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moving to Sacramento area - need climbing partner
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By haleymay
From Salt Lake City
Jun 5, 2010
hand solo - selfish wall

Hello!
I'm moving to the Sacramento area this week and need a climbing partner. From what I've read about the area, Tahoe or Cosumnes are probably the best areas near there. Lemme know if your interested. Thanks!


FLAG
By J. Albers
From Colorado
Jun 5, 2010
Bucky

Hi Haley,

Here is a quick run down of the in and outs of Sac area climbing. I will keep the discussion to areas that are within 2 hours or so from Sac, but keep in mind that the Valley, Tuolumne, and the eastern side of the Sierra's (Mammoth Lakes, Bishop, etc) are all 4-5 hours away and have copious amounts of amazing sport, trad, alpine climbing. As far as what is close to Sac though, this time of year is kind of a transition between sport climbing in the Sonora area and trad and sport up in the Tahoe area.

During spring, most people either sport climb in Sonora or trad climb up at Sugarloaf (up towards Tahoe, but lower elevation). However, two of the best sport areas in Sonora are undocumented (and will remain so indefinitely) so you will need to hook up with a local to get the low down. This time of year though, it starts to get too warm to climb in Sonora, but snow is still a problem up high near Tahoe. Areas like Donner Summit and Big Chief (both listed here on MP) may or may not have approach issues because of snow. If you trad climb, this can be a great time of year to head up to Calaveras Dome (also on MP). Calaveras Dome and nearby Hammer Dome offer fantastic long trad routes and semi-runout bolted slab climbing. The classic climbs on Cal Dome rival anything in the state (yes, including routes in the Valley!!) As far as Consumnes River Gorge is concerned....it is my personal opinion that there are only a few routes worth doing. Almost everything there is short, but you can set topropes easily, so going up there if you are short on time or to rope solo is always feasible.

If you are looking for partners, your best bet is to show up at Pipeworks climbing gym which is a few blocks from downtown Sac. There is a really friendly community of people that climb at Pipeworks and if you start hanging out there, finding new people to climb with shouldn't be a problem. The regulars at Pipeworks come from pretty much every background...sport, trad, ice, alpine, and 5.9 to 5.14 climbers, so you should be able to find some folks that suit your needs. In general, Tuesday and Thursday nights are the times that the 'regulars' climb, so try and poke your head in on those nights if you can. If you are looking to become a member, try and join during a time when they have a special going where they waive the initiation fee (I think this month it is $25 instead of the normal $100). Keep in mind though, as the summer months role onwards, people will be at the gym less regularly and in particular, during the month of June, a lot of the regulars will be off on climbing trips....in other words, don't be discouraged if you don't find someone there immediately because it may just be that a lot of people are either outside or out of town for the time being.

Anyway, I have several steady partners at the moment, so I am probably not of much use to you as a potential partner, but I would be more than willing to try and introduce you to people around the gym. In fact, there is a nice group of young ladies (ages 20's to 30's) that have come together to climb at the gym recently, so it isn't all just a bunch of guys!!!

Hope this helps. Welcome to Sac.


FLAG
By haleymay
From Salt Lake City
Jun 8, 2010
hand solo - selfish wall

Thanks so much for the info! We're finally in Sacramento so hopefully I can get some time to go check out Pipeworks.

Is it too hot already at the Sonora or Sugarloaf areas? I do both sport and trad climbing, but always used my partners gear in Utah so for the time being I'm limited to sport climbing (unless I find a partner here with a full rack).

Another question since you seem really knowledgable about the area. Is there an area with an easy approach and super easy TR climbs? My 4 yr old likes climbing sometimes and it would be fun to take him out if its not too long of a hike.

Thanks again!

