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Hueco Tanks

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From MP's sister site: MTB Project

Hueco Tanks  

Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Location: 31.9169, -106.0429 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 599,698
Administrators: Hank Caylor, Matt Richardson, LeeAB, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Aimee Rose on Mar 30, 2006
You & This Area
Best routes for YOU in this area
Your opinion of this PAGE:    [3 people like this page.]
Remember pinkpointing and tights? Both were legit ...

Some areas require a guide.


The best bouldering in the world, Hueco is amazing, but you gotta play the game to get in. Must call Texas State Parks (512)389-8900 to make reservations for North Mountain (be sure to write down your confirmation #s as they tend to lose them) or call the Hueco Rock Ranch (915)855-0142 for tours (required) of the other areas and camping.

Best time of year to visit is November through March. It gets windy through the end of March and beginning of April. After mid-April, it's hot as sin. The rock is amazing, bullet hard and sharp on the digits.

Matt Wilder's Hueco Tanks guidebook from Wolverine Publishing is the best resource for routes. It is very extensive, has great directions and pictures.

This online guide will focus on North Mountain, since in the other areas you'll have a guide and other people who can point out the problems.

Getting There 

Get to El Paso then take HWY 62/180 (aka Montana Rd) east until you pass all the junk yards. When you see the ufo shaped white building turn left and go to the end of the road.

Hueco Rock Ranch 

The Hueco Rock Ranch offers climbers a friendly place to stay while spending time at Hueco Tanks. Camp or rent a room/bunk. Showers, communal hang out area, and good company around the fire are included. Easy access to climbing and no hassle. Join the American Alpine Club and save 30%. Open November–April.

Book Reservations

Climbing Season

Weather station 8.2 miles from here

397 Total Routes

['4 Stars',54],['3 Stars',178],['2 Stars',125],['1 Star',37],['Bomb',0]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Hueco Tanks:
The Maiden   V0 4     Boulder, 35'   East Mountain : Maiden Gully
The Melon Patch   V0 4     Boulder   North Mountain : Scary Boulder
Hershey's Symphony   V1 5 PG13     Boulder, 25'   North Mountain : Sign of the Choss
Nobody Here Gets Out Alive   V2 5+     Boulder   North Mountain : The Grenade
Ghetto Simulator   V2 5+     Boulder   North Mountain : Ghetto Simulator
Sign of the Cross   V3 6A     Boulder   North Mountain : Sign of the Cross
T-Bone Shuffle   V4 6B     Boulder   North Mountain : The Morgue
Moonshine Roof (center)   V4 6B     Boulder, 25'   East Mountain : Moonshine Roof
The Fin   V4 6B     Boulder   East Mountain : The Aircraft Carrier
Bloodline   V5 6C     Boulder, 15'   North Mountain : Bloodline
Lobsterclaw, AKA:Mr. Negative   V5 6C     Boulder   North Mountain : The New Meadow
Dragon Fly, AKA: Dogmatics   V5 6C     Boulder, 15'   East Mountain : Dragon's Den
See Spot Run   V6 7A PG13     Boulder, 25'   North Mountain : The Big Time
Martini Roof short aka Baby Martini   V6 7A     Boulder, 25'   North Mountain : Martini Roof area
Baby Face   V7 7A+     Boulder   North Mountain : Trac II
Mushroom Roof   V8 7B     Boulder, 15'   North Mountain : Mushroom Boulder
Full Service   V10 7C+     Boulder   East Mountain : Dragon's Den
Indecent Exposure   5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a     Trad, 2 pitches, 300'   North Mountain : Indecent Exposure Buttress
Sea of Holes   5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b R     Sport, 2 pitches, 350'   North Mountain : Central Wall
Window Pain   5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 150'   North Mountain : Central Wall
Browse More Classics in Hueco Tanks

Featured Route For Hueco Tanks
The Melon Patch. Just like Lee says watch the flak...

