Pet Wall (Man's Best Friend Area), 5.7-5.9

Pet Wall (Man's Best Friend Area), 5.7-5.9

Page Type Page Type: Mountain/Rock
Location Lat/Lon: 36.16307°N / 115.4491°W
Activities Activities: Trad Climbing, Sport Climbing
Seasons Season: Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter
Additional Information Elevation: 4350 ft / 1326 m
Sign the Climber's Log


Although the routes covered here are included in the Front Corridor on MP, the Handren guide lists them under the Man's Best Friend area, which makes more sense given how one accesses them vs. how one accesses the Front Corridor.

Pet Wall is the name used by the guys who did the first climbs here. More on that below.
This wall is the site of the extremely popular (and fun) Man's Best Friend, a two-pitch 5.7 sport route that seems to almost always have one party on it and one or two other parties waiting. Get there early if you hate standing around.
In addition, there are a 5.8+ trad route, a 5.8 sport route that the developer calls 5.9 on MP (and I agree it is stiff for a sport 5.8), and a 5.7 trad route (5.7+ PG to the FAist). The trad routes don't seem to get much traffic since this wall primarily attracts sport climbers. Interestingly, the FAists/developers of those routes have different names for them and for this wall (they call it The Pet Wall); accordingly, the routes section will list the MP/Handren name as the primary since that is what most will see but will include the other names in parentheses.
With a west-facing aspect and an approach of about five minutes, this crag is perfect for summer mornings and winter afternoons.


Getting There

From the entrance to the Scenic Drive, go about 3 miles to the Sandstone Quarry parking area and trailhead. The route is visible from the road, but how to get to it is not immediately obvious. Using pictures on this page, find the white slab and scramble up it. Rappel down off anchors that are not immediately apparent, or scramble down just next to the rappel line (Class 4). There is an easier approach from the right, but it is hard to describe. Try to find it; if you can't; use the tried-and-true way.

Rappel In
Rappel In
One Way Back Up
One Way Back Up
Another Way Back Up
Another Way Back Up


Man's Best Friend starts from the base of the scramble/rappel. All the others start from a slab to the left, and getting there requires some Class 3/4 scrambling.

Shawn Neal and Corey Cogley first climbed all these routes and installed anchors. Mark Limage bolted Man's Best Friend on what he thought was the FA until he reached the anchors. All of this is recounted by Shawn Neal in the comments section of the MP page for Man's Best Friend. I do not know who gave the routes the other names, or why.
From left to right:
  • Crusty Creatures, 5.7 (Paislie Pockets, 5.7+ PG)-- Follow four bolts up a slab and over a small bulge and gain a right-facing corner. The crux is moving along and protecting a horizontal that connects the right-facing to a left-facing one. Use something like a #3 or #4 or a large hex for the crux section, though the rock quality in it is not good. 90'
  • Sea Anemone, 5.8 (Riley's Revenge, 5.9)-- Sport route. 8 bolts. More 5.9 than 5.8, in my opinion. 100'
  • Mollie's Malecone, 5.8+-- Not in the Handren guide. Follows a shallow crack up to anchors. Trad route. 90'
  • Man's Best Friend, 5.7-- Two pitches. 180'
Man's Best Friend
Man's Best Friend
The Slab To Access the Other Climbs
The Slab To Access the Other Climbs
Crusty Creatures, 5.7 (Paislie Pockets, 5.7+ PG)
Crusty Creatures, 5.7 (Paislie Pockets, 5.7+ PG)

Red Tape

Wait at least 24 hours after a rain before climbing to avoid damaging the rock and incurring the wrath of the climbing community.

There is a daily entrance fee of $15 per vehicle (2018). Annual and interagency passes are available (the Interagency Pass, AKA the America the Beautiful Pass, grants access to all federal fee areas for a year).

Hours the Scenic Drive is open:

13-Mile Scenic Drive 

November through February 6 a.m. to 5 p.m.
March  6 a.m. to 7 p.m.
April through September 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.
October  6 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Note: these hours are subject to change.  To be safe and sure, contact the park before visiting.
The BLM (the agency that manages this area) allows dogs in the backcountry. Please keep them leashed and pick up their feces.


When to Climb

All year-- morning shade and afternoon sun.


There are no campgrounds off the Scenic Drive in RRCNCA. There is a campground outside it, though; see here for more details.



Children refers to the set of objects that logically fall under a given object. For example, the Aconcagua mountain page is a child of the 'Aconcagua Group' and the 'Seven Summits.' The Aconcagua mountain itself has many routes, photos, and trip reports as children.