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Candy Store, The 
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Wild and Scenic Rock Climbing 

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Elevation: 6,000'
Location: 36.6982, -105.7077 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 11,669
Administrators: Mike Howard, Aaron Hobson, Jason Halladay, Anthony Stout, LeeAB Brinckerhoff, Marta Reece, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Mike Howard on Nov 11, 2007
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Jay Foley. photography

Caution: Poison-Ivy MORE INFO >>>


The main cliff is known as the "Candy Store" and has the best basalt crack climbing in the region. Trad climbing splitter cracks and corners on perfect rock. Look for anchors at the top of each 30 m pitch for easy lowering and top-roping after you lead them.

Adventure Sport-Trad: This is no roadside sport area. Be prepared and equipped to scramble/bushwhack/wade/boulder hop/route find and get less done than expected. Head lamps are used more often than one would guess. Please use established trails (may be faint but often cairned). The hike out (~600 ft) can be the hardest part of your outing.

Getting to the Candy Store 

Get the Taos Rock book for the best description. The Wild Rivers Recreational Area north of Questa, NM has excellent camping, spectacular views and great access to the trad climbing at Questa Dome as well as the riverside cliffs of this crag. There are also a few sport climbs up in the Red River Area.

From Taos, follow NM 68 north 7 miles. Take NM 522 approximately 20 miles to Questa. Travel 3 miles past the stoplight in Questa to NM 378. Turn left onto NM 378 and follow the signs about 12 miles west to Wild Rivers Recreation Area. The Candy Store is accessed from the Bear Crossing trail. Descend this steep trail for about 10 minutes. At the river, travel north on the East side, for about 10 minutes.(watch for poison ivy!) The cliff is located on the west side of the river and crossing can be problematic.

Rock Climbing Photo: Arial view.
Arial view.

Here are some options:Depending on the river level (about 225 CFS) you can rock hop on the rocks just North of the cliff.If it is warm bring an innertube (or anything that can hold a pack above water) and it is easy to swim across. In low water it may also be able to wade across the sand bars directly opposite of the crag. The crossing is easiest in late summer or fall when the river is less than 300 cfs.

River Flow Information: River Flow Levels -- River flow levels are unpredictable, so climbers should monitor the USGS website, or contact BLM, for current information (USGS 08263500 RIO GRANDE NEAR CERRO, NM.)
USGS Water Resource Division - New Mexico District
BLM (888)882-6188 (Recorded Message)

Day-use parking and camping fees are required for parking in BLM’s Wild Rivers and Orilla Verde Recreation Areas.

Boaters Info:

Services, Gas, Beer, Food (Taquitos at the Wildcat's Den 2457 Highway 522 (575) 586-1119, mmmm) in Questa

Guide Service - Mountain Skills

Climbing Season

Weather station 6.2 miles from here

18 Total Climbing Routes

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

Classic Climbing Routes in Wild and Scenic

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Wild and Scenic:
Kid in a Candy Store   5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c     Trad, 1 pitch, 80'   The Candy Store
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Wild and Scenic

Featured Route For Wild and Scenic
Rock Climbing Photo: FA Jay Foley, Joel Tinl belaying day 1 Crack in th...

Crack In The Cosmic Egg 5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b  New Mexico : Taos Area : ... : Ground Up Wall
Diverse climbing on great rock. Start in a thin seem layback this past a lone bolt to a ledge then up a steep finger crack to another sloping ledge.Step left and follow steep pockets to gain a large right facing corner when it ends do an airy traverse out right on a short horizontal hand crack then up to a ledge and rap anchor. Two ropes or A single 70 meter rope will just barely get you down (stay right at end of rap). Stiff for the grade!...[more]   Browse More Classics in New Mexico

Photos of Wild and Scenic Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Fall colors along the Rio Grande.
Fall colors along the Rio Grande.
Rock Climbing Photo: Best crack climbing in the county
Best crack climbing in the county
Rock Climbing Photo: Jay considering the art of cairning.  andrewburr.c...
Jay considering the art of cairning. andrewburr.c...
Rock Climbing Photo: Jay on his classic jam crack "Kid in a Candy ...
Jay on his classic jam crack "Kid in a Candy ...
Rock Climbing Photo: Kid In A Candy Store. A Sam Lambie Photo from New ...
Kid In A Candy Store. A Sam Lambie Photo from New ...
Rock Climbing Photo: Josh on Spearhead.
Josh on Spearhead.
Rock Climbing Photo: The view from the approach trail.
The view from the approach trail.
Rock Climbing Photo: Steve Laycock leads Kid In A Candy Store
Steve Laycock leads Kid In A Candy Store
Rock Climbing Photo: Herb's Lounge. Photo by Josh Smith.
Herb's Lounge. Photo by Josh Smith.
Rock Climbing Photo: Friendly berries.
Friendly berries.
Rock Climbing Photo: Joel Tinl: the Prince of Wides. Check out the Infl...
Joel Tinl: the Prince of Wides. Check out the Infl...

Comments on Wild and Scenic Add Comment
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By Tradiban
May 20, 2011
This whole wall looked stellar...too bad I couldn't get there! The best place to cross the river looked to be just slightly up stream from the wall and I could easily hop across there but keeping the pack dry would have been hard. In my attempt to prove to my partner that a dry crossing was possible I took an inadvertent dip! You should have seen the smug look on his face.

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