Moonstone Beach is Eureka/Arcata's easiest access climbing area. The good quality sandstone and greenstone boulders and cliffs, combined with soft sand landings under most of the boulders, make this a favorite for both the "The-sun's-out-class-can-wait" and the after work crowd. From the parking area there are four main areas with clusters of problems and routes. The rock dries quickly after storms and is climbable all year 'round but it can be foggy in the summer and days of rain in the winter. A rope bag or tarp is recommended when pulling your rope to keep it out of the sand. Moonstone is also THE place to meet partners for other local adventures.
#1 Many of the moderate topropes were pioneered in the 60's or earlier by Andy Montgomery, a minister from Arcata who trained on a wall he built inside the bell tower of his church.
#2 The Moonstone outdoor clothing company was started by the beach caretaker in a tin-can trailer on this beach.
Take Highway 101 north from Arcata, exit at Westhaven Drive(just north of Clam Beach), take a left under 101 and left back south and take the first right to the beach.
A guidebook is available at outdoor shops in Arcata and Eureka.
Camping can be found just south at Clam Beach or 15 minutes north at Patrick's Point State Park.
32 Total Routes
['4 Stars',3],['3 Stars',19],['2 Stars',9],['1 Star',1],['Bomb',0]
Browse More Classics in Moonstone Beach
Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Moonstone Beach:
Featured Route For Moonstone Beach
Nightmare 5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ E5 6a CA
: Redwood Coast
: ... : Karen Rock
Nightmare begins by climbing the first half of Dream Theme. Where Dream Theme traverses right, after the large hueco, continue up and left through a blocky bulge to a horn of lighter colored rock. Make a difficult cross through to a series of large but sloping holds, make a couple of moves on these and then continue straight up to the anchor....[more] Browse More Classics in CA
News and Events For Moonstone Beach
Latest Regional Forum Messages
Sun, sea & sand - Marc entering the crux of Dream ...
Jim Hammerle leading Karen Crack on Karen Rock.
Seaweed and surf, Moonstone Beach
The end of another great day, Moonstone Beach
Pelicans and surf, Moonstone Beach
Looking inland, Moonstone Beach
Bouldering on the beach.
THE MAN THE MYTH THE LEGEND
I like my drysuit . . .
From Obscure Gully.
Up the creek . . .
|Comments on Moonstone Beach
|By Rick Shull|
From: Arcata, CA & Dyer,NV
Dec 15, 2008
The Holladay-Hatfield is still there, although the hangerless bolts have been looking pretty bad for 15 years. The trees and shrubs seem to have overtaken the route.
Apr 30, 2010
I'm trying to figure out where this climb is exactly. The guidebook has "Holladay Traverse" as 5.10 and "2 old hangerless bolts, shrub belay, 35 feet" but the guide shows that one on the south side of North Rock... Any clarification?
|By Christian C|
From: San Diego, CA
Jul 13, 2013
what is the policy on bolting at moonstone? I've heard that it's prohibited on karen rock. can anyone confirm that? some of those lines would be rad leads.. What about bolting any other lines at north rocks or anywhere near that?
|By Rick Shull|
From: Arcata, CA & Dyer,NV
Jul 15, 2013
Many of the lines on Karen Rock would make for some nice leads but due to the wide variety of beach users and complaints of desecration by local tribes, climbers have only replaced existing bolts for safety. The management plan for the beach suggested several scenarios at Moonstone that included removing all bolts or not replacing the old ones. A decision was not issued as the tribes did not pursue the removal of the bolts BUT the issue could be revisited at any time, so climbers have not pushed the issue of new bolts. We are fortunate that climbing is allowed at all at Moonstone, especially with the tribal issues. Also, pretty much all of the routes have been free soloed or led with (sometimes iffy) gear, so "leads" have been established and can be led in the style of the original lead ascents....
|By Benjamin F|
From: Arcata, CA
Jul 21, 2013
i've both led on gear and free solo'd karen. the placements are so hit or miss, that you may as well just solo it. i say stick with the top ropes. they're all well positioned and convenient.
i recommend presenting any rebolting as "clean up efforts" that would include removing graffiti.