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Routes in (1) School Gate

Above the Groove S 5.11- 6c 22 VIII+ 22 E3 5c
Blackface Arete S 5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a
Bull King Dihedral T 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
Choose Your Size T 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
Disco Fistcrack T 5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
Fight S 5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a
First Corner S 5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a
Nowhere Man S 5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a
Oh No! S 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a
Oh! S 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
Piranha S 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
Reincarnation S 5.11- 6c 22 VIII+ 22 E3 5c
Right Disco Crack T 5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b PG13
Seaface T 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
Staircase T 5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c
Stepover S 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
Stone Z S 5.11- 6c 22 VIII+ 22 E3 5c
Surprise Crack T 5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
Tiger's Tooth S 5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c
Triple Cruxes S 5.13b 8a 29 IX+ 30 E7 6c
V-Groove S 5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
Warm-up Route S 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
Elevation: 26 ft
GPS: 25.113, 121.922 Google Map · Climbing Map
Shared By: Tony B on Nov 10, 2009
Admins: Nate Ball
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Compiled from drone footage: click here
Bolt Failures - Donations Help Details


The School Gate crag is the looming, square-shaped sentinel that can be seen from across the bay. It is most people's introduction to the Dragon Cave since it has the shortest, easiest approach and contains a number of moderate trad and sport routes. It is also densely packed, allowing large groups of climbers to conveniently lay siege. You can expect there to be a huge concentration of people here from March-October. If you climb 5.12 you will find a number of great routes and won't have to cue.

While the namesake crag is the first one you encounter, there are two other distinct areas. On the ocean-side is Appentice Rock, with several short trad routes and/or high-ball problems (no anchors, easy walk-off). On the uphill-side is Disco Buttress, for which the meaning has been lost to the ages. Several high-quality sport routes between 5.10-13 are packed in all around this.

The area is mostly southeast facing, and so is pretty toasty in the summer. However, there are some routes with northerly aspects that are in the shade for most of the day. If it gets too hot, you can head out to the ocean. There is one great spot - fairly obvious - that is sheltered all around by rocks that stick up out of the ocean. Some have been known to jump off said rocks. This is about a 3-minute walk south of the crag. You'll probably be sharing the area with day-trippers and divers. The latter are the ones responsible for the red arrows on the rocks. If only I could catch one of those bastards in the act...

Japanese hornets have also been known to congregate here in the warmer months. They have even stung someone into unconsciousness - be careful! If you see them - or hear them coming in like a death-wielding drone - do your best to avoid them.

Finally, this area picks up a lot of garbage from high storm tides. Please help us by taking a little bit with you on your way out.

Getting There

Approach via the North Parking (see Area page) and head NE along the coast on a trail for maybe 10 minutes, following it until some large cliffs are seen. The first of the obviously climbable tall cliffs is a large block on your right side, called School Gate. The East and South Faces of this contain several sport and Trad lines, and along it's North face there is a protected Gully that contains a surprisingly good and long sport climb or two.

Rain & Shade

All routes get wet in the rain. All walls except north face of Disco Buttress dry quickly.

Illusion Wall is shaded from sunrise to 1pm. Disco Fistcrack start is shaded from early morning onward. Disco Buttress north face is always shaded. All other routes are in the sun until late in the afternoon.

22 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at (1) School Gate

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Anmin Deng
Panchiao, Taipei, Taiwan
Anmin Deng   Panchiao, Taipei, Taiwan
"Disco Buttress" is also known as "Human Face Cliff" among local climbers. I'd personally guessed that "El Capitan" is a much more accurate translation. Mar 24, 2012
Anmin Deng
Panchiao, Taipei, Taiwan
Anmin Deng   Panchiao, Taipei, Taiwan
The name "Apprentice Rock" should spell "Appentice". It means "an architectural structure above a gate in traditional east Asian style", instead of referring to "the relationship as Skywalker to Juda in Starwars movies". It is named after the rock shape and position, at school gate. Mar 24, 2012

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