Route Guide    Partners    Forum    Photos    What's New    Journal        
Sign Up  |   Log In:Login with Facebook
REI Community
Oyster Dome
View Latest Posts in This Forum or All Forums
Page 1 of 1.  
Follow replies to this topic? Notify me at the top of web site.

Email me.
Nov 14, 2013
Hey everybody, I'm hunting for some information. I've heard from a few people that there are some bolted lines on Oyster Dome, but am having a hard time finding much beyond that. There's this high quality (jokes) topo on , but I'm looking for some better descriptions. What guidebook should I be searching for? Or does someone have this already pieced together, and is just waiting to add the info on mp? Orphaned
Joined Jul 9, 2007
13,900 points
Nov 14, 2013
It is generally refered to as the Bat Caves when talking about climbing. Never climbed there myself, but here is some info on summit post. Summit post Bat Caves Daniel Coltrane
From Seattle, WA
Joined May 26, 2010
356 points
Nov 14, 2013
Rock Climbing Photo: Angel's Crest
I was searching for some info on that too a couple years ago. I even hiked to the top with ropes to rapp it, but didn't end up doing it. The rock looked a little chossy and I also ready the routes were pretty stiff, I think in the high 11's or 12's. Aaron O
From Seattle, WA
Joined Apr 14, 2011
13 points
Nov 14, 2013
There is an old guidebook written by Jason Henrie in the 90s that has some information, but is tough to track down. I think the WWU OC has (had?) one, or maybe the WWU Library.

EDIT: Here they call it A Climber's Guide to Bellingham Rock! (1997) and include a bit of additional information. Good luck.
Joined Jun 23, 2011
83 points
Nov 23, 2013
Rock Climbing Photo:  
There are three guidebooks, the one you named being the most current and hardest to find. One of the two previous was dedicated to just the Bat Caves--that one is available at the downtown branch of the Bellingham public library. The are gets little traffic, the rock is sharp and some of the anchors are funky (Kris' Crack). Most of the routes, if I remember, are 5.10-11. Of course there is Meltdown, the 12d beast running the saw-toothed arete... michael faith
From Bellingham, WA
Joined Jun 6, 2011
762 points
Nov 25, 2013
I was actually up there about 2 years. We checked out meltdown and a 3 pitch route to the climbers left. The first pitch was super over grown, but after that it was pretty clean. I think it' was 5.9-11c-10c. Good route though! We also found two very old school REI biners on the anchors too. bmxanddie
From Seattle, WA
Joined Jan 17, 2012
115 points
Nov 25, 2013
Rock Climbing Photo: Figures on a Landscape
I climbed there a few days this past year, mostly on the upper terraces. The routes are awesome; I was mostly just doing mini traxion laps but it was a blast. A couple words of advice: don't climb there right after the rain. The rock is already pretty flakey on some of the routes, and is liable to blow if it's at all soggy (sandstone), plus the moss and lichen can be bad, though I cleaned up the holds on a couple of the shadiest and most overgrown routes. Consider bringing a couple of bolt hangers and nuts as there are a couple anchors where they are missing, though these are the minority. Best additional advice: Approach from the Samish Overlook area, not from Chuckanut drive. Decent driving directions are posted here: overlook but you're on your own for trail directions (take some horse trail followed by max's shortcut, then cut a hard left at a wetland/lake)… Google Earth is your friend if you get lost. Twinboas
From Bellingham, WA
Joined Apr 23, 2013
332 points
Nov 28, 2013
WARNING: The word is many of those bolts were placed by someone who used many hardware store bolts that were not rated for climbing. Do not trust any bolts there. It is sandstone in a marine environment and these have not been actively maintained. You could use rigging rope off of trees to top-rope off the ledges on the summit. There is also potential for some trad there. The bat caves are closed to protect the bats so approaching from the top is probably better too.

There is lots of potential there and they may have a copy of the old guide book at Backcountry Essentials or at The Alpine Institute in the admin office.

Governor Lister cliff off chuckanut has been re-bolted in recent years and has some decent little climbs. The best climbing in the region is Mt. Erie or Squamish. Good Luck!
From Bend
Joined Nov 27, 2012
0 points
Dec 11, 2013
Thought I would chime in here since I was involved with the route development at the Bat Caves back in the mid 90's. Glad to hear at least a few people have gotten up there! I always thought it was a worthwhile crag that deserved more traffic but the few times I've been up there in the past ten years or so it didn't seem like things got climbed all that much. Ultimately it's not as close to B'ham as you'd think given the drive and hike time so I can see why people would go elsewhere.

A note about the bolts: to my knowledge (as far as I can remember) we used 3/8x3.5 Rawl 5-piece expansion bolts for everything. This might not be true for 100% of the bolts since there were a few routes put up by other people, but this should be the case for the vast majority. They WERE purchased at the hardware store but that's a pretty standard bolt to use for climbing. Most of the routes were put up between 1994 and 1996 so they are coming up on 20 years old. Not sure you can expect to get a whole lot more out of most any bolts without seeing some signs of wear! (Especially in the Northwest)

Meltdown: thats cool that people have gotten on this route. It was never actually redpointed when we put it up. Me and jason were both close but never quite finished it off. Somewhere I saw mention that the second pitch as 12d, but it was never set up for lead climbing. A few bolts were put in for directionals to get down the wall and for top roping. We top roped the second pitch but there were some pretty major loose flakes/features on the upper wall that made it a little spooky to climb on. Pulling out the left side of the cave at the top of the wall is pretty exciting though! I don't think the guide book ever said the second pitch was finished...

I've been meaning to scrounge up my copy of the B'ham guidebook and maybe put some routes up on mp but just haven't gotten around to it. Sounds like many of the routes would need to be updated before they would be safe to climb on so maybe it would be better to wait...
From Bay Area, CA
Joined Mar 27, 2009
472 points

Follow replies to this topic? Notify me at the top of web site.

Email me.
Page 1 of 1.