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• Answer on front cover.

cracks in the southwest?

• Where can you climb unique sandstone sport routes and

the climbs?

• Where can you go if you don’t want to hike up a hill to get to

well as bouldering within 5 minutes of the parking lot?

• Where can you access over 70 lead and top rope routes as

• Where can you take the family to climb?

• Where can you climb year round (most of the time)?

• Where can you climb when the National Forests are closed?

M e x i c o


Climbing Guide

N e w

Mentmore G a l l u p

“New Side”

“Old Side”


19-20 21-22 23 23

10 11 12 12-13 13-14 14-15 14-15 15-17

3 5 5 5 7

Cover Photo: Marvin on DDM Photo by: Amy Bertolaccini Back Photo: Scott on a Boulder Photo by: Amy Bertolaccini






Table of contents

The local climbing community of Gallup, New Mexico and its surrounding communities welcome you to some of the most accessible, plentiful, and unique sandstone climbing available year round. Mentmore is a special place to the Gallup climbing community, we have worked hard to make great climbing available here, we hope you enjoy it!


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New bolt will be added to the Climb Crescent Moon to make it a Non-dangerous climb - I received enough complaints to make this change.

New route in the CORRIDOR WALL (New Side): Twig and No Berries - 5.10b. 4 bolt (or is it 3) located between routes 2 and three on the corridor wall. Anchors are set way back so bring some long slings. Good steep climbing kind of balancy.

CORRECTIONS/UPDATES (12-27-08) WALL OF DREAMS (NEW SIDE: Route # 15 has changed and is now Turquoise Classic Thunder - 11b. Route was lead by Alexander Nees. Great climb well protected with gear (cams mostly)- a little loose at the bottom so be careful.

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Gallup, NM is located in the Northwest corner of New Mexico right on Interstate 40. The Mentmore Climbing area is located just off of I-40 if exiting at exit 16. Gallup is 2 hours west of Albuquerque, NM and 2-1/2 hours east of Flagstaff, AZ. For those people making trips to the west from the east (or from the west to the east) it is a great spot, conveniently located, to stop and spend a day or two climbing/bouldering.


Mentmore is a small group of sandstone outcroppings with fragile holds. The climbing here is fairly unique, some routes have pockets, slopers, edges, and friction routes. The routes change as holds break due to many factors. This rock is NOT granite and must not be climbed like it is. The climbing must be


History of the Mentmore climbing area: The Mentmore Climbing Area was discovered in 1997 by a local climber/biker while driving to avoid a train stopped on the tracks. Since that fateful day, many local Gallup climbers have chipped in to make this local crag a great place to come and pull down. Access was at first tenuous but the climbing community had developed good relations with the landowner and access was granted to the Old (East) Side. Over the years since 1997 access has been legal/illegal until the City of Gallup purchased the land to keep the climbing area open to climbing. Through this development the Classic or Old Mentmore area was created and documented in a guidebook “THE MENTMORE CLIMBING GUIDE”. Since 2002 the area has undergone quite a facelift. The City of Gallup purchased the climbing area to help with the quality of life in Gallup in 2004. (I don’t know of any city to purchase a climbing area in jeopardy, this may be a first.) Since the purchase, the city has installed a fence, parking lot (which many climbers refuse to use), a bridge to the Old side, and an informational kiosk, hopefully, an outhouse is in the plans. The original Guidebook published by Michael Laplante had more routes listed than I am willing to add to this guidebook because of the access to certain areas that are not officially part of the climbing area. The efforts by many are a strong testament to what a community can do, reclaiming a dump and turning it into a recreational area. There is still a fair amount of work to be done; continued clean-ups (breaking the dumping habit), eliminating firing of firearms (not permitted in the recreational area), and of course trail building and route development. ONE MUST BE CAREFUL WHEN CLIMBING AND HIKING IN THE MENTMORE CLIMBING AREA. WHEN LEARNING TO CLIMB SEEK INSTRUCTION AND GUIDANCE FROM A CERTIFIED GUIDE OR TAKE A CLIMBING COURSE AND CLIMB SAFELY.


