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Shared By: Ryan Kelly on Jan 13, 2010
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Also called Na Pha Daeng (not to be confused with Pha Deang), Pha Tang is a superb cliffline offering some of the best developed rock in Laos. There are a few easier lines but most routes are in the 5.11 - 5.12+ range. The main areas here stay dry during rainfall.

Getting There

Finding Pha Tang isn't easy your first time. First step is to rent a moto, then head north on N13 for about 20 km to Pha Tang village. Continue another 2km until you see an obvious wall on your left. Head across the rice field (far more difficult than it looks), through a gate that hopefully is unlocked, across a river that is hopefully passive, and up to the wall.

Access Issues

The climbing is on farmland and you either have to walk around it from far to the south, or cross it. I had Adam (from Adam's Rock Climbing) take me there the first time and I would recommend it for all but the intrepid explorer.

Crossing the rice fields is far more difficult than it looks, those little mud banks are slippery. There may also be people working, so show some respect. There's a gate at the back of the fields that we found locked once. We had to hop a fence and bushwack through some fairly serious jungle to get there. If the farmer approaches you he'll want some cash for using his land, the fee was trivial 3000 kip or something.

Dangers and Annoyances

Aside from the usual jungle perils we found the place to be covered in leaches. These little blood suckers are smaller than your usual type, they look more like a short worm. It wasn't uncommon to find half a dozen on your feet. Just pull them off, they don't hurt but if they got enough of their anti-coagulant in you you'll bleed quite a bit for such a small wound.

13 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at Pha Tang

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
Money Can't Buy Me Love
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Money Can't Buy Me Love Sector Calcaneus
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c Sport
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Ryan Williams
London (sort of)
Ryan Williams   London (sort of)
I thought the lines here were excellent but a bit dirty. It's a real shame that Vang Vieng has about a thousand times more drinkers than it does climbers, because with some traffic this could become an excellent climbing area and an alternative to the hot and humid southern Thailand. In January, we wore hoodies and sat by a fir to keep warm at night!

If you are on a motorbike, just keep going north until you see a very obvious cliff of white limestone. It is a bit farther away from town that we were told, but just keep going. It's on the left, you can see it from the road. There was a small bamboo shelter that looked to be a makeshift truck stop. We turned left onto a dirt trail here and drove as far as the bike would take us.

Walk across the rice paddies but stay on the trails. We payed a small fee to a man who had a letter written by an English speaker. The note said that we crossed his land to get to the climbing and that he maintained the trails. I believe him because the trails were a lot more trodden than the climbing! May 31, 2010
Just climbed here for one day with a guide from Adam's Climbing School. The old man has gotten old and is not clearing the trails or collecting money anymore. The trail to the cliff is still well trodden though. The climbing I did was good, but there is definitely very little traffic so a bit dusty and lots of spider webs. It's in the shade most of the day which is nice. White limestone with some cool features, there's lots of potential for new routes, the cliff could be stacked. Dec 1, 2016