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Wandering to AZ, climbing on the way?
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Nov 11, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: Rump roast II, pistol whipped, Indian Creek  Photo...
We'll be on the road soon, headed from the Denver area probably for Tucson/Cochise. Instead of blasting down the interstates for 800-900 miles, we'd like to take some time and wander a little on the way. I am really unfamiliar with the climbing from Santa fe to ABQ to southern NM. Anything worth visiting this time of year? We'll be camping, so solar aspect is helpful, and after time off due to illness, I am looking at mostly 5.10 range climbing.

I poked around the MP database a little, looks like northern NM might be a bit chilly, but I am sure there must be some nice solar traps.

Thanks!
mountainhick
From Black Hawk, CO
Joined Mar 19, 2009
222 points
Nov 11, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: Yours truly on Treiber's Deception.
Why not head West along the 70, then cut down through Moab, Indian Creek, Flagstaff, Sedona, Phoenix etc? There are a bunch of other area along the way as well. DesertRat
Joined Jul 26, 2010
193 points
Nov 11, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: Rump roast II, pistol whipped, Indian Creek  Photo...
Thanks, good consideration there. We did pretty much that route last year. Thinking about a different route to see different country.

Indian Creek is always my #1 desert pick, I could spend weeks there myself, but will be traveling with my wife and she doesn't hang with the crack climbing. We really need more face climbing to spend time climbing together.
mountainhick
From Black Hawk, CO
Joined Mar 19, 2009
222 points
Nov 11, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: summit of the North Sister
There's nice basalt cragging around Los Alamos. You can chase the sun and it's not crowded. Also, Bandelier Nat'l Monument is worth checking out. Paul Irby
From moab, ut
Joined Jan 22, 2010
162 points
Nov 11, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: One Way Sunset
mountainproject.com/v/granite-... Scott M. McNamara
From Tucson, Arizona
Joined Aug 15, 2006
78 points
Nov 11, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: Rump roast II, pistol whipped, Indian Creek  Photo...
Car camping (Sprinter van) for granite mt? MP guide says nada. mountainhick
From Black Hawk, CO
Joined Mar 19, 2009
222 points
Nov 11, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: Rump roast II, pistol whipped, Indian Creek  Photo...
Paul Irby wrote:
There's nice basalt cragging around Los Alamos. You can chase the sun and it's not crowded. Also, Bandelier Nat'l Monument is worth checking out.



Capulin canyon looks pretty cool (for me, not so much for Mrs mountainhick)

So White rock?
mountainhick
From Black Hawk, CO
Joined Mar 19, 2009
222 points
Nov 11, 2015
White Rock on a sunny side.
Box Canyon near Socorro (the bouldering video on the Socorro page shows Major Wall in the background).
emmet
Joined Aug 10, 2006
17 points
Nov 11, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: summit of the North Sister
Yes, the White Rock crags were what I was thinking of. Plenty of bolted faces at the Overlook. Granite Mt. Is fantastic but it's also got lots of cracks and camping is tricky. Paul Irby
From moab, ut
Joined Jan 22, 2010
162 points
Nov 11, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: Rump roast II, pistol whipped, Indian Creek  Photo...
Mrs mountainhick aka mountainchick is OK for easy crack climbing up to 5.8, and I am happy to do some moderates with her, but she's not OK climbing where cracks are generally 5.10 and up. mountainhick
From Black Hawk, CO
Joined Mar 19, 2009
222 points
Nov 11, 2015
I second White Rock. It's only single-pitch, but the south-facing black basalt is about the warmest thing you'll find in northern NM. Depending on exactly when you come through, the Shield on Sandia might be warm enough with a late start, and it has a bunch of long routes.

Also, getting from Albuquerque to Tucson via Globe, AZ is nicer than the interstate, and takes you right by the Superstitions. I think they're mostly hiking/scrambling (Weavers Needle is 5.0 or something), but the scenery is wild and there's plenty of free camping near the Peralta trailhead.
seano
From Northern, NM
Joined Oct 17, 2012
25 points
Administrator
Nov 11, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: Georgeous!
mountainhick wrote:
Car camping (Sprinter van) for granite mt? MP guide says nada.


Edit: I updated the GM page to specifically say it's all paved in there and any vehicle will do, as well as some info on the camping at the Yavapai CG. I'm curious...WHERE did you see anything on the GM page that says you couldn't drive something like a Sprinter? I'd like to fix it if its in there...

Yup, Sprinter just fine. All paved all the way to the CG and the trailhead parking. Can get a site at Yavapai Campground, right there in Granite Basin. Don't know why someone above said camping is "tricky", unless you're trying to avoid camping fees. Watch the weather for Prescott to see what the conditions are like.

