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Ridgeline

Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
Fire Zone S 
Glowing In The Distance S 
Mogenhead S 
Never to be the Same S 
Onsight or Flight S 
Perrito S 
Ridgeback S 
Send or Mend S 
Sissyboyz-8 S 
Small Brown Mouse S 
Sudden Impact S 
Two Birds with One Stone S 
Wind of Change S 
Year of the Dragon S 

Ridgeline  


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Location: 32.40414, -110.69726 View Map  Incorrect?
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Administrators: Greg Opland, James DeRoussel, JJ Schlick, Hendrixson, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Nick Kuhn on May 11, 2004
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View of Main wall of Ridgeline from top of Ridgeba...

Description 

Looking for a an escape from summertime heat where you can sport climb on moderate routes? Ridgeline is it. With a short approach, bolted routes from 5.5 to 5.10, solid rock, quality fixed gear, and a shady base, this is a wonderful spot to enjoy a day of fun, safe climbing. It's been 95 degrees in Tucson while I've felt a chill wearing a T-shirt and shorts at Ridgeline. A 50m rope and 10 draws should be all you need here.

Getting There 

Take Catalina Highway past San Pedro Vista to about milepost 18.5, with a steep slope of white rock bordering the right side of the road. There is a parking pullout that can accomodate several cars. The trailhead is at the upper end of the pullout.

Hike the trail uphill as it parallels the small gully until you reach a saddle where the trail hits a T-junction (currently marked with a cairn). Go left and continue uphill before a brief descent deposits you at the base of the crag. Allow ~10-15 minutes for the approach. On the return, take care not to miss the T-junction at the saddle or you'll end up at Boneyard and have to spend more of your pleasant afternoon climbing those routes.

Climbing Season



Weather station 1.3 miles from here

14 Total Routes

['4 Stars',0],['3 Stars',1],['2 Stars',11],['1 Star',2],['Bomb',0]
['<=5.6',1],['5.7',3],['5.8',3],['5.9',5],['5.10',2],['5.11',0],['5.12',0],['5.13',0],['>=5.14',0],['',0],['<=V1',0],['V2-3',0],['V4-5',0],['V6-7',0],['V8-9',0],['V10-11',0],['V12-13',0],['>=V14',0]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Ridgeline:
Ridgeback   5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a     Sport, 1 pitch, 90'   
Perrito   5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b     Sport, 50'   
Sudden Impact   5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Sport, 1 pitch, 70'   
Sissyboyz-8   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 55'   
Glowing In The Distance   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 70'   
Small Brown Mouse   5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a     Sport, 50'   
Year of the Dragon   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 50'   
Browse More Classics in Ridgeline

Featured Route For Ridgeline
Desicon moving through the "side-cling/ lieback" above bolt #2 preparing to clip bolt #3 and initiate the actual crux sequence.

Sissyboyz-8 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a  AZ : Mount Lemmon (Santa Catalin... : ... : Ridgeline
Ridgeline Route #2 "Sissy Boyz-8" (E. Fazio-Rhicard book rating 5.8; my tentative rating, 5.8+ to 5.9) I have seen more leader falls on this climb than any other on the Ridgeline. It may be that the name of the route, and the book rating, give a number of "onsight" leaders a false sense of security here. This climb is not, in my opinion, a mere 5.8. If the "roof" crux on "Sudden Impact" is a true 5.8+, then the overhang on "Sissyboyz-8" should probably be listed as 5.9a, maybe ev...[more]   Browse More Classics in AZ

