West Elden is one of Flagstaff’s oldest climbing areas. This is predominantly a trad climbing area which has helped to preserve it’s clean and wild feel. West Elden is located at almost 8000 feet so climbing there is a great way to escape the heat during the summer. The rock is called Dacite, which is volcanic and climbs much like a highly textured granite. This climbing area is an awesome place to try climbing for the first time, work on intermediate to advanced trad skills or have a family or group outing. Free camping can be found off Schultz Pass Rd or further north on Hwy 180 in the National Forest. Due to West Eldens’ close proximity to downtown Flagstaff, we are able to offer half and full day trips.
Drive north out of Flagstaff on Highway 180 for about three miles. After passing the Museum of Northern Arizona (which is on the left) look for a right hand turn on to Shultz Pass Road. Take this turn and drive about 1/4 mile to a fork in the road. The left fork continues on Shultz Pass Road while the right is Mount Elden Lookout Road. Take the right fork and drive about three and a half miles to the parking area. Approximately two miles of this drive is on pavement and one and a half miles on a well-maintained dirt road. The parking for West Elden is in two pullouts on the right hand side of the road. There is a small kiosk at the first pullout marking the Oldham Trailhead. If the gate at the beginning of the dirt road is closed, park at the gate and walk 1.1 miles up the dirt road to the climbing area. Once at the parking area, the cliff runs parallel to the road on the east side of the road. Several very short trails lead up to the cliff.
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