Ada Urist at the base of LaCholla Jackson
Shelf Road features limestone sport climbs, mostly ranging from 5.9 to 5.12, with a few easier routes. Most climbs have small edges and crimps on near-vertical rock.
Several cliffs comprise the Shelf Road area: the Dark Side, the Bank, the Contest Wall, and Shelf Road’s newest area, Cactus Cliffs. Cactus Cliffs face south with sunny alcoves that shelter climbers from occasionally bitter winds. Even on a cool day, routes in the sun can feel blistering hot.
Alexi’s Climb 5.5 ***
One of the easiest routes at Shelf Road, Alexi’s Climb is at Cactus Cliffs. Once you reach the old parking lot, follow the trail east for about 5 minutes until you see a S/SE facing alcove on the left. Stone steps lead up to a flat area in front of an easy slab. Alexi’s Climb follows the bolts along the left.
From the spacious ledge atop Alexi’s Climb, I taught my son how to rappel and how to feed the rope through the anchors. Tristan led the climb and then belayed me up to the ledge. While I watched, he fed the rope through the anchor and set up the rappel.
Ada playing in the natural sandbox at Shelf Road