Sonora Pass Highway (108) Rock Climbing
The Sonora Pass highway is a short drive from Northern California's major population centers, yet offers rock like Tahoe AND Yosemite without the crowds of either destination.
The low country includes a series of crags along highway 108 from the San Joaquin Valley into the foothills near the town of Sonora itself.
In the fall, Table Mountain, especially around the Grotto, is one of the most beautiful places in the state. However, learn about its paradoxical access issues before visiting the Gold Wall or Jail House Rock areas there. They contain some of the finest climbing around, but aren't documented online or in guidebooks.
Approaches range from roadside pullouts with painted grades (established by the US Marines on public land near their Mountain Warfare Training Center), to remote and wild alpine lines requiring both luck and determination to climb successfully.
The high country is highly seasonal! Sonora Pass closes down every winter, and sometimes with little notice in spring and fall when there's snow on the ground.
A 2013 edition of "A Climber's Guide to the Sonora Pass Highway" may increase visits.
Other updates beyond the book can be found at the Sonora Pass Climbing website
From the west, head east on Hwy 108 from the small community of Sonora.
From the east, head west on Hwy 108 from Bridgeport at the junction of Hwy 395.
Note that the highway is closed in winter, generally November through May. Check dot.ca.gov/hq/roadinfo/sr108
for road conditions and closures.
Weather station 15.6 miles from here
128 Total Climbing Routes
['4 Stars',16],['3 Stars',43],['2 Stars',47],['1 Star',19],['Bomb',1]
Classic Climbing Routes in Sonora Pass Highway (108)
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Sonora Pass Highway (108)
Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Sonora Pass Highway (108):
Featured Route For Sonora Pass Highway (108)
Delirious 5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a California
: Central Sierra
: ... : Columns of the Giants
Begin by climbing up easy, vertical flakes and jugs to the beginning of the steep roof. Next, follow the obvious line of fixed draws out the horizontal roof for maybe 30 feet. The roof section involves traversing huge jugs, but owing to the steep nature of the roof (you actually climb slightly downwards towards the end of the roof), this section is fairly pumpy. At the end of the roof, pull the lip and clip the anchors that are slightly up and left. ...[more] Browse More Classics in California
By Tom Addison
Dec 6, 2014
The sign was posted by the Bureau of Reclamation. After conversation with the Bureau, the Access Fund will be reaching out to the climbing community and asking us not to place any bolts or install any fixed hardware on Table Mountain cliffs for the time being. Furthermore, please refrain from camping,having fires, or establishing new use trails in the area. The Bureau has expressed a number of concerns, but the signs are specifically a reaction to their concerns about possible negative affects of climbing and fixed hardware on a sensitive bat species. We'll put out more information as the situation develops.
USBR signs posted late November 2014 at Table Mountain Parking (end of Shell Road)
By Justin Johnsen
Dec 9, 2014
Thanks Tom, added a copy of your photo and note to the Table Mountain area.