Photos of Ridgeline Slideshow Add Photo
Ridgeline from Sky Valley
Ridgeline from Sky Valley
Laurel at Ridgeline
Laurel at Ridgeline
Starting up one of the fine routes at Ridgeline.  Butt shot courtesy of Joe Lee.  <br /> <br />March 2007
Starting up one of the fine routes at Ridgeline. ...
Multiple roofs on the downhill side of the formation below "Ridgeline."
Multiple roofs on the downhill side of the formati...
My friend Eric was cleaning the chains here when we heard a buzzing and a swarm of traveling bees flew right by him.  Bit of an intense moment...
My friend Eric was cleaning the chains here when w...
approach of ridgeline and extra top roping area
BETA PHOTO: approach of ridgeline and extra top roping area
Lauren Mulvaugh at Ridgeline
Lauren Mulvaugh at Ridgeline
Ridgeline from the approach
Ridgeline from the approach
Downed tress at jailhouse, you can almost clip the first bolt on Fire Zone from the tree.
Downed tress at jailhouse, you can almost clip the...
Southeast view from top of Ridgeline
BETA PHOTO: Southeast view from top of Ridgeline

Comments on Ridgeline Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Jul 14, 2012
By Anonymous Coward
Dec 23, 2004
12-12-04 Ridgeline:

We walked through a wet, and patchy snow for 22 minutes to reach the ranked climbs of the Ridgeline face. The weather service reports proclaimed a balmy 78f for Tucson Basin, but at 7500 feet, it was decidely chilly in the shade. There were no footprints to follow, so I imagine we were the first climbers there since the last week's 12-17 inch snowfall. Last season's "senicio" were still raised in all their tired, grey-headed glory above the discontinuous sheets of a snow that never seemed more than four inches deep, and scarcely impeded our progress. At the swale between the Ridgeline and Boneyard areas, we took a few moments to gaze across the valley systems that lie to the north, and actually had to wipe the sweat of our trek from our brows as we viewed the far off wonders of the deep, cupiferous vales of tje San Pedro. We reached the cliff face at a bit past noon (yep, another late starting day). The base zone was almost entirely free of snow, and rarely even dampened by the melt. So, high, dry, and actually warm, we assayed the first four climbs -- ranged from the left end of the formation.

I first led what must have been a 5.7, possibly 5.8 climb (fourth from the left) just beyond "Fire-zone." What a little gem! The introductory moves, if done straight below the first bolt, were decidely engaging, forcing me into broad stems and thumb mantles over some excellently solid, but not all that massive a series of holds. I think I even stretched left to tuck a single digit into an insecure undercling in my efforts to advance my aging, overweight body up that face. About 20 feet off the deck one encounters a roofish feature. Going up and right over the bolt on the brow was actually quite thrilling -- small holds, somewhat rounded, before finally finding a "bomber" ledge that allowed a decently exciting pull-up to the easier swells above.

Somewhat trepidous, after this first assault, I down-climbed the same sequence on a generously slack top-rope, and built up my confidence when I found it was not as desperate as it might have been (I usually find that downclimbing adds two letter grades of difficulty). Emboldened by the obvious fact that a near three month layoff had not produced a total collapse of my climbing skills (never better than intermediate anyway) I headed for "Fire-zone," the next climb to our left.

Here, despite my recent gain in non-useful body mass, I found the initial mantle move -- right palm down, and body held in close -- to be fairly reasonable. The quick reach up to the 6 inch wide quarter inch deep ledge above was a good stretch for my 5'8" frame, but its ragged edge was highly "grippable," and the nasty section of this climb was soon finished. Bolt clipped, and I gave the next, ready handhold a suspicion-filled second glance -- it is a hollow, nearly detached flaked with bright sunlight showing underneath... Still, it held. Above came a few insignificant moves, another clip and a strange semi-layback with finger purchase solely relegated to an oblique, almost hidden hold where friction rather than a positive, clinching grip allowed me to step up and find a beautiful, oblique crack into which I could sink my fingers deeply just as the dynamics of the climb forced almost all of body weight upon one hand. Whew! A bomber hold in need, indeed! From here the mount could be finished in relative security, and the rest of the run to the twin anchors above was not particularly remarkable, but for a tired, old man it was a welcome respite from the exertions below.

The down-climb here was actually more fluid, I thought, and the swing from the oblique holds had a certain eloquence and grace that were lacking in my ascent. Reversing the mantle below the first bolt required a more "mind-engaging" effort, but I surprised myself in that I actually powered my way through the sequence even though a minute "tooth" on the mantle ledge bit deeply enough to produce blood as I negociated the dismount. An excellent climb!