J. Albers wrote:
Hi Haley, Here is a quick run down of the in and outs of Sac area climbing. I will keep the discussion to areas that are within 2 hours or so from Sac, but keep in mind that the Valley, Tuolumne, and the eastern side of the Sierra's (Mammoth Lakes, Bishop, etc) are all 4-5 hours away and have copious amounts of amazing sport, trad, alpine climbing. As far as what is close to Sac though, this time of year is kind of a transition between sport climbing in the Sonora area and trad and sport up in the Tahoe area. During spring, most people either sport climb in Sonora or trad climb up at Sugarloaf (up towards Tahoe, but lower elevation). However, two of the best sport areas in Sonora are undocumented (and will remain so indefinitely) so you will need to hook up with a local to get the low down. This time of year though, it starts to get too warm to climb in Sonora, but snow is still a problem up high near Tahoe. Areas like Donner Summit and Big Chief (both listed here on MP) may or may not have approach issues because of snow. If you trad climb, this can be a great time of year to head up to Calaveras Dome (also on MP). Calaveras Dome and nearby Hammer Dome offer fantastic long trad routes and semi-runout bolted slab climbing. The classic climbs on Cal Dome rival anything in the state (yes, including routes in the Valley!!) As far as Consumnes River Gorge is concerned....it is my personal opinion that there are only a few routes worth doing. Almost everything there is short, but you can set topropes easily, so going up there if you are short on time or to rope solo is always feasible. If you are looking for partners, your best bet is to show up at Pipeworks climbing gym which is a few blocks from downtown Sac. There is a really friendly community of people that climb at Pipeworks and if you start hanging out there, finding new people to climb with shouldn't be a problem. The regulars at Pipeworks come from pretty much every background...sport, trad, ice, alpine, and 5.9 to 5.14 climbers, so you should be able to find some folks that suit your needs. In general, Tuesday and Thursday nights are the times that the 'regulars' climb, so try and poke your head in on those nights if you can. If you are looking to become a member, try and join during a time when they have a special going where they waive the initiation fee (I think this month it is $25 instead of the normal $100). Keep in mind though, as the summer months role onwards, people will be at the gym less regularly and in particular, during the month of June, a lot of the regulars will be off on climbing trips....in other words, don't be discouraged if you don't find someone there immediately because it may just be that a lot of people are either outside or out of town for the time being. Anyway, I have several steady partners at the moment, so I am probably not of much use to you as a potential partner, but I would be more than willing to try and introduce you to people around the gym. In fact, there is a nice group of young ladies (ages 20's to 30's) that have come together to climb at the gym recently, so it isn't all just a bunch of guys!!! Hope this helps. Welcome to Sac.


FLAG
By Joe Ludlow
From Denver, Colorado
Jun 8, 2010

School at Rock at Donner's Summit. 5.3 to 5.5'ish climbing that is litterally right on the road.


FLAG
By J. Albers
From Colorado
Jun 9, 2010
Bucky

Hi again Haley,

Your questions.....

You can still climb at Sugarloaf, but you probably need to climb in the shade. Furthermore, while there is some bolted climbing (note, though bolted, it is not sport) at Sugarloaf, most of the climbing is trad and setting TR's would be problematic.

You can still climb at Sonora, but you are going to be limited as far as which areas you can climb. The two undocumented areas are pretty much too hot at this point. The Far Side (this IS listed on MP) is way too hot at this point. However, you can still climb at the area called the Grotto. This area is listed here on MP and is in several guidebooks. 'Sonora Pass Climbing' is the best guidebook for this area, but there is also a Bay Area book by Falcon guides that has the Grotto in it. Also, be aware that all of the areas near Sonora have copious amounts of poison oak. The locals try and keep it in check, but if you stray off the trails, you will be in a fricking forest of it.

Also, since you may be there with your kid, I would make one other comment about Sonora climbing (this is going to sound harsh, but I'm just trying to be honest.) The rock in Sonora is super fun to climb, but it is also pretty sh*tty rock. The problem is that there are a lot of people that are idiots and they pull on stuff they shouldn't and thus there is potential for rock fall....rock fall that could definitely hurt or kill someone. This isn't a big deal, but just be aware and maybe don't let your little one hang out underneath anyone who is climbing.

