Known to Willamette Valley locals for years, The Garden is one of the state's best bouldering areas. Tucked away in the forest near Sweet Home are a few collections of gigantic boulders with many great problems and potential for many more.
The area is generally separated into two areas: the main area and the Armageddon area. The main area is more developed although there is a ton of potential at both. There is some sport climbing here as well on a few 30-50ft. cliffs.
The rock in this area is generally quite good. There are lots of slopers and the problems are similar to those found up at Squamish. The cruxes of the problems tend to come towards the top due to the sloping rounded nature of many of the boulders.
Be sure to bring some sturdy brushes when climbing here-- there is a ton of moss on the boulders and due to seeing relatively little traffic they get overgrown quickly. Somewhere underneath all the moss there are undoubtedly plenty of yet to be discovered problems.
Take Hwy. 20 East through Sweet Home. Drive through town and past the lake. Look for a sign to Quartzville and the fish hatchery and take the left turn. The parking for the main area is 4.3 miles from the turnoff. There are two prominent uphill dirt roads at about this distance; the first one goes to the Armageddon area and the second (better quality) road leads to the main area. Parking for the main area is 50m up this road at the big sweeping left turn. Take the trail down into the forest from here to reach the boulders.
Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for The Garden:
An excellent problem with a lot of movement. Works up the stand alone prow near Garden Variety. Start low and heal out right on a good ledge. From there work up to the inverted V pinch and left to the arete. From there it is a long committing move to the slopers on the top. ...[more]Browse More Classics in OR
By corvegas From: the depths of oregon Apr 28, 2006
This area is on private land be respectful. Place bolts by hand, dont leave fixed ropes. As of 4/10 ago someone had left their rope fixed in the main area for a while. If your cleaning, at least clean your rope when you leave.
Also dont place bolts where they dont need to be, they will probably wind up getting chopped.
question: is anyone aware of a guide book for Oregon bouldering locations (ie The Garden and Carver)??? I've checked local climbing gyms and the REI's around the area to find a possible Oregon bouldering book, have havent found anything......
I'll approve the comments regarding the "real" names and grades for these problems, with one piece of Administrator advice:
If you write an "underground" guidebook, don't get all annoyed when people don't know about it and follow its conventions. Lots of people climb at The Garden who are totally unaware of any guidebooks, especially undergound/secret/low-profile ones..
So....I'm not sure that this whole naming thing really matters too much. I'm thinking one of the cool things about this place is that the problems are frequently reinvented as they get done, moss over, then get cleaned and done again. I always sort of thought a guide would screw that up. That said i do have some old topos if somebody has an interest. eb
Well Mr PDub Trad, has forgotten to leave out a few MAJOR details I told him over on CascadeClimbers.com... Since I dont want hide like Mr. PDub, My name is Douglas Foley, I climbed at what he calls "The Garden" exstensivly through out the late 70's and early 80's. We called it The Enchanted Forest. We cleaned and scrubbed hundreds of problems, some I would say were quite hard for the time. So don't listen to his psyco diatribe. I made it clear to him I have no desire to help him in his quest due too his extremly poor attititude but if there is any one else out there that cares to ask me any questions about the good old days in the Enchanted Forest feel free to contact me. I'm trying to remember the few problems we acctually named, most of these being the hard ones.
I agree with eb, route names and fa are not so important here. Boulder problems in the NW are perennially fa'd. There is one rule though that all must abide - all problems existing or to be scrubbed are V2.
Wow, I had no idea this place had so much "history." I attended UO and lived in Eugene from 98-03. I took a wrong turn once and stumbled on this place totally by accident. Didn't even have climbing shoes/gear with me at the time. Just by walking around, I could tell that others had been there before me. I let some of my buds in Eugene know about it and we climbed there sporadically for three or four years. I think I must have climbed there dozens of times and I only ever saw outher people like five times. Very mellow place. I guess it's more travelled now that bouldering is cool.
...And this is my personal take, feel free to be offended...it's just bouldering. Do you really, really need your name attached to your "FA"? If it's that important to you, ok. Most of the time, the arguing over who did what when just screams of ego. In the big picture, it's not important...
Just my opinion...but, I think a guidebook to this place would be great if it had two main goals. Preserving access to the Garden should be first and foremost; this is the best bouldering within 100 miles of PDX or Eugene (that I know of...) and access should be the first concern. Second, people should be aware of where the quality problems are. Does the lowball buttscraper V5+ that only two people can do really need to be scrubbed off again? Or should it fade into moss? One the other hand, the quality lines should be made available to all.
Hey there, I'm interested in contributing to a guide, I've climbed many of the problems/ have potentially FA'd some hard stuff w/ confirmation from the Old strong dudes here in corvallis. My email is Galen.email@example.com I'd be down to meet up sometime. I have a large volume of information in hard copy.
Does anyone know what the hanging arete/prow about 30 yards up the hill from Octernal(?) is? It has a diamond shape and is very aesthetic. One of the best looking lines there. It looked freshly cleaned early in the summer. I wasn't able to send, it seemed quite hard (double digits I'm guessing) from the sit.