La Cueva as seen from the road, with the Organ Mou...
This group of rock formations is the some of the closest climbing for the Las Cruces climber. The majority of climbs here are trad climbs but a handful of sport routes can be found. Rock quality is often quite poor, as are some of the old fixed anchors.
Cueva Rock is a historical site and climbers should be respectful of this fact. A hermit once lived in a cave under this formation, and should you visit this cave, your eyes will be drawn to the piton infested crack system that soars above the cave. This route is off-limits to climbing, due to its proximity to the historic cave, and to the tourist traffic that goes under the route. Climbing is not allowed in or around this area.
There is a $3/day parking fee, or you can get a years pass for $20.
From Las Cruces, turn east onto University Ave which turns into Dripping Springs Rd. Follow this rd into the recreation area and turn left into La Cueva Picnic area. Check the park for hours.
Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for La Cueva:
This top-rope climb is located on the shady north side of Cueva, near the eastern end of the formation. It climbs up a broad black water-streak.The 2-bolt anchor is located on a broad ledge which can be reached by climbing up one of the crack systems just to the right, or by scrambling up the low-angle slab further to the east to gain the ledge system. The climb consists of thin face climbing on crimpers and tiny finger pockets. The crux is located 15ft off the ground, but the entire climb is pr...[more]Browse More Classics in NM
By Aaron Hobson Administrator From: Las Cruces, NM Jan 19, 2006
I'm posting information about La Cueva in the hopes of gathering more information about this area. The climbing record in the Las Cruces area seems to be rather difficult to come by. I have been climbing at La Cueva without knowing any information about any beta. I have dubbed routes with my own names for simplification. Otherwise, every route would be called, "Route #4 north face" or something like that.
If you have any issues with my posts, feel free to set me straight.
By Aaron Hobson Administrator From: Las Cruces, NM May 24, 2006
I've reorganized La Cueva into sunny and shady sides. This should also allow for expansion of the bouldering potential, and the eastern satelite formations.
Made the trip to Las Cruces from Tucson, AZ over the weekend. Loved the climb we did on Sugarloaf (The North Face route) and saw LOTS of long routes I'll be back to climb. However, we went to the shady side of La Cueva for some cragging on Sunday and was thoroughly disappointed. The rock quality was very poor and placing gear in this choss was less than confidence inspiring.. Also, most of the bolts that were there were chopped at some point, including upper anchors. Not recommended.
Next time try Rough and Ready Hills for a good sport crag experience. Southern Comfort Wall in the Organs has a lot of good trad routes and will offer a "crag-like" experience... except for the 1 to 1.5 hour approach.