Back to Banks Lake

Rock climbing in the summer can be brutal. The sun turns any rock face into a giant skillet, frying whoever decides to climb it. So to avoid the summer heat, our climbing crew chose to hit up Banks Lake in Washington.

This place is a climber’s paradise. Located near the Grand Coulee Dam, Banks Lake offers a trove of climbable rock, including bolted sport routes on Highway Rock and tons of free water soloing along the lake itself.

With a handful of climbing friends, a rented pontoon boat and a campsite just off Highway 155, we spent two days exploring the cliffs on the water’s edge. Our friend Cynthia took a ton of rad photos throughout the weekend, so without further adieu, here’s a collection of rockin’ photos (sorry, that was a super lame pun).

This is our friend, Katie (aka K2). Do I see a MTN Talk tank? (New tanks coming soon…)
If my memory is correct, which it rarely is, we had eight climbers total.
We managed to find a handful of bolted sport routes on the lake, so we broke out these bad boys!
Being so close to the water, the rock wall was cool to the touch.
Cynthia is an experienced climber and a fantastic photographer.
We managed to find three routes next to one another, so we couldn’t pass up a group shot!
Just chillin’ in the sun, reading up on the climbing routes nearby.
This cliff was just begging to be soloed! The rock was perfect and the water was deep.
Our buddy Matt is an Italian spider monkey.
We found a sweet little rock to chill on while others climbed on the wall.
This is quite possibly my favorite shot of them all. All aboard the solo train!
What’s a weekend away without a little relaxation? Gotta keep those climbing muscles rested!

If you’re looking for a perfect weekend away and you love to climb, Banks Lake is your best bet. This climbing pilgrimage has become a tradition for our climbing crew.

Have you ever been to Banks Lake or know of other places to deep water solo in the Inland Northwest? Let us know in the comments below!


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