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Magic Smelly Poodle

5.11 R, Trad, 300 ft (91 m), 4 pitches,  Avg: 3 from 1 vote
FA: Niels Tietze, Nicojah, Mathiue Spiderman, Captain Habesha
International > Africa > Ethiopia > Gheralta Range Koraro…

Description

Approach: Hike up the gully going up the right side of the tower.

After scrambling, you reach P1, the first section of vertical rock, here rope-up is recommended but not completely necessary. Climb 15-20m and you reach a long obvious chimney with a dead end.

The next pitch (P2) starts at the end of the chimney. Climb up the chimney and to an superb obvious handcrack up to an alcove.

P3: Climbs out of the alcove up and to climber's right until you reach a big ledge. Short pitch.

P4: The crux pitch. Follows face and crack climbing to the top of the tower. The rock is less reliable on this pitch... crux at the top below the tower's summit.

Should be some gear on the tower to rap off.

Read about this climb and two others in Gheralta Valley here: nicoparco.com/ethiopia-rock…

Location

These towers are located about 10km before the Koraro Spires on the same road out of Megab leading to Koraro and beyond in the heart of Tigray ahd the Gheralta Massif.

The Abuna Yemata Church is possibly the most visited church in the valley.

Magic Smelly Poodle is located on the backside (relative to your approach) of the smaller (on the left) of the two towers at Abuna Yemata Guh.

Have a local to negotiate with priests who will want to charge you to climb the tower the same price as visiting the church (100 birr per person). In theory you shouldn't pay... but if you do, make sure you go visit the church next door. It's worth it.

Protection

Gear: singles of .3-.5 , doubles to #3. Nuts.

Photos [Hide ALL Photos]

This line goes up around to the back of smaller tower (left). Local priests won't allowe climbers to attempt the larget tower.
[Hide Photo] This line goes up around to the back of smaller tower (left). Local priests won't allowe climbers to attempt the larget tower.
The Smaller Abuna Yemata Tower!
[Hide Photo] The Smaller Abuna Yemata Tower!
climber on P4. starts off in a crack and goes to face climbing and then another, fragile crack to the top! crux pitch
[Hide Photo] climber on P4. starts off in a crack and goes to face climbing and then another, fragile crack to the top! crux pitch
bottom of P4 on the big ledge
[Hide Photo] bottom of P4 on the big ledge
P2/ the handcrack that leads to the alcove
[Hide Photo] P2/ the handcrack that leads to the alcove
P2/ the chimney to the handcrack
[Hide Photo] P2/ the chimney to the handcrack

Comments [Hide ALL Comments]

James Garrett
Salt Lake City, UT
[Hide Comment] This route recently saw a probable second ascent by Niels who again led everything and Timmy O'Neill. Neither felt it was PG, even R is a stretch.... X seems to be more appropriate. A few of us watched from afar from Abuna Yemata. No bolted anchors necessitated a more complicated and time consuming descent than ascent. Sounds pretty scary:)! Sep 13, 2016
Nico Jah
Mojab
  5.11
[Hide Comment] Oh wow! Thanks for the update. It's hard to believe he did that onsight and pulled us, his three devoted fans, to the top. I can't wait to hear more about it. Whenever people ask me about climbing in Gheralta, I send them to that tower. I thought with the right gear including some large cams it could be protected Sep 14, 2016