Also (full disclosure), there's a 2.25 mile hike to get up to the crag. First ~1.75 is hiway trail, mostly uphill. Then you hit the climbers trail, which involves a little boulder hopping, but not that bad. Also uphill. You get all the work done on the way in, so all downhill on the way out.

PM me if you want any beta or route recommendations.
Greg Opland
Joined Nov 14, 2001
143 points
Nov 11, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: Rump roast II, pistol whipped, Indian Creek  Photo...
You apparently read into the statement that I meant it said no go for Sprinters. That's not what I was saying.

It said nada about camping at Granite Mt. That is all.

Thanks for the update.

BTW, we rarely choose to camp in "campgrounds" preferring dispersed/primitive camping. That is where the 2wd Sprinter becomes a challenge.
mountainhick
From Black Hawk, CO
Joined Mar 19, 2009
222 points
Nov 11, 2015
Mountainhick,

You might consider Isolation Canyon outside of Pine in Arizona. A good route would be to cut across central NM into Az via The 60 to Show Low, then onto the 260 and through Heber and pine. Its some really pretty country up there. The 260 would continue through pine and strawberry where you'll find Isolation canyon. From there you head into camp verde and the 17, depending on the weather at the time, its an easy cruise to Prescott, Flag, Sedona, or Phoenix. I you decide on Prescott I would recommend the drive through Jerome.

Granite mountain is great but it may not be what your looking for. most of the trad routes are crack climbs and the few bolted lines are pretty old school, as in kinda scary.

If you end up in Precott give me a pm, I know a few free primitive campsites (not campgrounds) in the hills around Prescott.

good luck
Jake T
From Prescott AZ
Joined Jun 10, 2011
6 points
Administrator
Nov 11, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: Georgeous!
mountainhick wrote:
You apparently read into the statement that I meant it said no go for Sprinters. That's not what I was saying. It said nada about camping at Granite Mt. That is all. Thanks for the update. BTW, we rarely choose to camp in "campgrounds" preferring dispersed/primitive camping. That is where the 2wd Sprinter becomes a challenge.


I did indeed read it that way. My bad.

Dispersed camping possible around Prescott, but hard to beat the convenience of the campground right there. And it's not a sites-all-crammed-together type of CG, so better than most.

And Granite Mountain is well worth a visit.
Greg Opland
Joined Nov 14, 2001
143 points
Nov 12, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: Sam Perkins; Ground-up FA; named because it's big ...
Jake T wrote:
Mountainhick, You might consider Isolation Canyon outside of Pine in Arizona


Isn't it a little chilly for isolation?

Same with Granite Mountain. It'll be snowing there by Monday.
Ball
From Oakridge, OR
Joined Jan 18, 2010
113 points
Administrator
Nov 13, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: Los Alamos Reservoir area arete project. August 20...
Some northern NM areas that'll be good assuming sunny and highs in the 40s/50s:
Utopian Vistas - Taos area. Basalt Rio Grande Gorge sport and trad. Morning sun. Sprinter van camping down the road in the gorge along the river.

El Rito Sport Area - Southwest of Taos area. Fun conglomerate sports climbing. Chase the sun on Super Slab in the morning and other walls later in the day. Sprinter van camping at trailhead.

Little River Wall - More conglomerate climbing in beautiful setting with long 5.9/5.10 sport routes. West-facing, gets afternoon sun. Sprinter van camping at trailhead.

Diablo Canyon - Santa Fe area basalt sport and trad. Winter Wall and Solar Cave sunny most of the day. Campsites at the parking area.

White Rock - Los Alamos/White Rock area. More Rio Grand Gorge basalt sport and trad climbing. Mostly morning sun but some areas like Big Enchilada and Potrillo have south-facing rock. Sprinter van camping not as convenient as you have to drive to Los Alamos and camp along Camp May Road or elsewhere in national forest. Not bad though.

Las Conchas, Area 37, Upper East Fork (UEF) - Los Alamos area. High elevation sport climbing in the Jemez Mountains that's surprisingly accessible and nice in winter due to a number of southerly facing walls. Sprinter van camping available on national forest roads in the vicinity.
Jason Halladay
From Los Alamos, NM
Joined Oct 19, 2005
10,491 points
Nov 13, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: Millennium Traverse, 5.10: Reimers' Ranch
You may consider City of Rocks State Park, NM. There are campsites around the outer edge of the boulder field. I've stopped there many times. There's not a lot of info regarding problems--that I know of, so enter the maze and find a rock you think you can climb.

Between Silver City and Deming.
Nathan Self
From Louisiana
Joined Mar 5, 2012
100 points


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