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Stumbling Blocks

Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
Blockbuster S 
Chimps Ahoy S 
Chopping Block S 
Classic Face TR 
Cockblock S 
Guerilla Drilla S 
Hot Lips TR 
Letterbox S 
Monkey Mayhem S 
Moonshiner S 
Mr. Big S 
New Release S 
Nipple Denial Syndrome S 
Over The Falls S 
Prow S 
Third Degree, The S 
Unknown S 
Unkown Crack 
Vigilante S 
Waiting for Guntes S 
X Files S 
Unsorted Routes:

Stumbling Blocks Rock Climbing 

Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Location: 34.09602, -118.73011 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 41,808
Administrators: jt512, M. Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Salamanizer suchoski, Justin Johnsen, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: veritus on Jan 3, 2007  with updates from Benjamin Chapman and 1 more


71° | 50°

79° | 51°
Memorial Day

81° | 51°

77° | 52°

75° | 52°
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Stumbling Blocks offers some of the most accessible sport climbs at Malibu Creek State Park. This area hosts the first routes after completing the traverse around the ever popular Rock Pool. While the routes at Stumbling Blocks are not long, the most popular routes feature short, powerful cruxes on steep pocked rock. This area is extremely popular, especially on weekends, and much of this popularity is due to the shade provided by the large oak trees surrounding the many faces of the Stumbling Blocks.

Getting There 

Louie Anderson book rates the traverse to Stumbling Blocks a 5.0.

The second traverse is a 5.5 and it takes you through The Ghetto and The Wave. The second traverse to these two walls is unnecessary if you are not as adventurous. I was able to roll up my pants and wade through it with my pack on. Everything on the first traverse was easy walking except for the small cave section. Caught me completely off guard while I was thinking easy 5 all the way.

Climbing Season

Weather station 7.0 miles from here

21 Total Climbing Routes

['4 Stars',0],['3 Stars',8],['2 Stars',13],['1 Star',0],['Bomb',0]

Classic Climbing Routes in Stumbling Blocks

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Stumbling Blocks:
Chopping Block   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Sport   
Classic Face   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     TR, 35'   
Moonshiner   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Sport, 70'   
Prow   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Sport   
Unknown   5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   
Guerilla Drilla   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Sport   
Chimps Ahoy   5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 80'   
The Third Degree   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b     Sport   
X Files   5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b     Sport, 30'   
Mr. Big   5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b     Sport, 35'   
Cockblock   5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b     Sport, 40'   
Blockbuster   5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c     Sport, 50'   
Letterbox   5.11b/c 6c+ 23 VIII- 24 E4 6a     Sport   
Nipple Denial Syndrome   5.11b/c 6c+ 23 VIII- 24 E4 6a     Sport   
Over The Falls   5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   
Waiting for Guntes   5.13a 7c+ 29 IX+ 29 E6 6c     Sport, 1 pitch, 30'   
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Stumbling Blocks

Featured Route For Stumbling Blocks
Rock Climbing Photo: T on letterbox crux

Letterbox 5.11b/c 6c+ 23 VIII- 24 E4 6a  California : Los Angeles Basin : ... : Stumbling Blocks
Shares the start with Nipple Denial Syndrome, climb left up the overhanging face on pockets to reach the "letterbox" pull over onto less than vertical face....[more]   Browse More Classics in California

Comments on Stumbling Blocks Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Jun 20, 2015
By 72HW Holly
Oct 8, 2008
Regarding the traverse around the rock pool to gain access to the Stumbling Blocks area, there used to be a really nice little nubbin for your feet on the step across move towards the end of the traverse...

It's gone.

