Wallula Gap Rock Climbing
|GPS:||46.037, -118.935 Google Map · Climbing Area Map|
|Page Views:||9,830 total · 211/month|
|Shared By:||Kemper Brightman on May 15, 2014|
|Admins:||Scott Coldiron, Nate Ball, Jon Nelson, Micah Klesick|
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DescriptionWallula Gap or perhaps more appropriately, "The Loo", is a basalt cliff band perched above the Columbia River a few hundred meters off the side of Highway 730. The climbs here are short, sometimes chossy and often one-move-wonders. Still, people stop by on the way to or from Portland just to stretch their legs, local college students come out to blow off steam after class or spend a lazy Sunday on the rock and locals stop by to put down a few routes after work.
Currently there are 34 routes on the lower cliff, with possibility for more development. Theres a mix of trad and sport lines ranging from 5.3 to 5.11. Conveniently, many of the trad lines share anchors with sport climbs, or are accessible from the top. Thus, a rack is not necessary, but can be worth wile if you want to mix things up. Inset bolts at the top of the cliff can be used to set up TR's if you have long webbing and don't want to lead. Most routes are between 20 and 35 feet long, so you can leave the 70m rope at home.
The upper cliff hosts several 60' routes from 5.4 to 5.9 on extremely fractured basalt entablature. There is potential for routes on this second cliff but very extensive cleaning is required. At the moment few make the trek up due to the questionable rock quality and longer approach.
When it comes to weather, the gap is almost always better than walla walla. Its not uncommon to leave Walla Walla in the rain or inversion and climb in direct sun at wallula. The west aspect of the cliff makes The Loo a perfect candidate for the sunset session on a clear afternoon. This orientation also means the area remains climbable (for the hardy) throughout the year, summer mornings and winter afternoons are the way to go if you just need to scratch the itch for real rock. The one thing that can really blow your day at wallula is the wind. Anything above 20 mph will make it hard to communicate with your belayer (even though you can practically touch them).
A Printable PDF guide can be found HERE
Getting ThereFrom Walla Walla, Drive west on HWY. 12 to intersection with HWY. 730. Continue onto HWY. 730 for about two miles untill the road starts heading due south. Pulloff on west side of road between Two Sisters and Walla Walla Yacht Club (Port Kelly). It's an easier hike to the lower cliff if you drive past the first small pullout and park in the next (farther south) pullout which is much bigger. The hike in from the 2nd pullout, which diagonals across the slope rather than going straight up, is slightly longer but causes much less erosion.
Classic Climbing Routes at Wallula Gap
Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
Days w Precip
Prime Climbing Season