Next, we approached something called "Sizzy Boyz Eight," and I fully expected it to be a breeze. It is listed as a 5.8+, but certainly it could not be anyway as formidable a challenge to the intermediate climber as "Fire-zone" with its 510- rating... Well. I was feeling almost cocky as I started this route, so I eschewed the easy holds to the left and went straight up the thinner face directly below the first bolt. I even restricted my use of stems here, hoping to "artificially" pump some character into this "Sissy" climb. My mistake. Hubris -- bad stuff, should be left at home.

Above the first bolt, I was able to handily clip number two, while looking with some concern upon the remants of an earlier placement that informed me this particular area of the climb must have taken many hits, necessitating a "re-placement." Maybe. Or maybe just a bad placement? Either way, I was alerted! A good thing too, as the next moves got pronouncedly obdurate for just a "sissies'" climb. Intricate, tentative placements of left foot, combined with right hand fingers clawing for purchase on a shap, inch and quarter wide ledge about 1/8th inch deep, allowed me enough confidence to strech up and clip bolt three. I almost lost it there, I'll claim that my lay-off and gained pounds nearly did me in, but honestly, I was nearly overmatched.

The 5.10- mantle of "Firezone" is at least obvious, but the next move on this "sissy" climb is NOT! Up and left, at the extreme limit of my carcasses' stretch, I found a triangular platform, two inches broad, an inch deep, slanted out and downward, and rather slick in texture. OK, I was slightly desperate at this point, my left shoulder was making all those "chuckling" sounds my doctor calls "crepitations" -- as bone grinds into bone -- and I figured I'd be dropping soon. But, more by instinct than "proper-managed" climbing technique, my left foot stabbed out to find a bracing purchase against the left face of the shallow dihedral. Stabilized, my right hand left the manky razor holds and fumbled above the mini-roof -- A POCKET! I swear, it IS there! Invisible from below, rounded, three inches in all directions, a secure hold which allowed even a rotundity of a climber, like myself, to grip firmly and pull my body up.

I had to shift my weight, my hands, and my attitude as I pulled above the overhang, and stabbed a quick biner through the third bolt. Even then, I could not rest as my lardo fundament was still hanging over nothing. But, after a few more pulls on angular-shap holds I finally got my feet underneath my major mass and stood up. Did I whoop with delight? Well, yeah. For a "sissy" climb, this 5.8 certainly had my number!

The finishing moves were probably fright-enhanced from the crux sequence below, but I found the final yards to the hangers to be thin-rounded stuff, just at the moment I really wanted some 5.4 buckets.

The down-climb seemed a bit easier (mentally), though I still had to pump the go-juice into the muscles to reverse the crux. Lowering myself from the "hole" and the "triangle" proved minimally exciting, but shifting into a semi-layback, and stepping off the shelf below the second bolt involved more "technical," precision placements of hands and feet than I really wanted to do just then. I cheated left into a dihedral-crack system for my dismount, not caring to face the finger-tip stuff I had used on the way up -- well, gee, I guess I was tired? OK, I "sissied-out!"

After some vastly nourishing gatorade, and a peanut butter sandwich laced with banana slices, I plunked the coiled rope down purposefully beneath the left-most climb, "Small Brown Mouse." One climbing guide lists this route as a 5.10, another calls it a "mere" 5.9. Since "Sissy Boyz 8" was done by the same first ascenion team, I approached this "mousey" ascent with a healthy amount of, well, not exactly fear, but I must say there was no scent of "hubris" to my mood! Nonetheless, it looked reasonably well-bolted, and at 2:30 PM it was fully warmed by the sun, and it actually looked "inviting!" At this point I began to have "belayer" troubles. As I approached the first clip, my wife (who kindly consents to hold the far-end of the rope when I can find no other companion) was retailing (for my benefit) her current state of neck fatigue, and her desire to shift into a more comfortable posture -- fully recumbent... I tried to impress upon her the sorry state of my current climbing abilities. I tried to enthuse her with my own sense of urgency, not to say anxiety. But, she persisted in shifting her belay, reminding me that never yet, asleep or awake, had she ever let me fall beyond the "reasonable limits" dictated by the logistics of the climb.

