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Nearby Mountain Bike Rides

Whittemore Gulch Trail
Fantastic views and flows. It is hard not to love this trail. Near Half Moon Bay, California
Wildcat Creek Trail
An easy beginner trail with several branching singletrack options. Near East Richmond Heights, California
Purisima Creek Grand Loop
Mostly doubletrack and fire roads. Wow views, big trees, and tough climbing. Not technical. Near Woodside, California
Methuselah Trail
A steep fire road at the top, narrow singletrack at bottom-gentle way to climb from bottom of park. Near Woodside, California
Water Dog Lake Park Loop
Surprisingly technical singletrack for suburban Silicon Valley. Near San Carlos, California
El Corte Madera Open Space Loop
A classic sampling of the great riding available at El Corte Madera Open Space preserve. Near Portola Valley, California
From MP's sister site:

San Francisco Bay Area Rock Climbing 

Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Location: 37.81843, -122.28806 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 820,058
Administrators: Aron Quiter, M. Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Salamanizer suchoski, Justin Johnsen, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)


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You & This Area
Best climbs for YOU in this area
Your opinion of this PAGE:    [4 people like this page.]
Dave on Gimme My Forty Sucka, Hidden Boulder

Old Training Ground Meets Locals' Playground 

While not generally thought of as a destination area for rock climbing, the pure number of visitors that head to the bay area for other purposes make this a great location for a quick day on the rock in between other commitments.

You can climb year round in the Bay Area, provided that winter rains haven't pummeled the area too recently. Often, inland areas are extremely hot in the summer, though the coastal areas will stay pleasant.

American Big Wall climbing took its first roots here, with locals practicing their skills on local rocks before heading to Yosemite for its renowned cliffs. Almost every area that has a chimney in Northern California was first climbed by Warren Harding or Forrest Shute, and you will often see a piton stuck in the rock left over from climbers of another age.

Berkeley, Castle Rock and Sonoma will hold your attention for a great day of bouldering. Mount Saint Helena or Lover's Leap (in the Tahoe area, but still only about 2 hours drive from most locations), or Table Mountain for a sport or trad experience.

Visitors and locals alike should check out the area along the Sonoma coast for a sport or bouldering experience unique to California, where waves, wind and rock found only here make an unforgettable day's climbing.

People with several days free in the Bay Area will probably want to head east to the Tahoe area in the summer or fall, to Yosemite for the trad folks, and perhaps all the way out (6-8 hours) to the Eastern Sierra areas like Bishop and Mammoth for a world class alpine, sport, or bouldering experience.

Unfortunately, a significant portion of the best climbing in the Bay Area is on private property, and unless you're in the know, you don't get to go.

The Bay Area's Areas

A few notes for first time visitors on where the rocks are clustered around here.

  • The East Bay is across the Bay Bridge from the city, and includes many parks in Berkeley and Oakland. The best climbing is near its eastern boundary, at Mount Diablo State Park.

  • The South Bay and Silicon Valley are south of the city. The most popular climbing areas here are in the Castle Rock Area, in the Santa Cruz Mountains. You can overhear tech employees talking about Google while you belay.

  • The North Bay starts north from the city across the famous Golden Gate Bridge, including Marin and neighboring counties. Climbing areas here include Mickey's Beach, Mount Tam and Ring Mountain.

  • Wine Country refers (Baycentrically) to wild and rural areas further north than the North Bay. This includes Napa, Sonoma and nearby counties, with climbing mostly on the rolling hills of the coast ranges, sometimes right on the scenic coast. Areas here include Mount St. Helena and The Nut Tree Boulders.

Most urban locales can be reached by BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) and connecting systems, or Uber if you're a high roller. Some crags are best reached by car, but keep in mind parking can be pricey in spots, and the bridges often collect tolls.

Climbing Season

Weather station 1.7 miles from here

1,141 Total Climbing Routes

['4 Stars',79],['3 Stars',359],['2 Stars',512],['1 Star',166],['Bomb',7]

Classic Climbing Routes in San Francisco Bay Area

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for San Francisco Bay Area:
Pyramid Crack   V0 4 R     Boulder, 20'   Castle Rock Loop : Pyramid Rock
The Spoon   V1+ 5     Boulder, 10'   Castle Rock Loop : The Spoon
Thee Classic   V3 6A     Boulder, 12'   Indian Rock Side : Thee Classic
Triceratops   V4 6B     Boulder   Secrets : Triceratops Boulder
Bates Arete   V4 6B     Boulder, 10'   Castle Rock Loop : Bates Arete Boulder
Tree Problem   V4 6B     Boulder, 20'   Castle Rock Loop : Parking Lot Rock
Nat's Traverse   V8 7B     Boulder, 10'   Berkeley : Mortar Rock
Deforestation    V9 7C     Boulder, 14'   Castle Rock Loop : Parking Lot Rock
Eco Terrorist   V10 7C+     Boulder   Castle Rock Loop : Eco Terrorist Boulder
Cave Route   5.8- 5b 16 VI- 14 VS 4c     Sport, 2 pitches, 140'   Pine Canyon : The Rock of Ages
Hailstone Arete   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 80'   Satellite Rocks : Hailstone Rock
Amazing Face   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 90'   Boy Scout Rocks : Lower Tier
Mullah   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Sport, 50'   Castle Rock Area : California Ridge
The Great Roof   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b     TR, 1 pitch, 80'   Castle Rock Area : Goat Rock
Proboscis   5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b PG13     Sport, 2 pitches   Pine Canyon : Mammoth Rock
Boromir   5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c     Sport, 1 pitch, 90'   Pine Canyon : Mammoth Rock
Bolt Route   5.11a/b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c     Sport, 1 pitch, 70'   Boy Scout Rocks : Lower Tier
Aloha Patrol   5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c     Sport, 4 pitches, 300'   Table Rock : Iron Curtain
Clamydia   5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 50'   Castle Rock Area : Waterfall Cliff
Sex Porpoises   5.12c 7b+ 27 IX- 27 E6 6b     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   Mickey's Beach : Main Rock
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in San Francisco Bay Area

Featured Route For San Francisco Bay Area
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Photos of San Francisco Bay Area Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: The Golden Gate. Photo by Blitzo.
The Golden Gate. Photo by Blitzo.
Rock Climbing Photo: photo:kyle turner
photo:kyle turner
Rock Climbing Photo: Liquid Amber is a common tree along the streets in...
Liquid Amber is a common tree along the streets in...
Rock Climbing Photo: Pier 39, SF.
Pier 39, SF.
Rock Climbing Photo: The Rock.  SF bay.
The Rock. SF bay.
Rock Climbing Photo: The Grateful Dead at Oakland Coliseum, February, 1...
The Grateful Dead at Oakland Coliseum, February, 1...

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