Recommendations for the ORG

My partner and I are planning a trip to the Owen’s River Gorge in March. I’m looking for:

  • what’s the predominant style (or things to be prepared for)
  • recommendations for routes in the 12a-c range
  • best places for food in Bishop


In my experience it vert or slightly steeper, lots of flat or incut edges, very similar to Skaha.

Sorry, no route recommendations

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That’s exactly what I wanted to hear! Love Skaha!!

Yeah, Skaha is a similar style for sure, but Owens is quite a bit slicker - it’s more like basalt than the granite type that Skaha is, so it takes some getting used to.

I haven’t actually climbed that many 12s in the gorge, but a lot of 11s and it’s generally a good time. Black Hole is my semi- long term goal there (I only go once a year for a day, so i try it with low expectations).

The upper gorge is more stout in general, the middle is where the action is, and the lower is quietest.

Respect the parking and rules there- it’s private land and it matters- no camping, pack it out, check in advance for any closures or access issues.

Bring a 70m cord and lower off everything- it’s generally well bolted and the popular climbs are popular with good reason, but don’t be afraid to explore!

Edited to add: Great Basin Bakery instead of Schaats (you’ll thank me) and the brewery.

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Awesome! Thanks!!

Dilithium Crystal is a great spot for fun 12s! Do Klingon. But I’m also a Trek nerd, so go figure.
Lat Machine is supposed to be a blast, I haven’t gotten on that one yet. Such a fun crag. Beautiful mussies on the anchors.

Lots of variety in ORG, but the “slot” type holds are definitely a common theme. Nice long pitches. The rock can be very textured, and then there are these cool sections of sheared face.

Mountain Rambler Brewery for the burgers and such.
Manor Market for groceries and local faire and good meat.

Have fun!

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What do you mean by “slot type holds”? Like jams, but not cracks?

Iv’e also seen them more commonly described as pockets… my lizard brain typed slots because they’re more horizontal/elliptical and not in-cut. There’s jams in ORG for sure, but these can be anywhere from finger drag holds, to full jugs, with depth of the slot being the difficulty differentiator.

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Got it! Thanks for clarifying!

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