A space is left on the outside margin of every page to make notes on the routes and for any other uses, phone numbers, dates routes climbed, etc.

Route symbols: x bolt xx anchor | (black line) is the route up the rock

Guide tools

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This is an area in which I can thank all the people (well almost all) who helped me make this happen. First, on behalf of the climbers who use Mentmore I would like to thank the City of Gallup and the Mayor, Bob Rosebrough; Representative Patricia Lundstrom; and Adventure Gallup for acquiring the climbing area and keeping Gallup Climbing open to climbing. I would also like to thank the Esparza family for recognizing the importance of keeping a resource like this open to the community by breaking up and selling the land to the city. Thanks to Joe Wickert for discovering thearea. Michael LaPlante for all the work on the old side and really pushing route development. The original climbers of Mentmore, Don T, Karl and Mary Lynn H., Pat E., Sue L, Craig L., Marvin S., Jim S. and all the others that I have forgotten that kept the area clean and forged the friendship to keep access open. A big thanks to all the organizations who helped with the cleanups and donations (monetary, equipment and time). NIYLP, Juvenile Probation,YCC, Kokopelli Adventures, Rehoboth Christian School, Stronghold Church, New Mexico Mountaineering Club, and the many Vista volunteers. Thanks again to Michael LaPlante who wrote the first guidebook, where I got a large amount of information from, for keeping such detailed route development information. Questions, comments or issues about Mentmore can be sent to me at


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6 MENTMORE climbing guide

• Take all your trash (and other’s) when you leave. • Park only in the parking lot built and provided by the City of Gallup. It only increases the approach time by two minutes or so. • Stick to established trails • Wait 24 hours to climb after it has rained, the rock is fragile after being wetted.


One of Gallup’s advantages is the weather allows climbers to hit the stone just about anytime of the year. It does snow here, but a few days later temperatures can be into the sixties and the snow will be gone- in January. Springs are windy, and the monsoons of July and August can leave the rock too wet/ damp to climb without ruining the routes- time better suited to hikes and bikes. SINCE THE ROCK IS A POROUS SANDSTONE—WEAK WHEN WET— PLEASE LET THE ROCK DRY OUT FOR A DAY OR TWO AFTER A GOOD RAIN. The New Side is a good summer crag, in the shade, until about 2:00pm. The Old Side is a great winter crag getting all day sun somewhere on the wall, although shade can be found in early morning and evening.


A specific issue needing to be addressed is establishing new routes, and how to avoid the ire and pain of angering locals with heavy-handed bolting approaches; you’ve been warned! • Check with local activists before drilling anything. • Leave the East Side alone, it has enough bolts. • If bolting, use only 1/2 x 4 inch sleeve bolts or bigger, no studs or pound-ins. • Don’t silicone bolts, it HOLDS IN water, porous rock needs to dry out • If you bolt, leave the macho crap at home and adequately protect the route • If you chip or crowbar to suit a route to your taste, tar and feathers are in your future. (of course make it safe, but if you need to remove a caboose size boulder—maybe the route doesn’t need to be done).


a style of finesse and body position rather than brute pulling —please preserve the routes as best as possible. Some routes have loose holds and fragile flakes that have existed for years and will continue to survive if pulled on correctly. All routes have easily accessible top rope anchors and plenty of rap stations for easy anchor set up cleanup. Most top ropes require short (under 4’) slings. Most of the routes here at Mentmore are moderate routes ranging from 5.6 to 5.12. The majority seem to fall in the 5.10 range.



old side parking lot


New Side


new side

exit 16

The Program Wall contains routes parking lot especially good for beginners to the sport. It is used by local guides to help students learn Program Wall the climbing arts.

