Saturday, January 26, 2008

East Cochise Stronghold

We decided to head further south, to the Dragoon Mountains, so called for the soldiers who were sent to hunt down the renegade Chiracahua Apaches. Cochise Stronghold, obviously, is named for the Apache warrior Cochise, as he was able to escape the US military by hiding out in the maze of valleys and mountains. It's also the pride of Arizona climbing, so great prized by southern Arizona climbers that only a few of the many routes done here are documented. The rest they leave up to your ingenuity to find or perhaps you can have your own adventure.
I decided to climb the route "Nightstalker" on Owl Rock (shown to the left). There are only 4 bolts on the entire route, which is a little sparse. I was able to get in some good gear and tie of 3 or 4 chickenheads to protect the rest of the route. It's a great route and I recommend it if you're in the area.
We only stayed in the east a few days because the sun went over the hill pretty early in the day which made for some cold late afternoons and nights. Now we are in the west, which has sun longer in the day and thus it's much warmer.

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