The Melon Patch V0 4  TX : Hueco Tanks : ... : Scary Boulder
Crux is at the bottom, then you follow jugs up the gently overhanging face....[more]   Browse More Classics in TX

Photos of Hueco Tanks Slideshow Add Photo
No one gets out of here alive.
No one gets out of here alive.
Hiking back from West Mountain at the end of the d...
Hiking back from West Mountain at the end of the d...
End of the Rainbow
End of the Rainbow
Fred Nicole floating around at Hueco Tanks, photo:...
Fred Nicole floating around at Hueco Tanks, photo:...
Bob Horan bouldering at Hueco on Obscured By Cloud...
Bob Horan bouldering at Hueco on Obscured By Cloud...
Earl Wiggins hb @ Hueco Tanks: photo Bob Horan
Earl Wiggins hb @ Hueco Tanks: photo Bob Horan
EW... back in the day when HT was just a little bi...
EW... back in the day when HT was just a little bi...
and after
and after
This was taken outside of Fort Bliss in El Paso re...
This was taken outside of Fort Bliss in El Paso re...
Fun Downclimbs!
Fun Downclimbs!
BH sends the 45 Degree Wall.
BH sends the 45 Degree Wall.
Hueco Tanks
Hueco Tanks
Beautiful Hueco Tanks, Texas.
Beautiful Hueco Tanks, Texas.
Working the No body @Hueco Tanks
Working the No body @Hueco Tanks
BH highballing on FA of Distorted History V5 @ Hue...
BH highballing on FA of Distorted History V5 @ Hue...
Sunset at Hueco
Sunset at Hueco
Shane Rymer on 2nd ascent of Moonlight Drive Trave...
Shane Rymer on 2nd ascent of Moonlight Drive Trave...
Horan on repeat ascent of Mother of the Future V7,...
Horan on repeat ascent of Mother of the Future V7,...
The second bolt on Desperado (5.10+) broke under b...
BETA PHOTO: The second bolt on Desperado (5.10+) broke under b...
Even though jumping through the hoops to climb her...
Even though jumping through the hoops to climb her...
Oryx at the entrance gate to the Park.
Oryx at the entrance gate to the Park.
Hueco in the 80s
Hueco in the 80s
Don't mess with Texas! Or so the saying goes.   No...
Don't mess with Texas! Or so the saying goes. No...

Show All 25 Photos

Only the first 24 are shown above.

Comments on Hueco Tanks Add Comment
Show which comments
Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Dec 20, 2014
By Russ Walling
From: www.FishProducts.com
Oct 17, 2007
Here is a small selection of videos shot at Hueco in the early 90's..... yeah it's dated... but it's FREE! Check them out and you can laugh at my JRat clothes!

By Monomaniac
From: Morrison, CO
Feb 12, 2008
The Geographic Coordinates provided above are incorrect. Here are some better coordinates, in case someone with Admin privileges wants to update things:

Hueco Tanks: -106.0429 x 31.9169

North Mountain: -106.0445 x 31.9225
East mountain: -106.0391 x 31.9171
East Spur: -106.0372 x 31.9108
West Mountain: -106.0456 x 31.9129

Some N Mtn areas:

110 Proof Roof: -106.0436 x 31.9222
The Grenade: -106.0438 x 31.9221
Indecent Exposure Buttress: -106.0483 x 31.9215
Martini Roof Area (Upper Lost Boulders): -106.0425 x 31.9217
Mushroom Boulder: -106.0487 x 31.9219
The New Meadow: -106.0437 x 31.9232
Sign of the Cross: -106.0433 x 31.9246
Small Potatoes: -106.0433 x 31.9224
Trac II: -106.0456 x 31.9217
Warm Up Boulder: -106.0449 x 31.9260
By Ken Trout
From: Golden, CO
Feb 7, 2009
The book: "Hueco Tanks, a climber's and boulderer's guide", by John Sherman, Mike Head, James Crump, and Dave Head, gives this for first ascent information:

"The history of lead climbing at Hueco Tanks can be summed up in one name - Mike Head. Mike ascended over two thirds of the lead climbs in this guide, usually in very bold style. Imagine leading Window Pain or Head Fox with only two bolts apiece as Mike first did. Or free soloing the first ascent of Sea of Holes, before the loose rock had been cleaned off.

