Apparently, nobody goes here any more. After dropping down the gully from the rim we were faced with some hellish bushwhacking through 8ft. tall reeds and underbrush. We were able to fight our way to E-Type Jag, but most routes out here will need some significant brush clearing in order to have a place from which to belay.
Full-length pants and sleeves should be considered essential equipment for this approach, and a machete wouldn't be a bad idea either.
Are there any access issues with any of the cliffs in the upper gorge? Watts mentions in his guidebook that the Red Columns and the Ivory Coast are closed to climbing due to liability concerns of the property owners. I know this book was written a long time ago and I also know that people have climbed in these areas in recent years. What is the latest? Anyone know anything? Am I going to get shot at if I try to climb here?
I'd be interested, very interested, if I could track down a veteran of this area who would be interested and available, especially mid-week, to clean it up a bit, and climb it a bit more. I have good pruners, good loppers, a crappy machete, and a strong will, and, again, mid-week availability (and Tech-nu).
To be clear, I do NOT have any experience in the Upper Gorge. I'd like to find someone who knows the area to minimize wasting time trying to figure it all out, but I'm happy to put some work back into it...one day or two, perhaps even three...Anyone?
By Monomaniac Administrator From: Morrison, CO Apr 6, 2011
If you're serious, you might consider contacting Paul Marshall. He's an architect living in Bend. He was Mr. Upper Gorge when I was climbing there in '05. He was talking about moving back East, so he may not be in Bend anymore.
The Upper Gorge is a great crag that deserves more attention.