Old (east) Side

Hwy 66

Exiting 1-40 at exit 16 head west on Route 66 past T&A Travel Plaza. The first road on the right is Mentmore Road (follow signs) head down this road across the railroad tracks. Keep heading North across the bridge and then take a left on the paved road. Go up a hill and down a hill, at the base of the hill is a sharp right turn, go straight throught the fence onto a dirt road heading to the parking lot. Please park in the provided parking lot.

How to get there

This guide is an attempt to better allow vertical adventurers access to the local cliffs and superb sport/trad routes. “Ownership” of these crags is and should be with local climbers, who have invested their time and effort to make it a fun , “safe” climbing experience. Anybody who wants to contribute to the crag’s development is welcome, but check with a local FIRST! DISCLAIMER: CLIMBING CAN BE DANGEROUS, IF YOU CHOOSE TO CLIMB, TAKE PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOUR ACTIONS. GET TRAINING IN ROPECRAFT FROM A TRAINED PROFESSIONAL SUCH AS KOKOPELLI ADVENTURES - 505-870-0727.

• If you vandalize the rock we will kick your ass! • Please do not add to the existing rock art.

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County Road 1/ Mentmore Road

Jim Smith, owner of Kokopelli Adventures, climbing ‘Looking for Daniel’ Old Side. Photo: Scott



The bulk of the information for this book was gratefully aquired from Michael LaPlante’s first and second editions of Mentmore Climbing Mecca which was the first guidebook for the area. Scott Halliday, the self appointed caretaker of mentmore, contributed route information for much of the ‘new side’ routes and oversaw the creation of this new edition. Craig Robinson shot a lot of photos for this new edition and designed its look.

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Open Face Wall

19. EGO TERRORISTS – 5.9. Face climb up the left side of the arête in the Balcony area. 7 bolts – sport. FA S.H. 20. 10 ‘TIL 8 – 5.9. Face climb up the right side of the arête of the previous route. Steep beginning moves on big holds leads to 5.8 cruising. 7 bolts – Sport. FA S.H. 21. PURCHASE AGREEMENT – 5.8. Easy face climbing just right of the “10 ‘til 8”. Access route from the balcony. Nice face climbing on big holds until… 5 bolts – sport. FA S.H. 22. BETTY’S FRIEND – 5.9. Thin face climbing just left of the black water streak. – 3 bolts – sport. FA S.H. 23. BETTY’S REDEMPTION – 5.8. Betty got off the belay seat and established this route. Excellent face climbing just to the right of the black streak. 5 bolts – sport. FA S.H. 24. CROW’S FEET – 5.10B. Located between the Balcony area and the Open Face Wall is a large roof. This climb is just to the right of this large roof. Nice face climbing leading to the top. 5 bolts – sport. FA S.H. 25. OPIE ATE FOR THE MASSES – Located just to the left of a small pinon tree, nice easy face climbing on nice holds. 5.7 – 4 bolts – sport. FA S.H. 26. NOTHING BUT MAYO – Located on the other side of the tree just left of a nice 5.6 crack. This climb is a beautiful cruise. 5.7 – 3 bolts – sport. FA J.S. 27. CRACK – Great easy crack with excellent gear placements. 5.6 – Gear – rap anchors. 28. TUNA MELT – Located just right of the 5.6 crack. Nice climb up big holds – don’t melt in between the bolts. 5.7 – 3 bolts - sport. FA S.H.

25 27

26 28


Rob’s an A Health Wall Benny Silva Wall

The Balcony


big blobs of love

access to the top parking lot

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Sport Homo Wall Slab Wall

East Side of Mentmore

Muey Infermo Joe’s Crack Jabba the Hut as seen from the parking lot There are many toprope anchors easily accesible and thier routes are not included in this guidebook. Moderate/easy bouldering is also plentiful in this area.

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Health Wall Benny Silva Wall Slab Wall

approach to the top big blobs of love Muey Infermo

Amy cranking one arm pull ups on Jabba the Hut

New Mexico Climbing Club on the Health Wall.


