Home > Profiles

Spring Rock Climbing Near Seattle

From splitter cracks to bolted slabs and overhanging endurance routes, Seattle is close to some world-class rock climbing

Seattle is close to some amazing rock climbing areas that make for a great day trip. There’s a nice variety of crags for beginners to overhanging test-pieces to splitter cracks. There are so many routes that you’ll always find something fun to climb in spring. Here are a few must-visit areas within 90 minutes of the city.

Index: One of the most popular climbing areas in the Pacific Northwest, this trad climber’s paradise is just over an hour’s drive from Seattle on Highway 2. The climbing is found around the quaint town of Index in the Skykomish River Valley. The granite and access to the climbs have led many to call Index a little Yosemite. When spring conditions line up, this is one of the best place to plug gear and jam splitters. Some classics include the two-pitch Princely Ambitions 5.9, the three-pitch Rattletale 5.10b, Perfect Pitch 5.11a and Even Steven 5.11b.

World Wall: Some of the best hard sport climbing in this part of the U.S.A. There are dozens of amazing lines from 5.9 to 5.14, most with perma-draws. You can climb here on rainy days thanks to the big overhangs. There are ground anchors because the belay ledge is sketchy, so best to not bring any dogs. Everyone brings stick-clips to stay safe. Around 45 mintues from Seattle. Classic routes include Reptiles and Amphetamines 5.9, Son of Jesus 5.10c, Megatherion 5.11b and Propaganda 5.12+.

Blackstone: This is probably the busiest crag for moderate climbers, with a high density of five-star 5.9 and 5.10 sport routes. They’re well bolted and busy, but worth the trip. Located in the North Bend area, around 45 minutes from Seattle. Some fun routes are Human Foot 5.8 sport and Stepping Stones 5.10c sport.

Buy the guidebook here.

Write-Off Rock: New to outdoor rock climbing? Then this place is for you. The approach is quick and the routes range from 5.4 to 5.9 and are bolted. The rock, like most in this area, is metamorphic. just with more slabs and slightly polished. It faces northeast, so a great morning crag. A great spot for new leaders. Around 45 minutes from Seattle. Some fun intro lines are Bottoms Up 5.7 sport and Legacy Bolt 5.8 sport.

Write-off Rock

Mount Erie: Located on Fidalgo Island above Puget Sound, this stunning crag gives nice views of the Olympic Mountains. As one of the best sunset crags on the west coast, climbers can expect classic sport and trad routes on textured and featured diorite. It’s 1.5 hours away from Seattle and the approach ranges from five five to 30 minutes. There are alos miles of hiking trails. Surely one of the best places to hang out. Check out the two pitch Zig Zag 5.7 trad, Intimadator 5.10a sport and Leathal Weapon 5.10+ sport.