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Gain Some Elevation!

Gain Some Elevation!

Are you looking for an adrenaline rush, or maybe just a new outdoor exercise?  There’s plenty of rock climbing adventures around the Yakima Valley that might be just what you’re looking for!

Rock climbing has been popular in the Cascades since Mt. Rainier was first climbed in 1881. Not many people know that the Yakima area offers numerous opportunities for a rock climbing adventure that will test both your courage and endurance. From the Royal Columns along the White Pass Scenic Byway, to the smaller rock climbing experience near the Wilridge and Naches Heights wineries, there is a rock climbing adventure for everyone and all within 30 minutes of Downtown Yakima.



The Royal Columns are impressive volcanic andesite columns formed from the Tieton lava flow eons ago. Discovered as a rock climbing destination in the early 60’s, this is primarily crag climbing. The vertical columns are located along the White Pass Scenic Byway (Mile Post #183.5/Hwy. 12), across from Oak Creek Wildlife Feeding Area. For a list of the climbing routes and levels of difficulty, click here. Located on land administered by The Washington State Department of Fish & Wildlife, a Washington State Discover Pass is required to park at the Royal Columns. Also, please note that the Royal Columns may be seasonally closed for nesting raptors, so check for closings by calling (509) 653-2390. And here’s an idea: after your climb, head to Bron Yr Aur Brewery, just 15 minutes away in Naches to celebrate with the best local pizza and craft beer at their new brewery.



How about checking out a favorite local spot for rock climbing that is also conveniently located south of not one, but two wineries? Park at Naches Heights Vineyard and Wilridge Winery and Vineyard, and grab your gear for a short hike through Cowiche Canyon to get to this rock wall with established anchors for top rope climbing. Celebrate conquering the rock by enjoying some fine Yakima Valley wines. Relax with a picnic after the climb and be sure to check ahead, there may be live music on the winery grounds. This location is less than 20 minutes from Downtown Yakima.


Need a place to stay after an exhausting day? Grab one of the cozy cabins at Elk Ridge Campground, or you can head back into Yakima and check out one of the downtown hotel choices within walking distance of restaurants and evening entertainment.


Happy climbing!