Makes the step across a bit more interesting, especially when the water is particularly dank (which is nearly always) so, word to the wise I guess. Don't think this single move warrants a grade change for the traverse, but it does indeed spice things up a little.
By LADave
Jul 19, 2009
Hikers, river swimmers, and other folks pass through the traverse every day. Its one-way only, and it only takes one ameteurish person to clog the route. With crowds, you can end up waiting half an hour to cross on a sunny weekend. A great alternative, depending on your gear situation, is to come prepared to swim around.
By Ryan Kelly
From: work.
Dec 3, 2009
Swim? With climbing gear? In that water? Brilliant.

It's possible to go around high on the right of the pond as well, though I've rarely had serious delays on the normal traverse. And this isn't the '5.5 traverse', that's the one by Ghetto Wall, this is more like 4th class.
By Slater
Apr 11, 2010
NEW ROUTES near Guerrilla Drilla-
Just left of The Third Degree (shares start?) is a 5.10+/.11a looking route to new anchors. Anyone have any info? Name?

ALSO - With Guerrilla Drilla at you back, by the tree there is a 5.6 4 bolt route on the right of this rock, and down below (steep start) there is a 9 bolt 5.9+ route that goes up to the roof by the tree and then up the arete (just left of the new 5.6). Can anyone pass on some info? Names? Confirm ratings?

ALSO on right side of Mt. Gorgeous gully, below Toddler Terrace there are two new long slab routes (both around 5.7+) with 7bolts and 6 bolts (l to r). Info please... Thanks!
By Michael Bartosek
From: Los Angeles
Aug 12, 2010
The route left of third degree has been in for a while now (at least two or three years from what I recall). I'd rate that route at 5.10d a bit height dependent -make sure to not pull on those blocks marked with the X around the 4th bolt. Other than that, I think it is a quality climb with fun moves for the grade (of course, Mr. Big is a 5.10d also and is much harder than this route).
By Brent Kelly
Dec 30, 2011
Visited the area for the first time yesterday, using the MP iphone app, and it was still very hard to determine which route was which. Even other climbers who claimed to climb there often weren't really sure what they were climbing.

Given the way people reference Guerilla Drilla and Chopping Block, some better descriptions of these route locations and some quality beta photos would be high-value, if any locals could provide for the community. Thanks!
By Tyler Smith
From: Buena Park
Jan 3, 2012
I don't have any pics but I have climbed there a lot. What kind of beta are you looking for? This may help a bit, Moonshiner is the route that starts by main tree after the short traverse. Just to the left of that is Guerilla Drilla, to the right around the corner of Moonshiner is Chopping Block 5.8. If you go off these routes and and the directions on this site you should be good. If you have any other questions just ask or pm me.
By Joi-Bobby Laos
Jan 10, 2012
Anyone know the ratings on the boulder problems in the cave area of the stumbling blocks? these are the problems located at creek level under the boulder used when scrambling over to get to the actual routes in the Stumbling Blocks. I heard a couple were v7 and the harder one was something like an 11?
By Daniel Wade
From: Oakland, CA.
Sep 4, 2012
Anyone know the names/ratings of the two climbs on the left wall in the shade hiking uphill from Monkey Mayhem? The first one had 3 bolts - start was pumpy but very mellow up higher. The second one to the right had 4 or 5 bolts and ended at the same anchor - more difficult moves down low but also mellowed out up higher. Thanks!
By Benjamin Chapman
From: Small Town, USA
May 16, 2013
Daniel....the 1st route is "K-2" (5.9) 4 bolts, while the 2nd route (uphill) is "Born on the 4th of July" (5.8) 5 bolts. Both routes share an anchor. Both have descriptions posted at the Mt. Gorgeous area.
By Chris Joe
From: Arcadia, CA
Jun 20, 2015
Louie Anderson book rates the traverse to Stumbling Blocks from Rock Pool a 5.0. The second traverse is a 5.5 and it takes you through The Ghetto and The Wave. The second traverse to these two walls is unnecessary if you are lazy :). I was able to roll up my pants and wade through it with my pack on. Everything on the first traverse was easy walking except for the small cave section. Caught me completely off guard while I was thinking easy 5 all the way.

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