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Black Bluff

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Black Bluff  


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Elevation: 7,200'
Location: 34.22574, -116.98685 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 23,727
Administrators: C Miller, M.Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Salamanizer, Justin Johnsen, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Chris Owen on Jun 24, 2011
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Description 

This remote and wild crag sits on the edge of the mesa west of Bluff Mesa Group Camp. The crag probably has one of the best outlooks of any crag in Southern California, with spectacular views across Bear Creek to Hwy 18 (Arctic Circle section), all the way to Mount Baldy. The rock is granite, about 80 feet high, with predominantly crack climbs, a number of which are very fine indeed. This coupled with the wildness, and the outlook makes it a very worthy destination.

A perfect counterpoint to Holcomb Valley Pinnacles.

Getting There 

From Big Bear Lake take Mill Creek Road which turns into Forest Road 2N10 for about 3.5 miles to a Tee in the road and make a right on 2N86 following it until it splits off left on a smaller dirt road (2N86A) to Bluff Mesa Group Campground. Park before you reach the campground, if you don't you'll get a lot of people staring at you, and maybe even asking you leave "their" campground.

Walk through the campground to it's western edge and start looking for either a cairn, or a plastic sign post (like the Joshua Tree Access Fund types) - once you find this you'll be set, carefully follow cairns and posts to a wide gully on the edge of the mesa which will lead down the slope and left to the bottom of the crag, it's about 1.5 miles following the cairns and wandering past many a likely candidate for good bouldering.

Be warned that's it's easy to get lost on the mesa, check your way there and be very aware of your surroundings. Some people have placed a set of cairns which run south to Siberia Creek, if, on the way back to the campground, you hit a trail next to a creek you've gone the wrong way and will need to back track.

Climbing Season



Weather station 1.2 miles from here

27 Total Routes

['4 Stars',1],['3 Stars',13],['2 Stars',8],['1 Star',4],['Bomb',0]
['<=5.6',2],['5.7',3],['5.8',4],['5.9',4],['5.10',5],['5.11',5],['5.12',3],['5.13',0],['>=5.14',0],['',0],['<=V1',1],['V2-3',0],['V4-5',0],['V6-7',0],['V8-9',0],['V10-11',0],['V12-13',0],['>=V14',0]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Black Bluff:
Scratch and Sniff   5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b     Trad, 1 pitch, 70'   Black Bluff - North Face : Black Bluff - N. Face (Righ...
Black Bart   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Trad, 1 pitch, 70'   Black Bluff - North Face : Black Bluff - N. Face (Righ...
Arctic Circle Jerk   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Trad, 1 pitch, 80'   Black Bluff - North Face : Black Bluff - N. Face (Righ...
Aurora Borealis   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 80'   Black Bluff - North Face : Black Bluff - N. Face (Righ...
After the Fire   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 80'   Black Bluff - North Face : Black Bluff - N. Face (Righ...
Black Beard   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b     Trad, 1 pitch, 70'   Black Bluff - North Face : Black Bluff - N. Face (Righ...
Social D   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b     Trad, 1 pitch, 70'   Black Bluff - North Face : Black Bluff - N. Face (Righ...
Shooting Star   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b     Trad, 1 pitch, 80'   Black Bluff - North Face : Black Bluff - N. Face (Righ...
Slap and Tickle   5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b     Trad, 1 pitch, 60'   Black Bluff - West Face
Powder Finger   5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c     Trad, 1 pitch, 80'   Black Bluff - North Face : Black Bluff - N. Face (Righ...
Browse More Classics in Black Bluff

Featured Route For Black Bluff
Parker Fagrelius starting up.

Aurora Borealis 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a  CA : San Bernardino Mountains : ... : Black Bluff - N. Face (Righ...
Singer is justified in calling this one of the best 5.9 crack climbs in the SBs. It is a wonderful climb in a wonderful setting - nice and athletic with great moves up fine grained granite.Work your way up the off width inside the flake, flakes and holds on the right prove most useful. The crux comes next with a hand traverse onto to a ledge on the left (very nice). Now follow the crack up over a couple of overlaps to the business. A splitter crack snakes it way up the face, but features to the ...[more]   Browse More Classics in CA

Photos of Black Bluff Slideshow Add Photo
railroad gin v0 FA. JOE DE LUCA
railroad gin v0 FA. JOE DE LUCA
You cant miss the cairns.....
You cant miss the cairns.....
GPS Coordinates 34.219833,-116.992667 <br />Start of the approach shortly after the Black Bluff campground <br />
GPS Coordinates 34.219833,-116.992667 Start of the...
;)
;)
Scott Nomi standing underneath the West Face.
Scott Nomi standing underneath the West Face.
Black Bluff
Black Bluff
A portion of the trail to Black Bluff, Big Bear South
A portion of the trail to Black Bluff, Big Bear So...
Follow the cairn trail to the climbers trail
Follow the cairn trail to the climbers trail
This is the turnoff for the Bluff Mesa Group Camp road (2N86A), Big Bear South
BETA PHOTO: This is the turnoff for the Bluff Mesa Group Camp ...
The Ant Boulder near Bluff Mesa CG, Big Bear South
The Ant Boulder near Bluff Mesa CG, Big Bear South
Descend down this gully then to the left to get to the bottom of Black Bluff.
BETA PHOTO: Descend down this gully then to the left to get to...
Arctic Circle as seen from beneath Black Bluff.
Arctic Circle as seen from beneath Black Bluff.
Bluff Mesa Group Camp, Big Bear South
BETA PHOTO: Bluff Mesa Group Camp, Big Bear South
Mount Baldy from Black Bluff.
Mount Baldy from Black Bluff.
Turn right onto 2N86 at this Tee in the road to reach Bluff Mesa Group Camp and Black Bluff, Big Bear South
BETA PHOTO: Turn right onto 2N86 at this Tee in the road to re...
v4 FA. Joe De Luca
v4 FA. Joe De Luca
Trail marker on the way to Black Bluff,  San Bernardino Mountains
Trail marker on the way to Black Bluff, San Berna...
As you get into the trail that is lined by beautiful manzanita,the cairns will be more frequent.Leading you up over a small ridge,then to the approach gully.
As you get into the trail that is lined by beautif...
Cool Dino formation a stone's throw from Railroad Gin (VO).  If you see this you are very near the Black Bluff Crags.
Cool Dino formation a stone's throw from Railroad ...

Comments on Black Bluff Add Comment
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By Nelson Day
From: Joshua Tree, CA
Jun 10, 2013
This place is home to some of the best climbs I have done in the Big Bear area. Excellent view, great quality rock, and numerous excellent trad lines make this definitely worth the hike, which is also beautiful.
By Jeff Botimer
Jun 25, 2013
One of the best climbing spots in the San Bernardino Mountains. Beautiful location and great rock make this the best spot in the big bear area in my opinion.