3 Stars',88],['2 Stars',142],['1 Star',56],['Bomb',0]

Classic Climbing Routes in Blue Mounds State Park (Luverne)

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Blue Mounds State Park (Luverne):
Succulent Pricks   V1 5     Boulder   South Quarry Area : The Blank
Sweat and Slide   V3 6A     Boulder, 15'   Bur Oak Trail : Boulder Area 2
Lip Sync   V4 6B     Boulder, 12'   Bouldering @ Blue Mounds : East Quarry Boulder
Perseus   V5 6C     Boulder   Bouldering @ Blue Mounds : Quarry Boulder
Pieta   V6 7A     Boulder   Bouldering @ Blue Mounds : Quarry Boulder
Pedestal Left   5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c     Trad, TR, 40'   Prairie Walls Area : 2. Yellow Lichen Buttress
Ivy Right   5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 45'   Prairie Walls Area : 5. Saturday Buttress
Kanaranzi Corner   5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b     Trad, TR   North Quarry Area : Kanaranzi Buttress (South F...
Crazy Crack   5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 50'   North Quarry Area : Kanaranzi Buttress (East Fa...
Jasper's Dihedral   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 45'   Prairie Walls Area : 5. Saturday Buttress
Becky's Arete   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     TR   Prairie Walls Area : 5. Saturday Buttress
X   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Trad, TR   Prairie Walls Area : 9. Chimney Buttress
Kanaranzi Right   5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a     TR, 1 pitch, 60'   North Quarry Area : Kanaranzi Buttress (East Fa...
Mean Streak   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 40'   Prairie Walls Area : 6. Midnight Buttress
Balcony Center   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     TR   Prairie Walls Area : 7. Sunday Buttress
Oath of Fealty   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 40'   North Quarry Area : Bison Buttress
Purgatory   5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c     Trad, TR   North Quarry Area : Kanaranzi Buttress (East Fa...
Warrior's Waltz   5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c     TR   Prairie Walls Area : 7. Sunday Buttress
Poika   5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c     TR   Prairie Walls Area : 9. Chimney Buttress
The Layback   5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c     TR, 1 pitch, 45'   North Quarry Area : Kanaranzi Buttress (South F...
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Blue Mounds State Park (Luverne)

Featured Route For Blue Mounds State Park (Luverne)
Rock Climbing Photo: Side profile of the Rex

Rex 5.12b/c 7b+ 27 IX- 27 E6 6b  Minnesota : Blue Mounds State Park (Luv... : ... : tyrannosaurus
The T-rex is a wild ride! Start in the kind of chossy corner underneath the roofs. Big move up and left into the rail on the arête. Find a sequence of crimps up higher to move right and set up for the crux, a (for me) dynamic foot-cutting throw to a compression arête above the 2nd roof. From here, move up to an amazing pinch on the lip of a roof and a small crimp and get established into a knee-bar to help pull over the upper roof/crux. A few more feet of easier climbing to the top....[more]   Browse More Classics in Minnesota

Photos of Blue Mounds State Park (Luverne) Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: The cactus of Blue Mounds - sometimes you will adm...
The cactus of Blue Mounds - sometimes you will adm...
Rock Climbing Photo: Blue Mounds in April 2004.
Blue Mounds in April 2004.
Rock Climbing Photo: Prairie Walls
Prairie Walls
Rock Climbing Photo: The snow behind the prairie wall buttress can hang...
BETA PHOTO: The snow behind the prairie wall buttress can hang...
Rock Climbing Photo: Great color in the rocks here at Blue Mounds
BETA PHOTO: Great color in the rocks here at Blue Mounds
Rock Climbing Photo: Setting up Anchors for Climbing
Setting up Anchors for Climbing
Rock Climbing Photo: map4
Rock Climbing Photo: map3
Rock Climbing Photo: map2
Rock Climbing Photo: This is the place!
This is the place!
Rock Climbing Photo: First Blue Mounds route guide - page 2, circa 1975
BETA PHOTO: First Blue Mounds route guide - page 2, circa 1975
Rock Climbing Photo: First Blue Mounds route guide - page 1, circa 1975
BETA PHOTO: First Blue Mounds route guide - page 1, circa 1975
Rock Climbing Photo: Blazing Star. August 30, 2009.
Blazing Star. August 30, 2009.
Rock Climbing Photo: the Fox snake is one of many animals  around the c...
the Fox snake is one of many animals around the c...
Rock Climbing Photo: Don't forget to register as a climber at the k...
Don't forget to register as a climber at the k...
Rock Climbing Photo: map1

Comments on Blue Mounds State Park (Luverne) Add Comment
Show which comments
Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Sep 10, 2016
By Ian Harmon
From: Minneapolis, MN
Jun 6, 2006
comment added to the "Getting There" description.
By Ian Schmit
Dec 18, 2006
do any of the harder less well protected lines see leads here?
By Doug Lintz
From: Kearney, NE
Dec 20, 2006
BM is a good place for headpointing. I suggest Cactus Capers, No Go Crack, The Layback, Death Scream, and Purgatory for some "leadable" hard climbs.
By Paul Getzke
From: Bloomington, mn
Sep 24, 2009
I spent most of the last week bouldering in western Minnesota. Since there is no detailed mention of bouldering at Blue Mounds, I just wanted to report that there is bouldering and it's not too bad either. It starts in the woods below the interpretive center and goes all the way to the old quarry. There are a number of blocks, some big and some not so big. Two big ones are below the interpretive center in the woods. Take the Burr Oak Trail below the center and you will find them down the hill. There are several more smaller blocks along the trail heading towards the old quarry. Once you get to the quarry, check out the big boulder there. It is the future home of some very hard potential projects. One more boulder is downhill from there. Have fun!
By Doug Lintz
From: Kearney, NE
May 6, 2010
I think it's great that people are adding bouldering problems to the Blue Mounds database. There's some quality stuff to be found in the park.
That said if you're going to take the time to add them please give good directions and a description to these problems (ex. Na-Cho Ordinary Nachos). Let see some pics of these problems too!

