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Areas in Tieton River

Bend, The 39 / 7 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 46
Cave, The 4 / 18 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 22
Chunkyard, The 0 / 11 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 11
Goose Egg Mountain 1 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 1 / 1
Honeycomb Buttress, The 0 / 1 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 1
Kloochman Rock 0 / 1 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 1
Lava Point 0 / 33 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 33
Moon Rocks 8 / 1 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 9
Oasis, The 0 / 8 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 8
Rainbow Rocks 1 / 3 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 4
Royal Columns 40 / 13 / 2 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 50
South Fork Cliff 1 / 11 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 12
Tim's Pond 3 / 1 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 4
Wild Cat Wall 9 / 4 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 10
Access Issue: Seasonal Raptor Closure Details

Description

The Tieton (Tie-eh-ton) River crags are spread out along a twenty-mile stretch of the Tieton River drainage, on the east slope of the south Cascades. Most of the crags are andesite (similar to basalt), part of a fifty-mile long flow from the ancient Goat Rocks volcano. By some accounts it's the world's longest andesite flow.

There are more than 400 routes, pretty much evenly split between trad and sport. Generally, the crags in the lower canyon (Royal Columns, the Bend, Moon Rocks) have more crack routes while the crags higher in the drainage (the Oasis, the Cave, Rainbow Rocks, Wildcat, Lava Point and South Fork) have more sport routes. Whether it's a reflection of the rock or the primary route developers, the Tieton shines at the 5.10 grade for trad routes and 5.11 grade for sport climbs.

The lower canyon is semi-arid with sagebrush, cactus and oak groves. The higher crags are in mixed forests of ponderosa pine and Douglas fir. Throughout the area, nearly every crag offers either morning or afternoon shade, and sometimes both. With a little planning, summer climbing in the Tieton can be more pleasant than in Leavenworth.

Watch for rattlesnakes in the lower canyon.

Getting There

If you're coming from Seattle or north, cross the Cascades on I-90, then take I-82 to Yakima. From Yakima, head west on Highway 12 approximately 20 miles, turning left where Highway 12 branches off of Highway 410. The first major crag (the Royal Columns) is about two miles ahead on the left, across from the Oak Creek Wildlife Area headquarters. Drive time approximately 3 hours.

From the South Sound (Tacoma and Olympia), or from Seattle to reach the upper Tieton crags, it's quicker in the summer to follow Highway 410 to Cayuse Pass, then take Highway 123 through Mt. Rainier National Park to Highway 12. Cross White Pass to the Tieton. Drive time approximately 2 and a half hours from Tacoma, even shorter to some crags.

From eastern Washington, get to Yakima, then follow the directions above.

212 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at Tieton River

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c
 53
Western Front
Trad
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
 44
The Cutting Edge
Trad
5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
 46
Mush Maker
Trad
5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
 44
X-Factor
Trad
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 41
Ed's Jam
Trad 2 pitches
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 60
Jam Exam
Trad
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 50
Inca Roads
Trad
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 23
Ring of Fire
Sport
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
 65
Orange Sunshine
Trad
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
 22
Reckoning
Trad
5.10b/c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
 10
Cat Crack
Trad
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
 33
Pure Joy
Trad
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
 22
Paul Maul
Trad
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
 26
Saint Of Circumstance
Sport
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c
 9
Aboriginal Design
Sport
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Western Front Royal Columns > Orange Sunshine area
 53
5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c Trad
The Cutting Edge Royal Columns > Orange Sunshine area
 44
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b Trad
Mush Maker Royal Columns > Main Face
 46
5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b Trad
X-Factor Royal Columns > Orange Sunshine area
 44
5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b Trad
Ed's Jam Bend > Bend Center
 41
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Trad 2 pitches
Jam Exam Royal Columns > Orange Sunshine area
 60
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Trad
Inca Roads Royal Columns > Main Face
 50
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Trad
Ring of Fire Lava Point > Dream Wall
 23
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Sport
Orange Sunshine Royal Columns > Orange Sunshine area
 65
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Trad
Reckoning Bend > Bend West
 22
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Trad
Cat Crack Wild Cat Wall
 10
5.10b/c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b Trad
Pure Joy Bend > Bend West
 33
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b Trad
Paul Maul Royal Columns > Orange Sunshine area
 22
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b Trad
Saint Of Circumstance Lava Point > Lava Wall/Deadheads
 26
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b Sport
Aboriginal Design Cave > Middle Wall
 9
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c Sport
More Classic Climbs in Tieton River »

Weather Averages

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J F M A M J J A S O N D
J F M A M J J A S O N D
sqwirll
Las Vegas
sqwirll   Las Vegas
The ratings here seem to be sanbagged a little. If you haven't climbed here then you may want to start a grade or two lower and work your way up. The grades seem to become more accurate once you get to the 5.9 and up climbing. If your crack technique sucks, then they may even feel harder. Sep 27, 2007
Bill Ballace
Pullman,WA
Bill Ballace   Pullman,WA
Quietly some of the best climbing in the state...Vantage gets gangbanged and you're likely to have Tieton all to yourself. If you are road tripping through WA Wild Cat Wall, The Bend, and South Fork are not to be missed. Jun 1, 2014
I wanted to report the washout of Wildcat Rd./NFS-1306. This is a primary access into a number of Tieton River Rocks areas including "The Caldera", "The Honeycomb Buttress", and "Wild Cat Wall".

My friend and I were headed to The Caldera for bouldering and found a cement blockade in the middle of the road at between .8 and 1.2 miles up the road (guess from google maps). Upon returning to Naches and visiting with the ranger at the NFS station, we were shown the pictures of the washout. It pretty much took the whole road at one of the creek pipe bypasses (aka not vehicle passable at all).

The ranger told us there is no money in the budget to fix the road this year or next year. So we are looking at maybe June/July 2016 for reopening of the road.

Just an FYI. Expect to require hiking your gear into the crag.

-Swithich

PS I'm going to post this on the crag pages as well as a heads up for people. Jul 9, 2014
New route!
Careless whisper 5.9+ gear tips-#1
Probably the only solid Rock in that area.
Approximately 5 miles east of white pass ski area. The obvious finger crack on the north side of the highway. Bolted anchor at the top. Jun 14, 2018
Jon Nelson
Redmond, WA
Jon Nelson   Redmond, WA  
Matt,
If your new route is not in an established area, and you'd like people to go get on it, then you should probably add the area to the appropriate region. Then add your route to that area. Jun 14, 2018
geoff georges
Seattle, Wa.
geoff georges   Seattle, Wa.
WARNING: DANGER : ALERT : WARNING : MAJOR CAR BREAK INS ARE HAPPENING ALONG HIGHWAY 12. We were one of 4 cars hit at the Bend area 7/8/2018, I don't know about other areas but many were hit at the parking on the road for Royal Columns too. Jul 9, 2018

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