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Kimball Canyon Crag

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Black Sheep Squadon S 
Ceiling Zero S,TR 
Dogfight T 
Flying Machines S 
Grey Ghost S,TR 
Off the Radar S,TR 
Pilot Error S,TR 
Pre-Flight S 
Sad Wings of Destiny S,TR 
Shooting Star S 
Sweet Dreams S 
T-33 S 
Vapor Trail S,TR 

Kimball Canyon Crag Rock Climbing 

Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Elevation: 3,123'
Location: 38.65391, -122.62224 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 1,287
Administrators: Aron Quiter, M. Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Salamanizer suchoski, Justin Johnsen, Vicki Schwantes, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Eric Berghorn on Jan 21, 2017


64° | 45°

62° | 45°

64° | 49°

70° | 54°

75° | 59°
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BETA PHOTO: Kimball Canyon Crag in the mist


Kimball Canyon Crag is a 100'ft tall steep-sided plug of Volcanic Rhyolite with multiple fine quality sport routes of varying difficulty, length, and architecture. There is no route here rated less than 5.10 so it is not really an area for moderates. A great resource is Jim Thornburg's Bay Area Rock guidebook which features a section on Kimball Canyon Crag and the routes here (starting on pg.66)

There are routes in the shade and sun depending on season and the time of day. Many of the North facing routes are in the shade most or all of the day which is very desirable on the hottest days of the year. The hike in might be blazing, but you know before you arrive that the shaded exposure of the North Face will be up to 20 degrees cooler than being in the direct sun on the south side. Conversely the south side gets morning sun and is great on cooler days where the crag blocks the bone chilling wind that can whip down the canyon from the summit area of MSH. The south side also goes into the shade in the late afternoon.

Many of the routes can be top-roped by ascending the access trail to the summit which continues past the North Facing routes for 100 feet before terminating at the base of a 3rd class scramble. Once there scramble up past a small tree and pass through a 15 ft' tall natural archway. From there once sorted, locate the accessible anchors above each climb. An obvious landmark on the top is the easily accessible anchor of Black Sheep Squadron 5.10d about midway across the North facing cliff edge.

The summit area is relatively easy to access, offers fine views, and once familiar can be a great place for chilling out between climbs. There exists a unique labyrinth of cool corridors and caves amongst the jumbled towers on top, which is quite confusing to sort out at first. Just be very careful while moving around and stay clear of the cliff ledges on all sides unless completely anchored in. Many of the drop-offs are 80+ feet above jagged rocks and far from any rescue.

Rock Climbing Photo: Kimball Canyon Crag photographed from across the c...
Kimball Canyon Crag photographed from across the canyon

Getting There 

Please refer to the main Kimball Canyon page for approach beta from the parking area.

Climbing Season

Weather station 2.0 miles from here

13 Total Climbing Routes

['4 Stars',0],['3 Stars',12],['2 Stars',1],['1 Star',0],['Bomb',0]

Featured Route For Kimball Canyon Crag
Rock Climbing Photo: Ceiling Zero from below. Very interesting holds an...

Ceiling Zero 5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a  California : San Francisco Bay Area : ... : Kimball Canyon Crag
Thin face climbing past 3 bolts leads into a steep stemming corner on lichened rock. After passing this gain a recess next to another powerful crux bulge, and keep your balance on the final steep ledges before reaching the anchor. There are a couple of ways to finish this route. Steve Curtis was the first ascent. Former suitors may want to re-visit since prominent holds previously used are now gone. The lower crux is a LOT more challenging without the loose shake-out jug/flake....[more]   Browse More Classics in California

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