If you are looking to TR stuff, then perhaps Consumnes River Gorge is not a bad place for you. The main area (Buck's Bar Dome etc.) has very accessible TR anchors, many of which are bolted, and the approach is very quick (maybe 5 minutes or so). There is also a small guidebook just for Consumnes called 'Rock Climbs of Placerville'. If you are there with your 4 year old, make sure to watch out for rattlesnakes.

Also, if you are looking for topropes, there is a brand new book by SuperTopos that is called "Bay Area Topropes". You can find it here:

www.supertopo.com/packs/bay-area-top-ropes.html

And lastly....since you have a small child, it might be nice to know that there are many parents who are regulars with small children at Pipeworks on weeknights. They have tables and a TV area so that it is easy for parents to keep kids happy. It seems like the parents all help look after the kids so that everyone can climb.

Cheers.


FLAG
By haleymay
From Salt Lake City
Jun 10, 2010
hand solo - selfish wall

Joe Ludlow wrote:
School at Rock at Donner's Summit. 5.3 to 5.5'ish climbing that is litterally right on the road.


Super! Thanks :)


FLAG
By haleymay
From Salt Lake City
Jun 10, 2010
hand solo - selfish wall

J. Albers wrote:
Hi again Haley, Your questions..... You can still climb at Sugarloaf, but you probably need to climb in the shade. Furthermore, while there is some bolted climbing (note, though bolted, it is not sport) at Sugarloaf, most of the climbing is trad and setting TR's would be problematic. You can still climb at Sonora, but you are going to be limited as far as which areas you can climb. The two undocumented areas are pretty much too hot at this point. The Far Side (this IS listed on MP) is way too hot at this point. However, you can still climb at the area called the Grotto. This area is listed here on MP and is in several guidebooks. 'Sonora Pass Climbing' is the best guidebook for this area, but there is also a Bay Area book by Falcon guides that has the Grotto in it. Also, be aware that all of the areas near Sonora have copious amounts of poison oak. The locals try and keep it in check, but if you stray off the trails, you will be in a fricking forest of it. Also, since you may be there with your kid, I would make one other comment about Sonora climbing (this is going to sound harsh, but I'm just trying to be honest.) The rock in Sonora is super fun to climb, but it is also pretty sh*tty rock. The problem is that there are a lot of people that are idiots and they pull on stuff they shouldn't and thus there is potential for rock fall....rock fall that could definitely hurt or kill someone. This isn't a big deal, but just be aware and maybe don't let your little one hang out underneath anyone who is climbing. If you are looking to TR stuff, then perhaps Consumnes River Gorge is not a bad place for you. The main area (Buck's Bar Dome etc.) has very accessible TR anchors, many of which are bolted, and the approach is very quick (maybe 5 minutes or so). There is also a small guidebook just for Consumnes called 'Rock Climbs of Placerville'. If you are there with your 4 year old, make sure to watch out for rattlesnakes. Also, if you are looking for topropes, there is a brand new book by SuperTopos that is called "Bay Area Topropes". You can find it here: www.supertopo.com/packs/bay-area-top-ropes.html And lastly....since you have a small child, it might be nice to know that there are many parents who are regulars with small children at Pipeworks on weeknights. They have tables and a TV area so that it is easy for parents to keep kids happy. It seems like the parents all help look after the kids so that everyone can climb. Cheers.


Thanks again for the info and heads up on the falling rocks and rattlers.


