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Beacon Rock: Southeast Face

Columbia River Gorge, Washington

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Beacon Rock: Southeast Face

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  • Beacon Rock from the parking lot.- Beacon Rock: Southeast Face
  • Approach hike.- Beacon Rock: Southeast Face
  • Beacon Rock from the approach.- Beacon Rock: Southeast Face
  • Beacon Rock from the approach.- Beacon Rock: Southeast Face
  • Beacon Rock from the approach.- Beacon Rock: Southeast Face
  • Pitch 1.- Beacon Rock: Southeast Face
  • Pitch 1.- Beacon Rock: Southeast Face
  • Columbia River backdrop.- Beacon Rock: Southeast Face
  • Pitch 3.- Beacon Rock: Southeast Face
  • One of the many large belay stations.- Beacon Rock: Southeast Face
  • View east toward Bonneville Dam.- Beacon Rock: Southeast Face
  • Pitch 5.- Beacon Rock: Southeast Face
  • Columbia River below.- Beacon Rock: Southeast Face
  • Columbia River below.- Beacon Rock: Southeast Face
  • Amazing trail structures on the hike down.- Beacon Rock: Southeast Face
  • Climbing Beacon Rock.- Beacon Rock: Southeast Face
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Classic route. Close to Portland. Multiple pitches. Views of the Columbia River Gorge.
Cons: 
Long waits if others are on route. Patches of grass in the middle of pitches.
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Region:
Columbia River Gorge, WA
Access: 
Hike-in
Climbing:
Sport climbing, Trad climbing
Congestion: 
High
Pets allowed: 
No
Site characteristics: Drinking water: 
Unfrozen water
Recommended Equipment:
Harness / rope / anchors, Helmets
Class / Rating: 
5.7 - 5.13a
Highest point: 
848.00 ft (258.47 m)
Distance: 
0.00 mi (0.00 km)
Alpine climbing NCCS rating: 
Grade III
Net Elevation Gain: 
628.00 ft (191.41 m)
Number of pitches: 
6
Year round: 
Yes
Parking Pass: 
State Park Fee
Permit required: 
No
Preferable Season(s):
Spring, Summer, Fall
Primary aspect: 
South facing
Total Distance: 
0.00 mi (0.00 km)
Total elevation gain: 
628.00 ft (191.41 m)
Trailhead Elevation: 
220.00 ft (67.06 m)
Typically multi-day: 
No
Current Local Weather:
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Adventure Description

Adventure Description

Sponsored Contributor

As one of the most iconic rock formations in the Columbia River Gorge, Beacon Rock can be seen and recognized from miles away. With its proximity to the Portland metro area, a diverse offering of climbing routes, and breathtaking views up and down the Gorge, it is not uncommon to see scores of climbers on the pinnacle, especially during the popular summer season. The moderate routes, including the very popular Southeast Corner (5.7), are often backed up all day long on the weekend. However, the area offers many routes that are considered more challenging and technical. With more than 50 routes graded 5.10 or higher and a superior quality rock than other features in the Gorge, Beacon Rock is truly a premier crag for advanced traditional climbers.

The nearly 850-foot basalt monolith is the remnant of a young volcano that erupted many millennia ago. Beacon Rock was used as a marker for the end of the Columbia River’s tidal influence of the Pacific Ocean by both the Lewis and Clark expedition as well as Native Americans for centuries before them. First climbed in 1901, it was soon thereafter purchased by Henry J. Biddle, who constructed the iconic trail comprised of bridges, handrails and a great number of switchbacks. After topping out on the multi-pitch routes, climbers join with hikers to descend the trail that has been preserved to this day.

While there are routes on nearly all faces, check with local authorities for current closures. The south face is often closed in spring and early summer for peregrine falcon nesting. Other areas are currently closed for species preservation and danger from an overhanging tree.

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Location + Directions

Location + Directions

Nearby Camping + Lodging

(33 within a 30 mile radius)

Nearby Adventures

(174 within a 30 mile radius)

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Adventure Community

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3 Members
Who's Done It
1 Members
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23 Adventures Explored
6 Adventures Published

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