Juan Tabo Canyon has its headwaters in the huge west-facing amphitheater south of North Sandia Peak. The north side of the canyon is prominently defined by the massive wall of the Shield. The southern margin of the canyon is formed by the ridge that connects The Needle with The Prow.
Depending on which crag you are targeting, or, sometimes, even which side of the crag you are heading for, the approaches to the climbs in Juan Tabo Canyon may involve either hiking down from the Crest or up from below. For example, the lower crags like UNM Spire and the Prow are commonly approached from below, using the Piedra Lisa Trail to access either the Fletcher or Movie Trails, respectively. Climbs on the eastern side of the Shield are commonly approached from above, from the North Crest Trail, but they may also be reached from below via the Fletcher Trail. Routes on the western end of the Shield may be better approached by the Piedra Lisa and Rincon Spur Trails. Similarly, the Needle may be approached by either dropping down from the North Crest Trail or by coming up from below, going up the Movie Trail or Waterfall Canyon.
Browse More Classics in Juan Tabo Canyon
Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Juan Tabo Canyon:
Featured Route For Juan Tabo Canyon
Purple Haze 5.11b A4+ R NM : Sandia Mountains : ... : Shield
Purple Haze is 10 pitches give or take depending on which finish you choose. The first ascent finished via Cowboy's Delight 5.9 A2+. PITCH 1- Climb the first pitch of Orange Sunshine to start Purple Haze. Starts up a right facing feature with sparse gear and brush to a right facing corner and ledge with 2 bolts.PITCH 2-Start up left on the ramp to a bulge protected by a bolt. Continue up past a couple more bolts to some flakes and ledges ending at a bolt and belay below a steep slab just left of...[more] Browse More Classics in NM