22 MENTMORE climbing guide

23 22

24 14 1720 21

10 1112 13

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The Balcony Wall of Dreams



9. REACH AROUND - 5.10C. Just west of the monolith is an arete up on the hill. Thin feet & reachymoves 5 bolts on this sport route just sround the monolith. FA S.H. 10. FLAKES DON’T FAIL ME NOW –5.10B. 50’ west of the monolith is the Wall of Dreams, this route starts on the obvious flake and moves to the left to the flake system. 7 bolts – 2 bolt anchor. FA S.H. 11. SINK OR SWIM – 5.11C. Just to the west of the large offwidth flake. Nice continuous face climbing. 7 bolts – rap anchors. FA S.H. 12. CRACK – 5.9. Fine lieback offwidth crack climb. Gear – Trad. 13. ON THE EDGE – 5.9. Fine face climbing that moves up the arête. 5.11b – 5 bolts – sport. FA S.H. 14. STOLEN DREAMS – 5.11A. Located in the middle of the wall just left of a finger/hand crack. Face climb that was stolen from another climber and bolted. Great climbing with some long reaches. 5 bolts – sport. FA S.H. 15. FINGER CRACK – 5.11B. Great crack- has top-rope anchor. Gear – Trad. FA S.H. 16. CHAI TEA-5.10B. Good morning climbing in the summer time on the left side of a detached flake. 5 Bolts + Rap anchors FA S.H. 17. TIME BANDITS-5.10C. Face climb on the right hand side of the detached flake. 5 Bolts + Rap Anchors. FA S.H. 18. CRESCENT MOON-5.10D. Use the loose flakes and the great arch to get to the crux. Watch out and stay away from the enormous loose rock on the top-left. 5 Bolts+2 Bolt anchor. FA S.H.

Wall of Dreams


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Listed west to east by area


1. MR. MOTO – 5.8. Jagged crack route next to the road, near the barbed wire. Gear FA Pat E. 2. I’M JUST A LITTLE HOPPY BUNNY – 10B. Next to the barbed wire by the crag entrance, climb the seam up past the wide crack and bit of a roof with big jugs higher. FA Micheal L. 12/99.

East Side Lead Routes


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Find this wall on the left side of the east complex

On Monolith

7. CAMERON’S COMING – 5.10C. Right side route. Great steep face climbing on the monolith route tends to the left. – 8 bolts – 2 bolt anchor (use Dumping Beauty anchors to rap route.) FA M.S. 8. DUMPING BEAUTY – 5.10C. Left route follows a right tending flake system. Fine awkward climbing. 7 bolts – 2 bolt rap anchors.


the monolith. Gear.



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3. REDEMPTION – 10D/11A. Chicken wing your way up to the ledge, place several psychological pieces of pro, and pull through the roof. Don’t fall. FA Michael L. 3/00. 4. THE DEMON WITHIN – 12A. Short but hard bouldery problem on the left side of a thin crack. If you can get to the second bolt, just grovel to the anchors on the ledge. FA Michael 3/99. 5. DUUUUUUUUDE!! – 10D. Six clips up to the steep crack just right of ‘Demon”; watch the third clip, decking out is possible. FA 11/98 Michael L. 6. LEANING SLAB – 5.3. Big slab boulder leaning just west of ‘Jabba the Hut’ formation. Bolted. FA Mike L.


Sport Homo Wall



Routes behind and on the monolitth 5. BUTTER TOES - 5.10C. Just inside the Corridor on the main wall. Easy climbing leads to the crux. 4 bolts – rap anchors. FA S.H. 6. FIVE O’CLOCK SHADOW – 5.10A. Face climbing leads to a Flake. 5 bolts – rap anchors. FA S.H.



