Bouldering near Hood River, Oregon last week was great. We got out on some very nice boulders and had a great afternoon. If you haven’t explored the Hood River vicinity it’s definitely worth the short drive from Portland to climb here. If you are tired of the usual areas some of the stone near the heart of the Columbia River Gorge makes for some great bouldering. Most of the areas are smaller in size than some of the farther western Gorge areas but you can find boulders as high as 18′ at more than one spot out here.
A small group of climbers visited here in 2008, then much of the area went into obscurity, only being visited a little over the last half a decade. I had a great time on some of the lines like Streamliner, a V5 with a nice V7 variation that utilizes a sit-start on a micro-razor crimp. This is my fourth trip out to this spot and it’s been fantastic being able to develop some of the rock here. All in all there are a good group of boulders in one consolidated area here and 7 similar areas within a short drive of this spot. It’s typically cooler here than in PDX so it’s nice to escape hot summer heat.
The rock type here is a smooth and polished volcanic varietal that has features that are baby smooth and others that are moderately sharp and provide good purchase. I’ve found several other spots like this nearby that I think can augment this area as a alternate weekend spot for climbers in Northwest Oregon.
A Bend climber ticked off a few of the really nice classics here back in 2009. A few Hood River locals have also been active sending some of the obvious lines on the boulders. A friend of mine from Portland has also been visiting here and putting up some great lines. I think there are some great opportunities in this part of Oregon for any motivated climbers wanting to send some new lines and check out new rock. I know I’ll be counting the days until my next visit here and to the front of the line for a Double Mountain IPA in town.