Somewhat over-stimulated, I admit I probably "over-reacted," certainly I "over-emoted." But just then, I was feeling certain that I would have to face this ultimate Ridgeline test without her full engagement, or her rapt appreciation of my perilous position. With any other belayer, I could depend upon their respect of me as a fellow climber, or, failing that, I could possibly bully or whine then into compliance. But with a wife, well what can you do? She outranks me entirely. So, semi-recumbent -- and telling me that this displayed her unbounded confidence in my skill -- she urged me "to get on with it." Well, the shadows of this wintry day WERE starting to mass and pool along the trail we must tread to get back to the car. So, I "got on with it."

Perhaps the adrenalines encouraged by our labour-management dispute assisted me, but anyway I mounted the first moves to the bolt, gripped some thin-shap holds, lifted my entire gross weight on one handhold and stabbed for an awkward undercling-crack that defeated my first desperate efforts to insert my fingers to a comfortable depth. Half-secure only, I flailed a bit with my right hand and found a fine hold, though not overly gernerous, I thought. This got me above the next bolt and into a pleasant "walk-up" section just below the roof. Securely clipped, I played about with several different combinations, foot here, no, better there; hand here -- whoops nothing there at all; well here's a slanting, sharp hold that allows a modified lieback; OK, foot up and left, then a sinew popping reach to an oblique knob-shelf with a good-grip hold. Body swings free of the wall, feet go up, power-in close to the rock, clip the bolt and -- panick! OK, I can hold myself here with one hand, but I'm on a definite overhang, and I can just imagine I'll have a nice dangle until tetanus sets in, and then: "Look out Baybee, I'm goona drop!"

"Baybee," replied, "It's OK, I'm on watch, and it's all air beneath you -- so drop." (She was semi-reclined like a Roman patron just about to dine on Doormice stuffed with Lark's tongues...)

The really nice thing about climbing, is that you do, from time to time, slip into another reality, find a new plane of existance, suddenly become all that you should be... I did not want to DROP, in fact I was distinctly aware that there were three ponderosa pines of immense antiquity and solidity just behind me. There came an otherworldly surge of power that sent me "ape-swinging" up and left. My fingers clawed onto a seires of modest handholds, greasy-black looking crystals of some dubious geology -- but, they held my weight, and I used my momentum to counterswing and lift my right foot to the knobby zone where my right hand once held my full mass. Above that, there was a rough ball and crack that received my questing fingers and allowed me to transfer my center of gravity to my right foot. I stood up. Relaxed marginally, clipped the next bolt, and squealed in good "sissy" fashion. No DROP!

5.10? 5.9? I could care less. I got up it! For me, this was the hardest of the climbs we had done on Ridgeline, and I felt enormously relieved just to have passed the crux without trying the recoil mechanism of my 10.5 mm rope (I'd climb on a 14mm if they made 'em!). I do not actually remember much about the finish, some leggy, step-up stuff, I think. I did downclimb it, but got some help from the rope at two nasty places where I found myself so widely splayed that I nearly induced several "charley-horse" muscle reactions. Somewhere along the line, up-or-down, I slit a fingertip, a rotten crescentic gash that bled enough to do more than just make the holds slick with my own juices, but absolutely no pain at all -- then.

"Small Brown Mouse" -- for the intermediate, unwary climber -- is rather more of a "Rat," I think. It is well protected, and its bolt placements were precisely where I wanted them, but THINK TEN, as you mount this bit of high excitement, even if, after you succeed, you downgrade it to a NINE.

A grand day, altogether...