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1. STRANDED – 5.9. The First bolted climb as you enter the Corridor area. Nice climb with rap chains at the top. 4 bolts- rap anchors. FA S.H. 2. UNCONSTRAINED – 5.10A. Just after the gulley is another bolted sport route. Nice route – long anchors needed. 4 bolts-2 bolt anchor. FA S.H. 3. HIGH STEPPING – 5.10B. 3-bolt route just left of an obvious crack. Move up past some improbable moves involving high steps. Long anchors needed. 3 bolts –2 bolt anchor. FA S.H. 4. BLOOD DONATION STATION - 5.9. Obviuos ofwidth crack on main wall behind

East Corridor Wall






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10 8 9 Slab Wall

14. UNNAMED - 10B. Prominent crack the exits left of the roof. Done ground up. Gear. FA Karl H. 15. MUY ENFERMO – 10C. Seven clips in the middle of the swallow wall. If you don’t speak Spanish it means ‘large cheesy burrito.’ Bolts are tall friendly. FA Michale L. 98 16. STUCK IN PUBERTY _ 11B. Climb the steep west side of the arete at the right end of the wall, trying not to explode your noggin’ on the boulder behind you. Don’t grab right of the arete. Above the fourth bolt, turn the arete and finish on the D.D. M. FA 6/99 Michael.

Tall steep wall behind the slabby monolith in the middle of the crag: it has swallow nests up high.

The Swallow Wall

7. SKIN OF MY SHIN – 10D. Just behind the freestanding boulder near Jabba, start up a right facing arete below a roof; make a heinous clip, and pull the roof to glory. FA Scott H. 10/00. 8. PILLOW ROOF – 11A/B. Just east of ‘Shin’, start on a shallow arete beneath the huge roof, and tends right to the base of the roof. Move out the right edge of the roof, and throw for the horn; harder variation out the lip not yet complete. FA on 10/00 Michael L. 9. NO IDENTITY BUT A TITLE – 10C/D. Follow the shallow arete up to the steep bulge above, use the pockets. FA Michael L. 11/99. 10. LOOKING FOR DANIEL – 5.8. Bolted line on slabby face. FA 98 Daniel. 11. PSEUDO-SUPERCRACK – 5.9+. There is a wide chocolate colored patina face in the middle of this formation, just behind the monolith. Start inside the cave, crank over on good hand jams, and pull hard to the easier stuff above. Bring extra number one Camalots. FA1/00 Micheal L. 12. STICK YOUR FIST HERE – 5.8. Twenty-five feet west of the swallow community is an off width crack on the left edge of a huge detached flake. It is big, so load extra 4-5 Camalots. Occasional slots allow for small cam placements. FA Michale 1/00. 13. HOOKYMASTER GENERAL – 10B. Worm your way up the big horizontals, funk your way through the head wall, and get ready to pull hard for the steep overhanging finish. FA 2/00 Michael.

Just east of ‘Jabba the Hut’, partially behind the monolith. Tons of moderate potential.

▲ 13

Slab Wall ▲ 18 19

▲▲ 20 21 ▲ 17 ▲ 16

22 23 21 12

▲ 8 Corridor

27 25 26 28 ▲

19 ▲ 7

Big double bulge east of the ‘Mayan Rock.’ Scott has done some high-ball boulder problems here, no leadable routes to date.

