Elevation: 8,000 ft
GPS: 9.088, 38.797 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
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Shared By: nicojah Parco on Apr 12, 2013
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Ethiopia's first Sport Climbing Crag, Amora Gedel (Hawk's Cliff) is nearly 500 meters wide and 50 meters high and has very easy access from Addis Ababa. The rock is basalt and offers sport, mixed and traditional climbs. All routes published here have bolted anchors, some have chains, some have rope anchors. See each route description for more info.

The entire cliff is in the shade after midday, and the quality of the rock is high with few broken pieces and weak flakes. There are some plants growing on the rock as well as lichen, but as the rock sees more traffic, the plants will disappear.

There is a small village called Kile above the cliff (20 minute vertical hike from the climbs) where climbers can camp with a local family for 40 birr per tent or if you carry your own water, you can camp below the cliff at the big fig tree for free. The village has access to clean water from a nearby well and pump. In Kile, climbers can also purchase local bread (injera), bottled beer, and other delights.

Please respect the local community, and stay on the trails as the farmers are growing wheat/sorghum in the field at the foot of the wall. As more and more people visit this crag, the locals will become more in tune with rock climbing. Donating old equipment is a fine way to support their interest to safely climb their own walls, however please donate equipment that is secure, especially when it comes to harnesses & ropes.

In May 2017, climbers reached a new agreement with Alemayu, and signed a contract at the Kaakoo kebele administrative office (Kile is one of four villages in the kebele).

The new agreement states that Alemayu will be payed 2200 ETB yearly. This covers:
-Unlimited access to the cliff.
-He is responsible for our safety when it comes to rock throwing.
-He will clear the base of the cliff from vegetation after each rainy season.
The payment will be in to parts: the first after the base have been cleared, the second six months after.


The agreement was signed in the presence or the deputy administrative head of the kebele, and if there are any violations of the agreement we can bring this directly to the kebele.
The money for the fee will be covered by a 200 ETB membership fee to the Addis Ababa Rock Climbing Club (AARCC)*. Any surplus funds can be used to aid the Kaakoo community, or otherwise in ways the club sees fit to promote climbing in Addis Ababa and Ethiopia. It should also be noted that we are allowed to park in the kebele compound, located on the left a few hundred meters after the telecast and the sharp, left turn.

Currently a paved road is under construction, connecting Addis Ababa and the Observatory.

  • AARCC is so far an informal gathering of climbers that share the joy of climbing; at Amora Gedel, Juventus Sports Club and elsewhere in Ethiopia.
Efforts are on the way to make the club a licensed, legal body under Ethiopian law. At the time of this writing, the Climbing CLub was head by Alexander Sellerholm. If you are really going to visit, you should join the FB group here: facebook.com/groups/1198223…

Be aware that Ethiopia's rainy season usually extends from mid May to mid September. Climbing days are to be had if you wake up early, in June and in September. In July and August it rarely stops raining long enough for things to dry.

Route creation began back in April 2013 and continues today. A PDF guidebook was created in 2016 and can been seen and downloaded here:


For more info about this wall and other climbing spots around Ethiopia, contact me at nico.parco@gmail.com.

Also read more about the history of this place here: nicoparco.com/rock-climbing…

Getting There

Go to the Farensay neighborhood in the northeast quadrant of Addis Ababa. Take the Farensay road all the way to the end, where minibuses, mid-sized buses and taxis are waiting in a dirt plaza. (This is your last chance to buy fruit, bread, etc.) Turn left and begin driving up the mountain. After a few hundred meters, you will go beyond the houses of the city on a windy dirt road and be surrounded by eucalyptus trees. Stay left when the road forks at a small rock quarry/gravel production. Continue up the road, at the top of the first hill, you can leave the main road which bends left, and go straight through another opening in the middle of an old quarry. Here you can park or continue straight through the work site another 300 meters on a road with pretty bad cobbles. If you continue, park at the bend in front of a small creek. From this point expect to walk for at least 30 minutes to get to the base of the cliff.

(If you take a taxi you may have to walk from the bus and taxi dirt plaza below. If so, expect about 2+ km more walking to get to the above described parking)

On foot, continue walking up the road. As you gain elevation, you might see what appears to be a very big cliff straight in front of you. I say MIGHT because these are eucalyptus forests and whether or not they are felled you will see what you see... Anyway Amora Gedel is literally straight ahead up the valley 1.5km. The rock faces east. There are two trails, the main one that goes to the top of the cliff up to the village Kile, and the other to the bottom. Please walk around farmers' plots and respect the locals' animals.

In 2013, taxi prices from the Bole Airport area are some 200 birr to the bus/taxi plaza and you can usually negotiate about 150 birr back to Bole. If you're taking the taxi, you can try to hitch hike up the mountain.

The dirt road that bends left also leads up to Kile village in a roundabout way. The road was regraded in 2015 and is in pretty good shape. Continue past the road that leads down to Gabriel Church and park next to someone's house. From there, walk east to the obvious cliff top, and you're still looking at 20 minutes to get to the base, but you can easily find Alemayu the farmer and buy beer!

33 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at Amora Gedel (Addis Ababa)

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
Easy Eshi
Sport 2 pitches
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
Tenish Tenish
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
Basque Arete
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Easy Eshi
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Sport 2 pitches
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Sport
Tenish Tenish
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Sport
Basque Arete
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c Sport
More Classic Climbs in Amora Gedel (Addis Ababa) »

Sun & Shade

Weather Averages

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Prime Climbing Season
Leo Paik
Westminster, Colorado
Leo Paik   Westminster, Colorado  
Interestingly, this seems reminiscent of North Table Mountain in Golden, Colorado...but it seems bigger. May 8, 2013
It is crimp city on vegetated and licheny holds on generally sound basalt. The approach is longer than 15 minutes and it is crucial to take along some locals who will dissuade the cute kids from tossing rocks off the top. Don't even think about climbing here without a helmet unless you have someone on top controlling the rock toss competition by local kids. Though this is addis ababa, this is "out in the country side" compared to Addis. Expect extremely sporty bolt spacing. Nov 15, 2014
nicojah Parco
Bogotá Colombia
nicojah Parco   Bogotá Colombia
In 2+ years there has been only one incident of rock throwing. Let's not generalize. The crag is safe, villagers are friendly. Having somebody who can speak a little bit of the language is always helpful. Melkam Climbing!!! Nov 25, 2014
As of today since these last post on the rock throwing, there has only been one other rock throwing incident this was from kids that most likely came from the city. Previous rock throwing was from the locals. Since we have instituted the 5 birr per person we haven't had any problems. So in order to keep good relations with locals make sure to contribute when Alemayu or his kids come to collect. Mar 21, 2016
nicojah Parco
Bogotá Colombia
nicojah Parco   Bogotá Colombia
The Amora Gedel small but proud climber-community in Ethiopia is excited to share this short film about Amora Gedel (Ethiopia's first sport climbing crag) to the general public.

vimeo.com/158669531 Oct 23, 2016
A few tips on how to get there not mentioned by Nico:
The little village to drive to from Gurara (where you and your vehicle leave the pavement and start up the dirt road) is called Akako. Most taxis should be able to drive all the way. Def the way to go. The road has been improved incredibly since the original entry. The road is better and the popular routes are cleaner. Nov 10, 2018