Mike placed the majority of retrobolts (sic)in Hueco Tanks, changing his routes from sporty climbs to sportclimbs (sic)."

The history of climbing bolt legalization at Hueco Tanks is found in an article titled: "Retrobolting At Hueco" by Laurel Lacher (Rock & Ice Magazine, #36, March/April 1990).
By Russ Walling
From: www.FishProducts.com
Feb 11, 2009
Thanks Ken.

Does anyone know the official bolt replacement policy at Hueco these days? Or do you just wait for a "drillers moon" and make it happen?
By Ken Trout
From: Golden, CO
Feb 11, 2009
Russ, thanks for all the great Hueco beta and photos (and the mussy hooks in the Owens too)!

I did ask a park staff member if I could help replace old bolts. The answer was that "Austin is working on it still." It being some kind of policy.

I had thoughts of the old Drilling Moon methods too, but it might get climbing banned. The scope of what really needs doing is too huge.

Sorry to all for hogging up so much page space with a lengthy condition report. Looking forward to a day in the future the conditions are simply "Phat new bolts on one of America's best crags."

By Russ Walling
From: www.FishProducts.com
Feb 11, 2009
"Austin is working on it" uh-oh. That is kinda scary.

Here is slide show from our trip in '07. You can see some of the old bolts in the show. It is a fairly large QT Movie, so be patient and let it load. There is like 100 images. You can do a mouseover on the little "i" in the upper right hand corner for captions on each photo. If you put your mouse over the bottom middle, forward, reverse and pause will show up.

here is the link: fishproducts.com/movies/hueco_...
By joshf
From: missoula, mt
Nov 16, 2009
there is a small mexican grocery on the right of the main road a couple miles out heading out from el paso towards hueco...best tortillas in the world. we subsisted off the damn things for almost a week and bought as many as we could before we headed home...dirt cheap and damn good for a tight budget.
By Nate Moore
From: On the road
Apr 2, 2010
I need to get to Hueco from Springfield, MO on the weekend of the 10th of April. I can meet you somewhere other than Springfield if i need to and my dates can change a little as well.

By gabriel hamilton
Sep 9, 2012
hey guys,

I have a quick question...

It is my FIRST trip to Hueco, FINALLY!

unfortunately, the only time we have allotted for now, is october 24-28...

Can we still find awesome climbing with the temperature during this time???

Basically, is it still worth it to make the trip??


By Dr. Dre
From: Manitou Springs, CO
Sep 16, 2012
Am heading to EP for work a few days and would like to check out Heuco. I heard that the park gate closes at 6 pm. Are there any areas one can still access for climbing or bouldering after 6 pm without issues, if one were to park outside the gate?
By bsear945
Oct 2, 2012
Does anyone have any experience with dogs at Hueco Tanks. Options of where to keep them due to them not being allowed on North Mountain or the Rock Ranch.

By DoNstamos
From: Subaru
Nov 29, 2014
NOTE: there are NO DOGS allowed on the mountain. Just figured I'd mention that. Kind of unclear on the info section and hueco parks doesn't display that information either.
By Lowell
From: El Paso, Texas USA
Dec 5, 2014
World famous "Pete's" Re-Opens!

Hueco Tanks Climbing Shop & Campgrounds
6011 Hueco Tanks Rd. 915-244-6792

Old school climbers remember "Pete's" Country Store as one of the most iconic dirtbag campgrounds in American climbing history. Located just outside the park entrance at Hueco Tanks, Texas, the Country Store was where bouldering pioneers stayed during the years that Hueco transformed from a little-known rock pile into one of the world's premier bouldering areas.

Deadpoint Magazine Article

Hueco Campgrounds

By meghan c.
From: el paso, tx
Dec 20, 2014
Moving to El Paso ...

We're moving to El Paso in a few weeks and are looking for a roommate or two to split a house near the downtown UTEP area, preferably somewhere in the Sunrise Hills area. We = my boyfriend James, myself, and our dog Whittlock. We're laid back 20/30ish and would be very happy to share a house with other climbers.

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