Thorkel and "Baybee"

c1thorkel@excite.com
By Desicon
Mar 2, 2006
Ridgeline Ratings:

The routes on Ridgeline are both named and numbered in E. Fazio-Rhicard's "Squeezing the Lemmon II." The numerical sequence on Ridgeline runs west to east: #1 "Small Brown Mouse;" #2 "Sissy Boyz Eight;" #3 "Firezone;" #4 "Sudden Impact;" #5 "Never to be the Same;" #6 "Wind of Change;" #7 "Two Birds with One Stone;" #8 "Mogenhead;" #9 "Glowing in the Distance." Route #10, "Ridgeback," is on the southern edge of a separate spur of rock. Route #11 ("Year of the Dragon") likewise lies off the main Ridgeline face but to the northeast.

Ridgeline seems particularly plagued with "ratings trouble." The two main guidebooks (E. Fazio-Rhicard's "Squeezing the Lemmon II," and the Falcoln guide) have different difficulties assigned to many of the climbs -- sometimes they are off by a full decimal rating. As this area receives a high volume of intermediate climbers -- many from outside the local area -- it may be benneficial for the community to establish a genuine consensus-rating for each of the 11* lines on this rock. Eventually, this online guidebook may attract enough commentators so that the ratings here can be fairly systematized and standardized. When "polling" the leaders at Ridgeline, I find that those who happen (by chance or choice) to hit the hardest sequences, tend to upgrade most of the climbs -- while those who light first upon the easier alternatives tend to think the book ratings are out of line and should be revised downward.

I think, then, that the chief problem for establishing a fair rating system at Ridgeline concerns the fact that most of the routes have several "alternative" sub-lines of movement that are equally apparent and available to the climbers. The 5.10- mantle on "Firezone" (route #3) can be avoided altogether by mounting some three feet to its right or left. The "hard start" on route #5, "Never to be the Same," can also be circumvented, right or left; and, except for the first ascent team, I have never seen any lead climber on route #8, Mogenhead, do the actual face-crux sequence. Consequently, in the following "suggested-ratings" review I will indicate just where I think a given level of difficulty may be found along the line of the routes discussed. Of course, such a review represents only my "best takes" on these routes, and it will need further, refining input from other climbers before it can become the basis of a real consensus.

One note of immediate warning: "Sissy Boyz Eight" is more probably a 5.9a or b -- please see Thorkel's description of this route in the post just above!

_________________

  • As of February, 2006 -- there were 11 established routes on the Ridgeline. The 11th is Brian Shon's (not Chan!) "Year of the Dragon," 5.9 to 5.10a, bolted and with two simple anchors at the top. This route goes down the north-east face of the rock thumb just to the right of "Glowing in the Distance" and left of the formation that carries "Ridgeback." In E. F-R's "Squeezing the Lemmon II," (p. 242) the small triangular rock just above the boxed number 9 is the formation upon which this climb is sited. There is an "airy-scary" approach up the southeastern side of this rock to gain access to the top bolts. From this platform one can, with some runners, rappel down some 45 - 50 feet to start this climb.
By Christian
From: Casa do Cacete
Apr 4, 2006
Ridgeline seems to be a magnet for accidents, specifically the second route from the left which one of the guidebooks, I believe "Rock Climbing Arizona", leads you to believe is 5.7 but is really 5.10a, with the added bonus of difficult clipping stances on the first few bolts before the bulge move..

The last time I went there a couple of years ago a groundfall had just occurred..By the amount of blood you'd think someone had died but apparently serious injury was avoided..
By Desicon
Apr 5, 2006
Climbing is an inherently dangerous activity, even top-roping can lead to severe injuries, and lead climbing can, of course, be immensely more hazardous. Those climbers new to the area (or even locals making their first leads at The Ridgeline) should remember that the guidebooks are not infallible nor absolute just because they are in print.

It is very unfortunate that The Ridgeline has at times been written up so "imperfectly," and yet it still receives such heavy use by intermediate and beginning-level climbers. These are precisely the climbers most at risk as they may tend to accept guidebook ratings as absolutes, and may lack the reserves of strength and the accumulated rock-skills to get themselves out of trouble when faced with a "mis-rated" route. This situation is my major motivation for re-leading all of the climbs here, and reporting my results in the more versatile medium of the internet, a medium that allows/ invites immediate response and input from other climbers in the joint effort of establishing a true consensus rating for each of the Ridgeline routes.