The Balcony


4 East Corridor Wall 5

▲ Blockhead

Menmore New Side Routes

Detail of area between Wallof dreams and the Balcony

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Wall of Dreams

Jabba the Hut


High Stepping Flakes Don’t fail me now

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▲ 3

▲ ▲ 2 1 trail to top

Open Face Wall Open Face Wall

24 ▲The balcony 20

▲ ▲ 14 15 ▲ ▲▲ 10 1113 ▲ 9

The Monolith

The Corridor

▲ ▲

Betty’s Redemption

▲▲▲ ▲

30 31 32


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34 35 36 37 38

Health Wall



19 20

21 xx

22 23 Bivy Wall

Benny Silva Wall

Swallow, Bivy, and Benny Silva Walls

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15 1617 18 Swallow Wall

Benny Silva Wall

Health Wall

22 23 24 25 26 27

19. FETIS ENVY – 5.8. Off-width in the west corner of the wall. Gear. FA 3/98. 20. RAZORS FORM HEAVEN – 10D. Six feet east of ‘Fetis.’ 21. JOE’S CRACK – 5.8. Prominent hand crack in the center of the wall. This crack has the reputation for being dirty. Gear. FA Craig. 22. FROM CZ WITH LOVE – 11B/C. Twenty feet east of ‘Joe’s crack’ is a pimpy set of shallow horizontals heading up to a small roof. Slice and dice your tips down low, pull the roof, and cruise to the top! Joins 28 near the top. 23. RAPTURE – 5.10A. Just east of ‘Joe’s crack’ is this reachy bolted line over a bulge. FA 12/99. 24. BIG BLOBS OF LOVE – 5.8. Just as the wall turns the east corner, look for a line of 5 bolts. FA Dan T. 25. TRES AMIGOS – 10B TO 11A. From the face right of the sharp arête begin any of these three routes down low on the bouldery start. Once on the ledge, move left, right or center of the bolt line. You can actually get three distinct climbs withoutsharing many handholds. All three are punpy.

It has his name and portrait emblazoned in the middle.

Benny Silva Wall


26. MAY CAUSE HEALTH PROBLEMS – 5.9+. Finger crack in the corner, on the west end. Gear. FA 97. 27. NOT SUITABLE FOR THE PREGNANT WOMEN – 11A. Bolt line 10ft. east of ‘Health problems.’ If you take a big fall on this one, your doing something wrong. FA pat E. 28. MAGNUM CUM MASOCHIST – 10A. First bolt line east of ‘Not Suitable.” Crank your way onto the ledge, finding a hidden bolt, and continue up to the mildly perplexing crux that can be a bit slopey. Hit the jugs to the summit! FA 1/00. 29. THE INNER SANCTUM – 10A. Six-bolt line west of the obvious ‘Why Crack.’ You to, may find that inner peace. This is the first line bolted at Mentmore! 30. REGGAE’S ROUTE –10C/D. Just left of the obvious hand crack, begin this line directly below one of the few lines of huecos at Mentmore, save some juice for the ‘engaged’ finish! FA Marvin on 4/00. 31. THE WHY CRACK – 5.7B/C. Jumbly hand crack at the eastern end of the wall. The first route done at this crag; in sub freezing weather. Gear. FA winter 97. 32. PHALANX – 10A. Splitter finger crack at the east end of the wall. FA stolen by Craig. 33. SMEGMA DELUXE – 11D. Tastes killer with green chile and extra cheese. Well bolted line east of the obvious phalanx finger crack. FA 5/98. 34. PILED HIGH – 5.9+ R/X. Runout roof/crack just east of 21. Head start scary finish. FA 5/98. 35. PEANUTS – 10A X. Climb out big roof 3 meters east of ‘Piled High.’ Bring small nuts and big cahones. FA Scott 5/98. 36. ROB’S AN A – 11B. Same start as “Peanuts” but head right to the bolts instead of straight up as in “Peanuts.” Great route, 4 bolts. FA Rob? 37. ROB’S A B – 12ISH. 38. ROB’S A C – 11 ISH.

Health Wall

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17.D.D.M. (DANKA DANIELLA, AND MICHAELA) – 10B. Climb the juggy south side of the arete for 6 fun clips. FA 12/98. 18. MG3 (MY THREE GIRLS) – 11C. Crank and try to clip your way up this tremendous edge route, keep your mind healthy for the top! FA 10/99.

16 Rather long, straight wall at the eastern end of the crag.


Just east of ‘The Swallow Wall,’ its got ledges your could sleep on.

The Bivy Wall

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Mentmore Rock Climbing Area Guide  

a guide to our local crag in Gallup - "New Mexico's Adventure Capital".