HUECO TANKS, TEXAS
Perhaps no other area in the world has as many problems per square yard as Hueco Tanks State Park outside El Paso, Texas. While accessing these three jumbled mountains of porphyritic syenite might seem daunting—with mandatory reservations and tours (for two of the mountains), and a limited number of visitors per day—if you can get through the red tape, this is bouldering heaven.
SEE SPOT RUN (V6)
“A desperate start to a mortifying topout,” writes John Sherman in the Hueco Tanks Climbing and Bouldering Guide. This highball experience (20-plus feet) follows ironrock crimps up the Big Show Boulder’s chocolate stone to a long punch to the lip—or a long drop to the pads. Sherman climbed it in the late 1980s sans pads, writing of his experience, “I descend with the best case of adrenaline shakes I’ve ever had. The [spotters] haven’t budged—they’re in shock” (“Texas Tall Tales,” Climbing No. 116, Oct/Nov 1989).
Nearby classics: Nobody Here Gets Out Alive (V2), Hundred Proof Roof (V3), Baby Face (V7)
THE MELON PATCH (V0)
This vertical wall with deep, juggy huecos below the looming Indecent Exposure Buttress takes you way off the deck to to a creaky finish at 25ft. This photogenic problem may whet your appetite for the Wanker 101, a compilation of 101 “easy” problems around Hueco Tanks’ North Mountain that will thrash you by day’s end (see climbing .com/wanker101).
Nearby classics: Epilady (V1), Shaved Pits (V2), T-Bone shuffle (V4)
DIAPHANOUS SEA (V11)
This climb exemplifies the iron- rock- crimping style so prevalent at Hueco. A sitstart on a low flake leads to a lunge to a good flake, and then the exit on an ironrock face. If you’ve been putting your time in on the MoonBoard, Diaphanous Sea could go down quickly. It’s one of a number of doubledigit classics put up in Hueco by the bouldering legend Fred Nicole.
Nearby classics: Sign of the Cross (V3), Choir Boys (V7), Power of Silence (V10)