One of the major sources of mis-rating may actually be built into the system of putting up climbs -- most first ascencionists put up only those routes that are well within their own comfort level, so a lot of 5.7 to 5.9 routes are nailed by 5.11 or better climbers. I think it is sometimes difficult for a 5.11 leader to really judge whether a climb is a 5.7 or a 5.8 or even a 5.9 -- all three grades may simply feel "easy" to an advanced-level climber. I have often heard it said: "What does a 5.12 leader know about 5.7s?" I suppose there is a good deal of truth to the dictum that it takes a genuine 5.7 leader to "know" a 5.7!

But, with the printed guidebooks, the first ascencionists report their "best guesses" as "suggested difficulty ratings" for the new climbs that they have done. The guidebook authors, who cannot climb every new route, can only report these ratings with the general caveat that they are not confirmed, and climbers should expect wide variations of "actual" difficulty. Only later, largely by trial and error, does a truer, more valid consensus-rating develope. When a dozen or more leaders have registered their opinions on a given climb, we may still see some wide variations in the assigned difficulties, but we can at least average the returns and come close to an "absolute rating."

Another major problem, here at The Ridgeline, seems to be factual errors (in at least one of the guidebooks, see Christian's comments above). The Falcon Guide (as I recall it -- I've mislaid my copy and cannot confirm this yet!) has some of the climbs misplaced/ misnamed and most of them, in my opinion, mis-rated. Eric Fazio-Rhicard's latest edition, "Squeezing the Lemmon II," does have the correct sequence (as I know it) and the correct names of the routes, although I disagree with many of the "suggested" difficulty ratings he reports from the first ascent teams.

A third source of "mis-rating" may come from the fact that the Tucson scale is a particularly "tough" one, the 5.9s I led here in the 1980s seemed considerably harder than the 5.9s I experienced at Devil's Tower, or Eleven Mile Canyon near Colorado Springs. As climbing became more popular, and as Tucson's population exploded, many climbers used to "easier" scales have moved here, or visit here. I think a more "inter-regional" scale is now developing in Tucson, falling more into line with the Colorado and Wyoming difficulties -- but keep in mind that many of the "old-time" leaders (who are still active here) continue to use the tougher Tucson scale. As a general rule of thumb, you can probably count on most of the climbs done on Mount Lemmon as being a half or even a full decimal level harder than similar ratings elsewhere.*

But, if the local climbing community joins the effort here at Mountain Project, I think we can gradually establish a current "consensus rating" for each of these climbs, a consensus that will better reflect the true difficulties to be faced on these routes for the beginning and intermediate leaders. Perhaps this will cut the accident rate here?

_____________
  • Things could be worse: the original, isolated, 1960s rating system at Palisades South Dakota resulted in "Mirage" being called a 5.9, I swear it's a 5.11b!
By Desicon
Apr 6, 2006
If I am reading you correctly here, jbak, I think you make several good points: the original decision to climb does ultimately involve individual responsibility, and a certain amount of sound personal judgment. Those who have been climbing for some time soon realize just how subjective the assigned difficulties can be, and quickly come to understand the limitations of the guidebook ratings. But those new to the sport often have to learn this lesson through trial and error, sometimes through the "school of hard knocks."

Unfortunately, as Christian puts it, the accident statistics for The Ridgeline point to a particular problem here, one that I think the community can address. Many of the beginning and intermediate climbers I have spoken to at The Ridegeline admit that they often put more faith in the book ratings than they should, and start an ascent thinking that if it is listed as a 5.7, it will give them a 5.7 (or close to it) experience. I would like to see at least a few climbing areas on Mount Lemmon given a good set of "consensus ratings," especially those high traffic areas where less experienced climbers are likely to congregrate. If we can establish a more valid set of ratings for these climbs, and publish the results in a flexible response format like the internet, does it do any harm?

