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Elevation: 329 ft
GPS: 45.55048, -122.56479
Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 213,849 total · 970/month
Shared By: Peter Franzen on Jan 22, 2006 · Updates
Admins: Roberta Zouain, Kristin Tippey, Micah Klesick, Nate Ball

Description Suggest change

Rocky Butte is perhaps Portland¬ís most accessible crag. Although accessible, it is not a beginner-level crag. The approach for most of the climbs puts you at the top of the crag where you may need intermediate to advanced skills in order to build an anchor with gear, use trees for anchors, rappel, ascend a rope, and even belay from above the climber. Established anchors often hang over edges where they are hard to access and even more difficult on which to establish a rappel and/or top rope anchor. Walking near the top to set up climbs without a safety line is not recommended. Communication between people at the top and bottom can be difficult due to many factors. 

Rocky Butte is located in Northeast Portland near I-205. Although noisy, somewhat overgrown, and often dirty it is a worthy crag for the happy-hour crowd or a quick weekend afternoon. It tends to be pretty damp during the rainy season but is quite climbable during the rest of the year.

There are reports of lots of broken glass here, including on some of the climbing holds. Pack some out if possible, and use care for your hands and feet!

Getting There Suggest change

To reach the climbing area take I-84 East from downtown to the 82nd street exit. Drive North on 82nd street to Freemont Street and take a right. Freemont will turn into 91st Street and will lead to Rocky Butte Rd, which loops around the top of the butte. There will be red numbered signs on the trees which designate the various wall locations. Park at the gravel pullouts along the street at the numbered sign that is relevant to the area you are looking for. The cliffs lie just beyond the trees to the Northeast. Most of the climbs here will require that you rappel in, however there are 4th class scrambles in several locations to get up and down. This option will ensure that you'll not run into homeless people that sometimes camp here, mostly in the lower area.  Alternatively, you can follow the trail Southeast past Poodle Pinnacle which head to the bottom and loop back Northwest towards the Grotto. 

You can also access from the bottom by heading towards the Grotto, but continuing on to 92nd and Skidmore. The start of the trail is easily marked by the concrete dividers that run along the turnabout. Do not park next to these dividers and instead find a spot next to a house along 90th or 92nd. Once you walk straight south about 150 yards, you'll hit the main trail. If you follow this trail East, it will loop back around to the top of the crag where the Mannahouse Church sits. Along the trail, there will be climbers trails where you can walk up to various walls from the bottom, often through brushy, dirty slopes. Walking the trail will mean you'll likely encounter the homeless people that often camp here.

169 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at Rocky Butte

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 22
Blueberry Jam
Trad, TR
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a PG13
 11
Dream Weaver
Trad, TR
5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a PG13
 4
Tiger Pause
Trad, TR
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 18
Mind Games
Trad, TR
5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b
 22
Blackberry Jam
Trad, TR
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
 10
Interproximal
Trad, TR
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
 15
Emotional Rescue
Sport, TR
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b
 18
Birds of Paradise
Trad, TR
5.11- 6c 22 VIII- 22 E3 5c
 13
Rise Up, Jay's Memorial Route
Sport
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c
 9
The Big Lie
Sport
5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c
 5
Communication Breakdown
Sport
5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c
 4
Hair Shirt
Sport, TR
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a
 4
Toothpick
Trad, TR
5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a
 6
Pressure Drop
Trad
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a PG13
 4
Close to the Edge
Trad, TR
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Blueberry Jam j. Toothpick Wall
 22
5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Trad, TR
Dream Weaver e. Bill's Buttress
 11
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a PG13 Trad, TR
Tiger Pause e. Bill's Buttress
 4
5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a PG13 Trad, TR
Mind Games f. Wizard Wall
 18
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Trad, TR
Blackberry Jam k. Breakfast Cracks
 22
5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b Trad, TR
Interproximal j. Toothpick Wall
 10
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Trad, TR
Emotional Rescue h. Warrior Wall
 15
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b Sport, TR
Birds of Paradise k. Breakfast Cracks
 18
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b Trad, TR
Rise Up, Jay's Memorial Route l. Wall of Shadows
 13
5.11- 6c 22 VIII- 22 E3 5c Sport
The Big Lie j. Toothpick Wall
 9
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c Sport
Communication Breakdown l. Wall of Shadows
 5
5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c Sport
Hair Shirt l. Wall of Shadows
 4
5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c Sport, TR
Toothpick j. Toothpick Wall
 4
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a Trad, TR
Pressure Drop l. Wall of Shadows
 6
5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a Trad
Close to the Edge j. Toothpick Wall
 4
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a PG13 Trad, TR
More Classic Climbs in Rocky Butte »

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