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Armora Gedel (Addis Ababa)

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A Supposedly Fun Climb I'll Never Climb Again TR 
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Armora Gedel (Addis Ababa)  

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Elevation: 8,000'
Location: 9.08768, 38.79739 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 2,913
Administrator: Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: nicojah on Apr 12, 2013
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Ethiopia's first Sport Climbing Crag, Armora Gedel (Hawk's Cliff) is nearly 500 meters wide and 60 meters high and has very easy access from Addis Ababa. The rock is basalt and offers sport climbs, mixed climbs and some trad climbs as well. All routes published here have bolted anchors. Please see the route descriptions for more info.

The entire cliff is in the shade after midday, and the quality of the rock is high with few broken pieces and weak flakes. There are some plants growing on the rock as well as lichen, but as the rock sees more traffic, the plants will disappear.

There is a small village called Kile above the cliff where climbers can camp with a local family for 40 birr per tent. The village has access to clean water from a nearby well and pump. In Kile, climbers can also purchase local bread (injera), bottled beer, and other delights.

Please respect the local community, and stay on the trails as the farmers are growing wheat in the field at the foot of the wall. As more and more people visit this crag, the locals will become more in tune with rock climbing. Donating old equipment is a fine way to support their interest to safely climbg their own walls, however please donate equipment that is secure, especially when it comes to harnesses & ropes.

Be aware that Ethiopia's rainy season usually extends from mid May to mid September. Climbing days are to be had all the through June and in September as well. In July and August it rarely stops raining long enough for things to dry.

For more info about this wall and other climbing spots around Ethiopia, contact me at nico.parco@gmail.com.

Getting There 

Go to the Farensay neighborhood in the northeast quadrant of Addis Ababa. Take the Farensay road all the way to the end, where minibuses, mid-sized buses and taxis are waiting in a dirt plaza. (This is your last chance to buy fruit, bread, etc.) Turn left and begin driving up the mountain. After a few hundred meters, you will go beyond the houses of the city on a windy dirt road and be surrounded by eucalyptus trees. Stay left when the road forks at a small rock quarry/gravel production. Continue up the road that will meet up with a former large work site. You can park here or continue straight through the work site on a road with really bad cobbles. If you continue, park at the bend in front of a small creek. From this point expect to walk for at least 30 minutes to get to the base of the cliff.

(If you take a taxi you may have to walk from the bus and taxi dirt plaza below. If so, expect about 2 km more walking to get to the above described parking)

On foot, continue walking up the road. As you gain elevation, you might see what appears to be a very big cliff straight in front of you. I say MIGHT because these are eucalyptus forests and whether or not they are felled you will see what you see... Anyway Armora Gedel is literally straight ahead up the valley 1.5km on the left. There are two trails, the main one that goes to the top of the cliff up to the village Kile, and the other to the bottom. Please walk around farmers' plots and respect the locals' animals.

In 2013, taxi prices from the Bole Airport area are some 200 birr to the bus/taxi plaza and you can usually negotiate about 150 birr back to Bole. If you're taking the taxi, you can try to hitchhike up the mountain.

The dirt road also leads up to Kile village in a roundabout way. you part near the church and then it's still a 20-25 minute walk over to the cliff base.

Climbing Season

Weather station 7.2 miles from here

14 Total Routes

['4 Stars',5],['3 Stars',3],['2 Stars',4],['1 Star',2],['Bomb',0]

Featured Route For Armora Gedel (Addis Ababa)
Leading, a few feet below the crux roof.

Jegna Almotem 5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b  Africa : Ethiopia : Armora Gedel (Addis Ababa)
This climb starts to the right of the big tree at the base of Tara Gaga. There is an obvious finger crack (your first piece of pro) in a sea of orange lichen. Gain a ledge and you will see the climb's first bolt. Place 2 or 3 pieces throughout the next 15-20 feet goes over steep, darker basalt with awesome formations and horizontal edges. There are some bolts and then the roof crux. Pull over the roof onto the harder, smoother orange basalt column. Three more bolts and then the anchors.Jegna Alm...[more]   Browse More Classics in International

Photos of Armora Gedel (Addis Ababa) Slideshow Add Photo
Pure Beauty!
Pure Beauty!
Sizin' up the wall.
Sizin' up the wall.
A panorama of Armora Gedel.
A panorama of Armora Gedel.
Nico & Matt considering the cliff size of Enkefet
Nico & Matt considering the cliff size of Enkefet
Left climber on Oyster Nuts, the dude on the right...
Left climber on Oyster Nuts, the dude on the right...
Sizin' up the Cliff.
Sizin' up the Cliff.
Climber on toprope going up Tara Gaga
Climber on toprope going up Tara Gaga
Bolting in Ethiopia.
Bolting in Ethiopia.
Climber on Enkefet (5.11+) on Armora Gedel.
Climber on Enkefet (5.11+) on Armora Gedel.
Part of the test crew!
Part of the test crew!
For full PDF topo contact nico.parco@gmail.com
For full PDF topo contact nico.parco@gmail.com
Local boys, future climbers!
Local boys, future climbers!

Comments on Armora Gedel (Addis Ababa) Add Comment
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By Leo Paik
From: Westminster, Colorado
May 8, 2013
Interestingly, this seems reminiscent of North Table Mountain in Golden, Colorado...but it seems bigger.
By James Garrett
Nov 15, 2014
It is crimp city on vegetated and licheny holds on generally sound basalt. The approach is longer than 15 minutes and it is crucial to take along some locals who will dissuade the cute kids from tossing rocks off the top. Don't even think about climbing here without a helmet unless you have someone on top controlling the rock toss competition by local kids. Though this is addis ababa, this is "out in the country side" compared to Addis. Expect extremely sporty bolt spacing.
By nicojah
From: Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Nov 25, 2014
In 2+ years there has been only one incident of rock throwing. Let's not generalize. The crag is safe, villagers are friendly. Having somebody who can speak a little bit of the language is always helpful. Melkam Climbing!!!
By James Garrett
Nov 25, 2014
The rock tossing comment is meant for any climbers visiting that are new to the area and not fluent in Amaric as Nico is. Rocks are more common than once in 2+ years, for sure, unfortunately.
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