Regarding Tucson ratings: This matter would be another issue best decided by a poll. I think you are correct in seeing the later Tucson climbs as being more in line with an inter-regional standard scale, but I'll stick with my original opinion that the 5.10 classics on Chimmney Rock are about a half decimal harder than the 5.10s I led back in the 70/ 80s in Colorado and Wyoming.

Thanks for the input, jbak!
By Forest Hill
From: Denver, CO
Apr 19, 2006
Hey, Folks. Sorry for the administrative backlog here. I've removed the comments that were unrelated to the routes here.
By Christian
From: Casa do Cacete
Oct 30, 2006
Just would like to add that the new guidebook "Weekend Rock: Arizona" has a good description and photos of the Ridgeline routes..But most importantly, my buddy Tim from L.A. is pictured climbing "Glowing in the Distance"..They should have belaying credits in the pictures too haha just kidding..It's a given they'd choose the 5.12 climber's picture over my lame as* on the same route..haha
By Brian Shon
Oct 21, 2007
I just recently discovered this site and much to my surprise found a reference in a post by Desicon to an undocumented climb, "Year of the Dragon", that I put up several years ago. Since the climb is no longer unknown, I am adding it as a new climb to the database with additional details. The nature of the climb is quite different from the other routes at Ridgeline. The approach is quite problematic and I would not recommend the climb for unexperienced leaders trying to bag their 1st 5.10.
By cml
Sep 24, 2009
I made my first trip to mt lemmon this past week, and went to Ridgeline. Those are some fun little climbs. I did have one small issue - several of the bolts wiggled (not a lot, but enough to notice when i clipped). and i dont mean the the outside nuts were loose, but the bolt itself. i dont have that much familiarity with bolt placement, but as far as i know this is usually a bad thing. if these are expansion bolts and this is just the outer rock eroding around the outside of the hole, i suppose the inner part where the expansion piece is could still be totally safe, but i figured i would ask. anybody have any input?
By emmet
Apr 27, 2010
I was climbing in the area today and saw something odd and new (to me). Two of the largest trees at the base of the rock have fallen over. The beautiful shade for the left half of the crag is gone. I suspect this occurred during the winter, but perhaps sooner? Given the direction and location of the fallen tree(s) it is possible the trunk scrapped along the rock as it fell. Perhaps the previous post about loose bolts is evidence of this (although much earlier)? I only did routes on the right side and I don't know the location of the reportedly loose bolts. Does anyone know when the trees came down? Are the bolts just showing heavy traffic?
By 1Eric Rhicard
Apr 27, 2010
Emmet, not sure what you mean when you say loose bolts. Bolts are rarely loose. Nuts become loose which allows the hangers to spin. Not a bad idea to carry a wrench so the next person up can tighten them down. A short 6-8 inch long wrench with 9/16 on one end and 7/16 on the other works great. 9/16 is more common. A small adjustable works too. Hard to over torque with a small wrench. Snug it down then a couple of more cranks and it is good. A small tube of clear silicon caulk can be used to dab on the end of the threads to help keep them from loosening up again.
By Steve Pulver
From: Williston, ND
Apr 28, 2010
too bad about the trees.. last time I was there, sometime in the fall, they were still standing.
By Adam Block
From: Tucson, AZ
May 14, 2010
I was there about 6 weeks ago and the trees were down, a bunch on the approach as well. I took a picture to post up here but forgot, I'll do that now.

I don't recall any spinners there but like EFR I carry a 9/16 with me when I climb which I think is always a good idea.
By ryan dillon
From: Tucson, AZ.
May 16, 2010
You would have to climb the routes to recall the spinners.
By Adam Block
From: Tucson, AZ
May 21, 2010
I do actually climb however I have way less balls than most sport climbers so I always chicken out when there are a bunch of dogs running around (knocking my kids down), an ipod playing Akon (Bob Marley), a 1/2oz of Mary Jane (Totally support the legalization of weed but I don't like mixing that and/or drinking with climbing and or shooting guns/driving), people practicing the no handed "it's a gri gri" belay and so on. The down/up side (perspective) being all of my climbing partners are now girls (due to the lack of ego which life has already beaten out of me) so I at least get to have the balls though I still sometimes question if theirs are bigger.