Keep it at guys, there's definitely some gems out there.
By Matthew Christensen
May 19, 2010
In June 2006, my buddy Sam and I were heading on back from climbing in the Black Hills. Halfway home (at the time IA), we pulled into Luverne to stave off the driving crazies. We were not looking to do much climbing in the Quarries, but we did have a crash pad. To our surprise, there were some fun boulder problems available. We spent a half day exploring the area and climbing. When we came home, we checked the guidebook and To our surprise, there was hardly anything about the boulders in this area. So, we posted some pictures and some fun names (e.g., Jackalope and Urban Sasquatch... named for the intoxicated run of a naked climber out of their tent). We did not want to post rating, but they were all manageable and under V6. It's great to see that mountain project is posting these climbs!!! If you are on your way west on 94, it's worth a stop for a quick burn. Be careful of the cactus for 2 reasons: (a) they are local and you are not (b) they hurt like hell when you are throwing for what you think is the top... and get a fist full of fire.
By Sam Daley
From: Minneapolis, Minnesota
Aug 22, 2010
I want to thank everyone who has been putting boulder problems online, it inspires me to continue returning to Blue Mounds! My friend Jak and I just had a great visit. We are going to be adding a few problems that we did not find online. If you have done these before and have any information on names/grades/FAs dont hesitate to contact either of us. Also if these problems are already up somewhere else let us know so we can mitigate confusion.
By Louis DeVo
Jan 26, 2011
What size pro should I bring if I'm going to be toproping, is there any natural protection?
By Doug Lintz
From: Kearney, NE
Jan 27, 2011
For a day of top-roping at BM I usually bring two or three pieces of 30 to 50 foot webbing, single set of stoppers, set of cams, and medium to large hexes. Some people like using tri-cams at BM but I think they're more hassle than it's worth (I have bootied a few though).
Many of the popular areas don't have much for natural pro. There's a few trees and boulders you can sling but they often sit far back from the cliff edge thus the need for long webbing.
Some of the routes require thought-provoking gear placements for top-rope setups. Often there's regulars there that can tell you exactly what to use for specific routes. Don't be afraid to ask.
By Pete Hunt
Feb 19, 2011
I agree with Doug about the long webbing! It is very useful for building anchors at Blue Mounds since you'll often have to go far back from the cliff edge for placements. Bring plenty if you want to make things easier on yourself or create multiple anchors.
By Amy Nelson
Mar 6, 2011
We're locals and love going out to the park; family has fun climbing the rocks that go into the campground area; looking for someone with more experience to show us what we need and teach us the right way to do things; once a year Blue Mound has started to have a clinic, but wish they would do more!
By Jon Marek
From: Sioux Falls, SD
Apr 8, 2012
Great bouldering guide for the area can be found here.

A Field Guide to Minnesota Bouldering
By trisgo
From: Omaha, NE (at the moment)
Sep 17, 2012
Can anyone tell me where to get a map that lables where the different buttresses are? There's a nice one for Palisades, but I can't find anything for Blue Mounds.
By Doug Lintz
From: Kearney, NE
Sep 17, 2012
Do you mean the buttresses of Prairie Walls? If so check out the pic below, otherwise the Minnesota/Wisconsin Falcon guide by Mike Farris is the best for locating all of the specific areas of BM. He does have a new edition coming out "soon".

By Chris treggE
From: Madison, WI
Sep 18, 2012
The new guide has been out for several months. It's on Mike's website or on Amazon.
By Jon Marek
From: Sioux Falls, SD
Jun 11, 2013
Only after moving away and climbing at numerous quartzite crags did I realize just how AMAZING the rock is in Blue Mounds. The entire length of cliff-line in BMSP is without question the most consistently high quality quartzite I have ever climbed! Enjoy this place, it is very special.
By Jess S.
Jun 9, 2014
wondering what the anchoring situation is like here? I read that we should bring lots of webbing, but does anyone have any other suggestions on anchoring gear or just tips for here?
By BlakeaDeppe
From: Sioux Falls, SD
Oct 28, 2014
Just moved to Sioux Falls and looking for some people to climb/boulder with. I am thinking about heading to the mounds tomorrow and possibly also on Thursday. I would love to have some company!
By James C.
Sep 10, 2016
Moved to Wahpeton, ND from Colorado. Looking for some people to climb with in this great flat land. Will provide beer and/or childish humor.

Also, I don't know if Settlers of Catan is part of the climbing culture up here just yet... but it should be.

Mountain Project

The Definitive Climbing Resource

MTB Project

Next Generation MTB Trail Maps

Powder Project

Backcountry Ski Maps & Secret Stashes
FREE Stickers · Gyms · People · RSS · School of Rock · Contact · About
Terms · Privacy © 2017 Adventure Projects, Inc.