5 Pitch Sport Climb - 5.9


Goat wall is a 1500 foot wall that rises up above the Methow River, just off of the valley floor, right here in Mazama. The rock is a metamorphosed, sedimentary rock and while it doesn’t fracture into clean crack systems, it does offer an abundance of edges that make this rock supremely climbable.
 
The approaches are short, and all of the climbs on the wall are bolt protected and offer rappel descents. The user-friendly nature of these climbs makes them great venues when the weather is poor in the high mountains, or when you want to spend all day climbing with a minimal approach and descent.
 
The Methow Inspiration Route is the oldest multi-pitch, bolt protected route on the wall. It offers five pitches of high-quality climbing in a lovely setting above the valley floor. The climbing is a bit harder than on Prime Rib, with most of the climbing in the 5.7-5.8 range and several sustained sections of 5.9.
 
Something many people don’t realize about Goat Wall is that it gets wonderful afternoon breezes that make temperatures pleasant, even in mid-summer when it's scorching on the valley floor.
Itinerary

The approach is relatively short and typically takes between 20-30 minutes, though the trail is steep and rocky. Trekking poles are highly recommended for approaching Goat Wall. Once at the base of the route, we will leave out packs, don rock shoes and rope up to begin the climb. The guide will carry a small pack with some water and a windbreaker and you are encouraged to stash anything you’d like in there, to enjoy the climb without a pack on. The first few pitches are more moderate and allow us to get warmed up before the climbing gets more difficult. The fourth pitch, while thankfully short, has a strenuous, steep, bouldery crux that requires some muscle and some helpful coaching. The final pitch is spectacular. Almost a full rope length, it features, steep and sustained 5.9 climbing. The best way to describe the signature pitch of this route is “never desperate, but always interesting”. From the top, we will often enjoy lunch with a great view of the valley before rappelling back down to the base of the route. A bit of scree skiing and we are back at the car.

Gear List
Skills Required
  • Climbers should know how to belay and be comfortable following rock up to 5.9.
  • We generally leave packs at the base of the climb.
  • Previous experience rappelling is helpful, though not required.
The Inspiration route generally only takes a bit more than half of a day. Often times we will finish the day out with a few pitches at Fun Rock for climbers wanting to end the day with a pump. Some great follow up climbs in the Mountains at a similar grade are the SW rib of SEWS, and the West Ridge of Paisano Pinnacle. For those that enjoyed the climbing on Goat wall, will love the long moderate route, Prime Rib. Climbers who wish to turn it up a notch should consider Sisyphus, also on Goat Wall.