Rock Climbing

Skylar Christian works out the moves on the Roach (5.11b), Deep Creek. – Benjamin Boldt Photography

Riverside State Park contains two of the best climbing areas in Eastern Washington. Deep Creek is a narrow basalt canyon with a seasonal creek that appears and disappears as you walk through the canyon.

Deep Creek

Deep Creek is a narrow basalt canyon with a seasonal creek that appears and disappears as you walk through the canyon. It’s sport climbing is legend in the region. One prominent feature, the pit, is known for having some of the hardest routes in the area with most routes in the canyon graded 5.11 and higher. The Creek also features a network of hiking and mountain bike trails, with a fantastic view from “the benches” atop the coulee walls, and a series of awesome hoodoos (some great for bouldering) filling the canyon as it approaches the river.

Getting to Deep Creek

Deep Creek lies one mile south of the Carlson Trailhead along the Centennial Trail, or about a one-half mile walk north of the Deep Creek Trailhead off Seven Mile Road near the ORV area. Both access points require a short walk; direct vehicle access is not available, but the approach is a breeze.

When to Go

In the spring (before June really), the canyon will remain wet, it is a creek after all. The stinging nettle and mosquitoes are not pleasant earlier in the spring, but by July the canyon is much nicer. Most people that start climbing early, climb in the pit (southwest of the parking area) until July.

Be aware, Deep Creek is a favorite spot for rattlesnakes. Please take the appropriate precautions before heading into the canyon.

For detailed info on climbing routes, driving and hiking directions and beta, visit Deep Creek Mountain Project site.

Deep Creek Story: Alex Nikolayev Climbs Quiver

Take a look as Alex Nikolayev climbs one of Spokane’s best hard climbs, Quiver. Quiver is a story from local climbing photographer Ben Boldt and Over Coffee Films.

McLellan Rocks at Fisk Property

McLellan Rocks (a misnomer due to confusion between the County Conservation area nearby) are a wonderland of Granite Formations that weave their way through an Old Pine Forest. Two hundred plus acres owned by the Washington State Parks at the Fisk Property, an undeveloped part of Riverside State Park.

The climbs are shorter from 15′ to 60′ but the quality is fantastic. Sport climbers, traditional climbers and boulders love the quality cracks, slabs and big overhangs. Lots of variety with ratings from 5.7 – 5.12.

Getting There

Head north towards the town of Nine Mile Falls and make a left on Charles Road just past the dam. You’ll pass the Riverside State Park Headquarters just across the bridge on your left. Continue 4.2 miles and turn right on South Banks Road. The road is paved then turns to dirt twelve miles in. Stay to the left as the dirt road splits to avoid driving onto private property. Continue until you see a sign for the Fisk Day Use Area. A Discover Pass is required and enforced at this parking lot.

When to Go

It can get hot at McLellan. Many people climb throughout the year, but ideal times are April through October. Most of the climbs face east or west, so some routes are better in the evening, some in the morning when its hot.

For more details on the climbing routes visit McLellan Rocks Mountain Project site.

McLellan Rocks at Fisk Property

McLellan Rocks (a misnomer due to confusion between the County Conservation area nearby) are a wonderland of Granite Formations that weave their way through an Old Pine Forest. Two hundred plus acres owned by the Washington State Parks at the Fisk Property, an undeveloped part of Riverside State Park.

The climbs are shorter from 15′ to 60′ but the quality is fantastic. Sport climbers, traditional climbers and boulders love the quality cracks, slabs and big overhangs. Lots of variety with ratings from 5.7 – 5.12.

Getting There

Head north towards the town of Nine Mile Falls and make a left on Charles Road just past the dam. You’ll pass the Riverside State Park Headquarters just across the bridge on your left. Continue 4.2 miles and turn right on South Banks Road. The road is paved then turns to dirt twelve miles in. Stay to the left as the dirt road splits to avoid driving onto private property. Continue until you see a sign for the Fisk Day Use Area. A Discover Pass is required and enforced at this parking lot.

When to Go

It can get hot at McLellan. Many people climb throughout the year, but ideal times are April through October. Most of the climbs face east or west, so some routes are better in the evening, some in the morning when its hot.

For more details on the climbing routes visit McLellan Rocks Mountain Project site.

Climbing Map in Riverside State Park

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