Elevation: 1,186 ft
GPS: 47.441, -121.668 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 690,632 total · 18,039/month
Shared By: skye h on Apr 20, 2018 · Updates
Admins: Scott Coldiron, Jon Nelson, Micah Klesick, Z Winters

Description

Exit 38, home to an abundance of sport routes, is nestled in the I-90 corridor just out of Seattle. It consists of 3 major sub-areas, each with its own parking area: Mt Washington, Deception Crags and Far Side. Each area has many small crags of metamorphic, oft-chossy rock to be found in the hills. A Discover pass is required to park at the Dirty Harry's Peak trailhead (the Far Side), the Mt Washington trailhead, and as of 2021, a portion of the parking for the Deception Crags is set aside for Discover pass holders.

Developed first by Bryan Burdo, these multitudes of cliffs would have been inaccessible thirty years ago, but first climbers' paths and then hikers' trails now lead directly and easily to each area. You won't find many trad climbs here, and very few cracks, but plenty of juggy (and steep) face climbs and a few nice slabs. Loose rock is a problem on less-visited areas, but most routes aren't as chossy as they look. Every climb was sport bolted up until recently but a several trad routes have been developed at the Far Side (mostly at Shangri-La). You also won't find hardly any multipitch climbs. The rock type (or something, since after all, Goat Wall is the same kind of stone) doesn't lend itself to 500-foot massifs, but there are one or two three-pitch outings here and there. It's a great area for your first lead, some fun experience with Washington's rhino rock, some steep face challenges or, depending, a one-hour bushwhack approach or ten minutes from the car.

Getting There

Take I-90 east from Seattle and take Exit 38. At the bottom of the exit ramp, take a right.

Mt Washington is the closest sub-area to the exit ramp. To access Mt Washington and the associated crags, take a right on SE Homestead Valley Rd, and then a right onto the next gravel road, going up a small hill to the Deception Crags & Mt Washington trailhead. (Needs Discover Pass.)

Deception Crags is the next closest sub-area. To access Deception Crags, either park in the Mt Washington trailhead area [needs Discover Pass] and hike east on the Iron Horse Trail to Deception Crags, or drive a mile further down SE Homestead Valley Rd (not specifically marked as such, it's the only road though), and park in one of the two pullouts on the left side of the road before you drive past Change Creek. The trail that leads through the Deception Glade boulders and up to the rest of the crags is just west of Change Creek.

The Far Side is the furthest area from the ramp. Follow the road all the way around, go under the I-90 overpass and park in the parking lot for the Dirty Harry's Peak trail. (Needs Discover Pass. A map at the trailhead shows the various crags.) Follow the trail or the firefighting academy road over the bridge and take a right on the trail, which leads you to the various rocks hidden in the woods.

539 Total Climbs

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Location: Exit 38 Change
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Classic Climbing Routes at Exit 38

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
 109
Kiss of the Crowbar
Sport
5.9- 5c 17 VI 16 HVS 4c
 212
Absolutely Nothing
Sport
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 141
Endless Bliss
Sport 2 pitches
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 137
Blockhead
Sport
5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a
 107
Ellie's Sweet Kiss
Sport
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 120
The Plank
Sport 3 pitches
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 103
Iguanarama
Sport
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 97
Lovey-Dovey
Sport
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 130
Old Milwaukee Road
Sport
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
 108
I Remember Drooling
Sport
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
 132
Bad Choo Choo
Sport
5.10c/d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b
 85
Big Mama
Sport
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
 111
Steep Street
Sport
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
 105
Architect Rally
Sport
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a
 93
Cultureshock
Sport
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Kiss of the Crowbar Far Side > Interstate Park > Eastern Block
 109
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b Sport
Absolutely Nothing Deception Crags > We Did Rock
 212
5.9- 5c 17 VI 16 HVS 4c Sport
Endless Bliss Far Side > Gun Show
 141
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Sport 2 pitches
Blockhead Deception Crags > We Did Rock
 137
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Sport
Ellie's Sweet Kiss Far Side > Interstate Park > Eastern Block
 107
5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a Sport
The Plank Far Side > Neverland > Lost Boys
 120
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Sport 3 pitches
Iguanarama Mt Washington > Amazonia
 103
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Sport
Lovey-Dovey Deception Crags > Substation
 97
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Sport
Old Milwaukee Road Deception Crags > Deception Wall
 130
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Sport
I Remember Drooling Mt Washington > Amazonia
 108
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Sport
Bad Choo Choo Deception Crags > We Did Rock
 132
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Sport
Big Mama Deception Crags > Nevermind Wall
 85
5.10c/d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b Sport
Steep Street Deception Crags > Nevermind Wall
 111
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c Sport
Architect Rally Deception Crags > Nevermind Wall
 105
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c Sport
Cultureshock Deception Crags > Nevermind Wall
 93
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a Sport
More Classic Climbs in Exit 38 »

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