Cowboy Up

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Cowboy Up Canyoneering Canyoning Caving
Also known as: Into and out of the Vortex.
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Cowboy Up Banner.jpg

Difficulty:‌POI 4A II PG (v4a1 II)
Raps:‌4, max ↨100ft
Rock type:Sandstone
Condition Reports:
7 Nov 2023

"we wore approach shoes for the climb. brought a single rack of .4 - 3 but in hindsight, i’d just take a #1, #2 and #3. bring a 120cm sling or cordelet

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Best season:
Not in Summer


A short and sweet Technical Adventure Route. Accesses a beautiful alcove system off the South Mesa of Cathedral Rock. Easy 5.7/5.8 climbing to approach.


Take the Mace climbers approach from Easy Breezy Trail to the south end of South Mesa. Scramble up in to second gulley where two pitches of climbing start.

Pitch 1 80 ft 5.7 0.5-3 mixed with bolts.

Pitch 2 30 ft 5.8 0.75 cam and bolts.

Scramble 3rd class to Summit.

Down climb 40ft to Northwestern ledge to find R1 on prominent smooth slick rock.


R1 100ft bolt station just above keyhole saddle. Rappel down past the saddle, making sure to stay right, towards Verde Valley School road (when facing the wall you’re rappelling down) when coming over the saddle. Do NOT go to the left. Continue past the saddle towards the trees.

Look out the window to Cathedral Saddle below to Northeast. But do NOT use this old bolt (shown in the image below) in the keyhole to rappel, the rest of the rappels are on the side where the trees are. Continue the route down the back side of cathedral.

  • caption
  • R2 50ft bolts LDC

    R3 12ft small Juniper CDC

    R4 40ft single bolt RDC


    Traverse your way back to the paths that snake their way around the base of the rock & to the “end of trail” sign at the end of Cathedral Rock hike. Follow easy signs and steps back to the parking lot.

    Red tape

    Beta sites

    Trip reports and media



    Information provided by automated processes. KML map by (unknown). Main photo by (unknown). Authors are listed in chronological order.

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