The down/up side (again, perspective) is nobody uses me as an example about getting dropped (nobody in mind here as it's happened MANY times), 3 people multipitch escapades with one rope (people in mind here) or having to hang from single bolts for hours at a time (nobody in mind here, just heard people laughing about it). I just get poked fun at for crying myself to sleep with fears of heights, a stuffed animal in one hand and Rock Warriors Way in the other.

Edited with the () comments 7-4-2010 to clear up somebody being upset because they would never listen to Akon :)
By CALEB ANDERSON
May 21, 2010
Adam....really dude...you lost atta boys on this one.....I would watch what you say because some of us know exactly who you are references....I.E. not cool man.
By MrFungus
May 16, 2011
5-13-11
I was camping at spencer canyon campground and looking for climbing. Looked up ridgeline and in my search up the wash/"trail" that I obviously missed I came to the very top of the ridge where I found a rock formation without sport bolts. We almost left but scrambled up top to survey the land and found that there were bolts on top. We clipped in, rapeled and climbed for a few hours but left without knowing where we were. Upon coming home I've tried to research the area and am unable to find ANYTHING on where we were. I've posted a pic up top with what I think is ridgeline and where we were climbing. If anyone has any info on the area I would love to hear it.

THANKS!
By Christian
From: Casa do Cacete
May 16, 2011
Could be Boneyard, Tombstone area of the Boneyard, Sky Valley? Or just rappel bolts somebody drilled to scope out new lines..Tons of rock in that area.
By Jimbo
May 16, 2011
You can't even see the Ridgeline or Bone yard from Spencer Canyon. The campground is past the Ridgeline parking and on the other side of the road. Your racing Tucson at the campground and the Ridgeline faces the San Pedro Valley.
Didn't see the photo you said you posted either.
By Jimbo
May 16, 2011
OK you posted the topo map not a photo. My bad.
Assuming the area you have marked in red is the parking for Ridgeline. (a big quarried road cut)IF you go up the creek bed slabs from the parking area to the saddle and hang a right that's the Bone Yard. If you go left that's the Ridgeline.
From your map you've got the two reversed.
By MrFungus
May 16, 2011
The red cut out next to the road is the old landslide scar adjacent to the wash. Boneyard is to the right (southeast) of the marked area I labeled as ridgeline which is correct. The area we were at is south facing and at the very top of the ridge overlooking the valley to the north. It has 10 bolts set up for top roping. But thanks for your input...
By jbak
May 16, 2011
When Tony was developing the Ridgeline, he mentioned that there was some rock up there. IIRC he described it as a bouldering area. I was gonna go look at it, but never did. The bolts could be his or... who knows. There are stray bolts on top of a LOT of crags around Tucson. I have found them in some surprising places.
By MrFungus
May 16, 2011
Thanks JBAK, Im new to the area and since so much of Lemmon is described I was surprised I didn't read anything. Thought some locals could shed some light. Its a fun, relatively simple crag with most around 45 feet. Fun routes with great views (as with most in the area)
By Joe Cayer
From: Mesa, Az
Jul 13, 2012
Can anyone tell me what the route to the left of Glowing In The Distance is? It shares the first bolt with Glowing but goes left up the face. Easy climbing to the first 2 bolts then thin climbing for the next 3 bolts.
By 1Eric Rhicard
Jul 13, 2012
Joe there is a new route on the right end of the wall which may be why you are confused. I think it shares the first two bolts of Glowing then goes right. You should be able to tell that the bolts are new. Probably gray with speckles. Two new ones at the left end as well.
By Joe Cayer
From: Mesa, Az
Jul 14, 2012
I'm probably completely lost. At the far right end of the wall, there are 2 routes that go up a short chute to the first bolt which they share. One route goes to the right exposing some great views from the crag. The other goes slightly left up the face. The left route felt slightly more technical than the right to me. I didn't have any beta for the area, so we were just pointing and shooting... I thought both of these were really good routes.