Rock climbing on Mt Lemmon, Tucson, AZ

Heading down to the crag from Windy Point.

These little Arizona boys haven't seen snow many times in their lives. It was a real treat to see their enthousiasm! 

Snow ball fights with the girls!

What an incredible view we had from our climbing spot!

Look at the scales on that rock! So fun to climb!

That view!!!

Antonio, Mara and JF cleaning the route from the top.

I love seeing my girls develop a relationship with these sweet boys!

Mount Lemmon towers over Tucson at an elevation of 9,150 feet. That means that when it rains in town, it snows on top of the mountain. That also means that many Mexicans pack their family in the car, cross the border and drive all the way up to Mount Lemmon to go play in snow. It is quite the sight to see all these cars driving down with snowmen built on their hoods (it seems like that's what you do...). Mount Lemmon is a prized destination for road bikers (think climbing all the way to the top and riding down!) and rock climbers alike (there are over a thousand routes on the mountain!). 

When we arrived at Windy Point (a little over 6,000 feet), the parking lot was packed with people, but Antonio knew of the perfect crag, just inches away from selfie sticks and the rowdy crowd. We spent a memorable afternoon there and left just in time to witness another amazing Tucson sunset on our drive down the mountain.

Starting the year right!

Raphael did his first two boulder problems!!

Little bro was quite happy to rock hop around the boulder

All the kids had a blast and were able to top it out.

I did it too... many times!

The plan was to go set up a few ropes at Hidden Jewel on Mount Lemmon, but after a pretty steep climb and lots and lots of scouting, Antonio deemed the place not safe enough to go with a bunch of kids, so we headed back down and decided to go back to the Hairpin boulders sector where we bouldered last time. It was the perfect place to cool down and enjoy the end of the day.

Bouldering in Tanque Verde, Mount Lemmon, Tucson, AZ

The girls couldn't wait to try their new crashpad!

Jump down, I got you!

Sisters helping sisters!

The girls paid attention to Pascale's every move...

She topped out on the first try!

Inspired, Mara got to work.

It is so fun to climb with experienced climbers. They are just beautiful to watch!

Lunch in our little paradise.

Pascale showing the girls another bouldering problem

This little guy has some great genetic!

I love this sweet family!

When we left our friends' home on Sunday morning, it was just above 0 degrees... We put on longjohns and layers of wool  and headed out to Mount Lemmon. By the time we reached Marble Cake Boulder, we had striped down to our t-shirts! The sun was glorious and the place where we set upvlooked like an oasis in the middle of a canyon.

We are new to bouldering and it is hard work! It is also quite different to not be ropped in and to feel *very* high (even if you're not that high). Most of us chickened out and did not top out any problem, but it is still fun to work on them. It was great to see how determined our kids were to figure them out, how they helped and spotted each other, how they moved the crashpads around depending on where the climber was, as they had seen many times in rock climbing movies... They worked hard!