FLAG
By haleymay
From Salt Lake City
Jun 10, 2010
hand solo - selfish wall

J. Albers wrote:
Hi again Haley, Your questions..... You can still climb at Sugarloaf, but you probably need to climb in the shade. Furthermore, while there is some bolted climbing (note, though bolted, it is not sport) at Sugarloaf, most of the climbing is trad and setting TR's would be problematic. You can still climb at Sonora, but you are going to be limited as far as which areas you can climb. The two undocumented areas are pretty much too hot at this point. The Far Side (this IS listed on MP) is way too hot at this point. However, you can still climb at the area called the Grotto. This area is listed here on MP and is in several guidebooks. 'Sonora Pass Climbing' is the best guidebook for this area, but there is also a Bay Area book by Falcon guides that has the Grotto in it. Also, be aware that all of the areas near Sonora have copious amounts of poison oak. The locals try and keep it in check, but if you stray off the trails, you will be in a fricking forest of it. Also, since you may be there with your kid, I would make one other comment about Sonora climbing (this is going to sound harsh, but I'm just trying to be honest.) The rock in Sonora is super fun to climb, but it is also pretty sh*tty rock. The problem is that there are a lot of people that are idiots and they pull on stuff they shouldn't and thus there is potential for rock fall....rock fall that could definitely hurt or kill someone. This isn't a big deal, but just be aware and maybe don't let your little one hang out underneath anyone who is climbing. If you are looking to TR stuff, then perhaps Consumnes River Gorge is not a bad place for you. The main area (Buck's Bar Dome etc.) has very accessible TR anchors, many of which are bolted, and the approach is very quick (maybe 5 minutes or so). There is also a small guidebook just for Consumnes called 'Rock Climbs of Placerville'. If you are there with your 4 year old, make sure to watch out for rattlesnakes. Also, if you are looking for topropes, there is a brand new book by SuperTopos that is called "Bay Area Topropes". You can find it here: www.supertopo.com/packs/bay-area-top-ropes.html And lastly....since you have a small child, it might be nice to know that there are many parents who are regulars with small children at Pipeworks on weeknights. They have tables and a TV area so that it is easy for parents to keep kids happy. It seems like the parents all help look after the kids so that everyone can climb. Cheers.


Thanks again for the info and heads up on the falling rocks and rattlers.


FLAG
 
By haleymay
From Salt Lake City
Jun 10, 2010
hand solo - selfish wall

J. Albers wrote:
Hi again Haley, Your questions..... You can still climb at Sugarloaf, but you probably need to climb in the shade. Furthermore, while there is some bolted climbing (note, though bolted, it is not sport) at Sugarloaf, most of the climbing is trad and setting TR's would be problematic. You can still climb at Sonora, but you are going to be limited as far as which areas you can climb. The two undocumented areas are pretty much too hot at this point. The Far Side (this IS listed on MP) is way too hot at this point. However, you can still climb at the area called the Grotto. This area is listed here on MP and is in several guidebooks. 'Sonora Pass Climbing' is the best guidebook for this area, but there is also a Bay Area book by Falcon guides that has the Grotto in it. Also, be aware that all of the areas near Sonora have copious amounts of poison oak. The locals try and keep it in check, but if you stray off the trails, you will be in a fricking forest of it. Also, since you may be there with your kid, I would make one other comment about Sonora climbing (this is going to sound harsh, but I'm just trying to be honest.) The rock in Sonora is super fun to climb, but it is also pretty sh*tty rock. The problem is that there are a lot of people that are idiots and they pull on stuff they shouldn't and thus there is potential for rock fall....rock fall that could definitely hurt or kill someone. This isn't a big deal, but just be aware and maybe don't let your little one hang out underneath anyone who is climbing. If you are looking to TR stuff, then perhaps Consumnes River Gorge is not a bad place for you. The main area (Buck's Bar Dome etc.) has very accessible TR anchors, many of which are bolted, and the approach is very quick (maybe 5 minutes or so). There is also a small guidebook just for Consumnes called 'Rock Climbs of Placerville'. If you are there with your 4 year old, make sure to watch out for rattlesnakes. Also, if you are looking for topropes, there is a brand new book by SuperTopos that is called "Bay Area Topropes". You can find it here: www.supertopo.com/packs/bay-area-top-ropes.html And lastly....since you have a small child, it might be nice to know that there are many parents who are regulars with small children at Pipeworks on weeknights. They have tables and a TV area so that it is easy for parents to keep kids happy. It seems like the parents all help look after the kids so that everyone can climb. Cheers.


Thanks again for the info and heads up on the falling rocks and rattlers.


FLAG


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