These basalt columns are on the rimrock on the West side of the river. Due to their location they receive shade almost all day and make for a great place to escape the sun.
There are a remarkable number of truly spectacular climbs here. A quick glance at the ratings of the routes in this area shows an incredible number of 4-star climbs, and everyone visiting Smith Rock owes it to him/herself to check out this area.
From the turnaround at the northern end of the parking area head East to the rim. Find a place where there are detached pillars and a rebar ladder going down a chimney. Climb down this chimney and head upriver (southeast). After crossing a large slide of small boulders you'll see the start of many pillars that are the lower gorge.
A second method of descent is my preference. This "secret entrance" once went through private property but now is owned by the park. This way also starts at the turnaround parking lot. Park and then head back up the road until you see a driveway leading to a house on the east. This house is now owned by the park. Go behind the house and through a gate. Walk along the rim for about a 100ft to find an improbable but easy 3rd class descent into the gorge.
Weather station 7.1 miles from here
86 Total Climbing Routes
['4 Stars',19],['3 Stars',50],['2 Stars',16],['1 Star',1],['Bomb',0]
Classic Climbing Routes in West Side
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in West Side
Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for West Side:
Featured Route For West Side
Catalyst (aka Child Abuse) 5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b OR
: Smith Rock
: ... : (3) Catwalk Cliff
A continuous onslaught of challenging moves lead to a thin crux just before the anchors. Catalyst climbs like a continuous series of intriguing boulder problems broken by ledge rests. As a (sport) classic in its own right, it however feels to me to be a bit close to the ultra-classic Cruel Sister (trad) on the right. ...[more] Browse More Classics in OR