There are more than a dozen unique locations
to enjoy technical rock climbing in Taos County.
The Rio Grande Gorge features several rock climbing locations with panoramic desert vistas. The Sangre de Cristo (blood of Christ) mountain range features sweeping thousand-foot granite cliffs and forested hiking trails along rivers and streams. Twenty-seven miles west of town, Tres Piedras (three rocks) has some of the most pristine, yet easily accessible (a flat one minute walk from the car) beginner climbing terrain in the country. This is a great location to bring a family or larger group to experience the basics of this intriguing sport. For a more secluded destination venture up to the Questa Dome wilderness and enjoy bouldering on granite blocks or classic multi-pitch routes up an 800-foot granite dome. Find sustained, splitter cracks in a remote setting in the Wild Rivers Area of the Rio Grande Gorge.
Taos Rock guidebook author Jay Foley’s company, Mountain Skills Rock Guides, can provide all the equipment, teach the basics to someone who has never climbed, get a group or family out for a once-in-a-lifetime memorable outdoor adventure, or guide the most experienced climber up the area’s longest, most difficult cliffs. Find out more at 575-776-2222.
Taos also has more than one outdoor climbing store to help you get started. Check out the Taos Mountain Outfitters located on Taos Plaza. There you can get advice, purchase area maps, guidebooks, outdoor gear, and check out the latest fashion for your next Taos outdoor adventure. The Mudd N Flood shop, on Bent Street, also offers some of these services.
Taos Rock Climbing in the Media
Taos rock climbing and Mountain Skills Rock Guides are the September 2009 featured cover story in the international publication, Climbing Magazine. The cover headline, printed over a color photo of pristine granite soaring above the Taos Mesa, reads “Taos, Believe It! Northern New Mexico’s World-Class Climbing.” No doubt Native Americans and other early inhabitants have been scaling low angle area cliffs for centuries. Taos technical rock climbing dates back to the early seventies when some of the major mountain cliffs were conquered safely with ropes and harnesses. Despite these early ascents, Taos rock climbing has enjoyed years of obscurity. However, with the appearance of Taos on the cover of Falcon Press’ 1996 Guide to Rock Climbing in Texas and New Mexico, the 2005 release of Jay Foley’s Taos Rock (Sharp End Press), the area’s first comprehensive guidebook, and Climbing Magazine’s editor in chief’s cover article “documenting this recently exploding climbing Mecca,” Taos rock climbing is no longer a secret.
Information provided by Taos News